Kalk Bay, Southern Peninsula
The quintessential fishing village, Kalk Bay combines a bohemian charm with workaday harbour vibe of fishermen offloading their catches, characterful seals hanging out at the water’s edge waiting for their spoils, and the freshest seafood in town in the harbourside eateries. The quirky antique shops, art galleries and boutiques along the main street are perfect for browsing and there are excellent cafes, bakeries, patisseries and ice cream shops for whiling away a leisurely afternoon.
The mountain forms a steep backdrop behind the village, so it is only a few narrow streets deep with Boyes Drive at the top providing a scenic drive and ideal vantage point for spotting the Southern Right whales in winter. Several hiking trails up beyond the road are worth exploring for adventurous souls and nature lovers, leading through fynbos and forest to the Boomslang Cave or to the Amphitheatre.
Enjoying the warmer waters of the Indian Ocean on the False Bay coast, Kalk Bay has a choice of protected tidal pools for swimming, the one at adjoining St James looking especially iconic with its colourful bathing huts. If you want a change of scenery, the railway runs along the coast, sometimes just metres from the waves, to the naval town of Simonstown, with plenty of sights to explore. For child-friendly play, head to sandy of Fish Hoek beach or the piled up sculptural rocks of Boulders beach complete with resident penguins.
Back in Kalk Bay, pick up a freshly baked loaf at Olympia Café, buy the best of today’s catch straight off the boat at the harbour and relax at home over the freshest of seafood braais with awe-inspiring views over the bay. It’s the archetypical seaside holiday complete with fish ‘n chips, ice creams, rock pools and sand between the toes, with an extra secret ingredient that is all Kalk Bay’s own.