The Hermanus Walk is at a town famous for its champagne air, long stretches of beach, mild climate, rich floral kingdom and is the best shore-based whale-watching destination in the world. It is also described as the Riviera of the South. Walk, whales and wildflowers !
Type Self-guided walk Location Hermanus, South Africa Group size 1+ people Duration 3 nights Grading Moderate/Easy grade Day Stages 9- 25 km Distance 30-45 km (3 days) Terrain Mountain, seaside, country rd Hotels 4 star Meals Breakfast each day Cost From R6 400 per person Dates Oct – April is “High season”
With its unparalleled scenic beauty, modern infrastructure, upmarket shops and endless adventure options, it’s little wonder that Hermanus has grown in size and popularity during the last decade. Hermanus is arguably the best land-based whale watching destination in the world. Southern right whales visit Walker Bay from June through to December and can be viewed from aboard a boat, an airplane or from the shore. Hermanus has the world’s only Whale Crier who blows his kelp horn when whales are spotted from the coastal cliffs adjacent to the town centre. Hermanus is a cosmopolitan town but has retained some of its historical fisherman’s village heritage. A number of craft markets sell a range of interesting wares and create a vibrant atmosphere. The old harbour with its restored fishing boats gives a glimpse of times past. Hermanus’s two lagoons and the ocean provide a watersport paradise for kayaking, canoeing, windsurfing,etc. Shark cage diving provides an adrenaline fix for adventure lovers. Hermanus has something for everyone. Hermanus may no longer be a village, but the character and atmosphere of this vibrant town offers a lifestyle few places can match.
Beaches Long stretches of soft, white sand beaches,small rock protected coves and spectacular wave action. One of the most beautiful coastlines in South Africa. The cliff paths are unique. Whale watching Hermanus is probably the best land-based whale watching destination in the world. The whale season is from June to December “Fynbos” plants and wildlife The Cape Floral Region is the smallest but richest of the world’s 6 floral regions- no less than 9,000 species.It has been identified as one of the world’s 18 biodiversity hot spots. Nature Reserve Experience the beautiful Fernkloof Nature Reserve. Discover and learn about the various indigenous plants, animals, geology and the colourful and entertaining history of the area while enjoying the breathtaking views of the Hermanus coastline. Views Magnificent and unequalled views of Walker Bay, the Hemel en Aarde Valley and Maanskynbaai Accommodation and restaurants 4 star hotel or guest house and a range of restaurants and bars Interesting town A cosmopolitan town but it has retained some of its historical fisherman’s village heritage. A variety of shops, markets, boutiques, art and artists, creating a vibrant atmosphere. Other activities Other activities in the Hermanus area can be added to the walking package. Hermanus is a haven for the outdoor enthusiast. Golf, canoeing, shark diving, horse riding, cycling, etc can be enjoyed.
Day 2: Enjoy stunning views of Hermanus, the Fernkloof Mountains and Walker Bay from Hoy’s koppie and the Elephant path. Walk various trails in the Fernkloof Nature Reserve, which covers 1800 ha in the Kleinrivier Mountains above Hermanus. It protects coastal fynbos and a small patch of evergreen forest. In Fernkloof to date 1474 plant species have been collected and identified. The Reserve is part of the Cape Floristic region – home to the greatest non-tropical concentration of higher plant species in the world. The Cape Floristic region is the only hotspot that encompasses an entire floral kingdom, and holds five of South Africa’s 12 endemic plant families and 160 endemic genera. Covering 78,555 km², this region is located entirely within the borders of South Africa. It is one of the five temperate Mediterranean-type systems on the hotspots list, and is one of only two hotspots that encompass an entire floral kingdom. From the reserve there are also magnificent and unequalled views of Walker Bay and Maanskynbaai
Distance 10 -25 km (4 -7 hours)
Day 3: One of Hermanus’s main attractions is its beautiful coastline. During the day you will have beautiful views of the coastline from the path on the mountainside and will end the day near the sea, in the Voëlklip part of Hermanus.
Distance 13 km (4-6 hours
Day 4: Walk along the Cliffpath in a westerly direction towards town.
The Cliff Path is one of the unique attractions of Hermanus. There are benches at strategic points which provide a place to rest and watch the whales ( in season ) or enjoy the sea views. In summer you will be able to enjoy safe swimming at four different beaches. Your walk ends in town where you can explore a wide variety of attractions
Distance 9 km (3-4 hours)
Hermanus Walk is a “centre based” walking holiday. It allows you to stay in a great location for the duration of your trip and enjoy local hikes before returning back to your guesthouse each day. We offer the choice of two walking bases, either the town centre or the Voëlklip beach area.
You will stay in one of Hermanus’s finest hotels or guesthouses and visit restaurants serving mouthwatering international cuisine. A panel of establishments have been selected to allow for non-availability. Any of the guesthouses can be a great base for your holiday. Click on the pictures to view the high standard of accommodation.
Rates & Tour info
Rate and dates
Choice of Standard or Superior accommodation. The rate of our package also depends on availability. For the Standard option our rate is from R6 400 per person, sharing. It will be at least 3 or 4 star standard. The rate for the Superior package will be quoted on request. During low season (May-September) the holiday may be available at a reduced rate. A minimum of 2 people per group. The above rate applies for a group of up to four people. Costs for single accommodation or extra nights or more than four people per group, available on request.
Included3 nights accommodation in selected guesthouses incl breakfast.Hotel to hotel luggage transfer along the trailDetailed Route directions.Information about the area
Transport to and from Hermanus, other lunches, snacks, drinks with meals.
