FULL DAY CAPE RIVIERA AND WHALES TOUR

Departure: Seasonal Tour (Aug to Nov)

Duration: 9 hours

Includes: Harbour Museum and Harold Porter Botanical Garden

Meals Included: None

August to November is usually the best time to see the Southern Right Whale in our waters. Hermanus' Walker Bay is and ideal place for whale watching. The mammals, which often come as close to 50 metres from the shore, are given displays of breaching, lobtailing, spyhopping and courtship rituals.

Depart Cape Town via Elgin, which is the heart of the apple industry, en route to Hermanus, stopping at the Old Harbour Musuem. As long ago as 1857, the old Harbour at Hermanus Pietersfontein provided a rocky but safe shelter for the small fishing boats whose owners were drawn to Hermanus by the abundance and variety of fish.

The Old Harbour was proclaimed a "Musuem" in 1972. Travel to the Hamilton Russell Vineyards established by Tim Hamilton Russell in 1981. He searched for and selected the most suitable "most southerly vineyards in the Cape" to produce South Africa's top cool climate wines. This was of course in the cool, maritime Walker Bay area, in the beautiful Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. The new generation proprietor, Anthony Hamilton Russell, says he is more interested in soils. The team comes closer each year to realising the full quality potential of the Hamilton Russell Vineyards terroir.

Take a scenic drive to the town of Kleinmond, for a visit to the Harold Porter Botanical Gardens. This beautiful, secluded garden is set between mountain and sea, in the heart of the Cape Fybos region and encompasses 10 hectares of cultivated fynbos garden and 190.5 hectares of pristine natural fynbos. Situated in the centre of the coastal fynbos where the flora is at its richest, the garden encompasses mountain slopes with their wind-clipped heathlands, deep gorges with relict forests, flats and marshes with restios, sedges and bulbd, as well as dunes adjacent to the beach with their specialised salt-adapted plants.

The garden is renowned for its waterfalls and amber pools. The high twisitng coastal road leading from Cape Hangklip to Gordan's Bay is one of the most spectacular anywhere, and with its new coat of tarmac is an absolute pleasure to ride. Not only does this route offer wondrous vistas out to sea, across sweeping bays and vertucally down into transparent sapphire shallows, it offers a perfect setting for the entrance to the "Riviera of the Cape".

The tour ends at +/- 17h30