Visit Knysna, the Destination Marketing Organisation for the greater Knysna area recently nominated Mark Dixon of Sedgefield, with his “Moonlight Meander” tours as well as Ypie Kingma to take part in the One Day Virtual Tours campaign launched by Western Cape Government, and Wesgro, the official Tourism, Trade and Investment Promotion Agency for Cape Town and the Western Cape.
Ypie Kingman’s tour footage, which gives viewers an opportunity to virtually experience a small piece of Knysna, whilst also encouraging and helping them to properly plan their trip to the area was officially launched at this year’s Virtual Knysna Oyster Festival as part of Visit Knysna’s destination promotion campaign.
The footage covered:
The 7 Passes Road entering through Rheenendal,
Margaret’s view point and the Belvidere’s holy trinity church,
Brenton on Sea beach walk to Buffalo Bay,
Oyster/culinary lunch experience at the Knysna Waterfront,
The lookout at The Heads, and
Knysna Elephant Park.
Evelyn Pepler of Ocean Odyssey commented: “It was a great opportunity to be able to show what we have to offer to the world during these times. We are hoping this will make tourists want to visit our area once things are up and running again.”
Ten other local tourist guides who incorporate a broad range of offerings have also been identified to receive more support. In the coming months their footage will officially be launched on Visit Knysna’s social media platforms, whilst Mark Dixon’s moonlight meander tour has launched as a podcast.
Michelle Lencoe of Lithemba Crafts & Tours went on to say: “Remember, every town has its own story to tell and being advertised through the virtual tours the guests get to see and hear different tours and areas of greater Knysna in a short period of time.”
“Virtual tours have now become very popular, especially as a teaser for travelers who are still saving money for their trip and an informative platform for people to plan their travel. While undoubtedly a tragedy, the COVID-19 pandemic could end up being the accelerator that transforms virtual tours from a luxury addition into a standard baseline expectation. It’s great to see the One Day Virtual Tours campaign giving these tourist guides a seat in the transformation table,” concluded Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris.
We all aspire to travel and be tourists. As September is Tourism Month, an annual celebration focused on the importance of tourism in every economy, we can be a tourist in our own town and country. By being reminded to rediscover the environment within which we live, we encourage everyone to re-appreciate the reasons why we live here.
Visit Knysna, the Destination Marketing Organisation (DMO) for Greater Knysna, is launching a treasure hunt-type initiative in celebration of Tourism Month 2019, encouraging locals and visitors to Discover Our World by following clues to various locations in and around our area. “With so much to see and do here in the heart of the Garden Route, we want people to rediscover the sights, experiences and spirit of our beautiful location”, says Visit Knysna General Manager, Colleen Durant.
This activation will launch on the 1 September with clue cards being available at the Visit Knysna office at 40 Main Road, Knysna, our information outlet at the Fijnbosch Coffee Shop, 31 Main Road, Sedgefield or downloadable from our website www.VisitKnysna.co.za .
Participation includes visiting at least 10 of the 18 clues on a clue card. There, take a selfie with the clue – be sure to include your clue card in your selfie – and tag @VisitKnysna and @VisitSedgefield with #DiscoverOurWorld. The initiative includes many local businesses and products who have offered specials and prizes to "discoverers" who are led by the clues to their establishments.
During the course of the month, there are prizes to be won or discounts to be issued by some of the participating products. On World Tourism Day, this being 27 September, we will end the fun with a few lucky draw prizes, hampers of locally made products, for participants that tagged correctly.
WESGRO, Cape Town and the Western Cape’s Destination Marketing Organisation, will also for the month of September be promoting special offers in the Western Cape area. Follow them on Social Media for more details: @discoverctwc
From 23 – 29 September 2019, South African Tourism will also be hosting a Sale Week with special offers from products and establishments from all over the country. Keep an eye on their website for more details: www.deals.southafrica.net .
We challenge everyone to get out, explore, have fun and even possibly win!
