Things to do in Knysna

Our most recommended things to do in Knysna

Knysna: Downhill Forest Scootour Adventure

1. Knysna: Downhill Forest Scootour Adventure

Experience the stunning, tropical beauty that is Garden Route National Park on a mountain scooter-bike. Used in the Alps during the summer season on the snowless ski slopes, the thick tires and solid design of your scooter-bike allows you to carve Garden Route’s trails with ease. Each scooter can fit one adult and a child passenger. After meeting your expert guides, you’ll board a scenic minibus ride to start your descent into the national park. After a safety briefing, you’ll head out onto the sweeping bends, criss-crossing down long hills within the lush forest. Keep on the lookout for local wildlife, like the majestic Knysna loerie, the shy bushbuck, and plentiful wild boar. After 2 hours going downhill on the trails, you’ll head back to the meeting point via minibus, never needing to worry about the uphill climb.

Knysna: 75-Minute Lagoon Boat Cruise

2. Knysna: 75-Minute Lagoon Boat Cruise

The tour departs from Thesan Island Harbour Town and heads out onto the pristine Knysna Lagoon, home to an array of native birds and marine life. On board the ‘Oyster Boat', spend a leisurely 75-minutes exploring the lagoon as you sail to the breathtaking and imposing Knysna Heads. As you glide along the waters, sit back and relax whilst soaking up the famous South African sunshine with the wind in your hair. From start to finish the tour provides breathtaking views of the surrounding waters as well as the Knysna coastline. During the boat ride your guide shares fascinating insight into the history, heritage, and culture of Knysna, from a local’s perspective.

Knysna: Luxury Sunset Cruise with Captain's Barbeque

3. Knysna: Luxury Sunset Cruise with Captain's Barbeque

Depart from Sirocco Restaurant Jetty on Thesen Island in Knysna.   Our experienced crew will welcome you with a glass of bubbly on board our luxury 55-foot catamaran. We then set sail and follow the picturesque channel past Leisure Isle, Featherbed Nature Reserve and through the world famous Knysna Heads (weather permitting) before setting sail into the Indian Ocean. Enjoy a sumptuous Captain's barbeque while you admire the coastline's abundant array of marine life, such as birds, seals, dolphins, sharks, whales, and much more. You may even get the chance to catch fish.  Enjoy panoramic views of the sunset over the port as you head back to the jetty.

Knysna: Close Encounter Whale Watching Tour by Boat

4. Knysna: Close Encounter Whale Watching Tour by Boat

Come get up close and personal with the gentle giants of the ocean on this 2-hour whale watching tour! Your trip begins as your captain navigates you through the Knysna Estuary and then you'll head out towards the vast and beautiful Indian Ocean. Every year, both the southern right and humpback whales leave their icy feeding grounds off Antarctica and migrate to mate and calve in the warmer waters of the Southern African coastline - this makes Knysna one of the best whale-watching destinations in the country. The tour will be narrated by an experienced skipper and guide who will share with you fascinating information about the lives of these whales. Your adventure will also be assisted by an experienced whale spotter who is in radio contact with all skippers, so you can be directed to any sightings. Keep your eyes peeled for other marine life as well - you may even spot a dolphin or a penguin or two!

Knysna's #1 Private Sunset Cruise, optional Oysters & Bubbly

5. Knysna's #1 Private Sunset Cruise, optional Oysters & Bubbly

Explore the Knysna Lagoon at sunset and watch as the bay turns pink. A wonderful way to end off a hot summer’s day in the Garden Route. This exclusive sunset boat cruise is the perfect escape for families, friends or couples. We depart from Thesen Harbour Town. Sit back and relax aboard our stylish lagoon cruiser Bella Vita and enjoy your surroundings and exquisite views of the lagoon and bays. Book per person or enjoy private use of Bella Vita privately for the ultimate platform with friends and family. We can arrange Drinks, Oysters, snacks, or even a DJ on private cruises. Experience Bella Vita, the beautiful life, with us aboard Bella Vita

Knysna Sunset Sailing Cruise with Light Dinner and Wine

6. Knysna Sunset Sailing Cruise with Light Dinner and Wine

Have the ultimate sailing experience while soaking up the golden hues of the Knynsa sunset. Depart from the waterfront and cruise through the Knysna Estuary and rugged headlands, a region known for its lush and diverse flora and fauna. Pass by the iconic Knysna Heads, a formation of impressive sandstone cliffs. If weather permits, exit the estuary out onto the vast Indian Ocean for beautiful evening views. Let the natural beauty of Knysna enchant you, from the breathtaking coastline to the diverse marine life. Onboard, savor an appetizing sunset array of savory snacks, cheeses, and fruits, and a complimentary glass of chilled bubbly while you watch the sun sink into the horizon.

