Where to enjoy a picnic after a hike in and around Plett

Where to picnic in Plett

Thank you to Plett Tourism for this wonderful article by Janet Middleton with lots of interesting information about the best picnic sites around Plettenberg Bay!

There’s nothing like a morning or an afternoon hike outdoors to work up quite an appetite. In summer, we’re fortunate to be able to either stroll right into a restaurant off the beach or pack a pleasantly packaged picnic.

Here are some favorite options for a picnic in Plettenberg Bay. Longer days and sun-soaked evenings make filling a basket with goodies and heading out.  A few essentials: water, sunscreen (maybe an umbrella), napkins and, of course, something to put your trash in – please.


Cape Nature’s World Heritage Site can be explored in several ways. Take a stroll along the bank (there are picnic spots just off the N2), book a river cruise, kayak tour or stand-up paddling experience. The nature reserve, at a small 740ha is near pristine and a sanctuary for indigenous trees including the Cape beech, giant stinkwood and the magnificent Outeniqua yellowwood.

Birders will find immense pleasure in sighting the Knysna turaco and woodpecker, sunbird species, kingfishers and more. If you’re headed up to Whiskey Creek – a lone leopard has been spotted on the banks on more than one occasion – the rarest of the African Big Five right there on the riverbank of Keurbooms River Nature Reserve.  Find out more…

Picnic in Plett on the Keurbooms River
Picnic in Plett on the Keurbooms River

Robberg Nature Reserve

No picnic list would be complete without including Robberg Nature Reserve, also a World Heritage Site and a national No picnic list of Plett would be complete without including our jewel. This is Robberg Nature Reserve. Robberg is a World Heritage Site, national monument and – thanks to the historical Nelson Bay Cave – a part of the Cradle of Human Culture Route.

The parking lot – which offers braai facilities and an epic sunset view along the coastline – is the picnic spot for Plett residents at the end of a long week. If you’re feeling more active, head on down to the Gap and onto the tombolo beach for a seaside picnic – you won’t be disappointed. Please note that there are no water points on the reserve and that it closes at sunset so, if you go exploring, you’ll need to allow time to hike back to the parking lot. Find out more…

Picnic Robberg yacht sailing coast mast
Picnic in Plett at Robberg Nature Reserve

Lookout Beach

Oh, the memories! Lookout Beach is a Plett institution: memories of ice cream melting in a cone, sand-coated sunscreen and endless waves breaking along the shore. Lookout Beach has been the holiday home of many a South African and is as lovely today as it was 50 years ago.

The nearby lagoon makes it an ideal beach for the family with littler children and there’s plenty of space to spread out and build a sandcastle. Either pack a picnic to enjoy under the umbrella or pop in at the Lookout Deck or Grand Africa Beach Lookout Beach for a fabulously tasty treat. Find out more…

Picnic in Plett at Lookout Beach
Picnic in Plett at Lookout Beach

Nature’s Valley

Lovely Nature’s Valley stretches luxuriantly along the Tsitsikamma coastline with the Otter Trail to the east and Salt River to the west, it’s a place of quiet beauty and serenity. Set up your picnic along the beach or lagoon and, if you’re well-packed for a hike, head along the coast to the magical paradise that is Salt River Mouth.

It’s best to research your route to Salt River before you but if you can get through the hike, it’s one of the loveliest spaces on the Garden Route – untouched, uninhabited, wild, and beautiful. Find out more…

Salt River mouth hiking trail in Natures Valley

Natures Valley Kalenderkloof hiking trail

Picnic at Nature's Valley
Picnic at Nature’s Valley


This undiscovered picnic spot has some of the best views you’ll find along this coastline. Fynbos covered cliffs are very different from the gentle, sweeping beaches of the bay. If you’re hiking, the coastal trail is quite strenuous.  This is a South African National Parks site within the Garden Route National Park. The 1km forest trail is perfect for the whole family.

Picnic tables and braais await to feed faces after the walks.  If you’re feeling extra adventurous, SANparks recently launched a new zipline adventure nearby, so you can fly across a gorge with even more gorgeous sea views and the ocean breeze in your hair! Find out more about Kranshoek and Harkerville…

Kranshoek coastal trail near Harkerville

Kranshoek from the view point, on the Harkerville trail.
Kranshoek from the viewpoint, on the Harkerville trail.


Tsitsikamma National Park is Africa’s oldest Marine Protected Area.  It is only 67km from Plettenberg Bay, and well worth the easy one hour drive along the N2. The Storms River Mouth section of the national park is the most magical of settings for a day trip. The three suspension bridges and the picnic areas are well-established and maintained. Plan for a full day out and take a picnic basket so you can enjoy all there is on offer besides lovely walks and hikes.  There is also snorkeling, scuba diving and a kayak/lilo adventure.  There is a shop, an information center and a restaurant as well as ample parking.


Storms River - Photo: J Middleton
Storms River Mouth

Longer days, and sun soaked early evenings puts everyone in the mood to be outside.

Robberg Nature Reserve is a true institution.In fact, you haven’t experienced Plett to the full until you’ve set your feet on this awe-inspiring peninsula. The views of the ocean and the bay are unparalleled. Palaeontology has never been this breathtakingly beautiful with the abundance of fauna and flora. The memory of this nature reserve will stay with you long after you dust off your hiking boots. Cape Nature provides  braai facilities and picnic tables as well as toilet facilities, a small kiosk and information centre.

Robberg Nature Reserve hiking trails

Bayside now offering hiking holidays!