Taking a drive along the Cape Whale Coast route

When last did you take a drive to Hermanus? Not the quick route over Sir Lowry’s Mountain Pass for the fabulous pies at the Elgin Farmstall, but along the newly launched Cape Whale Coast route.

If you’re travelling from Cape Town along the N2, you want to take a right just after Monkey Town and before Sir Lowry’s pass (toward Gordon’s Bay).

First stop (whether for lunch or dinner) is at Ooskus. I always remembered it as the “Jaws Fish shop”, because of the big picture of a shark on the wall. This tiny fish and chip shop is an institution. The food is delicious and without a doubt the most value for money ever. (EVER!) I have yet to see one of my athletic and hungry male friends finish one of their combos… so make sure you’re hungry. The shop itself is everything local. You know you’ve arrived in Gordon’s Bay when you’re waiting for your order to be hailed over the loud speaker. (No jokes, they have a microphone and a loud speaker in this joint)

From Gordon’s Bay the road along the coast is exquisite. They have numerous bricked parking spots to stop (to eat your fish and chips) and watch the yachts, whales or dolphins. I have stopped before to hear the whales blowing right below us along the sea cliff.

This road (Clarens Drive) will take you past crystal pools, famous for hiking and kloofing, and down to Koel Baai. The white stretch of beach is too beautiful, however quite dangerous because of the currents. Enjoy the view, and rather take a stroll down to Dappat Se Gat, a very popular surf spot and private little cove, with enough beach to tan, play beach bats, and check out the surf talent. Whats best is the water isn’t as cold as what you find in Clifton or Camps Bay, and you feel like you’re far away from anywhere, only 40mins from Cape Town.

The drive through to Rooi Els, Pringle Bay, Betty’s Bay and Kleinmond will take you to Arabella Golf Estate, before you take the turn off to Hermanus. If you’re staying in Pringle Bay (A little piece of a windy paradise), make sure you have dinner at Hook line and Sinker – Vars seekos en
vleis.

Peak Whale Season is normally from mid August to about mid October, but recently there don’t seem to be any rules. I spotted a whale on Sunday from Pringle Bay, 1 May. There have also been some fabulous dolphin sightings recently.