The Hemel-en-Aarde valley is one of the most relaxing, picturesque regions in South Africa. Known for it’s cool-climate wines and fabulous wine farms, it neighbours Hermanus, which is home to the Southern Right whale for a few months every year. The Walker Bay wine region is a must-visit destination.
Explore the Beaches
1. Breakfast Bay
If untouched, hidden gems are your favourite thing, Breakfast Bay is just that. This little beach is situated in Vermont, just past Onrus River and on the way to Fisherhaven. It’s ideal for a relaxed picnic and a favourite with locals for just that (hence the name) or snorkeling adventures.
2. Onrus Beach
The perfect beach for families with small children and adventurous older siblings, Onrus Beach is a wonderful place. The more intrepid can catch a wave in the surf or bodyboard in the breakers. For those seeking warmer, calmer waters, a dip in the nearby lagoon is perfect.
3. Sandbaai Main Beach
Great for families. There is loads of space for little ones to run around, build sandcastles, or play Frisbee. The water can get chilly in the Western Cape, but children and other keen swimmers hardly feel it, and love splashing around in the waves. There is plenty of kelp and some rocky patches too, so swimmers should watch out for these. The warm sands are great for sunbathing, picnics and collecting shells, making Sandbaai fantastic for the whole family.
4. Voelklip Beach
Voëlklip Beach is a favourite among surfers. Voëlklip Beach offers spacious green lawns leading down to the beach with a few rocky coves nearby for a more private beach experience; very popular during peak season and summer holidays. Refreshments are a few minutes’ walk away at a nearby Deli and coffee shop. Ablution facilities are basic yet sufficient. Parking is limited.
Langbaai Beach is located between two rocky outcrops in the popular holiday town of Hermanus. The beach is secluded and small, providing a more private and intimate beach experience in comparison to the other beaches in the area. The beach is well maintained and offers excellent swimming, surfing, and limited parking.
Also known as “Lover’s Cove”, is a firm family favourite. It offers shallow water for safe swimming, the best waves for surfing, ample parking, and excellent facilities, including picnic and braai spots under the trees.
7. Grotto Beach
The Blue Flag Grotto Beach is well known for its massive stretch of stunning sandy beach and ocean. It is enjoyed by locals and tourists alike and boasts a view of the mountainous areas behind whilst still having a seemingly unending view of the beach. This beach is perfect for swimming, suntanning, games and long, leisurely walks and with ample parking it is the ideal holiday point for many.
Explore the Restaurants
Origins at The Marine
At Origins, the focus is on fresh, locally sources food made simply. Watch our highly trained chefs at work in the open kitchen or enjoy the view of the rolling waves. Come in for tapas, craft beer or a multi-course fine dining experience, you can find it at Origins.
Monday – Sunday: 12pm – 2.30pm; 6pm – 9.30pm
028 313 1000, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Marine Hotel, Marine Drive, Hermanus, Western Cape
Housed in an 1800 century converted fisherman’s cottage, the restaurant (aptly named Fisherman’s Cottage) was opened in 1991 and has been serving a rich variety of seafood since then. Locals and visitors alike enjoy their seafood and delicacies from the blackboard menu inside the cosy cottage or outside on the deck.
Tuesday – Saturday: 6pm – 9pm; Friday & Saturday: 12pm – 3pm
028 312 3642, email@example.com
3A Harbour Road, Hermanus, Western Cape
Offering the rare combination of excellent food, a generous and wide-ranging drinks list, as well as entertainment for kids outside below the terrace, Lizette’s Kitchen is popular with families, visitors, parties and more. In summer, you can enjoy a drink outside on the wraparound stoep or on the wide deck, and in winter enjoy a cosy meal by the fireplace.
Monday – Thursday: 9am – 10pm
Friday – Saturday: 9am – 10pm
Sunday: 9am – 9pm
028 314 0308, firstname.lastname@example.org
20 on 8th Street, Voelklip, Hermanus, Western Cape
One of just 25 South African Italian restaurants accredited by the Italian Chamber of Commerce, Fabio’s Ristorante is dedicated to real Italian cuisine. Enjoy an authentic meal in the cosy restaurant and pick up imported Italian delicacies from their deli to recreate your own masterpieces at home. Fabio’s also have a great range of local and Italian wines to complement their delicious dishes.
