Where to Eat in Knysna: The Best Restaurants and Bars

July 23, 2017 Mikaela Didonna

Knysna stands out on South Africa's famed Garden Route thanks to the sandstone cliffs that dramatically separate its tranquil lagoon from the pounding surf of the Indian Ocean. It's also home to the country's largest indigenous forest. Hop aboard a ferry for a ride through the scenic highlights. The Millwood Mines at Jubilee Creek, site of a major gold rush in 1885, provide a picturesque spot for a picnic. Be sure to try some local oysters during the renowned annual festival.
Things to do in Knysna

1. Chatters Bistro

9a Grey Street, Knysna 6571, South Africa Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Credit Cards Italian, Pizza, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner HK$39 - HK$118 +27 44 382 0203
Excellent
61%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 631 reviews

Chatters Bistro

Chatters is famous for thin-n-crispy, made-to-order pizzas, a great wine list and home-made desserts. Owner-run, with a casual feel and friendly service style. Outside garden area for warm summer evenings and an inside area with a wood-burning stove, or an enclosed patio for the cooler winter evenings. Extensive wine list available (corkage not permitted and no license for take-away alcohol). Please book to avoid disappointment.

Reviewed By Merle F - South Africa

Ordered takeaway pizzas and can honestly say I think they are the best pizzas in Knysna. All fresh ingredients and so tasty. Thank you Rob for the excellent service.

2. The Olive Tree

21 Main Street | Woodmill Lane Shopping Centre, Knysna 6571, South Africa Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar European, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Dinner, Late Night +27 44 382 5867
Excellent
72%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

The Olive Tree

Olive Tree Restaurant Trading hours; Dinners only, Monday to Saturdays in Season> from 6.30pm till kitchen close at 9pm.

Reviewed By Lynda H

My husband and I had dinner here last week and the food was very good. You are greeted like a long lost friend, the menu is explained to you from a blackboard in great detail and the wine was from a local vineyard.
Very buzzy atmosphere, booking essential. Would recommend and will be going back.

3. Anchorage Restaurant

11 Gray Street, Knysna 6571, South Africa Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Seafood, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Late Night +27 44 382 2230
Excellent
61%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 815 reviews

Anchorage Restaurant

Reviewed By polartravel - Hamburg, Germany

One of the best restaurants in Knysna - Anchorage is a lovely place, has been around a long time, and is very welcoming. Great seafood, but steaks, ostrich and kudu are nice as well. Very friendly service, some good wines, and reasonable prices. Don't be in a rush, the food can take some time, but it is well worth the wait. Early Reservations recommended.

4. East Head Cafe

25 George Rex Drive, Knysna 6571, South Africa Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Discover, Parking Available, Full Bar, Accepts Credit Cards Contemporary, Cafe, Seafood, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Breakfast, Lunch, Brunch HK$24 - HK$94 +27 44 384 0933
Excellent
74%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 2 reviews

East Head Cafe

Great cafe with delicious food in a great setting - sit on the Terrace overlooking the beautiful Knysna Heads. Only open for breakfast and lunch from 08h00 to 15h30.

Reviewed By MyGeld - Paarl, South Africa

This restaurant compliments their perfect view! Best fish & chips ever with perfect selfmade tartare sauce. Friendly swift service which is often a problem in popular coastal eateries on a perfect day. Go early, it is very popular with locals and tourists alike and they don't take bookings. Also a great spot for scones and tea. We had lunch which went down well with an ice cold beer after a long hike. Definately go again when in the area!

5. Pembreys

Brenton Road | Belvidere, Knysna 6571, South Africa Parking Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff, Free Off-Street Parking, Serves Alcohol, Wine and Beer, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Credit Cards European, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Dinner, Late Night +27 44 386 0005
Excellent
75%
Good
18%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 435 reviews

Pembreys

Bistro, casual country cooking including South African dishes.

Reviewed By Jellybean29923 - Glasgow, Scotland

Recommended by out hotel and glad we visited. Food was fantastic, service was friendly and the wine was flowing. Great night, great food, great chat - would highly recommend. Very busy so worth making a reservation in advance.Thank you!!!!! Viv and Pete

6. Kilzer's Kitchen

No 3 Roos Bolton Crescent | Knysna Heights, Knysna 6571, South Africa Parking Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff, Street Parking, Free Off-Street Parking, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Digital Payments, Outdoor Seating, Accepts Credit Cards Contemporary, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Dinner, Late Night HK$2,315 +27 82 572 7986
Excellent
88%
Good
11%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 152 reviews

