After a lovely brunch at Ile de Pain, we headed to the touristy Knysna Waterfront Quays. It’s a lovely place to indulge in some ice-cream and watch the boats go by. The weather (and the shopping) were not that appealing so I skipped to the main attraction!
Google “Things to do in Knysna” and you will come across something like ‘take a ferry trip along the Knysna Lagoon’. And that’s exactly what we did.
There were various options of cruises/ boat rides to choose from. Many had lunch or dinner included and there were other more romantic sunset cruises. Being as impatient as I am, I just wanted to get on the first boat out of there! Without too much thought, we booked the earliest ferry trip at the Featherbed Company and just my luck, the John Benn was going to leave in 15 minutes. The John Benn is described as a double-decker floating restaurant. Even though food was not included in the cost of the ticket, there were options onboard if you felt a bit a hungry. The ticket cost R165 for a 90 minute cruise around the lagoon and to the Knysna Heads (where the lagoon meets the ocean). I took along some extra clothing thinking it would be verrrrrrrrry cold!
We opted to sit on the second level and chose the best spot we could find. It took a while for the boat to start moving and we started to get thirsty – which resulted in us ordering a pretty cheap strawberry milkshake and passion fruit and lemonade. The rest of the patrons were kicking it back at the fully licensed bar. There was a fun atmosphere going.
After the thirst came the hunger. It was my mother’s first time eating chilli poppers. It didn’t go down that well with her (some things should not be eaten with a knife and fork) but I thought they were pretty good.
The ride itself was nice and chilled. It was something different and I found myself wishing that we had something like that in Cape Town – only to realise, duh, we do! I just never go on the many, many boat rides available!
Nevertheless, it was a good experience and I was glad that I’d hopped aboard. The captain of the boat told us a bit about the Featherbed company. He explained that renowned TV science and maths teacher William Smith owned the Featherbed company. In fact, the exuberant William Smith owns the Featherbed Nature Reserve on the one side of the Knysna Lagoon. They have a cafe there that is quite popular and I believe you can also do hiking trails. Maybe next time.
And just to add a #history#biology#nerd#fact, William Smith is the son of J.L.B Smith, the professor who in 1938 identified a taxidermied coelacanth. The coelacanth was caught by skipper Hendrick Goosen who called the local museum curator, Majory Courtenay-Latimer, and sent the Prof a sketch of the fish. You can read the fascinating story here.
I enjoyed the 90 minute trip around the Knysna Lagoon. Make sure you lookout for the John Benn the next time you’re in the area.
The Featherbed Company Knysna
+27 (044) 1693/7