Hermanus © cornstaruk
Locals and international tourists alike make the pilgrimage south of Cape Town to Hermanus, just a few hours' drive down the coast, to enjoy the seaside charm of the place. The town is known for its whale watching, as Southern Right Whales migrate through the area to nearby Walker Bay. Visitors are almost guaranteed a sighting of these gentle giants from the steep cliffs of Hermanus between September and October and the Two Oceans Whale Festival draws big crowds over this period. There are also opportunities to view other wildlife, including dolphins, seals, penguins, and Great White Sharks. While its most popular attraction is offshore, the town itself offers many diversions, from browsing shops and restaurants in the quaint downtown area to venturing further afield to wine farms and beaches and neighbouring towns like Stanford, Gansbaai, and Caledon. Active pursuits include horseback riding, quadbiking, hiking, sandboarding, mountain biking, kayaking and zip lines. Strolling along the cliff walk in Hermanus is a must for visitors, even if there are no whales in the bay, and book fanatics should seek out the wonderful second-hand book store in Hermanus, called Hemingways.