There is no denying that Knysna is one of the most beautiful coastal towns in South Africa. The beautiful town also offers more than enough to do – whether you’re seeking adventure or a place to relax and unwind.
There are a bevy of wonderful activities to do in Knysna, but with the December school holidays fast approaching, we thought we’d round up some of the best, family friendly activities to do on Knysna. This way, mom and dad can relax and the kids can indulge in some family friendly fun!
Of course, going to the beach, visiting the several markets throughout town or simply taking a stroll through the streets of Knysna are also recommended family outings!
Situated about 40 minutes outside of Knysna in a suburb of Plettenberg Bay known as The Crags, is Tenikwa Wildlife Centre.
What makes Tenikwa so special, is that is an animal rehabilitation centre that places a strong emphasis on educating guests on animal conservation and rehabilitation – a great place to take the kids and for them to learn about the importance of animal conservation and rehabilitation.
They offer several tours and animal interactions, especially with their wildcats. Tenikwa is home to cheetahs, lions, servals, caracals and a leopard. Their Wildcat Tour departs every half an hour, and is a one hour tour in group format.
At only R245 per adult and R130 per child over the age of 6, it is totally worth a visit. Children under the age of 5 can join the tour for free!
Tenikwa also offers an interactive family program, the EcoKidz Family Challenge. The programme was specifically designed to keep kids engaged and entertained while educating them on conservation.
At the end of the tour, kids will have the opportunity to pledge to become a Tenikwa EcoKid – a pledge to take care of and understand all animals, be aware of ecological issues and to do your best to reduce, reuse and recycle.
The one-and-a-half hour program costs R260 per adult, R120 per child (under the age of 12) while toddlers 4 years and younger can take part in the program for free.
The Stormsriver Canopy Tours is one of the most famous (and most enjoyed) family activities on the Garden Route.
Situated in the beautiful Tsitsikamma forest just outside of Knysna, this 2 – 3 hour tour will have the whole family feeling like Tarzan while gliding from treetop to treetop through the forest.
The zipline, which is situated 30 meters above the forest floor, gives you an unparalleled view of the forest and the various wildlife and birds that reside in it. We would suggest putting a whole day aside for this tour!
The zipline is available to children over the age of 5 and costs R660 per person.
Lagoon Paddle Cruises
The Paddle Cruise on the Knysna lagoon is guaranteed to be fun for the whole family. The special, paddle-driven vessel not only looks beautiful, but gives a unique, vintage feel to this experience. It is also the only paddle-driven vessel in South Africa!
The relaxing cruise takes you to the famous Knysna Heads and back and can include lunch and dinner.
The lunchtime cruises are R247 per person and R121 per child (ages 4 – 15). During the lunchtime cruises an a la carte and tapas menu is available.
The dinnertime cruises may cost a little more, but it includes a delicious dinner buffet of stunning Mediterranean dishes. R555 per person and R166 per child (ages 4 – 15).
Knysna Elephant Park
When you think of Knysna and wildlife, there is definitely on thing that comes to mind: elephants.
Knysna is home to an internationally acclaimed elephant park – the Knysna Elephant Park. This park, which was established in 1994, was the first park in South Africa to house orphaned elephants.
Since its inception in 1994, the park has done wonders for elephant conservation and has been home to more than forty elephants which the park rangers have cared for and raised.
To say that an experience with these majestic animals is a magical experience would be an understatement. Basking the beauty and grace of these elephants – some who have been rescued from horrid abuse and circuses – is something the entire family will find unforgettable.
There are a string of activities to take part in at the elephant park, including Elephant Picnic Walks, Exclusive Safaris and even sleepovers in the beautiful Elephant Lodge.
You may not know that the Stormsriver Mouth is home to a beautiful natural reef!
This stunning reef is, naturally, best observed when snorkeling – and activity that the whole family can do together. Not only is the reef a must-see, but you can also feast your eyes on the stunning marine life.
Situated inside the Tsitsikamma National Park (which means that you will have to pay the park entrance fee if you do not have a National Parks access card), Untouched Adventures – the company behind the snorkeling experience – also offers guided snorkelling tours.
The guided snorkelling tour includes full gear provision and costs R440 per person. However, if you and your family are experienced snorkelers, you can do a self guided snorkeling tour and simply hire the equipment for R200 per person per hour.
Knysna truly is a wonderland for family fun, and the perfect place to take the family for a summer holiday!