Marine Safari

The confluence of the Atlantic and Indian oceans creates the perfect environment for rich aquatic biodiversity. During the months of May to July some of the ocean’s most fearsome, graceful and comical creatures call these waters home.

An ocean safari

To experience the Marine Big 5 in their natural habitat is humbling and indescribable. Enjoy close encounters with whales, sharks, dolphins, seals and penguins in all their glory as they feed, frolic and play.

Join us on a purpose-built eco-friendly tour vessel as we partner with Dyer Island Cruises, and enjoy a trip led by experienced marine biologists and guides.

Witness thousands of Cape Fur Seals basking in the sun, try and spot some fearsome Great White Sharks or delight as bottlenose dolphins surf right by the boat.

  • Grootbos is perfectly positioned on the doorstep of this marine paradise.
  • Learn more about the secret underwater life from our guides and biologists, with an emphasis on creating greater understanding about marine conservation.
  • From the end of June, Southern Right Whales migrate to the tempered waters of Walker Bay.
  • Spot some of the rare pelagic bird life across the blue ocean.

From Our Expert Guides

Clayton Niemand
"A once in a life opportunity to experience some of the most elusive marine creatures"

Secret Season Special

The Annual return of Southern Right Whales to our winter shores makes Secret Season the perfect time of year to discover the secrets of the ocean. 

View our Secret Season Special


Whale Watching and so much more at Grootbos - I stayed at Grootbos, ostensibly to see the Southern Right Whales.

Donovan Clark - United Kingdom

Exceptional place, we enjoyed wonderful sundowners as we watched for whales, flew above the bay to watch whales from the sky and went on a flower safari.

Charlotte Murray - United States

Wonderful experience - we went off-site for the whale watching and shark cage excursion.

Juliane Bruwer - United States

#ExploreGrootbos Short Films


Grootbos combines ingredients and flavours of indigenous fynbos and nearby marine shores, with spectacular dining settings. We pair these with our carefully curated wine collection sourced from the very best of the region.

As part of the Secret Season at Grootbos, our skilled team of chefs are on hand to forage in this unique natural pantry with you and take you on a journey of transforming these tastes into a unique dining experience. Grootbos is a destination dining experience with our food philosophy central philosophy to the experience. 


The marine world on the shores below Grootbos is home to unparalleled marine life ranging from the small and endangered African Penguin to the largest predatory fish of the oceans, the Great White Shark.

The cooler winter months and our Secret Season marks the annual migration of the Southern Right Whales and together with the Penguins, Sharks, Dolphins and Cape Fur Seals making up the Marine Big 5. Discover and explore this remarkable marine wonderland, heralded as the ‘Serengeti of the Seas’. 


Grootbos is home to 3 of the last remaining indigenous Milkwood forests of the Western Cape. These 1000 year old labyrinths of gnarled trunks and lichen covered branches are in fact a complex system of trees all working in unison. The atmosphere in these forests is enchanting, a space of tranquility and sanctuary.

The Secret Season offers the opportunity to spend time, exploring these ancient wooded spaces with a dedicated guide and re-connecting with yourself amidst this beautiful piece of nature. 


Grootbos is passionate and committed to the conservation of the Cape Floral Kingdom and the upliftment of the communities therein. Together with the Grootbos Foundation, Grootbos has integrated conservation and community into it’s very DNA and is an inspirational model for progressive and sustainable tourism in practice.

Come and be inspired during The Secret Season and discover the innovative ways Grootbos and the Grootbos Foundation work together to conserve the critically endangered fynbos of the region and create shared value with the surrounding local communities.


Grootbos lies in the heart of the Cape Floral Kingdom, the smallest yet most biodiverse of the worlds plant kingdoms and home to a biodiversity more abundant than that of the Amazon.

Experience the majesty and wonder of this distinctive landscape and World Heritage site in our Secret Season. Head out on our flower safari and understand the fascinating story of fynbos and this unique piece of nature.


Grootbos is situated in the southern most wine region of Africa, renown for Pinot Noir, Chenin and Sauvignon Blanc. Grootbos’s passion for wines of this region has translated into a careful assemblage of the very best of these wines, over the past decade. 

As part of the Secret Season, Grootbos sommeliers introduce these hallmark wines, varieties and wine stories of this exciting wine region and offer expert pairing guidance to complete the taste journey. 


Take a closer look at the world of bees and honey and be amazed at the intelligence of nature and the intricate role bees play in every aspect of our ecosystems.

The Secret Season, in our cooler months, is the ideal opportunity to suit up and head out with our apiarian. Encounter the buzz of a beehive, the delicate structures and matrix that come together in the fascinating world of bees. On your return, experience the extraction process top this off with some of our delicious honey muffins and a sip of honey iced tea!


Pick up a handful of shells when strolling along the endless white sandy beaches, listen to the waves crashing and marvel at the glorious views.

A visit to our beaches offers relaxation, inspiration or solitude, depending on how you choose to spend your time. At the foot of our reserve lies the cradle of human culture; caves that were home of our ancestors from the Middle Stone Age through the Later Stone Ages. Discover the ancient secrets the coastal caves hold. Soak up panoramic views, through the naturally casted window which after the rock shelter was named.


The Lady Stanford offers a gentle cruise immersing you in the natural world of the Klein River. There is exceptional birdlife to enjoy and the scenic river landscape is flanked by spectacular mountain range vistas, offering an ideal venue for a sundowner.

This tranquil cruise is an idyllic Secret Season activity as you relax and enjoy this serene meander down this beautiful river system.

Enjoy the warmth of our hospitality

Grootbos Foundation and global recognition

Grootbos is a world leader in sustainable tourism and has been awarded some of the highest international accolades possible, making us one of only a handful of lodges to achieve this.

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Grootbos invites you to experience our country's most precious floral biome and marine wilderness like never before. Enjoy unique guided experiences while being treated to five-star luxury at our lodges and villas. We offer South African residents an exclusive discounted rate and additional benefits. 

What's new at Grootbos - New Garden Lodge and Florilegium

The last year has been a busy one at Grootbos. We rebuilt our beloved Garden Lodge entirely and re-opened it in April 2022. We also officially launched the Grootbos Florilegium - Africa's first contemporary florilegium - which is a collection of botanical illustrations created by local and international artists, depicting the charismatic plants found on our reserve and the surrounding regions.

Click below to learn more about these exciting developments.

See New Garden Lodge See Florilegium