A Local's Experience: The Ultimate Guide to What to Do in Knysna

Knysna is a stunning coastal town situated along the Garden Route in South Africa. It’s filled with plenty of exciting things to see and do, from outdoor activities on land and sea to exploring local markets, galleries and restaurants. Moreover, there are lots of annual events to enjoy!

Bring your bike or rent one and get out in the wild!

Unleash your inner adventurer in Knysna, a stunning destination renowned for its mountain biking opportunities. With miles of single-track cycling paths winding through indigenous forests and Cape fynbos, Knysna is the ultimate destination for cyclists of all levels. Whether you’re looking for an adrenaline-fueled ride or a leisurely adventure, you’ll find it here. Join in on one of the town’s six annual mountain biking events, or hire a private guide to take you on an unforgettable journey. There’s something for everyone, from heart-pumping rides to family-friendly excursions.


Visit the Leisure Isle Beach and Knysna Heads.

The Leisure Isle Beach and Knysna Heads are two must-see attractions in Knysna. The Leisure Isle Beach is a great spot for swimming, sunbathing, and simply enjoying the breathtaking views of the ocean. The nearby Knysna Heads are twin sandstone cliffs which rise up from the ocean and offer stunning views across the lagoon to either side. Be sure to visit both sights on your trip!


Check Out the Local Markets

The Gardne Route is home to a variety of markets throughout the year, including the popular Wild Oats Saturday Market. Here you can find locally produced items such as fresh produce, crafts and art, jewelry, clothing and even treats like chocolates and fudge. The Saturday Market is the perfect place to stock up on souvenirs or grab a snack for lunch!


Enjoy Great Outdoor Activities – Whale Watching, Fishing, Hiking etc.

Knysna has no shortage of great outdoor activities to be enjoyed. The beautiful coastline and forests are home to a variety of wildlife that you can observe during whale watching cruises or while fishing in the lagoon. Experienced hikers can explore the Tsitsikamma Mountains, while die-hard adventure seekers can book a guided tour of kloofing locations around the area. Whatever your preference, Knysna is sure to have something just right for you!


Experience the Tsitsikamma National Park

The Tsitsikamma National Park is one of the most beautiful areas you can explore during your stay in Knysna. This picturesque park is full of trails that meander through forests and mountains, offering breathtaking views of the coast and wildlife. From relaxing walks through peaceful forest paths to thrilling hikes up to mountain peaks, there’s something for everyone here. Be sure to explore it during your visit!


Indulge in Café Culture & Gourmet Food

The restaurants in Knysna offer a unique mix of gourmet cuisine and café culture. From Instagram-worthy cafes serving up organic dishes to French bistros dishing up the finest seafood, Knysna has a range of diverse culinary experiences that are sure to delight your taste buds. Take some time to explore the markets and sample flavours from all over the world, or just watch the sun go down with a bottle of wine as you admire views across the lagoon.


Take a Trip to Knysna Heads.

Knysna Heads is a spectacular landmark with stunning views. Take a trip out to the heads and watch as the beautiful views of the lagoon unfold before your eyes. Enjoy kayaking or boat rides along the majestic ocean coastline, or simply take in the breathtaking vista at this wonderful spot.


Visit one of the many local beaches

One of the most beautiful beaches in South Africa, Brenton On Sea is a must-visit when travelling to Knysna. The crystal clear waters and white sandy beach provide the perfect atmosphere for swimming, sunbathing and simply soaking up the tranquil surroundings. Don’t forget to stop off at one of the local restaurants after enjoying your day by the sea.


Spot Fynbos Flora on the Lagoon Hiking Trail 

Experience the beauty of nature with the Lagoon Hiking Trail. This 4-hour round trip offers amazing views of Knysna and the surrounding area. As you explore, keep an eye out for several species of fynbos flowers, which can only be found in this part of South Africa. Be sure to bring plenty of water and snacks for a well-deserved break during your journey.


Kayak Along the Crags of Thesen Island 

Spend a day getting back to nature and go kayaking around Thesen Island, where you can witness stunning landscapes and mangroves. The winds may be strong near the island, so a guided tour is highly recommended in order to ensure the safety of all adventurers. Guides will also be able to point out interesting wildlife during your journey. Be sure to bring along your camera as there are many memorable photo opportunities!

Get airborne and try paragliding

Head to Sedgefield, the unofficial paragliding capital of South Africa’s Garden Route. Soar above the clouds and take in the stunning scenery from a bird’s eye view. If weather conditions aren’t favorable in Sedgefield, Brenton is a top alternative spot for take-off. Get ready to experience the thrill of a lifetime in Knysna!