Whale Watching Wednesday: When the gentle giants come to the shores of South Africa

Whale Watching Wednesday:

Witness the gentle giants along the shores of South Africa

Whilst the Southern Right Whales may live to over 100 years, the season to admire them from the South African coast is limited to a few short months. September is one of the best months in the year to view the incredible spectacle as they come to our shores from the Antarctic. Interestingly, Southern Rights are the only whale species without a dorsal fin and you can see that uniqueness up close at a selection of accommodation offering ocean views or by taking a day trip along the coast. Whale Watching in South Africa

What makes this species particularly popular is that they are relatively active and perform several amusing antics: breaching; spy hopping (when they poke their head above water to have a look above the surface); blowing jets of water and general playful, curious behavior. A great excuse to enjoy them is the Hermanus Whale Festival. This year it is from the 3rd to 6th October 2014.

This is a busy time for the small town, so book early to avoid disappointment. Otherwise stay before or after those dates to avoid the crowds, or stay further along the coast at some spectacular destinations. There are some incredible properties from where you can go on whale-watching boat tours or enjoy some last minute luxury.

Whale Watching South Africa

Day Tours

A very popular Whale Watching Tour is one leaving from Cape Town and travelling the coastal route to Hermanus. It is a fun day out and includes land-based whale watching in Hermanus itself from the incredible harbor cliffs.

If you are looking to make a trip of it, or stay near Plettenberg Bay, there is a boat tour operator who runs different types of Whale and Dolphin Watching Trips including close encounters.

Whale Watching South Africa

Suggested ocean-view accommodation options along the Garden Route are:


  • Birkenhead House  from R 2,802.50 per person sharing  which includes all meals, local beverages and house wine.

  • Quarters Hotel:  from R 1,177.50 per person sharing B&B.

  • The Marine Hotel  from R 2,122.00 pp B&B sharing.

Whale Watching South Africa

Further Afield

  • The Arniston Hotel  from R 687.50pp bed and breakfast sharing in a luxury pool-facing or R927.50 luxury sea-facing  room.
  • Mossel Bay: The Point Hotel: from R 682.50 pp B&B sharing.

  • Plettenberg Bay: The Plettenberg Hotel Book now for a rate of R 2,122.50 per person sharing with breakfast at this 5* luxury hotel.

  • The Plettenberg Park Hotel Small Luxury Sea Facing Room is only R 1,872.50 per person sharing for the month of October.

Grootbos Private Nature Reserve

Something Magnificent

One of our favourite destinations in the Western Cape is the Grootbos Nature Reserve. It comes into a special magical period now when you can view the whales from land, sea and spectacularly from air too! This truly is one of the best places to experience whale watching in a spectacular game reserve that spoils you for choice of activities, as well as spectacular scenery.

Book a Garden Lodge Classic Suite for only R3,392.50 per person per night in October. This includes your welcome drink; all meals (including a 5-course dinner); horse-back riding, guided walks and coastal drives. You could even go on a helicopter trip to view the whales from air.

Book now: BOOK.

Grootbos Private Nature Reserve

More ideas

For more ideas you can look over our recommended Garden Route accommodation offers here: GARDEN ROUTE ACCOMMODATION.

Don’t miss looking at Conrad Hilton Pezula Resort & Spa; Hyatt Regency Oubaai Golf and Spa Resort and Simola Golf Estate for something special.


Contact us so we can assist you in planning your unforgettable Whale Watching Experience in South Africa!

South African Tourism Company

Tel:    +27 (0)21 794 9050

Mobile: +27 (0)827 823 142

Fax:    +27 (0)21 794 9995

Email:   res@south-african-hotels.com

Website: http://www.south-african-hotels.com

Website: https://www.south-african-lodges.com

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