The Marine is one of South Africa’s most spectacular seaside hotels. Located on Hermanus’ famous cliff path, overlooking the breathtaking Walker Bay in the Western Cape’s Overberg region, this Small Luxury Hotels of the World property is the ultimate location for whale watching during our whale season – most often directly from the comfort of the sea view bedrooms.
Whether you choose one of our entry-level Double Rooms, Double Rooms with Sea View, or Premier Suites, you can rest assured that you will experience the most stylish of stays.
Hermanus first came into existence as a summer grazing area for livestock – before becoming famous for its fishing opportunities. Word then started to spread about its healthy sea air, which led to the opening of several hotels. The Marine was one of them.
Our 10 individually designed Premier Suites at The Marine offer mesmerising views over the expansive ocean vista surrounding the hotel. Two of our Premier Suites also feature private balconies with views over Walker Bay.
Each Premier Suite encompasses a separate lounge with Smart TV and Satellite TV channels. A beautifully decorated bedroom with en-suite bathroom is made all the more comfortable with air-conditioning throughout.
Luxury Double Rooms with Sea View
Our Luxury Double Rooms with Sea View are perfectly positioned for watching pods of dolphins and whales as they swim in the bay below. The panoramic views over Walker Bay have inspired the décor of each of the rooms, with blue featuring as a dominant colour.
A comfortable seating area makes for the perfect vantage point for spotting the gentle giants below while enjoying a glass of wine. In addition, several of the rooms feature a balcony with breathtaking views of the ocean. King size beds, spacious en-suite bathroom and air-conditioning throughout ensure the ultimate comfort.
The Double Rooms at The Marine all offer our signature décor and uncompromising style. Each of these comfortable guest rooms comes with an en-suite bathroom and air-conditioning, as well as a king size bed – which in some rooms can also be converted into a twin bed. In addition, several of the Double Rooms open out onto private balconies.
The Pavilion Restaurant
The restaurant features an edgy black-and-white décor reminiscent of the roaring 1920s, allowing guests to start their day in the most elegant of ways.
Breakfast is served each morning inside the Pavilion’s main dining section; guests can sit inside or take their pick from two al fresco options, either in the courtyard by the pool, or on the outside pavilion overlooking Walker Bay.
A selection of fresh fruit and freshly baked pastries are available each morning, together with cereals, and delicious Franschhoek Smoked Salmon Trout; while hot breakfast options are served à la carte. Apart from serving as the breakfast room, The Pavilion also serves lunch and dinner daily.
The Sun Lounge & Bar
Combine delicious drinks with breathtaking views. The Sun Lounge and Bar is the perfect place to relax throughout the day – from a quick coffee in the morning, to Afternoon Tea, a glass of bubbly or sundowners.
Overlooking the incredible Walker Bay, The Sun Lounge and Bar is the ideal spot to enjoy drinks and snacks while searching the waters for resident and visiting marine life. The warm and inviting colour scheme not only tempts guests and visitors alike, but also provides a comfortable setting to while away a few hours.
The relaxed sophistication of The Sun Lounge is complemented by a wide variety of South African wines, sparkling wines, signature cocktails and delectable eats. A visit to The Sun Lounge is ideal for afternoon tea or early evening drinks, enjoyed with the views of the surrounding cliffs and bay.
You only get one chance to create the wedding of your dreams – which is why it’s important to choose the right location and the right wedding coordinator. The Overberg’s magnificent ocean and mountain backdrop, coupled with the style, charm and professionalism of The Marine, ensure that your big day will be truly memorable.
Our event coordinators are passionate experts in dreaming up bespoke weddings and will gladly assist you in creating a wedding day that is absolutely unique and special. With that belief in mind, we design a wedding experience around four elements: exceptional service, unique setting, world-class cuisine and exquisite accommodation.
Tempted to turn your big day into a destination wedding? Getting married abroad is magical but not easy to organise. This is where we come in – let us take care of all the details!
The Western Cape’s Overberg region offers a unique location for a destination wedding – with spectacular views of the ocean, overlooking Walker Bay, it is the perfect spot for nature lovers and those wishing to tie the knot surrounded by natural beauty.
Part of the prestigious The Liz McGrath Collection, The Marine offers outdoor wedding ceremonies and banquets to impress guests from abroad and create memories to last a lifetime.
Whether you dream of an extravagant party or a small private ceremony, plan your wedding with us and our wedding team will take care of everything – leaving you free to simply enjoy your day.
Lovebirds keen to get married without having to plan a big wedding should consider our romantic Elopement package. Focusing on just the two of you, this intimate destination wedding offer will ensure the most magical of days, without any of the usual demands that come with a big ceremony.
Whether you are looking for a small family celebration or a large do for over 100 guests, we can meet your requirements with ease, thanks to our range of special venues. What better way to celebrate an anniversary, birthday, or other special occasion than with a private function at The Marine.
We specialise in events of all kinds, from proposals, engagement parties, Hen & Bachelor dos and Weddings; to family reunions, baby showers and ‘Sip & See’ meet-the-new-baby afternoons; as well as corporate functions.
Our decadent High Tea is also a lovely way to get together with friends or family, and comes with a delectable range of savoury and sweet treats, served with a variety of fragrant teas. We offer a wonderful choice of both indoor and outdoor venues, to suit all preferences and seasons – our team will gladly assist in choosing the perfect location for you and your guests.
For those grander occasions, we will assign you your very own Events Coordinator to ensure all your requests are catered for with the minimum of fuss, letting you look forward to the actual event stress-free.
Groups & Incentives
For your next corporate event or team building exercise, swop your office for the chance to feel the sand between your toes in Hermanus, with The Marine as your base – we offer
the perfect environment for multiple types of incentives and tailor-made packages.
The Marine is ideal for event organisers looking for a location close to Cape Town, yet far away from everyday city life. With mesmerising views of Walker Bay, a stay here will prove to be a tonic for the soul for all delegates.
We offer a range of accommodation options for groups – be it for conventions, incentive parties or tour groups; or film productions, sports teams, VIP delegations or YPOs. The Marine accommodates groups from five rooms, and can also be booked for exclusive use, with a maximum of 40 guests at single occupancy, or up to 80 guests at twin occupancy.
Carchele Beauty Spa
Settle into the calm and relaxing surroundings of the Carchele Beauty Spa at The Marine, a full-service spa that offers basic and signature treatments.
Facilities at the spa, including a steam room and couples massage treatment rooms, supplement the wide range of treatments available at Carchele, including facials by Black Pearl and Decleor, waxing, hand and foot therapy, and body treatments. The spa also features a DermaLife capsule with various programmes designed to detoxify, relax and rejuvenate.
Our skilled therapists will guide you in the selection of therapies most suited to reinstate balance and a sense of tranquility. We believe that your every journey with us will be a delightful one. For your comfort please read through our Spa Etiquette prior to arrival on the day of your treatment.
Dive in and enjoy a swim in one of our two saltwater pools – take your pick from the heated Hotel Pool or the Marine Tidal Pool.
Our heated saltwater pool is situated in The Marine’s tranquil internal courtyard, where guests are invited to glide into the revitalising water before relaxing on the comfortable poolside loungers set out each morning. An outdoor shower adjacent to the pool allows guests to rinse off after their invigorating swim.
The Marine Tidal Pool is situated directly below the hotel. Access is from a cliff path, leading down to the pool via a set of steep steps (not recommended for guests who have difficulty walking). The pool is safe for children and offers good snorkelling at low tide.
The Liz McGrath Collection Boutique
A carefully curated assortment of the finer things in life, The Liz McGrath Collection Boutique offers a selection of items from acclaimed South African designers.
These include ceramics, tableware and cushions by Ardmore, sculptures by Donald Greig and luxury crocodile bags and belts by Zambezi Grace – also stocked at our sister properties The Marine and The Plettenberg.
The Collection Boutique features not only clothing and holiday essentials, but also books, jewellery, art and other interior elements that make for wonderful mementos. Guests don’t need to worry about luggage restrictions, either, as items can be shipped anywhere in the world after purchase.
Explore & Experience
Overlooking South Africa’s most pristine whale sanctuary, The Marine offers guests the opportunity to experience the finest land-based whale watching in the world. That is not all however – the hotel also provides the perfect base from which to explore and enjoy a host of other activities.
We are only a stone’s throw from one of the greatest densities of the famous, endangered Great White Shark, as well as Cape Agulhas and the Winelands. From nature walks, hikes and mountain bike trails, to arts & crafts and festivals & markets, you can expect an exciting, invigorating holiday for the whole family.
Famous for whale watching, beaches and nature, as well as its food and wine scene, Hermanus really is a destination that ticks all the boxes: a palpable history, thriving art scene, boutique shopping and busy programme of festivals, concerts and events.
The region around Hermanus, known as the Overberg, is an area of natural contrasts, from the deep green apple orchards of Elgin to the sweeping canola fields of Caledon, and the rugged mountainous coast where marine life flourishes. The natural surroundings are at once diverse, and lovers of the outdoors are spoilt for choice with activities.
Whether you are looking to explore the tastes of the Overberg, immerse yourself in art, history and culture on the coast, or make the most of the great Overberg outdoors, there is something to suit all preferences.
Concierge Top 10
Whether you are planning to visit the beautiful Whale Coast and Hermanus with family and friends on vacation, or on a business trip, we would like to you to make the most of your stay and hope you will have time to experience some of the attractions that the Overberg Whale Coast has to offer. To assist you with we have compiled our ‘Concierge Top 10’ recommendation in and around Hermanus.
Fernkloof Nature Reserve
Join flower enthusiasts who travel from far and wide to explore 60km of scenic hiking trails in the Fernkloof Nature Reserve – the only such reserve with both coastal and mountain fynbos, and with the most species in close proximity. Whether you follow the lush Tree Trail or book a guided walk, you can expect instagrammable views wherever you go.
A favourite amongst surfers, Voëlklip Beach is immensely popular during high season. Spacious green lawns lead down to the main beach, with a few rocky coves nearby for a more private beach experience. Buy refreshments at the nearby deli and coffee shop before joining sun worshippers for a glorious day by the sea.
Festival and Markets
The town of Hermanus is also known for its annual festival and markets. The most famous is the annual Whale Festival that celebrates the return of the Southern Right Whales to the shores of Hermanus.
Picnic at De Hoop Nature Reserve
If time permits, a visit to this pristine 34,000-hectare reserve, accessible from Hermanus in under two hours, is a must. De Hoop is renowned for being one of the world’s top whale watching spots – in August 2018, a record 1,116 whales were sighted in a single day. We can pack a gourmet picnic for you to enjoy on the dunes while you look out for these magnificent creatures.
Walker Bay Sea Kayaking
Join Walker Bay Adventures on a guided sea-kayaking trip from the historical Old Harbour. Delight in sightings of Cape Fur Seals, penguins, cormorants, Southern Right Whales (in season) and other sea birds and marine mammals, while your knowledgeable guide tells you more about Walker Bay’s rich marine life.
Take a walk around town and visit some of the art galleries in Hermanus. You can meet some of the artists and see them at work.
Hermanus Famous Cliff Path
Hermanus’ famous Cliff Path, protected within the Fernkloof Nature Reserve, is one of the town’s most spectacular features. Stroll along 11km of rugged coastline, from the New Harbour all the way to Piet-se-Bos, just beyond Grotto Beach, for what is arguably the best land-based whale watching experience in the world.
Creation – Hemel-en-Aarde Wine Valley
Named one of ‘World’s 50 best Vineyards’ and ‘South Africa’s Best Cellar Door Experience’ in 2019, Creation will wow you with a truly sensory and highly innovative food and wine experience. A visit to this exceptional estate, set high up in the magnificent Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, is pure delight.
Shark Cage Diving at Gansbaai
Take the plunge on an adrenaline-inducing cage diving adventure in the heart of the world’s Great White Shark mecca. Not only will the experience leave you in awe of these powerful predators, you’ll also come away knowing a lot more about sharks and the area’s conservation efforts.
Considered to be the whale watching capital of the world, and named one of the top 12 land-based whale watching locations in the world by the WWF, Hermanus offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the Southern Right Whales up close. Spot whales from the comfort of your room, or go on a boat-based whale-watching trip with Southern Right Charters.
