Situated on the banks of the Breede River estuary, Witsand is home to 4km of pristine beaches, surrounded by a magnificent variety of Cape Fynbos species and the Breede River. The town is also known as the Whale Nursery of South Africa. Witsand is an authentic water-sport and adventure destination – experience the thrill of Stand-Up Paddle Boarding; Kite-Surfing; Surfing; Skiing, 4×4, Whale Watching and Fishing. 

Come and indulge yourselves in a treasure of exciting experiences, provided by nature and locals, who follow her inspiration. Port Beaufort situated on the banks of the river, and Witsand on the seaward side, where the river meets the mighty Indian Ocean. Our village offers the best of both worlds with sea and river activities to enjoy. Witsand is known as The Whale Nursery of South Africa. This is due to the largest concentration of Southern Right Whales that are found in St. Sebastian Bay each year. In 2013, an aerial survey revealed that 82 new calves were born – the highest total ever! It is nothing unusual to see up to 70 whales in the bay at one time. No licenses for boat based whale watching – as we have various look-out points from which to view and photograph the Whales.

Long stretches of pristine beaches are complimented by wonderful displays of Cape fauna & flora. Bird life abounds all around us and includes the Black Oyster Catcher, and our national bird, the Blue Crane. The wide estuary of the Breede River is another natural wonder. Rich in historical value about the Barry family that opened up this area to commerce with a number of ships, the best known being the “Kadie”. “The Barry Memorial church” built in 1859 is still in use today.

The bay and estuary provide a paradise for kiteboarders on flat water and share these spaces with other natural watersports. Fishing is a tradition here and the tall stories of those that were stranded or lost, are often a feature of entertaining evenings with the locals.

The Ostrich Eco 4×4 trail is close by for those with a adventurers wanderlust. The trail takes you through a series of loops and kloofs and covers 13km of pure adventure – the best remedy for those wanting to escape the crowds and travel off-the-beaten-track. 

Quick facts

  • Highest concentration of Southern Right Whales along SA coast
  • Population: 321
  • Adventure Sport and Fishing Destination

The Explorer’s Garden Route

  • Telephone: +27 (0)28 713 8000


  • Police: 10111
  • National Sea Rescue: +27 (0)82 990 5957
  • Ambulance: 10177
  • Doctor: +27 (0)28 722 1910

Not to miss

  • Excellent land-based whale watching (Jul-Nov)
  • Kite boarding and all wind driven water sports
  • Blue Flag beach swimming and safe tidal pool
  • Deep sea fishing, access to the sea via Breede River mouth
  • Rock angling, river & fly fishing
  • Hiking, cycling, bowls, kayaking, stand up paddling boading
  • 4×4 trails and river cruises