Betty’s Bay – a perfect get away
The quaint seaside village of Betty’s Bay is the perfect get away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Located between Kleinmond and Pringle Bay, Betty’s Bay is only an hour’s drive from Cape Town along the picturesque Clarence Drive Route (R44). Squeezed between the Kogelberg Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean and surrounded by fresh water lakes and the Palmiet River, this coastal town has a lot to offer.
Here are a few of the must see attractions …
If you like penguins (and who doesn’t?) a visit to Stoney Point is a must. This breeding colony to the Jackass Penguin is best visited in the late afternoon when the penguins return from fishing. Strolling along the boardwalk you might even catch a glimpse of a whale or two. In addition to Stoney Point, Betty’s Bay has some magnificent beaches such as Silver Sands and Hangklip dunes. The beaches of Betty’s Bay are all excellent spots for kite surfing, picnics, swimming and surfing although Jock’s Bay and Shelly Beach are more suited to youngsters being great for shell collection and paddling.
Harold Porter National Botanical Gardens.
Situated in the heart of the Cape Fynbos Region, the Harold Porter National Botanical Gardens has both a cultivated fynbos garden as well as natural fynbos. The garden which lies cosily between mountain and sea contain proteas, restios, leucadendrons and over 50 species of ericas and includes extensive mountain slopes, deep gorges, afro montane forests, wetlands and coastal dunes. Picturesque and peaceful, the Harold Porter Botanical Gardens are also home to some 60 species of birds, genets, nocturnal porcupines, mongooses, otters, dassies, baboons and although rare, leopards have also been spotted by the lucky visitor. Try hiking up Leopard’s Gorge Trail or up to Disakloof Waterfall. If that’s not enough to satisfy you, there’s also an amazing indigenous plants nursery, picnic areas and sunset concerts in summer.
Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve
This narrow coastal plain is wedged between the magnificent Atlantic ocean, with its jagged, rocky shore and vast sandstone mountains. The Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve
is home to over 1880 different species of plant, of which 77 species occur nowhere else in the world. You will find no fences protecting nature from humans and vice versa, rather the fierce commitment of local communities, farmers, conservation agencies and local government is what protects this magnificent landscape. Permits are required, but these can be obtained easily at the Oudebosch Office in the reserve. Tel. (028) 2715138.
Home to both breathtaking flora and fauna, Betty’s Bay has it all. As well as these attractions, Betty’s Bay has even more to offer in the way of outdoor activities. Try angling from the surf or the rocks or white water rafting, tubing and canoeing on the Palmiet River. Sandboarding down the Silver Sands Dune is also a favourite for youngsters. Also, don’t forget to check out local artists at the Art Route Gallery on Clarence Drive.