The shores along Algoa Bay, Port Elizabeth boast 40 km of magnificent golden beaches. A perfect combination of warm water, calm sea and fair breezes, prevailing offshore westerly breazes Algoa Bay is acknowledged as one of the best sailing venues in the world and a Mecca for all beach and water sport enthusiasts. Water temperatures vary between 18 and 21 degrees Celsius during summer and 14 to 19 degrees Celsius during winter. Swimming beaches are patrolled by fully trained professional lifeguards during the summer season, which means swimmers and sunbathers can safely enjoy their beach holiday.
South Africa is the first country outside of Europe to win Blue Flag accreditation for its beaches. The Blue Flag is an international award given only to those beaches that meet excellence in safety, amenities, cleanliness and environmental standards.
Port Elizabeth is South Africa’s premier beach holiday destination. Take a swim with the dolphins, explore underwater life, suntan on the shores, enjoy the many water sports and be romanced by the atmosphere Port Elizabeth has to offer.
Bluewater Bay Beach: Walk for miles on Golden Sands. Explore the adjacent river and delight in the magnificent sunsets while enjoying a sundowner with friends and family. The Bluewater Bay Life Saving Club provides the safety on the beach, but beware of dangerous big surf. Ample parking and ablution facilities. Bluewater Bay has a magnificent stretch of beach and in Summer, is patrolled by lifesavers. Other facilities include a car park, childrens playground and ablution facilities, and offers good swimming, fishing and surfing opportunities. The beach is accessed by traveling along the N2 towards Grahamstown and taking the Bluewater Bay turn-off, just past the Swartkops River.
Beachview: The view is breathtaking. This beach is part of the Beachview Resort. Lifeguards only during peak season and not recommended for safe bathing due to strong rip and backwash most of the time. Beachview is a 30 minute drive from the airport and 25 minutes from the city center. Beachview is known for its beautiful rock formations, gullies and pools. Bottlenose dolphins are the most frequently observed dolphins and can be spotted all year round. Common dolphins are often spotted from January to June as they follow large shoals of baitfish which move past the bay. Whale season begins in June when we see humpback whales moving along the coast as they head up the East coast of Africa towards their breeding grounds. Humpback whales can be seen in between June and early January, reaching peaks in July/August and again in November/December when they make their return journey, with calves in tow. Southern right whales can be seen from July to October as they enter the safety of the bay to give birth. Southern right whales are usually seen very close inshore they are the most frequently observed whales along the South African coast. We recommend a wildlife and whale watching cruise on Raggy Charter to provide you with a better chance of seeing the full array of marine wildlife Algoa Bay has to offer. The endangered Oyster Catcher and the Cape Clawless Otter frequent this area. The Cape Clawless Otter breeds in the fresh water system which enters the sea nearby.
Denville Beach: An often overlooked beach this spot is separated from Humewood beach by a small section of rocks and is alongside the famous McArthur Baths. If you want to try your hand at surfing for the first time this is a great beach for beginner surfers and is free of too many swimmers (unlike the surrounding beaches). Located across the road from the Dolphin’s Leap Centre and the famous Bayworld this beach might just offer you a little more space to spend your day in the sun.
Hobie Beach: Port Elizabeth’s most popular beach. Hobie Beach, located to the right of Shark Rock Pier, is usually the venue for the annual “Splash Festival”, beach volleyball, and for the world boardsailing championships. Professional lifeguards on duty and all facilities close by. Offers safe bathing and the low tide rock pools are a favorite to explore by all ages. Power and sail craft launching Area. The popular Hobie Beach, in the vicinity of the Shark Rock Pier and the Boardwalk, is the venue for the annual “Splash Festival”, as well as Beach Volleyball and World Sailing Championships. The beach, a favourite for swimming, sunbathing and body surfing, also offers sheltered rock pools with interesting inter-tidal sea life.
Humewood Beach: Port Elizabeth’s blue flag international Beach. Big enough to keep your eye permanently on toddlers. Professional lifeguards on duty. Young families favour this beach because of the shade supplied by the overhead promenade and the easy access to grassy lawns and shady trees of Happy Valley. Humewood Beach is South Africa’s oldest blue flag beach and situated between Kings Beach and Hobie Beach along the main beachfront. Adjacent to Happy Valley, the beach is ideal for families and offering sheltered sunbathing. During the summer holiday season, Happy Valley which is adjacent to Humewood Beach is lit up with coloured lights and depicts children’s stories and rhyme characters. Happy Valley also offers grassy areas which is ideal for picnics. The beach offers save swimming, rock pools, snorkeling, fishing and other water activities and is manned by life guards.
Kings Beach: One of the countries most famous and safest beaches. Boast 2km of white sands. Fence surf spot next to the harbour wall. Power craft launch area covers 300m of beach next to the launch road. Bathing areas in front of the Kings Beach Colibri Surf Lifesaving Club. McArthur’s Baths Pool Complex is situated along the Kings Beach Promenade. Voluntary lifesavers on duty at weekends during summer. Professionals during the week. Public toilets and change rooms facilities. