Things to do near
*Distances are shown as the crow flies and not necessarily the actual travelling
Gonubie (0.7 km from Rainbow Valley)
Beach walk on the wild side – tread the sandy routes and rocky footpaths of the Khoikhoi and shipwreck castaways.
The five-day Strandloper Trail treats hikers to a subtropical carefree meander through incredibly scenic rocky shores, sandy beaches, grasslands and coastal scrubland. Starting at the Strandloper Ecotourism Centre at Cape Morgan, the southbound paths eventually reach Gonubie on the last day.
Endless wave-washed seascapes, interesting tidal pools, unspoiled river estuaries, cool forests and golden sand dunes characterise this varied route. Some sections of the trail offer lovely snorkelling in the gullies.
Hungry hikers can grab a hearty pub meal and drink at various hotels and pubs along the way. Overnight huts all have ablution facilities. There are also braai facilities with the exception of the Cape Henderson hut where no fires are allowed.
+27 (0) 43 841 1046
Gonubie (1 km from Rainbow Valley)
One of South Africa's Blue Flag beaches, Gonubie Beach is one of the best secrets of the Sunshine Coast. Access to this beach is along a raised boardwalk leading down to a beautiful tidal pool. The boardwalk is a fantastic lookout spot for watching dolphins and whales as well as surfers and windsurfers.
Gonubie Lagoon is popular with families, providing kids with many hours of fascinating exploration as they discover small fish, shells and other marine creatures.
Situated only 8 km from East London, the coastal village of Gonubie is considered to be a suburb of the city. But the chilled vibe and awesome scenery of Gonubie belies this. Lying on the estuary of the Gonubie River and enjoying a wonderful climate, Gonubie is a small piece of paradise on the Eastern Cape Coast.
Gonubie (4.6 km from Rainbow Valley)
A great place for the family and the thrill seekers! This resort has a nice restaurant, amazing zip cord rides, quad biking, abseiling, canoe trails, paintball, archery, pellet pun shooting, microlight flights and boat cruises for the romantic.
Day visitors are welcome. The rates are reasonable and there is entertainment for all ages.
Kwelera (4.8 km from Rainbow Valley)
Yellow Sands Beach looks out over the picturesque Kwelera River mouth and rocky point on the Wild Coast. Surfers can often be seen riding this popular break. Yellow Sands offers safe swimming, excellent river and surf fishing opportunities and ample solitude for relaxation.
There’s a fun fishing spot just below the raised parking area. Ski boats also launch from this point. It’s also fantastic for bird watching, long walks on the beach and paddling across the river.
Glengarriff (7.1 km from Rainbow Valley)
Glengarriff Beach is a relatively unknown, unspoilt part of the Wild Coast, and only 30 kilometres from East London. The white sandy beach stretches for many miles and has a beautiful lagoon safe for swimming and paddling in. The beach is suitable for surfing, fishing, scuba diving and kite surfing.
Glengarriff (7.7 km from Rainbow Valley)
Glen Eden is renowned for its safe swimming beach, stunning river mouth, rock pools and long beach walks. A short stroll from the parking lot will get you to the beach, favoured as one of the best sites for tranquil sundowners.
Bonza Bay (9.6 km from Rainbow Valley)
Not only is Bonza Bay Beach pristine and stunningly beautiful, it has really great rock and surf fishing spots. A tidal river runs to it!
Beacon Bay (10 km from Rainbow Valley)
Lively local market offering organic produce from local farmers and producers.
Opening times: Tues-Fri 8am-3:30pm Sat 7:30am-1pm Sun & public holidays 8am-1pm
Not open Mondays.
Chintsa (10.9 km from Rainbow Valley)
Home to rare white lions and the Big Five, Inkwenkwezi Private Game Reserve offers a delightful safari experience in the malaria-free Eastern Cape.
Inkwenkwezi, the Xhosa word for 'under the stars', offers an unforgettable wilderness adventure with amazing options such as elephant-back walks, hiking, horseback and quad-bike trails guided by experienced rangers as well as stunning beaches to explore.
Along with lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo and elephant, the reserve has cheetah, numerous antelope, giraffe, zebra, other predators and prolific birdlife.
Inkwenkwezi is also popular with couples wanting to tie the knot in a romantic but easily accessible game reserve. It’s just a five-minute drive from awesome beaches and a 40-minute drive from East London Airport. Getting there by car is easy as the roads are tarred right to the entrance gates.
Beacon Bay (11.7 km from Rainbow Valley)
This up market night club widely regarded as one of the top venues in East London. Ccatering for the youngsters on friday nights and over 30's on a saturday nights. The dance floor and lighting is stunning and the music is totally awesome.Numbers Dance Club has introduced numerous original concept parties and music theme nights in addition to bringing many top local and international DJs, radio presenters, music groups, comedians and cabaret shows to East London. If you want to enjoy all the best events in a safe environment, Numbers Dance Club is the place to be.
Nahoon (11.8 km from Rainbow Valley)
Nahoon Beach is part of the pristine Buffalo City coastline that encompasses secluded beaches and an estuary offering mild to wild experiences. Perfect for simply soaking up the sun or extreme big wave surfing, kite surfing, short hikes and fly fishing in the estuary.
Join the team at Jonginenge Eco Education, or call a surf school and learn to catch the waves at this legendary spot.
Nahoon (12.3 km from Rainbow Valley)
This easy trail in the Nahoon Estuary Nature Reserve is a fantastic walk for families. The Dassie Trail starts at the Visitor Centre and wanders through forest to an open area of mud flats fringed with mangrove trees. Most of the trail is on a boardwalk with information boards and tree labels adding to the experience. Keen birders should keep an eye open for the Narina Trogon.
Nahoon Estuary Nature Reserve is open on weekdays from 09:00 – 16:00. Entrance is free.
Duration: 1 hour
Difficulty: Very easy
Distance: 2 km
Nahoon (13.3 km from Rainbow Valley)
Send your kids to Jonginenge Eco Adventures for an action-packed day while you take a much-needed break.
The Jonginenge team will keep the children busy with exciting activities at Nahoon Beach. Trained lifeguards give surfing lessons and provide other beach-based action ranging from sand boarding to paddling, snorkeling to fishing and environmental appreciation.
083 305 2590 / 083 565 0514
Stirling (13.3 km from Rainbow Valley)
Set on fairways steeped in history, the top-rated East London Golf Course is regarded as a delightful playing experience on a course every golfer should play.
Many champions have walked the fairways and teed off in South Africa’s Championship Tournaments here. East London Golf Club hosted the SA Open six times and is a regular home for National and Regional Championships, Seniors and Nomads Tournaments.
East London Golf Club is one of the oldest and most established golf clubs in the country. The traditional course layout is set amongst undulating hills, dunes and coastal indigenous scrubland. It combines both links and parkland features.
A family of impala are resident on the course and you can soften spot Knysna loeries and many other species of birds.
Chintsa (13.6 km from Rainbow Valley)
The Wild Coast’s Chintsa Beach is a gorgeous sandy beach divided by a pristine river estuary. West of the estuary lies the smaller stretch of beach, the location of the renowned Buccaneers Lodge and Backpackers. Chintsa’s eastern side is a larger settlement of holiday and retirement homes.
There's an abundance of rock pools, great surfing and kite surfing spots along this 17 km stretch. The beach is safe for swimming beach and forms part of the Standloper Hiking Trail. It's a good beach to work on your fitness, or to simply to stroll and enjoy watching the whales and dolphins that occupy this lovely bay.