Vyn meets Whales

The season has started for us and the first guests have already arrived. But last Thursday we had a quiet day and the weather forecast for Hermanus was great. My great co-workers, Portia and Sindi, had told me that they had NEVER seen whales. They have both lived in Cape Town for (almost) their entire lives and have been working in guest houses for years. How many guests must they have listened to who came to Cape Town directly from Hermanus and enthusiastically reported their whale sightings?

So I asked them if they would like to join me on a tour to Hermanus and the enthusiasm was great. Before we left, they both took photos in the lounge.

So we took the N2 out, over Sir Lowry’s Pass straight on until we turned right just before Botrivier to take the R43 down to the coast. On the way, the memory of one of the ladies’ cell phones was already full, so much had they already photographed from the moving car. And the best was yet to come.

When we arrived in Hermanus we immediately drove to the parking lot of The Marine Hotel, because we wanted to have lunch there later. The few steps to a full view of the first whales were quickly made and then we saw them: various groups of whales – mothers with their calves and also mating groups, i.e. several bulls swimming around a whale cow. For me, these huge marine mammals are still impressive, even though I have seen them so many times and I was very happy for the two of them to be able to experience this now.

Afterwards we walked along the Cliff Path in beautiful sunshine and saw more and more whales. I had read that last counts had shown that this year especially many animals cavort in Walker Bay, no one can explain this yet. I had heard from other guests who had already been with me at the end of August that they had even seen the whales feeding, that is, filtering the water through their baleen with their mouths open. Even the skipper of the whale watching tour was very impressed by this. I had never experienced that either. Actually, one always learns that the animals eat fat in the Antarctic seas and feed on it during the time they spend off South Africa’s coasts.

We saw these impressive animals darting around, breathing, jumping, rolling on their own axis and hitting the water surface firmly with their tail fin. They were very nice and gave everything. Surely they also had great fun in the beautiful weather.

Then we looked at the artificial whale in life size in front of the Hermanus Whale Museum, which was also very impressive for everyone.

For us, a tour by boat out into the bay unfortunately had to be cancelled, as the wind was supposed to increase in the afternoon and the conditions would have become too rough. Sindi already had great respect for the boat ride anyway, so she was rather relieved.

All the more we could enjoy our lunch at The Marine. Starter, main and of course a dessert – everything was delicious. The portions were so huge that we were able to take boxes with us and there was still something for the families who stayed at home.

Then on the way back we had to hurry. We returned using the R44 along the coast via Kleinmond and Betty’s Bay. Actually, I wanted to make a stop at Stoney Point to watch the penguins, but time was a bit short. We do have the beautiful Boulder’s Beach around the corner, so we will certainly go there again to see penguins when we get the chance.

In any case, we all had a lot of fun on our mini company outing and will certainly do it more often.