Monday – Sunday, 11am – 10pm
028 313 0532, email@example.com
60 St Peters Lane, Hermanus, Western Cape
Burgundy Seafront Restaurant
In a historic building overlooking the old Hermanus Harbour lies Burgundy. A Hermanus landmark, the oldest building in town, as well as a National Monument, the restaurant was opened in its current iteration by local wine family, the Hamilton Russels. The food is a delicious cross section of seafood and other culianry delights and the wine list a virtual walk through the Cape winelands, both local and further afield.
Monday – Sunday, 8am – 9pm
028 312 2800, firstname.lastname@example.org
7 Harbour Road, Hermanus, Western Cape
Rossi’s Italian Restaurant
If you’re looking for tasty, housemade food in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere, Rossi’s is a great stop. A Hermanus institution, they’ve been running since 1985 serving up traditional Italian food to locals and visitors alike.
Sunday – Thursday: 11am – 9.30 pm
Friday & Saturday: 11am – 10pm
028 312 2848, email@example.com
10 High Street, Hermanus, Western Cape
This Italian-South African eatery is in the centre of bustling Hermanus with a welcoming ambience and a great vibe. Serving bright, fresh and seasonal food, their wide open deck is the ideal spot to while away summer evenings.
Monday – Friday: 10am – 9pm
Saturday & Sunday: 10.30am – 9pm
028 313 1153, firstname.lastname@example.org
83 Marine Drive, Hermanus, Western Cape
Pear Tree Bistro
Overlooking the old Hermanus Harbour is a piazza where the Pear Tree Bistro finds its home. Producing creative and tasteful dishes in this beautiful location, Pear Tree offers a relaxed and tranquil atmosphere to enjoy your meal.
Monday – Sunday, 11.30am – 10pm
028 313 1224, email@example.com
2 Godfrey Cottages, Village Square, 81 Marine Drive, Hermanus, Western Cape
A little way out of Hermanus town centre, overlooking the working fishing and whalewatching harbour, lies the Harbour Rock. A Hermanus institution, it was established in 1997 and has been serving up consistently great food since then. The menu focusses on top quality seafood and was one of the first restaurants in Hermanus to serve sushi. Choose from the extensive seafood menu or indulge in one of their meatier dishes. There truly is something for everyone.
Lunch: Monday – Sunday, 11.30am – 4pm
Dinner: Monday – Sunday, 6pm – 10pm
028 312 2920, firstname.lastname@example.org
Suite 24A, New Harbour, Hermanus, Western Cape
In the friendly atmosphere at Groves Cafeé, you can enjoy your flat white and a view of the whales in the bay. The fresh, delicious menu has something for everyone from breakfast through to a late lunch. Oh, and remember to take a look at the cakes and scones, they are not to be missed!
Monday – Sunday: 8am – 5pm
028 312 4277, email@example.com
5 Village Square, Marine Drive, Hermanus, Western Cape
La Pentola overlooks the grand expanse of Walker Bay through their panoramic windows. This South African culinary leader – originally started in Johannesburg in 1995 and now in Hermanus – is known for their fresh seafood, prime cuts and exotic game.
Monday – Sunday, 11am – 10pm
028 313 1685, firstname.lastname@example.org
Shop 4, Ocean View, 87 Marine Drive, Hermanus, Western Cape
The Classroom Restaurant
The Classroom, home to graduate chefs from the local Warwick Chefs School, lies in the beautiful Hemel-en-Aarde Village just outside Hermanus. The perfect venue for a wedding, birthday or other celebration, their weekly Sunday Lunch is also a more casual way to enjoy their delicious food.
Sunday, 12pm – 3pm
028 316 3582, email@example.com
Hemel-en-Aarde Village, Sandbaai, Hermanus, Western Cape
The Milkwood Restaurant
Hidden in the milkwoods that line Onrus Beach and Lagoon, lies the neighbourhood gem that is The Milkwood. Separated into The Restaurant and The Beach Hut, you can enjoy a refined and delicious plate of food overlooking the lagoon, or a casual (but just as tasty) bite downstairs in the Beach Bar. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and the wine list is a succinct walk through the local wine region.
Monday – Sunday: 8am – 10pm
028 316 1516, firstname.lastname@example.org
Atlantic Drive, Onrus Beach, Hermanus, Western Cape