Riversdale is situated at the foot of the Sleeping Beauty Peak, close to the eastern end of the Lange Berg, on the bank of the Vet River, a branch of the Kaffirkuils River, that flows into the Indian Ocean at Stil Bay.
Riversdale was named after Harry Rivers, a local government official, and proclaimed in 1938.
Some people say you will smell Riversdale before you see it. This is because of the "Agathosma" shrubs that grow in the area. The smell is not unpleasant, more like that of a hospital, an antiseptic-like smell.
In the nearby Jurisch Park you will find a dam famous for several species of wild water-birds. Also in the Park you will find mesembryanthemums and the aloes are beautiful when they flower between May and June. The park has two sections, one caters for the exotic plants, while the other, the Van Riebeeck Garden, is for local flora.
Steam enthusiasts will enjoy looking at the Class Seven locomotive, mounted on a platform in Riversdale town, representing the first railway connection in 1903.
Wildlife enthusiasts should visit the Werner Frehse Nature Reserve. In the reserve you will see Eland, Bontebok, Gemsbok, and many other species.
Riversdale has a caravan park equipped with self-catering chalets and several hotels. The Louis Henri Meurant Tourist Camp was named after the writer of the first book in Afrikaans, published in 1861. In the book are two fictional characters, called Klaas Waarzegger and Jan Twyfelaar, and it dealt with the issue of should the eastern cape separate from the western cape.