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Ever since it was proclaimed a reserve in 1957 the Fernkloof Nature Reserve has become a firm favourite for walks, hikes and bikes. The 60 kilometers (around 37 miles) of walkways and trails that zigzag through the reserve can take you to the picturesque Lemoenskop outlook point, the Three Dams, Galpin Hut, the waterfalls and several other beautiful and photo inspiring locations. These paths are lovingly maintained by the FNR (Fernkloof Nature Reserve) Committee, which consists of the local municipality, the Fernkloof Advisory Board and the Hermanus Botanical Society (BotSoc).

Over the last couple of years more areas have been added to the Reserve, including the Cliff Path Nature Area, the Mossel River Valley, parts of Klein River Lagoon and the mouth of Vogelgat River. Due to these inclusions Fernkloof Nature Reserve now boasts an uninterrupted reserve area of coast to mountain. The Cliff Path that’s now included wraps itself around the coastline of Hermanus and is perfect for land-based Whale Watching in season.

As if the pristine pathways weren’t enough the Committee has also given us the landscaped and colourful Fernkloof Gardens situated at the entrance to the reserve. This wheelchair friendly garden offers different “focus gardens” that contain different Fynbos and other plant life that are found in different areas around the reserve. There is also plenty of lawn space and shady trees for a scenic picnic or you can book an event here via the Fernkloof Reserve Office.

Also, if you find yourself falling in love with the indigenous flora around you during your visit then we suggest making your way to the Fernkloof Nursery across from the gardens. This quaint little cottage and garden area sells a lot of the flora you’ll find in the reserve, making it easy for you to take a piece of this experience home with you.

Hermanus Pincushion Hermanus Everlasting Hermanus King Protea

A little bit about the Fynbos

Fernkloof is proud to host six of the seven endemic plant families specific to the Cape Floral Kingdom. Originally called fijn bosch by early Dutch settlers, this diverse plant species comes in a variety of colours, shapes and sizes, all of which are environment-dependent. Every year more and more species are being identified and catalogued, adding to the 1600 + species that are currently in the reserve.

If you’d like to learn more about our famous floral family then please follow this link!

A little bit about our Fauna

The reserve’s landscape goes from flat and coastal to mountainous and forest filled, making it an ideal habitat for over 130 species of birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians. During your exploration of the reserve you might come across Grey Rhebok, Cape Grysbok, Klipspringer, Baboons, Mongoose and Dassies, whilst the more nocturnal and private Porcupine, Genet and Hare might be more difficult to find. The birds in the area are the most commonly spotted and you’re sure to see species such as the Cape Sugar Bird, Sunbirds, Rock Thrushes and Rock Jumpers. Raptors can also be seen in the area, including Jackal Buzzards and Black Eagles.

The reserve also hosts a Wildflower Festival in the last weekend of September every year, which you can enjoy with family and friends. There are several Eco-Friendly displays in the marquee near the entrance whilst intricate and beautiful displays are on show at the Fernkloof Hall a little ways up.

For more information feel free to get in contact with the Fernkloof Nature Reserve or send us an This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

Fernkloof Reserve Signage Tortoise in Fernkloof Reserve Fernkloof Reserve Flowers has always aimed to insure that its clients are given comprehensive and affordable advertising choices that will best suit their business needs. We’ve therefore come up with a variety of unique options that are upgradeable, changeable from month-to-month and offers clients prime exposure within our site, helping to grow their potential client base. has always aimed to insure that its clients are given comprehensive and affordable advertising choices that will best suit their business needs. We’ve therefore come up with a variety of unique options that are upgradeable, changeable from month-to-month and offers clients prime exposure within our site, helping to grow their potential client base.

Ataraxia is one of the newer farms in the area, having been founded in 2004 by husband-and-wife team Kevin and Hanli. The 47 hectares of prime vineyard land called The Skyfields is located on a unique, elevated section of the Valley that offers up beautiful views and excellent growing conditions, conditions that have helped to create some incredible wines boasting balance, depth and finesse.

