Arniston is a small seaside settlement in the Overberg region on the Cape South coast, close to Cape Agulhas, the southernmost tip of Africa. Prior to the loss of the Arniston, it was known as Waenhuiskrans, an Afrikaans name meaning literally "Wagon house cliff", after a local sea cave large enough to accommodate a wagon and a span of oxen.
At first only a fishing community, Arniston has become a holiday destination and its hinterland a region for viticulture. The fishing village, characterized by its lime-washed and thatched houses, remains unspoiled and has been declared a national monument in its entirety. Fishermen still go to sea in boats of the style that would have been familiar to locals in the early nineteenth century, although now under contract to larger commercial enterprises. Whale watching is a popular tourist activity. The Arniston Hotel is a popular tourist destination that looks out over the ocean. The closest major town is Bredasdorp, 24 kilometres (15 mi) to the north. The Overberg Test Range is situated adjacent to the town.