This little village of holiday homes sits next to azure waters with bordered with white sandy beaches separated with low sandstone cliffs. It’s English name, Arniston, is the name of a ship that was wrecked tragically in the bay, whilst its Afrikaans name, Waenhuiskrans (literally: wagon+house+cliff), refers to the cave in the cliffs nearby.
Getting there: From Cape Town, take the N2, 100 km later turn at Caledon onto the R316. Pass through Napier and Bredasdorp.
The little village has no petrol station, pharmacy or shops to speak of. There is one tiny “shop” at the Arniston Hotel, but city-dwellers be warned that it carries only the very basics, and has limited opening hours.
The harbour is in front of the Arniston Hotel. It’s worth taking a look at the colourful boats on the slipway, and to see what the catch of the day is. Unfortunately none of the boats went out on the two days we spent there. On two occasions some locals came knocking at the door of our cottage, the first time selling a freshly caught fish, and the second time hawking some fresh wild oysters. We bought 10 and enjoyed them as amuse-bouche that evening.
This part of the coast is well-known for whale watching. There were more than 3 lounging close-by in the bay all the while we were there.
Where to stay
- Arniston Seaside Cottages
- Arniston Spa Hotel
- Waenhuiskrans Municipal Caravan Park
What to do
- Visit the Waenhuiskrans Cave
- Walk to the fish traps
- Stroll through Kassiesbaai fishing village
- Pop in at the harbour
- Have sundowners at the Arniston Hotel
- Relax on one of the beautiful beaches or explore the rock pools