- Enjoy the Beach - If the tide is in, there's very safe swimming at Bollard Beach towards the 'top' end of Leisure Island. It also has a sandy beach ideal for sand castles. At the 'bottom' end of the island, there's a grassy, shady picnic site with BBQ facilities and toilets. If you want a very long romantic walk along the beach, you can walk all the way from Brenton-on-Sea to Buffalo Bay (about 8km). Don't ignore any warning signs on the beaches as very strong currents do occur.
- Seek Solace in a Forest - Knysna is surrounded by patches of state forest in which there are paths of varying lengths. Pick up a map at Knysna Tourism (phone 044-382-5510) and a permit at the forest entrance. If you're a mountain-biker, there are various routes to explore in the state forests. At Millwood, there's the 19km Homtini Cycle Route which starts at the Krisjan-se-nek picnic site. In Diepwalle, there's the 24km Petrus-se-brand Cycle Route which ends at the Garden-of-Eden.
- Take a Township Tour - Soweto outside Johannesburg is the township that's known internationally, but like many a South African town, Knysna also has a township which has realized that tours are one way to generate some income. You can take a township tour and visit one of the largest Rastafarian communities in South Africa.
- Bird and Tree Watch - Tree spotting has a distinct advantage over birding, what you're trying to identify stays put. Start by stopping at any 'Big Tree' sign you see, then progress to a walk in the woods, tree guide in hand. The variety of habitats at Knysna makes for good birding year round. Look out for waders and sea birds at Woodbourne Marsh (alongside George Rex Drive) and alongside the causeway to Leisure Island, and for fish eagles upriver of the N2 bridge over the lagoon.
- Dive the Lagoon - Knysna Lagoon is home to the world's only estuarine seahorse species, but they're so tiny you're unlikely to spot one diving. Rather concentrate on the wreck of the Paquita, in the Knysna Heads
- Stare Into the Eyes of an Elephant - Once your kids hand feed an elephant at the Knysna Elephant Park (off the N2 between Knysna and Plettenberg Bay) they'll all want to 'work with animals' when they grow up. Remember to wear old clothes as you'll get covered in elephant spit.
- Enjoy the View from the Western Head - If you wondered why the both heads of the Knysna Lagoon aren't covered with houses, it's because the Western head is a private nature reserve, called Featherbed. The tour starts with a 25-minute boat trip across the lagoon, then you're driven up to the scenic lookout point where you choose between driving down again or do the 2,2 km walk through the milkwood forest and along the lagoon's edge back for a multi-course buffet lunch.
- Picnic in a Secluded Cove - The road over Knysna's Eastern Head and down the other side is extremely steep in places, but it's the only way to get to a beautiful sheltered cove called Coney Glen. There's a shady, grassed picnic site where you can BBQ, rock pools to snorkel in, and a sandy beach to sit with your camera to try to get that ultimate wave photo when the tide's coming in.
- Catch a Steam Train -If you have a passion for steam trains, then a return trip on the Outeniqua Choo-Tjoe between Knysna and George will be on top of your list. If you're not, it's still worth considering the trip (though perhaps only one way) as the views are spectacular.
- Go Fishing - The fishing is excellent in Knysna but first you need to buy yourself a fishing permit at the at the Knysna Post Office (corner Main and Montagu streets). Try fishing from the jetty in the Knysna Lagoon or in the surf off the rocks at Brenton-on-Sea or Buffalo Bay. If you want some beer to help, Knysna's local brewery, Mitchell's, offers tastings of its beers (08h00 to 17h00 weekdays and 09h00 to 13h00 Saturdays). Phone 044-382-4685.