Magnificent mountains, whale, sea, and endless beaches…
Only 90 minutes’ drive from Cape Town lies the wonderful seaside village of Hermanus, overflowing with charm and pleasures for young and old. Famed for its restful, relaxing pace, Hermanus is situated on the stunning Overberg whale coast of the Western Cape, offering much-needed respite from the world.
Escape to nature
Escape to nature and breathe the crisp, soul soothing, champagne air along the famous cliff path – an 11 km spectacle sure to revitalize the spirits. Hermanus has long been known as a destination for those needing health-recuperating holidays.
In 1896 a Sanatorium was built in the town so that visitors could benefit from the fine air quality and its purported health-giving benefits. Still today, Hermanus remains a wonderful year-round holiday destination blessed with the magnificence of mountains, sea and endless beaches. This little coastal town never disappoints.
Whales are one of the most mysterious and beautiful creatures in the ocean, with many people travelling hundreds of miles in the hope of spotting one of these gentle creatures. Hermanus offers some of the best whale watching experiences in the world.
The best time to enjoy viewings is between July and November either from land, by boat or from above via a scenic flight. You are almost guaranteed to spot whales in September, October and November in Hermanus, particularly in Walker Bay, which is the mating and breeding ground of the Southern Right Whale.
Traveller’s tip: For those with a more adventurous spirit, a guided sea kayaking trip promises to release your adrenaline and offers a unique whale watching opportunity. Discover the magic of this unique coastline with its abundant marine life during a gentle two-hour paddle, starting from the historic Old Harbour.
And whilst you’re breathing champagne air, you may as well drink it! Hermanus offers an array of Wineries set in Hemel-en-Aarde (Heaven and Earth) valley with outstanding mountain scenery and lush farmlands. Enjoy a glass of bubbly or wine tasting experience at any of the wonderful vineyards.
Located just below Marine Drive, where the land plummets into the ocean, and the sea enters into a sheltered cove, lies Ficks Pool, a perfect spot for a refreshing swim in the sparkling natural, blue tidal pool. Pack a cooler box, towel and book and head to one of the beaches.
Grotto Beach is well known for its exquisite stretch of beach and ocean, enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. You may even be lucky enough to spot some whales here, especially from the rocks above the sea.
Looking for somewhere peaceful and luxurious to unwind after a day’s activities? The Marine is one of South Africa’s most spectacular seaside hotels and an ideal location for rest and relaxation.
This five-star luxury destination, a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, is located on Hermanus’ famous cliff path, overlooking Walker Bay. This means you don’t even have to get out of bed to experience spectacular views or even whale watching!
Taste your way around the delectable Overberg region
Situated in Hermanus, The Marine is perfectly positioned for a variety of gastronomic experiences in the Overberg region – from farmer’s markets and wine estates, to regional dishes and glorious seafood.
Your culinary adventure begins at The Marine, where our Head Chef – Oelof Voster has created a restaurant offering that showcases the impressive bounty of the Overberg. At Pavilion at The Marine, diners can expect dishes incorporating traditional South African elements in a relaxed, contemporary atmosphere.
The Overberg is a wine-rich region, and The Marine’s position offers easy access to explore the wine estates of Walker Bay, Hemel-en-Aarde and the Elgin Valley. The wine estates in the Hemel-en-Aarde region are famous for world-class Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, among many other varietals.
The wines and beautiful scenery are matched by a smattering of unique eateries, including both country cooking and fine dining. Try Mogg’s Country Cookhouse, a quirky farm cottage that offers farm-fresh cuisine, or opt for a chocolate and wine pairing at Creation Wines.
There is also a host of regular markets for foodies and families alike, stretching from Hermanus to the hamlet of Stanford. Every Saturday, at the Hermanus Country Market, visitors can sample local craft beers and wines, meet artisan producers and relax with an excellent cup of coffee and a fresh pastry while watching their kids play.
There is so much to explore in the surrounding areas, too, such as the award-winning South African Gruyere cheese at Klein River and the delicious craft beer at Birkenhead Brewery.
