A Family Weekend in Hermanus

My family and I spent the past Easter Weekend in Hermanus. Hermanus is a tranquil coastal town in the Western Cape, a favourite among tourist and those who love the ocean, like our family. It has something for everyone, from shoppers to adventurers.

In our family, we have a variety of interests. My dad is an adventurer who paddles competitively and can’t sit still for very long. My mum, on the other hand, considers lounging in front of the TV or watching performances as an ideal way to wind down. Like my mother, I’d also much rather watch a movie or read a good book than brave the waters. My sisters also like watching movies, but they like getting active too.

Staying in a small but comfortable apartment we found on Airbnb, we explored Hermanus by day and watched movies such as Identity Thief and My Boss’s Daughter by night, going out only to eat out and to watch Hermanus’s famous annual Passion Play.

In this article, I share the highlights of our family weekend.

Passion Play

“Jesus” on the cross.

My mother booked us tickets for Hermanus’s Passion play on the evening of Good Friday. The play was held at the Old Harbour in the heart of town, a small harbour that is surrounded by high cliffs. These cliffs, as well as a platform below them, formed the stage: While the audience sat facing the cliffs, the characters moved around from one point to the next, acting out Jesus’ story.

The play began with an angel sharing the news of Jesus’ coming. The story went on to unfold from Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem to his crucifixion, and finally to the moment when He ascended to Heaven.

The play truly made the story come alive. The characters were dressed in clothes resembling the clothes from children’s Bibles, the events evoked emotion, and “Jesus” even rode on a real donkey.

A stroll along the cliffs

Hermanus Cliff Path.

On Saturday morning, our family took on the Hermanus Cliff Path. The Hermanus Cliff Path Biodiversity Path is an 11 km-long path along the cliffs that line the town’s coast, stretching from the New Harbour to the estuary at the mouth of the Klein River. We only hiked a 4 km-part of the path, however: from the beach two blocks away from our apartment to the town centre. After watching whales (we saw one) and having lunch in the outdoor amphitheatre, we hiked back to our apartment again.

Eating out

My sister and I in Betty Blue Bistro.

We ate out twice this weekend. On the first weekend, we ate at Col’Cacchio. The second time was at Betty Blue Bistro, my and my sisters’ favourite restaurant in town.

Col’Cacchio pizzeria specialises in crispy, thin-based pizza. Part of a restaurant chain, Col’Cacchio has simple decor and a relaxing yet reserved ambience. The restaurant caters for everyone: vegetarians, vegans, and people who are gluten or dairy intolerant. My mum and youngest sister shared a Salame Piccante pizza with a gluten-free base (not because they are gluten intolerant, but because they avoid gluten due to its extra calories), and they would absolutely recommend it. I had a Sedriano pizza with salami, avo, cherry tomatoes and sesame seeds – and it was delicious!

Betty Blue Bistro is probably the most popular restaurant in Hermanus. Some say the appeal is the welcoming service provided by the friendly hostess and her husband; others say it is the quirky, mostly yellow decor. Either way, the restaurant is always bustling with girlfriends having lunch, or families (like us) sharing a meal together. Their food is great. Their speciality is their filled pancakes, however. My personal favourite is their peppermint crisp pancake.

People watching on the beach

Voëlklip Beach.

On Sunday, it was finally sunny. So my sisters and I headed to Voëlklip Beach, a small, secluded beach with spacious lawns, small coves, and great waves for surfing and bodyboarding.

We mostly sat looking at the variety of people on the beach and in the water, from teenagers to exotic tourists. We also made the most of the autumnal sun and tanned a bit. My sisters went swimming in the icy water (although not for long), while I preferred to stay at our spot on a hilly lawn, looking after our things and reading.

How was your Easter Weekend? I would love to hear all about it in the comment section.

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