Knysna in South Africa’s Western Cape is located along the famed Garden Route. The town is famous for its oyster festival, warm people and the most magnificent views from Leisure Isle to the Heads. A visit to Knysna is a sublime mixture of adventure and relaxation.
If you’re looking for South Africans’ most popular small town, go to the end of the Garden Route in the Western Cape to Knysna – the ‘elegant lagoon’. It’s easy to get the ‘Knysna Spirit’ as you drive in on the N2 Highway from Cape Town. The town is well developed, but you still feel you’re travelling in woodcutter country.
Knysna has, for many, become the pot of gold at the end of the Garden Route. It’s famed attraction is the Eastern and Western Heads, a cavenous expanse where many a ship has met its doom. Today the Featherbed Nature Reserve pays homage to the richness of fauna and flora that Knysna has to offer.
The Knysna Elephant Park is where you can interact with and feed the relocated jumbo families. It’s a favourite with the youngsters. If they’re still in the mood for a ‘creature feature’, then whip them down the N2 to Monkeyland for a visitation with some of the loveliest lemurs in southern Africa.
The dolphins and the southern right whales seasonally visit the shores of the Paradise Coast and you can go out to sea and find yourself in the middle of a 4 000-strong pod of common dolphins leaping through the waves. On the way back to land, visit the seals of the Robberg peninsula – an entertaining, if less graceful, sight.
Knysna is replete with various forms of accommodation to suit all pockets. You can stay on a houseboat on the lagoon, a forest lodge near the beach, a log cabin in the forest, a Cape Cod-style mansion, a bustling hotel on the main road or one of the many guest houses listed.
How to get here
Knysna can be easily accessed by road as it lies on the N2 between Cape Town (500 km) and Port Elizabeth (280 km). Knysna`s biggest neighbouring towns are George (60 km) and Plettenberg Bay (35 km). George Airport is a mere 65 km away and provides a variety of daily flight options.
Where to stay
Knysna is replete with all forms of accommodation to suit all pockets. You can stay on a houseboat on the lagoon, a forest lodge near the beach, a log cabin in the forest, a Cape Cod-style mansion, a bustling hotel on the main road or one of the many guest houses listed.
Around the area
Head for the nearby town of Storms River, where treetop canopy tours through the Tsitsikamma Forest get the blood boiling and the Tarzan whoop instantly out of the voice box. There are a number of trails available in the district, the most famous of all being the Otter Trail, which is not for the lazy or unfit. Those brave souls who ‘do the Otter’ enthuse about this hike and invariably book again.
Tours to do
The Knysna area consists out of Knysna, Sedgefield, Brenton, Noetzie, Rheenendal, Belvidere and Buffalo Bay. The area is one of the most scenic in the world and offers beaches, lakes and lush forests to play in.
DID YOU KNOW?
There's a large Rastafarian community outside Knysna at a place called Judah Square.