Whale watching sounds great, doesn’t it? And I can guarantee you'll not forget the sight of a 60 ton fish leaping out the water. But you have to be in the right place, at the right time, and you need a healthy dose of patience to play this game.
We've decided to dedicate this issue of our newsletter to help you gather more whale stories for your buck.
Firstly we provide some brief facts on 3 species of whales commonly found in Plett’s waters. Once you know what you're looking for, we'll tell you where the best land based whale watching spots along our coast are located. We also recommend some of our houses where you have every chance of spotting these awesome animals from the warmth and comfort of your living room.
Whales for our Bay
Name: Southern Right Whale
Adult weight: 50 – 65 tons
Length: 16 – 17m
Reason for visit: To breed
Distinguishing feature: No dorsal fin. Southern Rights often play in shallow water just beyond the breakers, and therefore make good viewing opportunities from land.
Name: Humpback Whale
Adult weight: 40 tons
Sightings: June/July and Sept – November
Reason for visit: Just passing through on the way to/from Mozambique
Distinguishing feature: Huge flippers up to 4 metres long, the leading edges of which are covered with knobs and barnacles.
Name: Bryde’s Whale
Adult weight: 14 tons
Sightings: Year round
Reason for visit: Resident in the bay
Distinguishing feature: Prominent dorsal fin. Best viewed from capes or promontories such as Robberg.
If you want more information on whales and dolphins, visit the very informative web site of the Centre for Dolphin Studies.
Best Land Based Whale Watching spots
Beacon Hill Viewpoint
Located at the very top of the hill overlooking the Beacon Island Hotel, from this viewpoint one has a fantastic view over all three beaches and the whole bay, making it a great place to see where the whales are playing for the day. Bring your binoculars.
Robberg Nature Reserve
Take the fairly easy walk from the parking lot to the Gap on the Northern side of the peninsula. Due to the step incline, one has the opportunity to look down into the water from many spots on the trail. You'll probably see more than a whale.
With a large grass area and many outside tables, this restaurant is where families head for whale season. Recently purchased by a charismatic Italian, there are also some very good tasting reasons to drive the few extra kilometeres.
Storms River Nature Reserve
The Circular Route walking trail takes one up a steep climb to a wooden deck, purpose built for spotting whales and other sea-life. From personal experience I can highly recommend this spot.
Look Out Viewpoint
Famous for it's 'whale tail' seat, it's still difficult to beat this old favorite spot. The only place where one can enjoy the view from your car if the weather is dodgy. Follow the signs from Plett Main Road.
Best Whale Houses
These houses are superbly situated for seeing whales, without the need to venture outdoors.
1. Arrowood 32
Top of the Range:
1. Sanctuary 15
2. Sanctuary 25
3. Green Dragon
4. The Waves
Upcoming sports events in Plett
Event: SA Canoe Marathon Championships
Dates: 11 - 12 June 2005
Venue: Forever Resorts, Keurbooms River, Plettenberg Bay
Info: SA’s top single and double canoeists will race over a lap style course on the Keurbooms river. The event will be used as a trial for a SA team to be sent to the World Champs in Perth, Australia in October. Several medallists from previous World Championships will compete.
Our self-catering apartments on the Keurbooms River offer perfect accommodation for this event.
Event: The Wedge Classic Bodyboarding Competition
Dates: 5 – 8 July 2005
Venue: The Wedge, Central Beach, Plettenberg Bay
Info: The Wedge Classic is a regular listed event on the South African Bodyboarding Association calendar, and attracts SA’s best bodyboarders from all age groups.
We recommend staying in Outeniqua, Plaka or Dageraad for this event, from where it is a very short walk to The Wedge.
Public Holidays in June 2005
Thursday June 16 is Youth Day
Aim of our newsletter
We aim to improve our customer’s holiday experience in Plettenberg Bay by making sure that they are informed of tourist related activities and by sharing our local knowledge of the area.