Kilzer's Kitchen

Type of Cuisine - South African Part of Kilzers Kitchen Cookery School - this restaurant operates on Wednesday evenings only for the public. The format is basically as follows : Our guests 19:00 in the evening - bringing along their own wife and their own wine ....no corkage charges at all ( for the wife or the wine ). These dinners are hosted weekly ( Wednesdays) from the beginning of November - end of April annually. Upon arrival guests are welcomed by our waiters ( as we are frantically busy in the kitchen )--- and given appetizers to nibble on, as well as a "welcome drink" - at present our flavour of the Month - a home made Limoncello - to warm them up on a cold Winter's evening, or cool them down on a hot summer's evening. At approximately 7:30 for 7:45 we welcome all our guests to the open-plan kitchen, where we give them a complete run-down re: the dinner for the evening. Starters & main courses are prepared in full view of the guests as they congregate around the kitchen area, along with our famous joke telling - a bit of "Kitchen Theatre". After this guests return to their individual tables, ( laid up as per customer reservation ), and the meal commences with a starter, followed by main course ,dessert, coffee/ tea and biscuits to end the meal. Everything edible is prepared in our kitchen - including the apperitif, as already mentioned. All in all, it is an evening celebrating food, more food, fun, and of course, the guest's own choice of wines - which are sometimes dodgy, other times magnificent - all depending on individual taste. The atmosphere is a party atmosphere, and the noise level is generally high and festive.........Enjoyment of the evening is up to you. We would love to welcome you and look forward to a visit from you and whoever you wish to bring along.............wife, lover, mother- in- law............. We cater for any special requests, e.g vegetarians, gluten intolerant or any other food allergies. Please advise beforehand.

Reviewed By malcandkaren - Bucks uk

Once again a stunning display of culinary excellence from Jenny and Albin. They are masters of their craft. Everything is %. Stunning food. These guys have endured personal problems following the tragic fire that destroyed their house last year. But they are indomitable!!! Last night the “no shows” should have been ashamed of themselves- there would be a queue!!!! Nearly everyone there had been before and the reviews say it all. If this was a full restaurant there is no doubt it would be #1 on TA. Keep recycling those jokes Jen!

7. Le MAQUIS

14B Gray Street, Knysna 6520, South Africa (Formerly Die Gieter's Cathy & Remy Restaurant) Parking Available, Validated Parking, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Discover, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff, Street Parking, Accepts Credit Cards French, Mediterranean, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Dinner HK$24 - HK$157 +27 82 257 7852
Excellent
74%
Good
16%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
3%
Terrible
3%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 447 reviews

Le MAQUIS

In the Heart of Knysna, enjoy French Cuisine by French Chefs in a cosy, relaxed but intimate place. Only 30 seats, so booking is essential NB : Our liquor licence is in process, so please bring your own wines

Reviewed By polartravel - Hamburg, Germany

We had lovely dinners with Cathy and Remy when they were still in their old place at the Phantom Pass road so had high expectations. Their restaurant is now called Le Maquis, located in the middle of town on Gray Street. Not a great location, but the rather stylish decor made up for it. A warm welcome by Cathy as always, and the same French-inspired menu. They are still not licensed, so you have to bring your own wine - that's fine, but then there should be no corkage fee. The food was good as always (allow at least an hour - or longer - for the mains to be served), but the service was really poor. Very inexperienced waiters, not trained at all. Given the overall experience prices were too high. We left somewhat disappointed... the evening could have been so much better

8. Montecello

Main Road, Sedgefield, Knysna 6573, South Africa Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Steakhouse, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Dinner, Late Night +27 44 343 1780
Excellent
58%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 271 reviews

Montecello

Reviewed By Stephen V - Cape Town

Another pleasant evening at this unpretentious little establishment that has become somewhat of a legend in the area.
Service from friendly and efficient staff was acceptable and the fish dishes we had were well prepared and tasty. Small but decent wine list - a nominal corkage fee is charged if you BYO wine.
Recommended

9. Freshline Fisheries

Railway Siding Dockyard | Behind Tait Marine on way to Thesen Islands, Knysna 6570, South Africa Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Free Off-Street Parking, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa Seafood, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner HK$16 - HK$157 +27 44 382 3131
Excellent
68%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Freshline Fisheries

The most unique and affordable seafood restaurant in Knysna with one of the tastiest, fresh seafood menus in the Garden Route. You can choose exactly what style meal you want e.g. rice, salad or chips with your fish, prepared the way you like it: Grilled,Fried or Wes-Kus style. Not licensed so bring your own drinks (BYO) beer, wine etc. No Corkage :)

Reviewed By smaatje - Maastricht, The Netherlands

Expecting a bit more of this highly rated place. The menu is what you can expect of a fish place, comparable to the big chains in Cape town.
The service was bad. Slow and little rude waiter.
The fish we had lacked flavor. The king prawns were nice.
Please note that they do not have an alcohol license so bring your own if you like a glass of wine/beer.

10. Tottie's Farm Kitchen

Rheenendal Road, Knysna 6570, South Africa Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Buffet, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Validated Parking, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Healthy, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Breakfast, Lunch, Brunch +27 44 389 0092
Excellent
68%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 241 reviews

Tottie's Farm Kitchen

Reviewed By billy b - port elizabeth south africa

well .what an experience ,a must . the decor is from the past and informal. the setting outside also excellent .the staff are all locals and very friendly . the portions are substantial and delicious . the pickle fish a must. well priced and they are licensed for wine etc

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