+27 (0)44 382 5510
Today, Wesgro exco members visited Knysna and Sedgefield to review the work done after the first month of the contracted relationship with local government to provide local tourism promotion for Knysna municipality.
The team was satisfied with the progress made in the month since the Service Level Agreement (SLA) was signed including:
• the appointment of an acting General Manager and three fixed term contract staff members running the operations in the Visit Knysna visitor centre;
• setting up of office backend and administration requirements including IT, HR and compliance;
• finalisation of the short list for candidates for the role of the General Manager of Visit Knysna and setting up of interviews;
• the printing of two format maps (fold up and tear off) for local businesses and visitors to use during season;
• meeting with various local tourism partners;
• planning the brand and marketing strategy consultations for week commencing 10 December 2018; and
• structures to join planning around the events for e.g. The Knysna Oyster Festival.
The SLA provides for a brand strategy to be tabled by 1 January 2019, so the next month will involve comprehensive consultation with the industry and stakeholders, starting with excellent previous tourism work tabled by Hunt Lascaris and the municipality.
As discussed with the tourism industry in Knysna and Sedgefield today, the working name for the operation promoting tourism in the town will be "Visit Knysna”.
As per the SLA, this operation will be a division of Wesgro run from Knysna by Marcia Holmes – who has been appointed as the acting General Manager while recruitment for a permanent appointment is under way.
Following today’s meetings with the Knysna Tourism Association and the Sedgefield Ratepayers Association, we are moving towards finalising one or more Memoranda of Understanding with tourism industry bodies to make sure that tourism promotion for the greater Knysna area is delivered in alignment with the tourism industry.
“With only one month since the signing of the SLA, we are pleased to report that the team at Visit Knysna have started to deliver on our commitment of promoting tourism in Knysna and Sedgefield. Our first order of business this past month was to ensure the tourism office at 40 Main Road is open and ready to sell the destination as part of a renewed effort by the tourism industry, the municipality and Wesgro to promote all the destination has to offer,” said Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris.
Following the meeting in Sedgefield, Harris - and Judy Lain, Wesgro’s Chief Marketing Officer for Tourism - officially launched the "Knysna Loving Local Craft Collective" Pop-Up Shop at the Tourism Office on 40 Main Road.
The Pop-Up boasts arts, crafts, food and beverages made from locally sourced materials with many products on display created by disadvantaged and differently abled individuals in the district.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with the "Knysna Loving Local Craft Collective" on this innovative initiative creating opportunities in the region. The annual Pop-Up is one of many ways that the municipality is bringing locals into the tourism sector, creating a platform for creatives to showcase and sell their wares,” added Harris.
Media Relations Officer, Wesgro
Tel: 021 487 8700
Cell: 083 577 0327
This Sunday, SABC News' Trendz Travel programme relaunched with a new logo and a new look! It also featured the first of three inserts on Greater Knysna.
Sedgefield Cansa Shades of Pink Fun Walk & Run on the 25 October went ahead despite the driving rain and locals turned out in force to support this worthy cause. Sedgefield Tourism assisted with promoting the event which raised over R7,000 for Cansa. Both Sedgefield Councillors, Levael Davis and Cathy Weideman walked in the rain to show their support for those affected by cancer. A big thank you to all the sponsors and to the Bowling Club for hosting this event, to Sedgefield Striders for co-ordinating it.
If the Sedgefield slogan, Slow Town conjures up images of listless locals going about their daily business at a tortoises pace, then you have the wrong idea entirely.
In fact, quite the opposite is true for this pretty little coastal village. Sedgefield lends itself completely to pursuits outdoors and locals are seen actively embracing the elements.
When Sedgefield was declared Africa’s first Cittaslow Town back in 2010, it joined more than 100 towns around the world in a pledge to promote a better quality of life, a spirit of community and a profound respect for the environment.
