Wild Coast Travel Guide

 

Description

The Wild Coast is a really great destination. Protected for years by limited road access, this area offers a combination of rural tranquillity, traditional African lifestyles and architecture, almost unbelievable scenery and fascinating flora and fauna with the opportunity to have a great beach holiday.

Hotels are spread out along the coast in the small settlements, almost all of which have their own road down from the N2 - so it's not easy moving from one coastal spot to the next. This is a bit of a problem, but the planned 'solution' may be even worse. A planned coastal highway would, admittedly, make it easier to get around for both tourists and those few locals who can afford cars but the main advantage would be that it would make it so much easier to transport the heavy metals that multinational corporations are just itching to mine in the to date untouched coastal dunes. So - our vote is we put up with somewhat tricky road access.

As for the hotels - some are great, some a little run down, but all offer fantastic views and, invariably, excellent and plentiful seafood. This is a wonderful family holiday destination and almost all the hotels have family rooms, babysitting services, children's programmes and children's meals. There is so much to do here and so many new friends to be made that most children are quite reluctant to leave at the end of the holiday, and many local families book their next year's accommodation as they leave for home.

Although the coastal hotels are wonderful, probably the best way of experiencing this area is to spend some time with the local people. There is a fantastic community project on the northern Wild Coast, which offers horse riding, hiking, canoeing and fishing from a beautiful tented camp overlooking a turquoise-blue lagoon. Here you can chat with the local people, learn how they live and go fishing with them, or foraging for wild foodstuffs. Or, of course, you can just lie around relaxing in beautiful surroundings.

The vegetation of this area is rather unique, as many of the biomes of South Africa come together here, so you will find some unusual plants in what botanists call the Pondoland Centre of Endemism.

The Wild Coast is renowned for its fantastic surfing and excellent fishing. There is potential for good diving but the conditions are not consistent and there is very little infrastructure. This all changes in July, though, when itinerant dive operators move into the area to take advantage of the sardine run, which is the greatest migration on earth, in terms of biomass.

The Wild Coast has long been a favourite hiking destination but the huts fell into disrepair in the 1980s and haven't been rebuilt. But - and this is a good but - you can hike between hotels. Now that's a win-win. You don't have to carry sleeping bags or food. You can even organise to get your luggage driven round for you and take only a day pack. That's styling.
Towns on the Wild Coast include the laid back Coffee Bay, the rather bustling Port St Johns and, right at its northern extremity, Port Edward.

In and Around

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Accommodation near Wild Coast

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

from R1640
1 night, 2 adults

Crawfords Beach Lodge

Sleeps 88 Chintsa Lodge in Chintsa

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

from R1300
1 night, 2 adults

Traills End

Sleeps 8 Chintsa Self-catering in Chintsa

Situated in Chintsa East - formerly Cintsa East about 40km north of East London. Considered to be th...

from R550
1 night, 2 adults

Benmore Lodge

Sleeps 36 Kei Mouth Self-catering in Kei Mouth

from R770
1 night, 2 adults

Areena Riverside Resort & Private Game Reserve

Sleeps 88 Chintsa Self-catering in Chintsa

Areena specializes in providing prime caravan and camp sites, as well as luxury cottages, conference...

from R1700
1 night, 2 adults

Ocean View Hotel

Sleeps 88 Coffee Bay Hotel in Coffee Bay

Nestled virtually on the beach in a small magnificent bay between great towering cliffs and the spar...

from R590
1 night, 2 adults

Glass House Guest Lodge

Sleeps 18 Port St Johns Guest House in Port St Johns

Glass House Guest Lodge is the ideal place for business travellers looking for overnight accommodati...

from R1420
1 night, 2 adults

Kob Inn

Sleeps 88 Qora River Mouth Resort in Qora River Mouth

Kob Inn is a family resort on the Wild Coast in Eastern Cape. It offers a perfect mixture of Wild C...

from R300
1 night, 2 adults

Gecko's Place

Sleeps 32 Port St Johns Self-catering in Port St Johns

At the very end of Agate Terrace, surrounded by virgin forests, unspoilt mountains and beautiful bea...

from R1570
1 night, 2 adults

Hole in the Wall Accommodation Unit H1

Sleeps 8 Hole in the Wall Self-catering in Hole in the Wall

Hole in the Wall Accommodation Unit H1 is located in the secluded tropical bay in the heart of the W...

Wild Coast Hiking Trail
Bashee Point Sunrise

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