Saturday, October 4, 2014


Franschhoek from the pass
Thursday, October 3, we drove up out of town over Franschhoek Pass to Hermanus. We spent a week there on our previous visit and had some nice memories to revisit. Even if we didn’t have the memories, Hermanus is the whale-watching capital of South Africa, making it a prime destination town much of the year.

The drive over the pass is stunning providing outstanding views of the Franschhoek Valley with the village nestled at one end. The route was originally used by elephants who used the valley as a birthplace. A wagon trail was finally built in the 1920s and since then it has been improved to the nice road it is today. Once over the pass, we drove thorough many miles of grain fields looking much like the Palouse country of eastern Washington.

After about two hours we arrived in Hermanus, much grown over the last two and a half years. We easily found Fabio’s, the restaurant we liked so much where we had a great lunch of pasta and seafood along with some good wine.
Hermanus Shore Trail
A hyrax greeted us on the trail.
After eating we walked along the shore path. When we got to the point we watched the whales cavorting in the bay. One performed a couple of spy hops. A few breached and one seemed to be standing on his head, his tail spent so much time out of the water.

Forty-five minutes later we were back in the car looking for a beach where I had spent mornings bird watching. After one false start where we ended up at a lifeguard training camp, we found the spot. At mid-day, I didn’t expect to see much, but we were still entertained by some flamingoes. Two of them even took the opportunity to fly closer to provide some better views.

Before heading home we did stop at La Vierge Winery for a tasting and a visit to their rest rooms which provide a unique setting as you can see by the pictures.

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