Knysna: Lagoon Boat Cruise and Oyster Tour with Tastings

7. Knysna: Lagoon Boat Cruise and Oyster Tour with Tastings

The tour departs from Thesan Island Harbor Town and heads out onto the blue waters of Knysna Lagoon. As you sail, learn all there is to know about oysters, as well as how to taste the difference between those that are wild or cultivated. The boat takes you around the stunning lagoon where the ocean stretches out towards the crisp blue sky, then sails around the Kynsna Head for more spectacular views. Throughout the tour, feel free to ask questions, take photos, and excite your taste buds with complimentary oyster tasting and white wine too.

From Cape Town: 5-Day Best of Garden Route & Addo Safari

8. From Cape Town: 5-Day Best of Garden Route & Addo Safari

Go on an exciting and unique African safari for 5 days. See elephants, ostriches, dolphins and more. Enjoy free time on the beach to surf and explore, and learn from your expert guides about wildlife conservation. Day 1: Route 62Travel about 400 km Start with a morning pickup from Cape Town and Stellenbosch. Ride along Route 62 — the longest wine route in the world, with a wine tasting stop (a non-alcoholic tasting is available too) before reaching Oudtshoorn in the semi-desert Klein Karoo in the late afternoon. For a close encounter with Mother Nature, you'll have the option to join rangers on an Elephant Educational Bush Walk (at extra cost) as they follow 3 lovable rescued elephants along the waterhole to learn about these gentle giants' background, behavior, and character. You can choose to overnight at (Saver package) Uthando Backpackers, (3*Comfort package) 88 van Rheede or (4*Deluxe package) Buffelsdrift lodge. Day 2: OudtshoornTravel about 250 km Wake up in the ostrich capital of the world, visiting a working ostrich farm to get to know more about the largest, flightless bird in the world. Head to the mountains to wander deep underground in the illuminated wonderworld of the Cango Caves. Explore the narrow passages and vast halls filled with ancient stalactites before traveling onward to the Addo region. Overnight at Avaco Cabins, 3* Gerald's Gift or 4* Addo Wildlife lodge Day 3: Addo, Jeffreys BayTravel about 250 km Start the morning early to spot wildlife as the bush awakes in Addo Elephant National Park — the 3rd largest national park in South Africa. You can join an optional 4x4 game drive (with extra cost) and also go on the included 2-hour safari with your guide navigating the park in the tour van in search of some of the Big Five animals in this sanctuary to over 550 elephants, buffalo, lion, black rhino, zebra, and more. Spend your afternoon relaxing at Jeffreys Bay's beach or choose between with surf lessons, beach horseback riding, or sand boarding (optionals at extra cost). Overnight at Island Vibe, 3* Sea Whisper or 4* On The Beach lodge Day 4: Tsitsikamma, Sedgefield Travel about 250 km Adrenalin junkies can experience the highest Bungy Bridge Jump in the world or Waterfall Zipline over waterfalls in the nearby Tsitsikamma forest (optionals at extra cost). Venture into the Tsitsikamma National Park for a forest fix and short walk to the suspension bridges, before a photo stop at Knysna's lagoon viewpoint en route to Sedgefield. Overnight at Pili Pili Beach Cabanas, 3*Fairy Knowe or 4* Dolphin Dunes lodge Day 5: Wilderness Travel about 450 km Take to the water for a leisurely canoeing session to a secret waterfall along the rivers of the Wilderness region. On the journey back to Cape Town you'll get another chance to spot wildlife on a 4x4 Botlierskop game drive (at extra cost) or relax at Mossel Bay's Diaz Beach after a leisurely walk to the Cape St Blaize lighthouse. End with an evening drop-off at your Cape Town or Stellenbosch accommodation between 8 pm to 10 pm.

