If you’re looking for winter getaway destinations in the Western Cape, Knysna should surface at the top of your list!

There is more to Knysna than beautiful beaches, as you’ll soon discover, making it an idyllic escape, no matter the time of year. Winter temperatures hover between 10°C and 20°C, making this itinerary perfectly suited to slightly chillier conditions.

Keep reading to unlock your winter escape to Knysna!

1. Walk on the beach

The beach takes on a unique, contemplative character in the winter months. While you might not be tempted to swim in the ocean in the middle of winter, walking along the shore is a must-do activity year-round.

After settling in at The Turbine Hotel & Spa, make your way to one of the nearby Blue Flag beaches and enjoy walking along the pristine expanse of sand. This activity is ideal for those with kids. After all, rock pools are magical places of discovery, no matter the season!

Blue Flag Beaches in Knysna:

  • Buffalo Bay
  • Brenton-on-Sea

2. Attend the Knysna Oyster Festival

This year, the famous Knysna Oyster Festival takes place between 21 and 30 June.

It is an iconic event that celebrates our country’s finest oysters paired with live music, regional wine, exciting outdoor adventures and a vibrant atmosphere driven by local culture. If you’re looking for an excuse to visit Knysna this winter, look no further than this festival!

The Turbine Hotel & Spa is ideally placed for those looking for accommodation during the Knysna Oyster Festival. Located on Thesen Island, we are simultaneously close to the action, yet removed from the bustling crowds.

3. Go whale-watching

Between June and November, South Africa plays host to migrating southern right and humpback whales who move up along our coastline to calve. Winter is therefore a spectacular time of year to go whale-watching, with sightings pretty much guaranteed!

We recommend making use of Ocean Odyssey, a charter company with modified vessels kitted for whale-watching.

These tours are informative and, above all, respectful of the whales’ personal space and safety, as well as yours. Yes, you will get exhilaratingly close to these giants of the ocean, but it will be on their terms.

4. Cosy up in a pub

Nothing speaks to the stomach like a pub lunch when it’s chilly outside.

Knysna has many quaint pubs to choose from, including The Bell Tavern, Olde’s Restaurant and Bosun’s Arms, but our favourite (and we may be biased) is our very own Gastro Pub at The Turbine Hotel & Spa. Get comfortable near the fire and allow our talented bartenders to pull you a draught or pour you a cocktail.

The Gastro Pub also has a sunny deck that boasts a view of the marina, making it the perfect place to catch a legendary sunset over the Knysna lagoon. Keep an eye on our Events Page – a favourite winter activity among locals is our monthly Quiz Night. Do you have what it takes? We’ll soon find out…

Browse the full Gastro Pub menu here.

5. Visit The Old Gaol Museum

While there are many exciting and worthwhile museums to visit in Knysna, The Old Gaol has a bit of everything, making it the perfect recommendation for this list.

Here you’ll discover what Knysna was like as a port town and delve deep into its maritime history. There are also displays detailing the Knysna forest elephant – now something of an enigmatic myth to history-lovers. There are also beautiful old maps and model ships to help you imagine what life in Knysna must have been like in the 1800s.

Find The Old Gaol Museum Corner of Queen Street and Main Road opposite St. George’s Church and the Royal Hotel. If you’d like to discover more museums in and around Knysna, click here.

(Image Credit: Instagram | 21worldtraveler)

What else?

When it comes to your winter getaway to the Western Cape, we’ve only scratched the surface!

8 More Winter-Friendly Activities:

1.) Visit The Knysna Heads, an iconic landmark on the Garden Route!
2.) Spend some time interacting with elephants at the Knysna Elephant Park.
3.) Explore the shops, galleries, and restaurants along the Knysna Waterfront.
4.) Take a hike and marvel at the beauty of nature in the Knysna Forest.
5.) Take a ferry ride to Featherbed Nature Reserve.
6.) Browse local crafts, food stalls, and live music at the Knysna Friday Market.
7.) Enjoy a round of golf at Pezula Championship Golf Course, with stunning views of the ocean and the Knysna Lagoon.
8.) Explore the works of local artists and artisans at the Knysna Art Gallery.

For even more winter-friendly activities near Knysna, click here.


Stay With Us

If you’d like a stay to remember (in a refurbished power station), look no further than The Turbine Hotel & Spa, a luxurious 5-star accommodation offering on Thesen Island.

We’re a stone’s throw away from all the exciting activities mentioned above and also offer plenty of our own onsite.

Our friendly reception team would be more than happy to put together a bespoke winter-friendly itinerary just for you, should you need it. Book online using our seamless booking platform or get in touch directly.

Contact Details:
+27 (0) 44 050 3500 | +27 (0) 62 403 0493

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