Two ‘brak’ (brackish) rivers, the Klein-Brak and the Groot-Brak, reach the sea in Mossel Bay and both have holiday resorts on their lower reaches. Groot-Brakrivier has a lagoon at its mouth and a cluster of bungalows built on an islet.
The town was founded by the Searle family in 1859 and the footwear and timber industry they established here still thrives. The font in the Spanish-style church was made from the post of a turnpike built by the first Searle to settle here.
During the Christmas holiday season, the camping ground near the mouth of the Hartenbos River is a city of tents and caravans. For two months there is considerable activity, then, almost as suddenly as they came, the vast crowds thin out for the remainder of the year.
An open-air stadium, seating 10 000, is used for folk festivals, church services and athletics.
A Voortrekker museum exhibits two wagons which took part in the 1938 symbolic trek to Pretoria.
The cliffs along the Garden Route occasionally pull back to form sandy, sheltered bay. Herold’s Bay is an example of such bays. The cliffs on either side fall steeply into the sea. The beach is well sanded and has a sea-water swimming pool. A ridge overlooking the bay is the site of the village. Trees give the whole area the appearance of a park-land.
The resort is named after the Rev. Tobias Herold, the first minister of George’s Dutch Reformed Church.
Boating and fishing are major pastimes at Keurboomstrand, the resort at the mouth of the Keurbooms River. Here the river, named from the sweetly scented flowering trees which grow on its banks, joins the Bietou River to form a lagoon. On the beach, which is bordered by bush, are mounds of shells thousands of years old. Nearby is the Matjies River Cave, where Late Stone Age relics gave been found.
The upper reaches of the Keurbooms River are roofed with trees, notably at Whiskey Creek.