Best of Hermanus

Top itineraries and travel advice in and around Hermanus
Hermanus is best known for its shore-based whale watching from July through October, when the Southern right whales enter the deep bay to mate and calve. Travelers can stand on the clifftop promenades or take a boat out in search of whale sightings, or choose to get up close with a different aquatic creature in a shark cage dive in nearby Gansbaai. 

Previous kimkim travelers have found plenty of sources of adrenaline to pursue in Hermanus. Try your hand at kitesurfing, mountain biking, paragliding, paintball, or sandboarding for your rush. If you like your travels a little more sedate, follow a 12-mile (20 km) wine route through the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley and see why its name translates to “Heaven on Earth.”
Plan your trip to South Africa
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
End your trip with winery tours (and tastings) in the Cape Winelands
Map of Highlights of Namibia & South Africa - 14 Days
Highlights of Namibia & South Africa - 14 Days

Discover Namibia and South Africa's rich culture, natural landscapes, and abundant wildlife on this 14-day tour across both countries. Start with a city break in Windhoek before driving to the Namib Desert to climb sand dunes and rise above the landscape in a hot-air balloon. Drive along the Skeleton Coast next, where elephants and black rhinos await you. Then, fly to South Africa to explore the Cape Peninsula, the coastal town of Hermanus, and the picturesque vineyards of the Cape Winelands.

Seek out lions on a game drive in South Africa's Kruger National Park
Map of Namibia & South Africa Adventure: Deserts, Coastlines & National Parks - 21 Days
Namibia & South Africa Adventure: Deserts, Coastlines & National Parks - 21 Days

Get ready for three weeks of safaris and road trips throughout southern Africa. It begins in Namibia, where you'll hit the road on the famous Skeleton Coast, visit iconic red deserts, and enjoy game drives in Indigenous conservation areas. Next up is South Africa, where you'll tour Cape Town, walk with penguins on the beach, go on wine and food tours, and enjoy multiple safaris in the legendary Kruger National Park.

Cape Town
Map of Coastal South Africa: Cape Town, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 13 Days
Coastal South Africa: Cape Town, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 13 Days

This epic 13-day itinerary delivers the best of South Africa's southern coast by combining city tours, wine tastings, road trips, and safari drives. First, enjoy history walks around Cape Town, tours in the Winelands, and trips to the Cape Peninsula to walk with penguins. Then hit the road for nature tours and beach time along the famous Garden Route before finishing strong with a true African safari in a private game reserve.

Little ones will love seeing zebras in South Africa
Map of South Africa Coast & Safari Family Adventure - 7 Days
South Africa Coast & Safari Family Adventure - 7 Days

Treat the kids to the holiday of a lifetime as you journey to South Africa for an unforgettable trip that starts in vibrant Cape Town and ends with a stunning couple of days on safari at the Southern Cape's Gondwana Game Reserve. Along the way, you'll scale iconic Table Mountain by cable car, play alongside penguins at Boulder Beach, and cruise the Cape on a pirate ship before encountering Big Five wildlife in the stunning surroundings of the Garden Route.

Hike in the Golden Gate Highlands National Park on your way to Clarens
Map of Road Trip Through South Africa & Lesotho: Iconic Cities & Natural Landscapes - 14 Days
Road Trip Through South Africa & Lesotho: Iconic Cities & Natural Landscapes - 14 Days

Immerse yourself in South Africa and Lesotho's natural landscapes on this two-week road trip across both countries. Start in Cape Town with community development tours, a cruise to Robben Island, and a day trip down the Cape Peninsula. Then, drive yourself to Stellenbosch to explore the Cape Winelands, followed by Hermanus for a boat cruise to spot whales, sharks, seals, and penguins. From here, explore the Gondwana Private Game Reserve before ending with an epic waterfall in Lesotho.

You won't be roughing it on safari at your luxury camp (photo courtesy of Shamwari)
Map of Luxury South Africa Highlights: Winelands, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 7 Days
Luxury South Africa Highlights: Winelands, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 7 Days

Combine a relaxing luxury vacation with thrilling outdoor adventures on this weeklong South Africa tour. Taste the quality of the country's most famous vineyards on a visit to the Cape Winelands region before hitting the road on the Garden Route, one of the most spectacular coastal drives on the continent. And no trip to Africa is complete without safari fun, so finish the adventure in an open-topped safari vehicle seeking big cats, elephants, rhinos, and other majestic creatures on the savanna plains.

Close-up of male ostrich in Little Karoo
Map of Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 14 Days
Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 14 Days

Take a two-week adventure from one of the world's highest bungee jumps down into a cage next to a great white shark with this trip plan. Start on Table Mountain in Cape Town, followed by a culinary tour, treetop walkway, and wine tastings. Once you get onto the Garden Route, you'll make your way around canoeing through lagoons, hiking in national parks, and spelunking through caves.

