Situated along the famous South African Garden Route, Knysna is an area well-known for its breath-taking scenery, rich cultural heritage and unspoilt natural landscapes.

The Pezula Hotel and Spa

The nearby Pezula Resort Hotel and Spa is a world-class hotel and has set new standards of luxury and excellence. Accommodation is in 83 exquisitely appointed suites with private balconies or patios, walk-in wardrobes and en-suite bathrooms.

The resort also houses an award-winning Spa & Gym, Zachary's gourmet restaurant, the Pezula Designer Collection boutique, executive boardrooms, a 24-hour business centre, a Champagne & Whisky Bar, Cigar Lounge, library, games room and Championship Golf Course. A variety of other activities are available – visit www.pezula.com.

Shopping and Dining

The quaint streets of Knysna town reveal many boutiques, art galleries, gift shops as well as a formidable array of fine restaurants, seafood taverns, pubs, delicatessens, coffee shops as well as a well-stocked library, a mall, modern cinema and a theatre.

The restaurants offer anything from fusion food with an Oriental flavour to nouveau cuisine; from traditional South African dishes such as Cape Malay-inspired bobotie to a Xhosa delicacy known as umnqusho; from a meaty braai to a syrupy sweet koeksister.

For the shopper, there are interesting outlets tucked away around every corner, including a quaint Waterfront shopping complex and authentic African traders.

Fauna & Flora

The Knysna area abounds with unequalled landscapes; forests, lakes, mountains and rivers; all teeming with incredible wildlife and the unique "Fynbos" vegetation. Walks, hikes and trails along the coast or in the indigenous forests provide endless opportunities to enjoy the fauna and flora of the region, including many rare and protected species.

Touch, feed and photograph the endangered Knysna forest "ellies" at the Knysna Elephant Park or visit one of the many other animal, bird or plant sanctuaries like Birds of Eden, Monkeyland or the Knysna Botanical Gardens; all within 20 km of Knysna.

Marvel at the incredible creatures of the African bush flourishing in their natural habitat with a game drive through one of the local reserves. Here you have the chance to see leopard, giraffe, rhino, zebra, buffalo, kudu and much more.

The Featherbed Nature Reserve on the Western Head is a privately-owned, South African Heritage site and is only accessible by a short ferry trip across the lagoon. This pristine paradise is home to a breeding program of the rare Blue Duiker, one of the smallest antelope species in the world; the beautiful Knysna Loerie and the endangered Knysna Sea Horse.

The Knysna Oyster Festival

A visit to Knysna would not be complete without tasting the delicious local oysters, farmed in the nearby lagoon. Oysters and Knysna are synonymous with the earliest records of the consumption and marketing of oysters dating back 1896.

The annual Knysna Oyster Festival is not just an oyster festival – it's an introduction to the people of Knysna and surrounds, their way of life and the treasure trove of nature's gifts that the region has to offer.

Adventure Excursions and Sports

There is a plethora of adventurous activities, ranging from a relaxing balloon rides over the Klein Karoo to an unequalled adrenalin rush with cage diving with the Great White sharks at Mossel Bay.

The Knysna Lagoon offers numerous watersports including skiing, canoeing, sailing, paragliding, kite surfing and fishing. There are also a number of marked trails in the surrounding forests for horse riding, hiking, mountain biking, quad biking and abseiling.

Take a wild ride on the world's largest bird the Ostrich on a farm in Oudtshoorn, or combine the thrill of riding a "foefie" with spectacular scenery with a tree top canopy tour in the magnificent Tsitsikamma Forest near Storms River; both approximately 2 hours from Knysna.

The world's highest commercial Bungy Jump at Bloukrans is less than an hour's drive away.

For the avid golfers, there are a number of excellent golf courses in the area including the Pezula Championship Course - the Garden Route is a golfer's paradise!

Culture and Heritage

Knysna is steeped in history, from the Khoisan art of the Cango Caves dating back 10 000 years, to the Millwood Goldmines deep in the heart of the forest, where you can view the original mine shafts and equipment from Knysna's short-lived gold rush.

The Knysna Art Gallery and Maritime Museum are situated in the Old Gaol Complex – a structure dating back to 1859 – and explain the fascinating origins of the town's timber and shipbuilding industries.

Visit the grave of George Rex (1765-1839), considered to be the founder of Knysna or take a guided tour of Knysna's vibrant township for a truly African Experience. Discover real African hospitality, meet a "Sangoma", and experience local food and customs.

There are also a number of historic churches in the area one of which being the Holy Trinity Church in Belvidere, a beautiful example of 12th Century Norman architecture.

The Indian Ocean

The incredible wildlife of the area stretches to those at home in the Indian Ocean. Observe whales, dolphins, Cape fur seals and numerous sea birds up close from sea-kayaks, motors boats and yachts or even from the luxury of the deck chairs, pool and Jacuzzi at "Heaven Can Wait".

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