The Hermanus Whale festival celebrates its 23rd year where these amazing gigantic creatures of the deep are showcased together with a variety of festivities, a carnival, a wide selection of food and drink and top performers and musicians from 3 October to 6 October. Hermanus has become known as the best land-based whale watching destination in the world and boasts the world’s only “Whale Crier”, a man employed expressly to wander the town’s cliff-tops announcing the presence and whereabouts of the Whales during the whale watching season from July to November. Each year southern right whales migrate from their icy feeding grounds off Antarctica to our warmer climates, usually reaching South Africa in June/July. During the season, the coastal waters of the Western Cape abound with the Leviathans, mating, calving and basking in the sun, often giving whale-watchers spectacular displays of elegant water acrobatics.
The Whales are always the star attraction at the annual festival and amazing sightings may be had either from the rocks at the site of the old harbour, or on the cliff top roads above the town. Last year there was a record sighting of 196 whales off Hermanus’ Walker bay. Celebrating the presence of whales, visitors are invited to join in the 3 days of festivities including great food, quality crafters, local beer brewers, great cycling and athletic events, and kids entertainment. Two Oceans Wine Music stage will feature more than 20 artists performing over the festival and the Marine Endangered Species Expo Marquee will enable you to learn about our marine mammals. There will be a carnival parade on the Saturday featuring the bands of the SANDF and the Cape Town Highlanders.
The highlight of Saturday 4 th October will, undoubtedly, be the annual Whales and Wheels classic car show which will be held from 09h00 to 17h00 at the Hermanus Primary School. Owners of these prized old cars motor in early in the morning from all over Cape Town and the Overberg. The school grounds will host the display of Vintage, Veteran and classic cars, some almost priceless and seen very rarely. The organisers aim to surpass last year’s show that was acclaimed by many visitors as one of the best country shows they have attended. There will be a parade of the classic cars through the streets of Hermanus at 10h00. The school hall, as always, will host an exhibition and sale of scale model cars where boys of all ages can indulge their passion, and there will be many food and refreshment stalls. A modest entrance fee to the public is charged to the car show and raises money for the school.
The full programme of events is available on the web-site and from the Festival office. http://www.whalefestival.co.za/
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