Discover the best of South Africa on this two-week family vacation
Map of Relaxing South Africa Family Adventure: Oceans, Wildlife & Safari Self-Drive - 14 Days
Relaxing South Africa Family Adventure: Oceans, Wildlife & Safari Self-Drive - 14 Days

Two weeks in South Africa gives families plenty of time to relax, explore the country's incredible wildlife, and travel from east to west without feeling hurried. Start in Cape Town to summit iconic Table Mountain, discover authentic African cuisine, and tour the Western Cape vineyards. Then it's on to the Eastern Cape, where you'll unwind on Knysna's beaches, soar along the country's fastest zipline, meet ostrich flocks and elephant herds, and cruise the infamous Shark Alley.

A family hike in South Africa
Map of Adventure, Safari & Family Fun in South Africa: Cape Town & the Garden Route  - 14 Days
Adventure, Safari & Family Fun in South Africa: Cape Town & the Garden Route - 14 Days

This exciting two-week family tour of South Africa starts in Cape Town, where you'll hike the majestic Table Mountain and enjoy a traditional African dinner and dancing. Then, journey along the Garden Route, visiting the seaside town of Hermanus for whale watching and the Cape seals of Geyser Rock. Search out Africa's Big Five game animals at Gondwana Game Reserve, take a treetop walk in Tsitsikamma National Park, and visit monkeys, birds, and big cats at Knysna's wildlife sanctuaries.

Go whale watching and visit reputable wineries while staying on the south coast (photo courtesy of The Marine Hermanus)
Map of Luxury South Africa Highlights: Cape Town, Winelands, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 14 Days
Luxury South Africa Highlights: Cape Town, Winelands, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 14 Days

Enjoy a bit of the good life on a luxury two-week getaway to one of the most beautiful corners of South Africa. It's first-class all the way, as you enjoy private tours of scenic Cape Town and dine at its best restaurants. Then head east as you take advantage of wine tours in the charming French village of Franschhoek, champagne catamaran cruises, and, if you're up for it, cage diving with great white sharks. Finish with two days of game drives at a private reserve to complete the adventure.

Bloukran's Bridge
Map of Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 10 Days
Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 10 Days

Spend 10 days taking in the Western Cape with this trip plan. You'll explore Cape Town and see Table Mountain from both a distant beach and right under your feet, sample the wines of Stellenbosch, and dive into a great white cage encounter before you hit the road on the Garden Route for canoeing, hiking, animal encounters, and more.

Make scenic stops along the Garden Route, including Tsitsikamma National Park
Map of Cape Town & the Garden Route: Best Itinerary Ideas
Cape Town & the Garden Route: Best Itinerary Ideas

Cape Town and the Garden Route is a classic pairing for travelers headed to South Africa. It's best to spend 12 to 15 days in-country—this allows for plenty of time to enjoy the top sights and activities at each stop. Travelers can also opt for a faster paced trip, covering the top highlights of each region in just 10 or 11 days. Check out our favorite itinerary ideas below, and start planning your perfect trip.

Elephants in Chobe
Map of Epic Southern Africa: Victoria Falls, Chobe, Cape Town, Garden Route & Addo National Park - 21 Days
Epic Southern Africa: Victoria Falls, Chobe, Cape Town, Garden Route & Addo National Park - 21 Days

Get ready for a packed three-week adventure to some of the greatest locales in Africa. Your multi-country journey begins in Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls—the largest waterfall in the world—followed by camping in Botswana's Chobe National Park. Then enjoy the highlights of beautiful South Africa, including wine tours, scenic road trips, wildlife safaris, mountain biking, caving, hikes up Table Mountain, sunset boat cruises, and much more.

Visit the colony of African penguins on Boulders Beach
Map of Journey Along South Africa's Coast - 16 Days
Journey Along South Africa's Coast - 16 Days

Explore South Africa's diverse natural landscapes, cultural heritage, and abundant wildlife on this 16-day tour. Start in Cape Town, where you'll savor a 14-course African meal, wine taste in the Cape Winelands, and discover the V&W Waterfront. Spend two days whale and shark spotting in Hermanus, then pick up your rental car and drive to Ballito and St Lucia to snorkel in tidal pools and cruise for hippopotamus and crocodiles before ending with game drives to spot the Big Five in a private reserve.

Visit the adorable African penguin colony on Boulders Beach
Map of Explore Zimbabwe, Botswana & South Africa: Natural Wonders, Wildlife & Culture - 21 Days
Explore Zimbabwe, Botswana & South Africa: Natural Wonders, Wildlife & Culture - 21 Days

In three weeks and three countries, you'll discover unparalleled natural landscapes, abundant wildlife, and vibrant cultures. Start with a sunset cruise along the Zambezi River and end with a community development tour in Cape Town. Along the way, go on photo safaris in Chobe National Park, sample delicious local food in Johannesburg, and drive to the ostrich capital of the world. Other highlights include a rhino walk, diving with sharks in a secure cage, and kayaking with African penguins.

