My family love to do this walk when we visit Hermanus. The views are spectacular and it offers... read more
Hi Cathy. We have been visiting Hermanus since 1994 - have walked parts (not all) of the Coastal Paths many times, but they have all been on the Stanford side of the Town. From what we are familiar with, I would suggest you... More
Hi Cathy. We have been visiting Hermanus since 1994 - have walked parts (not all) of the Coastal Paths many times, but they have all been on the Stanford side of the Town. From what we are familiar with, I would suggest you consider - drive through (or around the ring-road of) Hermanus and out on the main road R.43 along the coast, probably signposted to Stanford. Carry on right out of town until you get to an island with a garage - leave the Stanford Road and take the right hand road, which again follows the coast. Go past a little café on right (Bread & Butter?) or stop off for a coffee if you have been driving all the way from Cape Town. A bit further on, turn right down past the lovely hotel Birkenhead House - your sat nav will pick that up and I think there is a road sign, to tell you when to turn right. To the left is a small, public car park where you can start your walk. There are toilet facilities there but no shop or café. This is where we have usually started our walks. We are now in our 70's so the walks get ever shorter! According to Google maps, Hermanus to Birkenhead House is 3.7 kms.- a little over 2 miles. The coastal path back to Hermanus is paved/concreted all the way to Hermanus, I believe - a bit up and down at times, with a few steps. We haven't done the complete walk, but I don't know of any difficult parts from talking to those who have. I don't think it a strenuous walk back to Hermanus and you will know how long to allow for you walking 2+ miles, but you may well think that an hour would be sufficient, even allowing for plenty of photos on the way. You will be overlooking the beaches all the way and the views are stunning. When you reach Hermanus Town, perhaps an excellent lunch - large or small - at Café Burgundy - right on the front overlooking the sea. There's a nice small shopping arcade not far away, with the Town just behind. Then an hour's walk back to the car and off back to Cape Town. I would think the journey will take the best part of 2 hours depending on times of day/traffic etc. That's quite a day all in, but I'm sure you will also enjoy the drive over the passes and down to Hermanus. If you think that is too far to walk, there are several little roads off right from R.43, some of which lead down to the coastal path and have places to leave your car. You might feel that's a bit isolated, whereas the beach/car park by Birkenhead House is very well frequented. My only fear is that going in August, you might be too early for the whales. In spite of what some of the Tourist Guides say,I would have thought that the best times would be mid/end of September, through October and November, so, hopefully, you will be there in late August. Do hope this is helpful to you. It's a magical place to be in (even without the whales). We go every year now for 6 weeks in January/February to escape our winter, so always miss the whales, so do enjoy! The year we did 'do' the whales, we drove all the way down from Port Elizabeth, seeing whales every day. All the southern coast of South Africa is, in fact, a succession of huge bays - all were filled with whales. In just one bay, I counted 60 whales (or 60 tails)! At Hermanus, driving past the old jetty, we saw a mother and baby right up alongside of the jetty, with people on the jetty, just looking down - something very special!