The Perfect Weekend in Hermanus, South Africa

{Home is somewhere in that cluster of houses between the mountains and the sea}

I think we all have a few magical places where we can go to find perspective, to spin our dreams into reality, to rest, and to centre ourselves in this whirligig of a world. 

I have two very special places like that.  

One is the dormer window in the attic of my childhood home.  I sit on a pile of cushions and feel like I have climbed a castle tower where I can survey my domain (the front yard). The world seems so small and manageable from that height; not scary or overwhelming at all. I make lists and dream big dreams, and almost every one of them comes true. 

That's another thing about these magical places.  The dreams you dream there have a habit of transforming themselves into reality. 

My newest magical place is my parents-in-law's beach house in Hermanus, South Africa.  Here, I can sit on the second floor balcony, glass of wine in hand, and watch the waves rolling endlessly toward the shore far below me. 

There's something about the sea and the mountains and the whales (oh! the whales!) that make me feel simultaneously really small, but also like I'm part of this great big amazing world. The landscape is wholesome;  I mean wholesome in the "being there makes you whole again" kind of way.  

Plan your trip to Hermanus

Getting there:

It's about a 1.5 hour drive from Cape Town through amazing mountain passes and rugged coastline.  

Where to stay:

There are plenty of amazing hotels and B&Bs in the town.  However, we usually stay in our parents' holiday home.  Fancy staying in the same place?  You can check it out and find more details HERE

Where to eat

We have a ritual of coffee and breakfasts at Savannah Cafe. It's our favourite "not for tourists" place. The staff are friendly, the food is affordable and delicious, and the coffees are fantastic.   

The best pizzas in the world are from Rossi's. Trust me.  Advance booking is essential. 

Where to buy books: Hemingway's bookshop is like Paris's famous Shakespeare and Company transported to the African Coastline. They have an amazing selection of used, rare, antique and new books, as well as other memorabilia.  

Other things to do: 

A walk along the cliff path.  Hermanus is a long narrow town, strung along the shore and nestled between the mountains and the sea.  The whole coastline is public parkland, and there's an amazing paved walking path that leads along the beaches and cliffs, and through the dense Fynbos forests.  

Whale watching. In winter and spring whales make the bay their home.  I've sometimes seen up to 10 whales at a time, breaching and jumping and frolicking in the water.  You don't even need to go on fancy boat tours, all you have to do is walk along the cliff path and keep your eyes peeled.

Do you have any special places that inspire you more than others?  


{Hemingway's Bookshop}

{The perfect cappuccino from Savannah Cafe}

{Flowering Aloes hanging over the sea cliffs}

{The dense forests along the cliff path feel like something out of a fairy tale}

{He is my sunshine....} 

{Along the Cliff Path}

{Rocks carved by the Indian Ocean}