The vineyards themselves are planted on elevated, predominantly south facing slopes, with soils that dictate which grape cultivars are planted. After meticulous study and research, Kevin decided that the best wine “vehicles” to express this terroir were Chardonnay and Pinot noir. His belief is that “the more pure the voice of the soil, the more interesting the wine” – Michael Chiarello.

Nestled amongst manicured vineyards at the foot of the imposing Babylonstoren mountain range, visitors will find the Ataraxia Wine Lounge. The views from here have been described as “…one of the most spectacular and dramatic positions in the whole wine world”, and rightly so. Built as a chapel in the vernacular architectural style of the region, it offers a place for visitors to relax whilst tasting the four vintages on offer – an unwooded Sauvignon Blanc, a wooded Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and a red blend called Serenity. The views from the balcony or the luxurious lounge are breath-taking, adding to an experience that is guarenteed to leave an idelibly satisfying impression on all visitors.

Monday - Friday | 09h00 - 16h00
Saturday | 10h00 - 17h00
Public Holidays | 10h00 - 17h00

Closed Sundays, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Christmas Day, New Year’s Day


The Curio & Craft Daily Market offers you a fantastic experience whilst nestled in the center of our lovely town at the Old Harbour Market Square. The stalls that open up to the public every day from 10h00 until 17h00 are reminiscent of the stalls in Hermanus’ history, and sell many hand made products that are both beautiful and hold a bit of Hermanus in them. Among the shops you will find kelp horns, paintings, sculptures and beaded art works as well as the more traditional African deities and jewellery.

However, if you’re taste goes more towards the modern then there are many stalls that sell beautiful garments and trinkets for you to take home and enjoy. Souvenirs are also obviously bountiful here so you’re bound to find just the right token of Hermanus for you to keep.

For more information you can contact the Village Square or visit their site.

Also on Saturdays, come rain or shine, the Food and Wine Market at the state-of-the-art Hermanuspietersfontein Wine Cellar, which can be found in the Hemel-en-Aarde Village, offers free wine tasting and unique gourmet-style food stalls in a lively, elegant atmosphere.
Visit their market courtyard from 09:00 to 13:00.


The This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. offers exciting kite surfing lessons in the safety of the Klein River and Bot River lagoons. The water is waist deep and pleasantly warm in the summer months. Although winds vary, they are generally on the lighter side, which is perfect for beginners but no lessons take place when the wind gets stronger than 20 knots.

The school provides all equipment, such as a wetsuit, kites, lines, a harness, impact jacket and a hard hat. The course is divided into three sections with a minimum of 2 hours spent on each section. This is necessary to communicate all the required safety precautions as well as get you ready for your first unaided trip. This means that you will have to do a minimum of 6 hours before you will be able to kite-board safely on your own. The lessons are worth it though, as you will soon feel the exhilaration of navigating the shores of the lagoon at speed.

For more information, please visit our Activities & Operators page.

The Hermanus MTB Trail is the favoured option for mountain bikers in the area, starting at the Hemel en Aarde Village and giving riders four options of varying difficulty to choose from. These routes take riders deep into the Valley where the beautiful views and pristine atmosphere are only a small part of the enjoyment.

Interested riders need to purchase a permit from Euodia Cycles or Wine Village Hermanus to be able to ride the trails. The proceeds from this permit help to keep the trails maintained.

The Green Route: This easy route is ideal for both beginners and families and is a perfect introduction to single track mountain biking trails. The trail is 6 km (3.7 miles) in length with a total of 130m in ascent, making it a relatively flat ride. The route usually takes around 30 – 60 minutes to complete.

The Blue Route: This route is an easy to moderate track that’s ideal for novice to intermediate riders. The 13km (8 miles) route is all off-road with a lot of fast flowing single track, giving riders a fast-paced experience along a beautiful route. The trail usually takes around 1 – 2 hours to complete and has a total ascent of 240 meters.

