Hermanus (thankfully no longer known as Hermanuspietersfontein) is famous for the Southern Right Whales that are known to frolic in Walker Bay. I heard you could see whales from the cliffs in Hermanus, but I was skeptical. The claim seemed like a too-perfect-ploy to lure tourist dollars into a tiny fishing town, so I perched myself outside the Marine Hotel to see for myself.
Moments after I stepped outside, with no binoculars needed, I spotted a huge whale waving a fin in the air and enjoying the sunny day about 30 feet from shore.
I was captivated by the dramatic cliffs, the kelp forests waving in the clear shallows below and of course, the marine life. I spent a leisurely wandering the cliffs, inhaling salty air and watching for waving whales.
When I grew tired of watching from shore, I boarded a whale watching cruise for a closer view. The captain shared a million interesting facts about the Southern Right Whales who live, mate and eat in Walker Bay from June to December. I had reached Hermanus at the tail end of the whale watching season and still saw dozens of very active whales. At the height of the season, whale-spotting planes report hundreds of whales in the bay at any given time.