Family time on the beaches of Cape Town
Map of Adventure, Safari & Family Fun in South Africa: Cape Town & the Garden Route - 10 Days
Adventure, Safari & Family Fun in South Africa: Cape Town & the Garden Route - 10 Days

This 10-day family trip to South Africa blends the perfect mix of adventure, excursions, and luxury downtime as you explore the country's scenic Garden Route and Western Cape. Start in lively Cape Town, where you'll scale Table Mountain by cable car before touring the surrounding wine country. Introduce the kids to Africa's iconic Big Five as you safari in Gondwana before winding up on the pristine shores of Knysna and catching a sunset cruise along the lagoon.

Experience the ultimate in bushveld luxury at Sindile Safari Lodge (photo courtesy of Shamwari)
Map of Luxury South Africa Highlights: Cape Town, Winelands, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 10 Days
Luxury South Africa Highlights: Cape Town, Winelands, Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari - 10 Days

Experience the best of Africa as you explore the savannas, cities, and coast of the continent's southernmost nation. On this luxury escape, stay at the finest hotels and dine at the best restaurants, starting in Cape Town, a city famous for its beautiful coast and iconic landmarks. Then, after touring the vineyards of the Cape Winelands region, hit the road down the Garden Route (one of the most famous coastal drives in the world) and finish with safaris to spot big cats in the Eastern Cape.

Tsitsikamma National Park
Map of Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 11 Days
Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 11 Days

Eleven days will allow you to encounter many of the highlights of the Western Cape with this itinerary. You'll start off in Cape Town with scenic city tours, wine tastings, and a shark dive before you set out on the Garden Route. This classic road trip will wind you through wilderness, wildlife, and more wine before loop back to Cape Town to depart.

Check out the towns on the Garden Route
Map of Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 12 Days
Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 12 Days

Combine a city break and a classic road trip with this 12-day itinerary. Stroll through Cape Town's many attractions, whether on sandy Bloubergstrand Beach or the shops of the V&A Waterfront, before you duck under the vines of the Winelands' vineyards. Then get in your car for a drive filled with whale-watching, wildlife, and more.

Chapman's Peak outside of Cape Town
Map of Scenic South Africa Road Trip: Cape Town & Garden Route - 13 Days
Scenic South Africa Road Trip: Cape Town & Garden Route - 13 Days

Spend 13 days in South Africa enjoying the highlights of Cape Town, plus a jaunt through wine country and down to the Cape of Good Hope. You'll then embark on an epic road trip along the Garden Route, one of the most scenic coastal drives in the world. Stop in national parks, visit charming towns, hit the waves in surf towns—you'll even have time to search for the "Big Five" on multiple safari game drives.

Cape White-Eye Bird
Map of Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 13 Days
Cape Town & Garden Route Adventure - 13 Days

Thirteen days through the Western Cape will thrill you with all that this region has to offer. Your trip begins in Cape Town, where you can enjoy views from on the shore, atop Table Mountain, and amidst the city streets. Venture into the vineyards of the Winelands and rocky coasts of Hermanus before you embark on a Garden Route drive that will bring you from one of the world's highest bungee jumps down into glittering caves, and so much more.

Campus Bay in Cape Town, South Africa
Map of Cape Town, Franschhoek & Garden Route - 14 Days
Cape Town, Franschhoek & Garden Route - 14 Days

Go whale watching, shark diving, wine tasting, meerkat spotting, ocean kayaking, and so much more on this fantastic two-week tour of South Africa. Kick things off in Cape Town with the best food, art, and history experiences, get up close with nature on a drive along the famously scenic Garden Route, and end your adventure with a ride through the vineyards on the famous wine tram of Franschhoek.

Table Mountain at sunset
South Africa Photography Adventure: Cape Town, Garden Route & Cango Caves - 7 Days

"Chase the light" as you explore mesmerizing mountains, rivers, coastlines, and plateaus across the Western and Eastern Capes in South Africa. Flexible for all budgets and skill levels, photographers will explore the shadows of Cape Town's colorful neighborhoods, capture stunning sunrises atop Table Mountain, and cruise the Stanford River in search of glistening sunbeams. End your trip by heading east along the coastal Garden Route for even more photographic scenes of nature and wildlife, including rare rhinos and meerkats in their natural habitats.

Penguins on parade
Map of Explore South Africa: Cape Town, Winelands, Johannesburg, Safari, & Beach - 16 Days
Explore South Africa: Cape Town, Winelands, Johannesburg, Safari, & Beach - 16 Days

Spend 16 days sightseeing through South Africa with this itinerary. Start off in Cape Town and survey the scenic views from Table Mountain and seaside cliffs, descend in a shark cage, and sample the city's culinary scene. Switch to Franschhoek to sip from the local wine cellars, then over to Johannesburg to soar above the plains in a hot air balloon. Continue straight on to safari in Kruger National Park, then escape to the sea at Thonga Beach.