Back in the mid-19th century when Hermanus was still going by its original name of Hermanuspietersfontein, this isolated hill, standing on an otherwise flat plain and rising some 75 metres above sea level, was simply known as “Klip Kop”. However, as time passed and the village grew and eventually took on its new (much shorter) moniker, the hill came to be known as Hoy’s Koppie, taking its name from the charismatic Sir William Hoy, the Scottish-born head of the Cape and South African Railways in the 1920s who had enjoyed strong links with the town and who eventually arranged it such that both he and later his wife could be buried at the hill’s summit.
These days of course the city completely surrounds this strange little hill in the middle of nowhere, and the hill itself has become a part of the Fernkloof Nature Reserve. Work has been done to add a path that snakes up all the way to the top (with a couple of its original old stairs thrown in for good measure), making for a fun little nature walk that doesn’t take a lot of time to complete, but is strenuous enough that you feel rewarded once you reach the top and take in all those wonderful views of both the town and Walker Bay alongside it.
Silly as it sound, this little hill has been on my to do list for a while now, and at the start of the year I finally made time for it, grabbing my girls and tagging in their complex buddy Cara to come along for the adventure. This was of course not the part of our day trip to Hermanus that the girls enjoyed most, but nevertheless it was a fun bit of adventure for all four of us. (That said, they wanted NOTHING to do with graves at the top of the koppie!)
So a short and sweet but satisfying little walk in nature – more or less.
As for our day out in Hermanus itself, the girls and I had a right good time. We watched the fishermen at the harbour, we ate KFC at Voelklip Beach, we built a cairn at Rotary Way lookout point, we played pirate adventure mini golf at Benguela Cove, and even enjoyed some soft serve ice cream in Kleinmond just to cap everything off!