There is a wide variety of things to do in St Francis over the holidays. When you’re tired of sun tanning or the weather is miz there are plenty of fun activities lined up daily – from social evenings to sports events. If the day’s events don’t tempt you and you find yourself wondering what to do, consider the following options:
Learn something of the history of the area and some of the ships that went down just offshore.
Pack a picnic basket and take the whole family for a leisurely trip around the canals and a half day trip or full day trip up the river. Spot the aquatic birds, dabble at fishing and then stretch your legs at Geelhout pit stop where there are braai facilities as well. Hire a boat, canoe or a gondola on the canals or river or take a river cruise.
On a clear, warm evening, pack a picnic basket and head to the wild side at Cape St Francis at about 5 pm. Then watch the sun slowly sinking into the sea while creating a stupendous kaleidoscope of colours in the sky and turning itself into a blood red fireball as it disappears from view.
This is an ideal, safe spot for the families to have a picnic… plenty of pools for the little ones to splash in. There are braai facilities and what’s more this cove is sheltered from the windy blasts that hit the main beaches sometimes.
At the bottom of Harbour Road, you will find St Francis’ own little museum.
If you want information on things like the current state of the beach, indigenous vegetation, birds, fish, shells, whales & dolphins, the penguin rehabilitation project at the lighthouse, walking trails, the chokka industry, the history of St Francis Bay, aerial photographs of the development of the area, future planning proposals, including the Spatial Development Framework, the proposed nuclear power station, and proposed wind farms, the state of the Kromme and Sand Rivers, etc., etc., then this is the place to find out.
Also at the bottom of Harbour Road is the most delightful indigenous garden. The community garden has an impressive range of indigenous vegetation, well worth a visit to enjoy the seasonal flowers and
From the community garden one can take a delightful walk to the Port and back. The meandering route takes you through indigenous bush and along the coastline with beautiful views. There are resting places along the way.
Walk right to the harbour entrance along the wall and see the gulls and gannets… Do visit Mauro’s restaurant, the top place at the Port to dine out and chill out over season, with great views of the boats. Or pop in there just for delicious coffee or refreshments anytime of the day.
The Reserve lies within 200m of the Cape St. Francis Resort. A walk through the reserve is a must-do for all lovers of fynbos. Maps and plant guides are available at the Cape St Francis Resort’s reception office.
Access is from Shore Road. At low tide the estuary offers beautiful, firm and clean sand, which allows for an extended walk out to the river. Long or short walk, depends upon how long you wish to spend on the sand bank. Wide variety of water birds and waders to enjoy.
Drive down St Francis Drive towards the Port, pass the turnoff to the Harbour and a little bit further on there is a pathway on the left to a look-out point. A short paved path leads up to a view spot with benches. Ideal for a picnic. Amazing views stretch from the Seal Point Lighthouse to the Groot Winterhoek mountains.
Start at the Port. Walk over the road leading into the harbour and through the gap in the wall on the right of the road . There is a path that follows the coastline.
You will walk across Boulder Bay and into the Cape St Francis Nature Reserve . Pass by magnificent sand dunes and steep rocky outcrops. Look out for the endangered African Black Oyster catchers, you are sure to see them as there are a number of pairs in this area. Dolphins and otter may be spotted so keep an eye out for them.
During June/ July and Nov/Dec you may be in for a whale treat. Seals also may be spotted sunning themselves on the rocks along the way.
It takes at least half an hour each way walking briskly. It is possible to walk on from Cape St Francis Point all the way to the lighthouse but it takes an additional one hour, one way.
For an added wealth of knowledge and an even better experience, we recommend taking this trail with Aweigh Adventures.
A lovely outing with the dogs is to walk up the Sand River to see the sand river crystal pools, see lots of birds, strange insects and lots of frogs plus other fauna. This walk is strenuous but a unique experience.
The Oyster Bay dune-field into which the Sand River flows is one of the finest examples in the world of a by-pass headland dune system. This phenomenon occurs when wind-blown sand crosses behind a headland. It is estimated that the sand takes some 3000 years to travel from Oyster Bay to St Francis Bay.
The walk takes you about eight hours one way. Bush buck, duiker, bush pig and mongooses or (more likely) their tracks may be spotted.
The walk starts at the Sand River causeway which is situated about half way between the traffic circle and the Kromme River Bridge.
For the very fit and adventurous there is the now famous Chokka trail, over three days.
This organised walking, hikng trail is a 62km slack-pack hiking holiday between Oyster Bay, St Francis Bay and Cape St Francis. This trail won an Lilizela Award this year.
The walking trail adventure starts at Cape St Francis Resort from where you are taken to Oyster Bay to overnight there .
Contact CSF Resort: 042 2980054
Go to Quaysyde Restaurant & Pub in Seaglades Drive and hire a ferry that will take you to a fantastic secret beach.
Arrange a picnic lunch from your home or have the Quaysyde prepare a picnic box for you and enjoy the day at the beach, returning by ferry again when you have had enough sun.
Quaysyde is also a fantastic playground for children.
Have fun and Happy Holidays!