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Witsand Garden Route South Africa

The whale nursery of Southern Africa

Witsand is a peaceful coastal village situated at the mouth of the Breede River, on the N2, 300 km from Cape Town. The village derives its descriptive name from long stretches of pristine white beaches: Witsand translates to ‘White Sands’ in English. The village is flanked by the Indian Ocean and the Breede River estuary. Witsand falls within the Cape Floral Region World Heritage Site, and is surrounded by a range of magnificent Cape Fynbos species, complemented by 4 km stretches of unspoilt beaches, leading to Moodie’s Well.

Witsand Beach - a Blue Flag beach - is recog­nised for excellent safety, cleanliness, provision of amenities and maintenance of environmental standards, with safe swimming spots for languid days in the sun. The beach also has fantastic rock pools filled with sea creatures such as octo­pus, starfish, sea urchins and crabs, to explore. The Breede River is well suited to a wide range of water sports.


The town’s main tourist attraction is the majestic Breede River – one of the largest, most navigable rivers in South Africa – and the Breede River estuary. The river abounds with diverse fish species and is home to 296 species of birds, making it a popular destination for an­glers and bird watchers. Witsand is an important breeding ground for rare birds, among which it is home to the Blue Crane, South Africa’s national bird. St. Sebastian is regarded as the whale nursery and the home of the Southern Right Whale. It accommodates the largest population of these whales annually, between July and No­vember, when they migrate to warmer waters to calve. Witsand has earned the accolade of be­ing the best land-based whale watching destina­tion in Southern Africa, from which these 58 ton ‘gentle giants’ may be observed and appreciated.


Every year in October, the MRI Whale Unit con­ducts an aerial survey to count and photograph the whales and calves in the nursery. The 2013 aerial survey revealed that 82 new calves were born during the season. Come and experience the unique exhilaration of witnessing a whale calf being born, then raised out of the water by ‘nurses’ for it to take its first breath. At Malgas, the last hand-operated pont operates to ferry travelers and their vehicles across the Breede River to reach Cape Infanta.


Travellers can choose from a number of self-ca­tering chalets and flats, holiday homes, lodges, garden cottages and bed and breakfast estab­lishments, to suit their accommodation needs.

Witsand enjoys a year round mild climate, which makes it an ideal destination to experience:

. 4 x 4 Eco trails . Beach walks . Bird watching . Canoeing . Deep sea fishing . Dune trails . Eco hikes & trails . Exploring shipwrecks

. Fly fishing . Fresh water angling . Horse riding . Kite surfing . Leisure boating . Mountain biking trails . Nature walks . Paragliding

. Sea Cruises . Snorkelling . Spear fishing . Surfing . Swimming . Tractor trails . Whale watching . Wind surfing . Wining and dining

. Places of historic interest . Quad biking . River cruises