Eastern Cape Travel Guide

Description

The Eastern Cape is South Africa's second largest and most diverse province. It's a great sun, sand and sea destination with a coastline that runs from temperate rocky shores in the south to sub-tropical beaches in the north. There is a beach for every reason - from highly developed urban playgrounds to wild and untamed stretches of wave-washed sand. It has some of the best surf in the country - make that some of the best surf in the world. The small towns of Jeffreys Bay and St Francis Bay are renowned and very popular surf destinations and the Wild Coast has some legendary (and mostly secret) breaks.

The Eastern Cape is not classic lowveld, which is the vegetation type found around the Kruger National Park and is most usually associated with big game. However, this province has some awesome safari destinations. The Greater Addo Elephant National Park, near the town of Addo, conserves a staggering diversity of plant and animal life. There are a number of private game lodges, both in the national park and in surrounding private reserves. Best of all - it's totally malaria-free. South Africa's first and - to date - only serious commercial ski resort is in the high-lying northern part of the Eastern Cape. OK, it's not exactly Chamonix or Aspen - but it is skiing in Africa. Snowboarding's big, too.

The Eastern Cape's cultural heritage is particularly varied and interesting, and there are so many interpretive tours, museums and monuments, you'll never be bored. Towns that will particularly appeal to more culturally minded visitors include Graaff-Reinet and Grahamstown.

Nieu Bethesda, which is close to Graaff-Reinet, is a funky little village that owes its popularity to the existence of the Owl House, which is South Africa's most well known example of outsider art. Port Elizabeth is renowned for its excellent township and cultural tours. The Nelson Mandela Museum in Umtata is a loving tribute to South Africa's first president. There are great tours along the Wild Coast, on which you get to spend time with the local people and see how they live. The Grahamstown Festival or, more accurately, the National Festival of the Arts, which showcases a huge variety of South Africa's visual and performance arts, is held in Grahamstown at the beginning of July.

There are some excellent golf courses, but they're not all as conveniently close together as they are, for example, on the Garden Route. Some of the better courses are to be found in or near Port Elizabeth, Port Alfred, East London and Port Edward. A brand new golf course has been built at the rather interesting town of Alicedale, which is experiencing a huge economic revival after spending years as a virtual ghost town.

In and Around

Nearby Locations
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Featured Destinations
 

Accommodation near Eastern Cape

*Distances are shown as the crow flies and not necessarily the actual travelling distance.

from R1,610
1 night, 2 adults

Morgan Bay Hotel

Sleeps 63 Morgan Bay Hotel in Morgan Bay

Enjoy all that the magnificent Wild Coast has to offer at the Morgan Bay Hotel. Nestled between a mi...

Tsitsikamma Village Inn
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20%
from R880
1 night, 2 adults

Tsitsikamma Village Inn

Sleeps 132 Stormsriver Village Hotel in Stormsriver Village

This magical hotel is located in the quaint village of Storms River and was originally established i...

from R300
1 night, 2 adults

Avoca River Cabins

Sleeps 77 Sunland Self-catering in Sunland

In the beautiful citrus and rose growing area of the Sundays River Valley, 25 minutes from the Addo ...

from R1,000
1 night, 2 adults

Kingfisher Lodge

Sleeps 21 Graaff-Reinet Guest House in Graaff-Reinet

Kingfisher Lodge is situated on the banks of the Sunday's River in a peaceful and quiet area of Graa...

Crawford's Beach Lodge
Special
Deal
from R1,640
1 night, 2 adults

Crawford's Beach Lodge

Sleeps 48 Chintsa Lodge in Chintsa

High dunes, unspoilt beaches, all the advantages of the Wild Coast in an exclusive setting, only 40 ...

from R600
1 night, 2 adults

Parrot Peek Inn

Sleeps 14 Beacon Bay Self-catering in Beacon Bay

Friendly and affordable owner-managed 3 Star accommodation that comprises five en-suite units with p...

from R740
1 night, 2 adults

Storms River Guest Lodge

Sleeps 39 Stormsriver Village Bed and Breakfast in Stormsriver Village

Storms River Guest Lodge is located in the peaceful village of Storms River, in the heart of the Tsi...

from R625
1 night, 2 adults

Thornycroft Lodge

Sleeps 60 Horseshoe Valley Backpacker in Horseshoe Valley

We are located in the country side on the banks of the Nahoon River, 5km from the N2 Amalinda exit. ...

from R550
1 night, 2 adults

Maple Grove

Sleeps 10 Hogsback Self-catering in Hogsback

Restore peace and tranquility to your mind, body, and soul at Maple Grove. Situated in Upper Hogsba...

from R500
1 night, 2 adults

Beau & I

Sleeps 12 Graaff-Reinet Bed and Breakfast in Graaff-Reinet

Situated in the heart of Graaff-Reinet, we are within walking distance of shops, restaurants, museum...

Addo Elephant
Port Elizabeth Beach
Beach Horse Riding