Knysna is blessed with a temperate climate and spectacular scenery. Finding fun and interesting things to do is easy. Many of them are free, and all of them make your trip to this gem of the Garden Route worth every moment.
Build sandcastles and swim
The area is steeped in history, brought to life by the well-researched fiction of Dalene Matthee. Why not choose one of her books for your holiday reading? Set up a deck chair and umbrella at Bollard Bay on Leisure Island and journey back to when elephants roamed the forest. Bollard Bay is the perfect spot if you have little children. The water is shallow for swimming, and building a sand castle is a must.
Escape across the water
Jump on a water taxi across the lagoon to the Featherbed Beach Bar . Open during the high summer season, it is the perfect spot for a scrumptious lunch right on the water. Or book any of the other boat excursions on offer for a relaxing time on Knysna’s famous estuary, commonly referred to as the Knysna Lagoon.
Step back in time
Visit the Knysna museums for a glimpse of the past: the Old Gaol built in 1859; the yellowwood cottage Millwood House; the General Dealers Parkes’ Shop built in the early 1900s; the labourers’ cottage Pitt Street House; and Parkes Cottage with its displays of Millwood history. Stop in at the Turbine Hotel to see a real slice of history.
Take a leisurely stroll or three
Take a stroll around Knysna – there is much to see. The Harbour Town on Thesen Island is delightful. Find a bench at the end of the jetty and watch local fishermen catching Strepies. The Knysna Seahorse is a very special creature and the only true estuarine seahorse in the world. This seahorse is only 12 cm long, and you can see one for real in the tank in the SanParks building on the pier.
It’s just a short walk along the Lagoon to the Knysna Waterfront with its many restaurants and colourful harbour. Here you will also find delightful shops and boutiques selling curios, crafts, and designer items.
Explore a small town with a big heart
Hidden in the heart of Knysna town there is a real gem: Pledge Nature Reserve. This 10ha reserve has been lovingly restored. It has an abundance of indigenous flora, fauna and birdlife. You can meander through the park on the footpaths, alongside the stream. If you climb the path to the top of the reserve you will be rewarded with a beautiful view over the town and out to the Heads. This is the perfect place to enjoy a picnic.
Sunshine and seaspray
If you are looking for a beach walk, there are many good options. Brenton-on-Sea offers a beautiful walk and, if you are up for it, you can walk all the way to Buffalo Bay. Another option is to park at the car park as you come into Buffalo Bay and walk what the locals call “the wild side at Buffs”. Another beach walk with spectacular scenery is at Gericke’s Point in Sedgefield.
See the world in a whole new way
There are many viewpoints around the area that are well worth visiting. The outlook point on the East Head gives you a breathtaking view of the opening of the Heads. Other picturesque landscapes can be seen along the road to Brenton-on-Sea. Take a flask of coffee and sit for a while on Margaret’s Bench with the sweeping view of the lagoon; or drive further along for a panoramic view of the ocean and Buffalo Bay.
Find yourself in the forest
Jubilee Creek is a great choice for a forest visit. The drive there gives you a real taste of the indigenous forest. Here you will find a lovely picnic spot where children can splash in the river. There is also a short, flat walk to view the waterfall.
These options only scratch the surface when it comes to things to do and see in the Knysna area. Will you have enough time to experience them all? You’ll just have to come back and visit us again. And again.