Oaks on Main, Main Street, Knysna

Hidden gems for that mid-morning cuppa

High tea (and coffee) off the high street – Grab a cup of coffee or enjoy a cup of tea at one of the hidden gems in the greater Knysna area.

Need a cup of coffee to start your day? Does a cup of tea after ten make you feel human again? Or are you looking for a reviving cuppa in between your adventures discovering Knysna and its surrounding areas? You’ll find plenty of coffee shops and daytime restaurants in the main centres of Knysna and Sedgefield. Buffalo Bay and Brenton-on-Sea also have a few places to get your java fix in their centres.

But the greater Knysna area also has a number of hidden gems when it comes to caffeine and cake. Here are a few places to try that are a bit more off the beaten track.


Although Snobs Coffee Roastery is right in the centre of town, it is hidden away at Oaks on Main Knysna. Their wood roasted coffee is best enjoyed in the tranquil courtyard that brings Knysna’s old-world charm to life.

Papillon at the Heritage is off Knysna’s busy Main Road and situated inside one of the town’s many historical buildings. Well-known for their New York cheesecake, this day- and night-time restaurant often hosts high tea on Friday afternoons.

Just outside of town on Old Cape Road (as you drive to the Simola Hotel), you’ll find The Farm. Family friendly with a kids’ playpark, great coffee and fantastic food, The Farm is also a favourite pitstop for cyclists coming off the nearby forest trails.

The Grain Mill Organic Bistro

The Grain Mill Organic Bistro is a well-kept secret. Serving healthy food and great coffee, they also sell organic goods and bake delicious spelt bread. Trendy lifestyle store Metelerkamps is adjacent to the bistro, perfect for some retail therapy while waiting on your order.

The industrial area might seem like an unlikely location for a restaurant or coffee shop, but this is where you’ll discover the delights of White Washed. Teas and coffees are served with homemade sweet treats and pastries while the aromas wafting from the kitchen are sure to convince you to stay for a wholesome lunch. You can also buy a variety of treats, fresh breads and ready-made frozen meals. Should you be in the mood for something stronger than coffee, why not sample the craft beers from neighbouring Red Bridge Brewing Co?

Leisure Island

Nadine’s Corner serves a relaxed, island living atmosphere with their coffees, teas and light meals. Sit and sip under the trees, watching the island life passing by.

Nadine’s Corner - Leisure Isle

Bodega Café delivers sincere hospitality with their popular coffees and treats. You might just find yourself going for coffee – and staying for lunch.


Just to the west of Sedgefield, at the Mosaic Market, you’ll find Slow Roasted Coffee Collection. Sample their coffees, which are roasted on site, with a slice of cake before deciding which roast or blend to take home with you. Their decadent coffee body butters are a must-have spoil for yourself or that someone special.

Fijnbosch Coffee Shop - Sedgefield

Not necessarily hidden, but on Sedgefield’s Main Road, Fijnbosch Coffee Shop serves freshness. Get your coffee or tea along with tips and advice on the area, as Fijnbosch serves as the Visitor Information Centre in Sedgefield.

Other Areas

Flippin’ Knys Roadhouse, at the Goukamma Station on your way to Buffalo Bay, serves “award winning” cheesecake and great coffees.

When exploring Rheenendal, or if you are driving the Seven Passes road, stop at Totties Farm Kitchen for a refreshing cup of tea or coffee. Opened by the matriarch of the Van Rheenen family, Totties is now run by her great-grandson and his wife.

The Oak Leaf is not just an exceptional coffee bar, but a brunch café and deli too. The café is in the beautiful Belvidere estate, just outside of Knysna as you drive to Brenton-on-Sea, and even has a doggy menu for your furry companion.

The Charlesford Farm Café is a rustic venue that serves fantastic coffee and café fare at the Charlesford Farm Meat Co. and Deli. It’s also the perfect place to pick up farm fresh meats for a braai at your accommodation.

The greater Knysna area is filled with café’s, coffee shops and restaurants that serve good coffee. Find them all here (link to listings).

* Written by Jacques Marais – Novemeber 2020