Julie South Africa 4 Comments

The hike around Robberg Peninsula is rated as one of the top things to do in Plettenberg Bay, South Africa. It is a 9 km hike around a peninsula jutting out into the Indian Ocean.

On this hike we climbed up and down the rocky coastline, hiked past a colony of seals, and wandered on a second, smaller peninsula made of sand. The best part of the hike was the ever changing scenery. Almost every fifteen minutes our views and the terrain we hiked on changed, making this one of the most interesting hikes we have done. Throw in an almost secluded beach and whale watching and you have a fabulous hike.

Robberg Peninsula Hiking Stats

Distance: 9.2 km
Difficulty: Easy to moderate
Length of Time: 4 to 5 hours
Location: Robberg Natural Preserve and Marine Protected Area in Plettenberg Bay.
Cost:  There is a fee of R50 for adults and R30 for children for admission into the park.

Please practice the seven principles of Leave No Trace: plan ahead, stay on the trail, pack out what you bring to the hiking trail, properly dispose of waste, leave areas as you found them, minimize campfire impacts, be considerate of other hikers, and do not approach or feed wildlife.


Robberg Trails Map


Hiking Robberg Peninsula

The hike starts on the mainland and takes you out to the tip of the peninsula. We hiked along the northern side of the peninsula, where it was warmer and there was not much of a breeze. The hiking on this part of the trail was rather easy, along well marked trails and even some sections of boardwalk.

Robberg Peninsula

Tyler and Kara


Along this portion of the hike we spotted the seal colony. Actually, we smelled the seals long before we saw them. Even though the seals were located down by the water, at least 50 meters below us, the smell was horrible. I had no idea seals smelled so bad!! This terrible odor kept wafting up to us on the warm breeze coming up from the ocean. We did not stay long here…yuck!



Once we reached the tip of the peninsula the hiking changed dramatically. The wind picked up, the temperatures cooled down a little, and the scenery became much different. Now we hiked along the rocky coastline very close to the water’s edge. At times we would get sprayed by the sea and we could still spot the occasional seal. Unfortunately, we never did see whales or dolphin, which is common at this time of year.

Hiking South Africa


The hiking now was more challenging, just what Tyler and Kara love. They love rock scrambling and climbing up the steep, rocky faces of the cliffs. They are very nimble and full of energy…I am beginning to have a hard time keeping up with them now.

Walking the Trail

Robberg Trail


Our destination for lunch was a beach of sand that formed another peninsula connecting the main peninsula with a smaller island. We were trying to reach this point thinking it would make a good picnic spot. No matter how long we hiked it seemed like it kept getting farther away.

On the Trail

Finally, we made it to the sandy beach and had it almost to ourselves. There were only a few other hikers wandering around. This is such a gorgeous place…why aren’t more people here?

We were here in September, off season for visiting the Garden Route of South Africa. This meant cheaper prices and fewer tourists…wonderful! The only downside about visiting at this time of year is the weather. Wintertime here is chilly (60’s during the day and a little too cold to swim) with a greater chance of rain. However, the weather was perfect today!

Robberg Peninsula Beach Africa


We ate our lunch on the beach and watched as high tide moved in. It is amazing here!

The beach on Robberg


After lunch we climbed up the small island that overlooks the beach and Robberg Peninsula. We couldn’t stay long, unfortunately. With high tide the waves would eventually meet in the middle, covering our path back to the peninsula.

Walking on the Beach

Robberg Peninsula August

Robberg Peninsula Beach

From the beach it was only a twenty minute hike back to our car. The hike took us four hours, including plenty of time to stop for photos and for lunch on the beach.

This was a spectacular hike. Tyler and Kara loved every minute of it (which is rare for them) and we all agree that this is one of the most interesting hikes we have done. It was just difficult enough to challenge us and give us a good workout and we all loved the short sections of rock scrambling and climbing.

For anyone with plans to visit Plettenberg Bay or Knysna on the Garden Route, put this hike at the very top of your list. You won’t regret it!

Where We Stayed

For four nights we stayed in the Panorama Lodge in Knysna, South Africa. The Panorama Lodge is a bed and breakfast. Our hosts, Dieter and Tina, made us feel right at home. Every morning we were served a delicious breakfast and at night we would hang out by the fire, drinking wine, and enjoying the view over Knysna. Dieter and Tina made us feel like family and it was hard to say goodbye when the time came. This makes a great place to stay for families and we highly recommend the Panorama Lodge.

If you have any questions about how to hike Robberg Peninsula, let us know in the comment section below.

More Information about South Africa

PLACES TO GO IN SOUTH AFRICA: Spend a few days in Cape Town, go on safari in Kruger National Park, journey to the Cape of Good Hope, go road tripping on the Garden Route, visit iSimangaliso Wetland Park, and explore the Drakensburg Mountains of South Africa.

PLACES TO GO NEAR SOUTH AFRICA: Chobe National Park in Botswana is one of the best places in Africa to see African elephants. Go on a road trip to Lesotho on the Sani Pass. And visit Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary in Eswatini.

GREAT HIKES FROM AROUND THE WORLD: For more great hikes, check out our article listing the 20 Best Day Hikes in the World. See our full list in our Hiking Guide.


Planning a trip to South Africa? Read all of our articles in our South Africa Travel Guide.



Hiking Robberg Peninsula in South Africa


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Comments 4

  1. Avatar for Thomas Wales
    Thomas Wales

    When I lived in Sth Africa A number of years ago.we walked round the Peninsula.I did so on my own at least 6 times and and enjoyed the scenery the flowers and the few birds that were there/also enjoying the ancient cave that was once Home to some people many long years ago.Holidays at Plettenberg at Xmas time was fantastic.

  2. Avatar for Jeff Brown
    Jeff Brown

    Thanks for this post along with your broader Garden Route information. Reading this made us want to add this to our trip and we just did the hike earlier this week. WOW, it was amazing with each turn of the corner another breath-taking view. And hardly anybody was there, even in November. Thanks again for the information.

    1. Avatar for Julie Post
  3. Avatar for Kathy (mom)
    Kathy (mom)

    If it’s not one thing it’s the other. Today it was the danger of the incoming tide covering up your path back! You always add some excitement to the post! It does look like a great time and I love the cottage you stayed in for several days. I like the large portrait of the water buffalo in their living room!

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