The Red Route: This track is a slightly more difficult route and is perfect for intermediate to experienced riders. This 28km (17 miles) route is mainly fast flowing single track that crosses over rivers and jeep tracks and has a total ascent of 700 meters. This circular route takes between 2 – 3 hours to complete.

The Black Route: This the most difficult of the four routes and is aimed at experienced riders. This track has a lot of fast flowing single track that crosses over rivers and jeep tracks and has several steep ascents totalling 1000 meters along the 33km (22.5 miles) track, which can be completed within 2.5 – 4 hours.

There is also an open 17 km (10.5 miles) circular trail that takes riders through the picturesque Fernkloof Nature Reserve. This intermediate trail is mainly jeep tracks but also incorporates single track areas, making this stunning trail that much more attractive. There are also plenty of viewpoints to stop at, as well as the Three Dams to cool off in (but a bit of a hike is required to get to the top).


Enjoying the great outdoors is a always a fun (and free) way to explore Hermanus, it gets the blood pumping and you’ll come back with a sun-kissed glow and a smile on your face.

Fernkloof Nature Reserve is a beautiful reserve with rolling gardens and beautiful hikes that range from short and easy, to long and challenging. The pristine pathways make it ideal for all ages, fitness levels and also caters to the disabled (with well kept, wheelchair-friendly pathways), with Fynbos along the trip for you to view and enjoy.
Fernkloof Nature Reserve Official Site

The Cliff Path winds its way along the cliffs of Hermanus from New Harbour all the way to Grotto Beach. The path is wheelchair friendly and offers uninterrupted views of the ocean – perfect for land based whale watching in season!

For a guided tour of the Path please call our Whale Crier, who has some informative facts and historical bits of knowledge for you to share during your walk. He will also share his knowledge about some of the best locations for whale watching and picnic spots.


Hermanus has been recognized by the WWF (World Wildlife Fund) as one of the 12 best whale watching destinations in the world. The best time to enjoy whale watching in Hermanus is between July and November either from land, by boat or from the air via a scenic flight. The whale viewing during the months of July and August vary from year to year with regards to how many whales are present in Walker Bay and along the coast; however you are almost guaranteed of seeing whales in September, October and November. For those with a more adventurous spirit, a guided sea kayaking trip promises to get the adrenaline going and offers a unique opportunity to watch whales and explore the magnificent coastline. For whale-watching tours, please follow this link.

Hermanus, particularly Walker Bay, is the mating and breeding grounds of the Southern Right Whale during the winter and spring months (from June to November). Southern Right Whales migrate from the Antarctic around June to calve and mate. Calving takes place in August and September and the males arrive for mating in October when the whale population peaks.

  • The Cliff Path offers 12km of the best whale watching view points in the world, stretching from one end of Hermanus to the other. At certain points whales can be seen playing as close as five meters from shore.
  • Drive south on Westcliff Road and park at Fick’s Pool. Take the cliff path towards the New Harbour for about 100 metres and arrive at Dreunkrans – a popular whale watching site
  • Park at Fick’s Pool or in Marine Drive and make your way to Windsor Bay
  • Gearing’s Point overlooking the Old Harbour, gives an uninterrupted view of the ocean.
  • At the Old Harbour,viewing terraces are available with spectacular views over Walker Bay. Information boards provide basic information about the whales.
  • Drive down Main Road towards the beaches (north-east) and take the turn-off to Die Gang at Berg-en-See to arrive at De Gang.
  • One of the most popular locations in Hermanus for whale watching is Siever's Point, which is closest to where the whales frolic.
  • The Kwaaiwater lookout point is accessible by vehicle.
  • The Voëlklip and Grotto beaches are perfect for whale spotting and watching, especially on the rocks above the sea.


New Harbour View

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