Grab the kids, trawl our local markets for fresh bread, cheese and fruit, and head out for a picnic in Plett! Blanket? Check. Sunscreen? Check. Snacks? Check. Ready? Let’s go and explore some of the most incredible picnic spots in and around Plettenberg Bay.
KEURBOOMS RIVER NATURE RESERVE
This World Heritage Site can be explored in many ways: take a stroll along the bank, take a boat up the river, paddle or SUP. At just 740ha, the nature reserve is small and near-pristine, named after the Western Keurboom. It is a sanctuary for indigenous trees including the Cape Beech, Giant Stinkwood and the magnificent Outeniqua Yellowwoods, and the birdlife and animal life are quite spectacular. Look out for Knysna Turaco, Knysna Woodpecker, Sunbirds, Kingfisher and more. Find a little beach, set up camp and spend the day swimming, sunning, snacking and enjoying the sounds of nature. If you’re feeling adventurous, there is also a spectacular jumping rock to search out.
No picnic list would be complete without including Robberg Nature Reserve, also a World Heritage Site and a national monument. Robberg is an excellent choice for a late afternoon or evening picnic (the gate closes at sunset, so don’t linger too long). The picnic area offers unique views across the tombolo beach to the island and the open ocean beyond. You may spot seals, dolphins, whales and even a cruising Great White shark, and the sunset colours will be the perfect backdrop to your picnic.
LOOKOUT BEACH AND LAGOON
As far as family picnic spots go, Lookout is simply perfect. The sheltered lagoon is lovely for younger children to splash in the shallows, while the older children swim, stand-up paddle or canoe. With the sea is just across the beach, everyone can enjoy a splash in the waves! If you’re planning to spend the day at Lookout, be sure to take an umbrella, as there isn’t any shade. This is a Plett summer staple: cooler box, boogie boards and ice creams!
NATURE’S VALLEY AND LAGOON
If you’re looking for a quieter beach picnic, then Nature’s Valley may be a better option than Lookout Beach. It’s like Lookout in that there are both lagoon and beach to enjoy, but also nothing but nature on every side. Nature’s Valley is the official end of the Otter Trail and a part of the Tsitsikamma National Park, so immaculate natural surroundings are a given. A trip to Nature’s Valley makes a lovely outing for the whole family: walks and hikes through the forest, lagoon for paddle, rock pools and the open ocean. There are various choices for a picnic spot, so choose one with a bit of shade.
KRANSHOEK PICNIC SITE
Without a doubt, Kranshoek has some of the best views in Plettenberg Bay! Set along the dramatic coastline, facilities include tables and braais, and is spacious enough for outdoor games. The site is located between the coastal Fynbos and indigenous forest offering several hikes: the 1km forest hike is perfect for everyone, while the 5km and 9km coastal trails are more strenuous. Kranshoek is a perfect opportunity to see the best of Plett’s floral biodiversity, birdwatch and take some photos!
TSITSIKAMMA NATIONAL PARK
Tsitsikamma National Park is Africa’s oldest Marine Protected Area and, if you have the time, it’s only 67km from Plettenberg Bay, and well worth the trip! The Storms River Mouth section of the national park is the most magical of settings for a day-trip. Lilies cling to a cliff’s edge misted by ocean spray, the suspension bridges sway above the entrance to the Storms River Gorge and the picnic areas are well-established and maintained. With a snorkelling trail, scuba diving, kayak and lilo adventure and hiking, plan for a full day out and stock that picnic basket!