Western Cape Tourist Attractions Whale Coast Route
The Whale Route is in the Overberg and is where some of the best whale viewing spots in the country are found between August and December.
Where? Cape Overberg Region, Western Cape
When? Open daily (best between August and December).
The beautiful Overberg – just 'over the mountain' from Cape Town – has five routes one can follow when visiting the area, designed by Overberg Tourism. The Overberg is brimming over with attractions, towns to visit and sights to see, and it makes it that much easier to break it down into a couple of routes, or just one, every time you visit.
The first of these is the Whale Route, and possibly the most obvious as it is in the Overberg that some of the best whale viewing spots in the country are found between August and December. The route begins in Cape Town and follows the particularly pretty R44, also known as Clarence Drive, through the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve. It is a popular drive that easily rivals Chapman's Peak in Cape Town as one of the most scenic in the country – views over False Bay are incredible on clear days.
One passes through the villages of Rooiels, Pringle Bay and on to Betty's Bay, where Stony Point is a popular spot to visit one of only two mainland African Penguin colonies. Just around the corner is the wonderful Harold Porter Botanical Garden, which is well worth a visit.
Pressing on, the route reaches Kleinmond where joining the R43 will bring you to Hermanus, which boasts not only some of the world's best land-based whale watching, but has its very own whale crier during the season.
On through the town of Stanford, a beautiful village on the edge of the Klein River and on to Gansbaai – known as Great White Shark country because of the shark cage diving available here. The route ends at Die Dam, but you could also continue on to Baardskeerdersbos, Elim and Cape Agulhas, if the whim takes you.