Overall rating is Moderate. You do not need to be ultra-fit but certainly able to walk between 12 and 20 km per day and be able to cope with undulating countryside and some hills. The route takes you along stony mountain paths, along field and tracks and along country roads. See Walking grades for more details about Moderate rating.
Day 1 – arrival: Day 2 – Moderate: Day 3 – Moderate: Day 4 – Easy
Additional options- special interests
The Hermanus area offer a wide range of attractions and activities that can be added to your itinerary Let us know if you have a special interest in any of the following activities. Our Route Manager can assist with bookings and advice.
Cycling, Shark Cage Diving, Scuba Diving, Whale Watching/Bay Cruise, Horse Riding, Historic Hermanus Hoy’s koppie, Bird Watching from a hide on the lagoon, Indigenous Plants – The Cape Floral Kingdom, Sea Kayaking, Hang Gliding/Paragliding, Adventure activities eg Quad Biking, Tree Top Sliding, Tubing and Rafting, Zip Line Riding, Hermanus Forest Adventures, Abalone farming River Cruise on the lagoon.
Your trip can be extended or amended to include some of the activities. The costs of these options are available on request.
When to go to Hermanus
Any time of the year, but the weather is more predictable during “High season”. Reserve early to obtain the best rooms. “Low season” is a good option for local guests who are either prepared to accept weather risks or to change their plans at short notice. During low season accommodation is normally more available.
Weather in the Western Cape Coastal region is mild Mediteranean. Hermanus enjoys a mild climate. Winter, although the rainy season, has nonetheless many sunny days and is generally mild, with high winds at times. Summer is dry and sunny, with heat tempered by sea breezes. Early autumn (March) is idyllic, with balmy days and late afternoon sea mists – the so-called Hermanus “champagne air”. Hermanus is truly deserving of its reputation for happy holidaying. During the summer months the white sandy beaches are filled with holiday makers enjoying the sunny weather and excellent swimming in the sea. Hermanus is a popular resort for visitors wanting to escape the cold Northern Hemisphere winter.
Getting thereFor international visitors:
Fly to Cape Town International airport and from Cape Town to Hermanus by car.
From Cape Town to Hermanus:
Take N2 towards Somerset West Continue on the N2 through Somerset West and over Sir Lowry’s Pass Continue for 47 km to Botriver Take Hermanus off ramp to left (R43) Continue driving for 44 km into Hermanus Town centreScenic route from Cape Town:If you are driving from Cape Town and have some time to spare it is worth turning off the N2 onto the R44 (Clarence Drive). Driving from Cape Town take the N2 towards Somerset West turn left onto R44 to Strand and proceed until you reach Gordons Bay. Travel on the R44 along the coastal road where you will pass the Kogelberg Nature Reserve which is known for its beautiful fynbos. Carry on with the road past Rooi Els, Pringle Bay and Hangklip. You can visit Stony Point in Betty’s Bay which is the home of the African penquins. There are numerous paths leading past the nests which will give you photographic opportunities.After Stony Point the road leads past the Harold Porter Botanical garden – proceed on the R44 through Kleinmond ( for ± 11 km ) to the T-junction. Turn right onto the R43 that leads to Hermanus.Directions from Garden Route:Drive on the N2 heading towards Cape Town, passing through Riviersonderend. Turn left about 8 km further to Rietpoel / Stanford / Hermanus on the R326. Drive through wheat fields and sheep farms across an intersection and continue driving to the town of Stanford. Before entering Stanford town turn right to Hermanus which is 20 km away.
What to take
Comfortable, well aerated clothes in keeping with the season. Always bring a pullover / windbreaker, good walking boots (already worn-in) and several pairs of cotton or wool socks. For your daily needs, you are advised to have a day-bag, a plastic bag to line your day-pack (to protect the contents from rain), rainwear, a sun-hat, sunglasses, sun block, a water bottle, plastic picnic boxes (for transporting your lunches), first-aid kit , camera and film, torch/flashlight and an extra plastic bag for litter.
We recommend that you arrange appropriate holiday insurance giving you cover against illness, injury, and loss or damage to luggage. This insurance should also cover the possibility of your having to cancel your holiday for any reason.
As soon as we have finalized your booking and hotel schedule we will forward your Hotel guide by email. This will specify your hotel schedule and provide directions. (Different hotels/guesthouses are used from time to time) The second component of your route description is your Route guide. This specially prepared guide includes route notes, maps and GPS references. Self-guided walking is simple and convenient with our Route-and Hotel guide. Hikers can set out when they like, stop where they want and visit sites en route that are of interest to them. The Route guide will be given to you on arrival
Availability and booking
To reserve a date, forward: Availability request
To book– Go to How to book ,or
Tel.: +27 (0) 21 852 5937, Fax.: +27 (0) 86 618 3448
Map of Hermanus
Comments by guests who have experienced a self-guided walking/hiking holiday offered by WalkingHolidays.co.za in South Africa- “Overall, the holiday was invigorating- You certainly went out of your way to make the whole time memorable- We are recommending it to our walking community in the States- Fantastic walks, wines and accommodation” For details, go to Reviews
More about Hermanus
Hermanus Walk is a relaxing self-guided walking/hiking holiday in a town famous for beautiful beaches, mild climate, rich floral kingdom and whale watching
Hermanus is a very attractive tourist destination and one of the best ways to experience it is on foot. The Hermanus Walk was structured to offer the best of Hermanus. For more information about Hermanus, go to Read more
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