For millennia, whales have visited the bays of the Cape Province during winter to give birth to their calves in shallow and safe water and to suckle them. They gave their name to Walvis Bay and after 1790 attracted whalers from many nations who anchored in the bays to provision and to hunt whales with their rowing boats.

By the 1960’s the whaling industry was under pressure due to declining numbers of whales and rising costs, like fuel costs. In the end it was probably financial considerations that lead to the demise of the industry in the mid 1970’s.

Today old whaling centres like Hermanus are thriving tourist destinations. The whale population are at healthy levels attracting International and local tourists’ to its shores for whale watching during the calving season August to November. The development of a thriving restaurant, hospitality and wine industry in the area is proof that sustainable choices can result in greater financial benefits and for a wide group of individuals.