Discover Hermanus’ rich cultural offering
Hermanus has so much going on that the whole family is sure to be kept entertained during your stay. For the art lovers, there are small galleries dotted around town, while history buffs will enjoy finding out more about this seaside town. A busy festival scene is another reason to visit throughout the year.
The Marine has been a part of Hermanus’ history almost from the very beginning. The hotel was first built in 1902, with a modest 21 rooms. In its fledgling years, Hermanus was a fishing village – a heritage that is still very much in evidence today.
Spend a day uncovering the history of this beautiful coastal town – museums are all within easy walking distance of The Marine, so you can explore the town on foot at the same time.
The Old Harbour Museum is situated in the Old Harbour, in the town centre. There, you’ll discover exhibits depicting the history of the fishing and whaling industry in the area, among many other fascinating displays.
The Whale Museum features a daily audiovisual presentation called The Whale Show, during which visitors can go ‘below the surface’ and enjoy an encounter with southern right whales.
Then go on a journey into the town’s past at De Wet’s Huis Photographic Museum, through a collection of sepia photographs portraying Hermanus from the time it was a quaint fishing village.
Hermanus also has a wealth of contemporary art galleries – must-visits include Abalone Art Gallery, Walker Bay Art Gallery, Rossouw Modern, Old Harbour Gallery and Lembu Studio and Gallery.
For written masterpieces, Hemingway’s Bookshop in the centre of town is a treasure trove for bibliophiles, and specialises in Africana, antiquarian and collectables, as well as unusual and often out-of-print books.
There are many events and festivals throughout the year. Highlights include the Hermanus Fynarts Festival, the Fernkloof Wildflower & Eco Fair and the famous Hermanus Whale Festival, which is held in celebration of our annual marine visitors, the southern right whales.
The whales stay for approximately six months of the year, and guests can enjoy the sight of them frolicking in Walker Bay from the comfort of their own suites at The Marine, as well as along the cliff paths that meander in front of the hotel.
Explore the Overberg’s extraordinary outdoors
The Overberg is an area of natural contrasts, from the deep green apple orchards of Elgin to the sweeping canola fields of Caledon, and the rugged mountainous coast of Hermanus
where marine life flourishes. The natural surroundings are at once diverse and awe-inspiring – and lovers of the outdoors are spoilt for choice with a host of activities.
Hermanus is synonymous with land-based whale watching, and guests of The Marine can enjoy this pastime from the comfort of their own suites, or on a cliff walk in front of the hotel. Feeling a bit more adventurous?
Then take to the seas, with kayaking or boat tours that will take you right up close to the southern right whales. Alternatively get a bird’s-eye view of the gentle giants with a scenic flight over Walker Bay.
The southern right whale makes up part of the Marine Big 5! The rich waters of Walker Bay teem with marine life, and a visit to The Marine means you can tick off the Big 5 during your stay. Spy dolphins and seals frolicking in the water, go cage-diving to see great white sharks, and see the African penguin in its natural habitat with a tour at Stony Point.
Just below The Marine is Hermanus’ iconic marine tidal pool. To access the seawater pool, simply walk down from the cliff path onto steps leading directly to it. Offering fresh, bracing ocean water packed with micronutrients, as well as mesmerising views, it’s an experience the whole family can enjoy.
The beaches of Hermanus are white-sand playgrounds for avid swimmers, surfers and sunbathers. There are a variety of inlets and coves, as well as secluded beaches against coastal cliffs; a must-visit is Grotto Beach, which has Blue Flag status. Traveller’s tip: There are also trails for horse riding on certain beaches, as well as within the area’s vineyards and orchards.
No trip to Hermanus is complete without a visit to Fernkloof Nature Reserve, unique in that it is the only such reserve with both coastal and mountain fynbos – and it has the most species in close proximity.
Botanists and flower enthusiasts travel from far and wide to experience the magic of this place, and locals delight in the diverse beauty of their ‘backyard’. Fernkloof is also popular with picnickers and hikers.
Do you relish the opportunity to practise your swing while on holiday? Hermanus has an easily accessible golf course, in the most scenic of settings, and there are other courses in the area to explore. The Overberg region is a birder’s paradise, too, offering twitchers the opportunity to identify endemic bird species in fynbos, coastal and wheat field habitats.