Essentially it is a cultural revolution against the notion that faster, bigger and more is better. One could even say it is resistance to the homogenous afflictions of modern living. The philosophy is not about doing everything at a ‘tortoise pace’, but rather to savour and be mindful of each and every moment. By getting back to basics, by reclaiming a life of reflection and togetherness one is able to live completely in the NOW –these are only some of the underlying concepts of the Cittaslow movement.
This ethos is tangible when visiting Sedgefield’s town events, charitable causes, farmer’s markets supporting local produce. These events and more are whole-heartedly supported by locals and there is a distinct sense of community here.
Sedgefield is once again gearing up for the annual Slow Festival from the 24-27 March. This festival serves as a celebration of all the things that makes Sedgefield so special. Details of this much-loved festival will follow in the upcoming weeks. For further information visit the website: www.slowfestival.co.za
Sedgefield strives to adhere to a Slow Town philosophy and continually aims to successfully achieve these Cittaslow principles:
For more than a decade the Scarab Village, Sedgefield has been a hub for local creativity and ingenuity - from food fare to arts to a unique range of crafts.
This village is not just a craft fare, but has several permanent businesses trade that throughout the week, offering a range of distinctively unique items, including natural, bespoke furniture pieces, handmade jewellery and decorative light fittings, hand crafted paper, beads, wood and stone decor and so much more.
Scarab Village house a lovely nursery that sells a host of indigenous plant species, which include a wide selection of succulents. The village also boasts Sedgefield’s very first boutique craft brewery. This family business specialises in quality hand crafted beer, including a light summer-style Blonde, to a well-hopped Indian Pale Ale. Their beer garden offers a relaxed, down to earth place to hang out with friends on the weekend.
On Saturdays the venue transforms into a busy Scarab Craft Market. Here one can source some of the best authentic arts and crafts on the Garden Route. And now, from the 2 October, the Scarab Village is going to be humming to a totally different beat with the opening of the new restaurant Melody’s. The owners anticipate Melody’s to become THE meeting place for both locals and visitors looking for a venue to dine and dance the night away!
Melody’s will be open daily and will host a variety of different genre musicians, including jazz, blues, country, rock, cabaret to name but a few. No cover-charge will be payable during their opening month of October.
A list of their first week’s line-up:
Friday 2 Oct - Music by ECLIPSE (pop, country rock)
Saturday 3 Oct - Entertainment by STEVE HUGHES (hits from the past ‘til the present)
Sunday 4 Oct - TANYA & CHARL (blues, rock and jazz)
Wednesday 7 Oct - Delightfully entertaining BRONWYN STAMMER (blues, jazz, cabaret)
Timberlake Organic Village, a quaint tourist attraction between Sedgefield and Wilderness has always been firmly rooted in the principles of slow food, natural, organic, and “local is lekker”.
This one-stop experience offers a delightful mix of small independent businesses built around a common area. It has a genuinely down to earth ambiance and has been a favoured destination for locals and visitors seeking an earthy respite for many years.
One of the best aspects of Timberlake is that it focuses on providing food and entertainment for children and adults alike. So, while your children play on jungle gyms, explore the fairy garden or tackle the awesome obstacle courses designed and run by Acrobranch, the adults can relax, listen to live music at the Oyster Shack, and then relish some of the Garden Route’s most acclaimed food fare.
Zucchini restaurant delivers on its promise of hearty, healthy meals. It is no surprise that it was voted as one of the top 8 restaurants in the region. Zucchini’s source only local produce and a great deal of the greens and vegetables used in the restaurant are picked straight from their very own organic vegetable garden!
Then there is the Windmill Cafe’, also a relaxed breakfast and lunch stop presenting a variety South African inspired and local foods.
From wine to mohair, fairies to an eclectic range of crafts, Timberlake offers a very unique shopping experience which smacks of South African’s creative ingenuity.
Next time you head this way, make a plan to stop here. You won’t be sorry!
An exciting backpacker's lodge has found its way to Myoli Beach alongside the Swartvlei lagoon, Sedgefield where we welcomes you to a 14km treasure chest of unspoilt beach and the ultimate extreme adventure experience on the garden route!