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Whale and Dolphin Watching on the Garden Route
Concierge.com's insider take:
About a 90-minute drive east of Cape Town, Hermanus was once a poor fishing village, then a wealthy retirement village, and is now the whale-watching capital of South Africa. Each season (May to November), southern right whales wallow in Walker Bay, where thousands of admirers watch from winding cliff paths high above the rocky shoreline. It's a tidy industry, with a horn-blowing town crier directing visitors to the best viewing points, information kiosks, and a tiny museum on the quayside that highlights the town's now-extinct fishing industry. Plettenberg Bay also offers great viewing of humpback and Bryde's whales, as well as dolphins and seals, through outfitters such as Ocean Blue Adventures. Boats leave from Central Beach, next to the Beacon Isle hotel. While calving season is usually in July, whales are easy to spot through November.
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