Kouga is largely a suburban area, with three main topographical regions:
The coastal region stretches from the Tsitsikamma River in the west to the Van Stadens River in the east. This zone includes the towns of Oyster Bay, St Francis Bay and Port St Francis, Cape St Francis, Jeffreys Bay and the Gamtoos River Mouth. The coast serves as a major tourism attraction.
The Gamtoos River Valley is characterised by wide, fertile flood plains associated with low-lying land. Steep and less-fertile slopes flank the Valley. The towns of Patensie Hankey, Loerie and Thornhill are focal points of this high-potential agricultural region.
The Humansdorp area, including Kruisfontein, is characterised by moderate slopes in the south, with steeper slopes towards the north and north-west.
The four main rivers in the area – the Kromme, Seekoei, Kabeljouws and Gamtoos – are tidal rivers. The Kromme River and Gamtoos River are significant sources of water supply. Ground water is another major component of domestic water supply. Aquifers are also utilised in the agricultural sector for irrigation. There are numerous areas of wetland adjacent to the region’s rivers and on the coastal platform.
These wetlands are extremely sensitive to disturbances such as agricultural activities and development. The wetlands accommodate high species diversity and fulfil natural water purification and flood retention roles. The climate of the Kouga region is subtropical, which makes the area conducive to a range of outdoor activities and various types of agricultural production.
Rainfall varies between 650 mm per year (St Francis Bay area) to 400 mm (Gamtoos River Valley). The area is generally described as windy.