Often overlooked by travellers to South Africa in favour of Cape Town, the Winelands and the Kruger, the Eastern Cape with its combination of culture, coastline and wildlife is well worth taking some time to explore. Here are just a few reasons why we think you should visit the Eastern Cape on your next holiday to South Africa.
1. The wildlife
The Eastern Cape boasts a wealth of flora and fauna, including the "Big Five" (elephant, lion, leopard, rhino and buffalo), in a malaria free environment. Important conservation areas include the Mountain Zebra National Park and the famous Addo Elephant Park and the Eastern Cape Game Reserves include an outstanding selection of private concessions and award winning private game reserves and lodges. The coastal waters are also rich in marine life, with abundant dolphins and the occasional whale spotted from the beaches.
2. The beaches
The Eastern Cape is home to some of the best beaches in all of South Africa. Its stretch of beaches includes a section with around 800km of untouched and pristine coastline complete with breathtaking sand dunes, ocean views and natural scenery. For those who are a little tired of popular Durban and Cape Town beaches, the Eastern Cape offers several alternative options which make your trips to the beach that much more relaxing. Some of the most impressive beaches include Donkin Heritage Trail and Beaches, Jeffreys Bay, Nahoon Beach and Port Alfred.
3. The history
The Eastern Cape is a veritable treasure trove for those interested in history. The area where Port Elizabeth sits today for example is the site where the famous 1820’s British settlers first set foot on South African soil. That city is brimming with stories of the settlers, from the interesting museums and old colonial buildings in the city centre, to the Donkin Heritage Trail. More recently, the Transkei area was a designated ‘Bantustan’ during the Apartheid era and is the birthplace of many of South Africa’s most influential political activists such as Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo.
4. The surf
The Eastern Cape is home to some of the finest and most beautiful surfing beaches in the world. Jeffreys Bay is, undoubtedly, the Eastern Cape’s gem in terms of surfing. In fact, this is a world-renowned stretch for some of the finest surfing available. It is no wonder that it hosts one of the legs of the annual Billabong Pro™ surf event, in which the planet’s top surfers compete for the title.
5. The National Arts Festival
The National Arts Festival is an important event on the South African cultural calendar, and the biggest annual celebration of the arts on the African continent. Starting at the end of June/beginning of July, it runs for 11 days and is held in the small university city of Grahamstown, which is a 90 minute drive from Port Elizabeth.
If our blog has got you interested in visiting the Eastern Cape on your next holiday to South Africa then get in touch with our experts by calling 020 7843 3500 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
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