Garden Route and Addo Elephant National Park: 6-Day Safari

9. Garden Route and Addo Elephant National Park: 6-Day Safari

Day 1: Cape Town – Hermanus – Cape Agulhas The tour departs from Cape Town and heads to Hermanus. Follow the scenic coastal road to Betty's Bay to see a colony of endangered African penguins. Spend the afternoon in the seaside resort town of Hermanus, famous for playing home to hundreds of Southern Right whales from July to November. The town also features many shops, restaurants, and markets. In the afternoon you'll drive on to Cape Agulhas, the southernmost tip of Africa, and the place where the Indian and Atlantic oceans meet. Day 2:  Cape Agulhas – Oudtshoorn Travel to Oudtshoorn in the Little Karoo, known as the ostrich capital of the world, via scenic Route 62, South Africa’s longest wine route. Sample local wines before experiencing the subterranean beauty of the Cango Caves on a guided tour. Day 3:  Oudtshoorn – Knysna – Sedgefield After breakfast head over to Outeniqua Mountain Pass, where you'll explore Wilderness National Park by canoe. Enjoy a paddle up the Touw River through the indigenous forest, admiring the diverse local birds along the way. After about 40 minutes, leave your canoe behind for a 2-kilometer hike along a boardwalk that leads to rock pools and a lovely waterfall. Afterwards, head to the famous town of Knysna via the beautiful Garden Route Lake District. Visit the famous Knysna Heads viewing point, overlooking the Knysna estuary. Spend the late afternoon exploring the beaches of Sedgefield. Day 4: Sedgefield- Tsitsikamma - Addo After breakfast, head off to Tsitsikamma National Park. En route, you'll stop at Bloukrans Bridge, the world’s highest bungee jump bridge, standing at 216 meters tall. You'll spend the afternoon in Tsitsikamma National Park, which features a unique combination of indigenous forest and beautiful Indian Ocean coastline. The park offers hikes of varying lengths including a walk across a suspension bridge, and swimming. In the late afternoon, depart the Garden Route for Addo. Day 5: Addo-Wilderness/Mossel Bay Spend the morning exploring Addo Elephant National Park. You'll get up to 2-3 hours to roam the 28,000-hectare national reserve, home to approximately 600 elephants and various other animals, including buffalo, lions, rhinos, warthogs and many more. After an exciting morning on safari, we drive back to the Garden Route where we overnight in Wilderness/Mossel Bay. Day 6: Wilderness –Mossel Bay - Cape Town After breakfast, stop in Mossel Bay to spend some time on the gorgeous beaches, hike the Cape St. Blaize trail along the seaside cliffs, and visit the famous Diaz Museum complex which commemorates the first known European exploration around the tip of Africa. The more adventurous can try a 10,000 foot tandem skydive or sandboarding on the longest dune in South Africa. Arrive back at Cape Town in the early evening.

Knysna: 2.5-Hour Day Sail & Lunch Charter

10. Knysna: 2.5-Hour Day Sail & Lunch Charter

Join the ultimate sailing experience whilst soaking up the warm sun aboard the beautiful Outeniqua. This 2.5-hour experience departs from the Knysna waterfront and cruises through the Knysna estuary and through the rugged headlands, the beautiful passage to the extensive Indian Ocean. Let the natural beauty of Knysna entertain you, from the breathtaking coastline to the diverse marine life, as the sails to steer us. Guests are treated to an appetizing picnic on deck composed of cheeses, fruits, savory snacks, and a complimentary glass of chilled bubbles, while you take in picturesque surroundings. All the trips are ocean-going trips and are weather and sea conditions dependent.  Only the skipper of the vessel can make a judgement call on these conditions which are determined on the day of the charter.  Conditions are influenced by tide, wind direction and speed, and sea swell, therefore going out through the Knysna Heads is never guaranteed.  

Other Sightseeing Options in Knysna

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What people are saying about Knysna

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 434 reviews

It was a fantastic trip. Our guide Mawanda was an extremely competent guide, very precise and a very friendly and knowledgeable person. Mawanda accompanied us through all 5 days with safe driving, good stories about the places we visited. The organization of the trip itself was also top class. We got to see The Big five both on land and in the sea. We owe Mawanda a big thank you. Ole-David & Benedicte

Such a good tour - so worth it! We had Wendy as our guide who was totally phenomenal - I can’t recommend her enough. She was so knowledgable and upbeat and organised, it made everything so easy and interesting. The views were stunning, the activities interesting, the food tasty, the hostels clean and secure - I can’t recommend enough!

This was such a beautiful experience, friendly and caring stuff. The captain was nice and showed us dolphins. The team came prepared with blankets because it does get a bit chilly. The food after the trip was delicious and enough. I would definitely recommend it

Wonderful experience, I highly recommend it to anyone visiting Knysna!

Awesome experience! Definitely recommend this activity!