Welcome to Betty's Bay
Betty's Bay is the type of coastal village where people come to retire from the relentless pace of a city. It's the sort of place that is dotted with holiday homes and is soothingly quiet during off-season save for the few tourists coming to see the penguins. During peak season there are but a few more people seen sauntering along the roadsides and going for walks along the beach. Betty's Bay is the type of coastal village where even during its busiest season you will never need to struggle to find a quiet moment.
The village, although small, is one of the longest in South Africa as the houses and holiday homes are spread in the fynbos belt between the Kogelberg Mountains and ocean for 13km. This allows the homes to take full advantage of the magnificent coastal and mountain views. For Betty's Bay it is not the look of the town or the décor of the buildings that make it unique, instead it is the sterling views that surround the town and the simple lifestyle that is the true allure.
The area of Betty's Bay, like much else on the coastal side of the Kogelberg Mountains, was once cut off from the rest of the Western Cape and served as a home for Khoisan strandlopers, bandits, slaves on the run and vast amounts of wildlife. It was only in the early 1900s during WWII that a road was cut into the side of the mountain, which soon resulted in the birth of Betty's Bay. Although established now, there is still that element of untouched wilderness that is evident in the indigenous plant life, unyielding mountainside, jagged coastline and heavy winds.
Today whale watching is a wonderful attraction from July to December, however in the years between 1913 and 1930 the Southern Right Whales were hunted as Stony Point was home to one of the few whaling stations in South Africa. In season they could catch up to 300 whales because of the Southern Right Whales' tendency to venture within close proximity to the coastline (a trait that makes for amazing land-based whale watching in the present day).
Some of the remains of the old whaling station are still evident but now Stony Point is a popular tourist destination for the African Penguin colony that resides there. It is one of only two shore-based colonies in the country and the penguins began to breed there after the whaling station was closed in 1930. The very dapper looking birds attract tourists from all over the world that can walk the winding wooden walkway that meanders through their home and the protected area.
Other activities and attractions in Betty's Bay include beachcombing, sand boarding, hiking and whale watching. The Harold Porter Botanical Gardens make for a perfect day spent in nature with 10 hectares of cultivated garden and the even more impressive 190.5 hectares of uncultivated land, which boasts indigenous coastal fynbos and waterfalls. There is a Belgian Chocolatier that runs out of his home on the outskirts of the town. Decadent chocolates and interesting mixes will make any chocolate lover begin to salivate in anticipation while the infectious passion of the chocolatier himself could convert a savoury palette to a chocolate one with ease.
Located just less than 100km outside of Cape Town and perched between Kleinmond and Pringle Bay, Betty's Bay will whisk you away to a lifestyle long forgotten and will be sure to steal your heart within one holiday.