Discover Knysna

Visitors to ‘The Beautiful Town’ are spoilt for choice with a kaleidoscope of unforgettable experiences to choose from.

Enjoy a stroll around town and visit some of the wonderful restaurants and/or coffee shops the town has to offer or indulge yourself with some retail therapy. We have excellent Food, Design and Craft Markets that showcase local talent and handmade products, along with some great boutiques and art establishments to tantalise you further.

Our cultural history and location are diverse, with the Knyna Basin & surrounding Forest, Wood Industry and the Gold Rush all explained to the nature and heritage connoisseur.

If you are an adrelain junkie OR just after a little bit adventure, then knysna is the place to be, with loads of hair raising, heart pumping, outdoor, muddy, sweaty things to do on the water or in the forest…

Surfing@BuffsIf you’re the active type, how about learning to surf, snorkel or SUP (stand up paddle boarding) with the trendy TripOut Surf School.

Or explore the Knysna forest by foot, in a canoe or by mountain bike with Knysna Forest Tours. There’s also awesome fishing spots (estuary, river, rock and surf) in the area, permits are required, but easily obtainable at SANparks or the local Post Office.

Knysna also offers some magnificent hiking trails, ideal for all fun-seeking people who want to be outdoors, choose from more than 20 magnificent walks, hikes and trails. Contact Knysna Tourism for a complete list and maps.

For a mix of both with a little knowledge and fun throw in for good measure, and trip with Knysna Hike & Bike is also a good choice. Anne and Mandy’s aim is to introduce visitors to a different side of Knysna and its surroundings through guided walking and cycling tours that take in stunning scenery, local cuisine and fine wines as well as places of historical and natural interest.

The scenic Seven Passes drive is a definite “must do” when in the area. This route will take you from Knysna to George over seven mountain passes and several historic bridges. Also stopping at the Millwood Goldfields, Materolli Museum and a magnificent lunch at Totties Farm Kitchen, where you can relive the remains of a golden era of Knysna, when the first South African Gold was discovered in these black streams. As well as a leisurely stroll through historic Knysna town centre, which is a blend of historic buildings, art galleries, museums and modern shops and malls. All the Knysna museums offer entry free of charge and will capture the imagination.

With the sheltered lagoon in its midst, Knysna is also the perfect place to snorkel and view those shipwrecks that didn’t make it through The Heads (The Heads? – Those sandstone cliffs that guard the narrow entrance of the warm Indian Ocean into the Knysna Lagoon). There also a great scenic look out at the top, where you can check out Knysna town and lagoon vistas, get some great shots and in certain seasons, spot whales and dolphins. Also at the feet of the Mighty Heads, there are some great rock pools to explore, and when hungry and thirsty the East Head Cafe is ready and waiting to serve you yummy eats and drinks, in a wondrous watery setting.

Did we tell Knysna is on a lagoon? How about taking your loved ones cruising on the water, while sipping champagne and feeding each other locally grown oysters. The Featherbed Company offers numerous boating options including ferry trips, sailing aboard a luxury yacht, fine dining on a paddle cruiser and a unique eco-experience stopping off at the Featherbed Private Nature Reserve. SpringTide Charters, also have a myriad of romantic luxury sunset, sunrise and anything in between cruises. Ocean Odyssey compliments this luxuriousness as Knysna’s only official Close Encounter Whale Watching permit holder, whilst observing whales in their wild environment which certainly leaves an indelible, feel-good mark on the soul, and Knysna is one of the best places to do this.

Or maybe you would like to explore the superb golf courses this area has to offer: the local Knysna Golf Course, the Championship Course at Pezula, or Simola’s Jack Nicolaus Signature Course. Golfing novice, why not try your hand at mashie golf (at Blackwaters River Lodge) where hardly any golf skills are required.

If you’ve been active enough, it may be time to go the beach. Wonderful, almost empty, sandy beaches are waiting for you at Brenton-on-Sea, Coney Glen, Buffels’ Bay, Noetzie and within the Lagoon the model family beach Bollard Bay at Leisure Isle. There is more beach than you can handle…

Or go the African way – on a walking tour through our vibrant townships and learn a little about ‘living local’ and all the wonderful projects and hard work that Ella and Penny are up to, to help the local community with Emzini Tours. You can also pay an insightful visit to our Rastafarian community. Or how about bargaining for curios at the local African crafts market!

Which brings us on to shopping! Knysna and surrounds has nine (yes nine!) alfresco markets which celebrate a healthy lifestyle and organic farming. The highlight undoubtedly would be a visit to the Wild Oats Community Farmers Market, in Sedgefield, on a Saturday morning. There is certainly a taste for every palate, with a noticeably health-conscious emphasis on the wares.

Then most importantly eating and drinking. Always a favourite hobby on holiday. Knysna is luckily blessed with many exciting (some award winning) scrumptious watering and eating holes, all of which we’d like to visit, recommend and blog about see here for our recommendations for eating out in Knysna.

For more even info and personalised advice, please don’t hesitate to email us, as we live here and are glad to help!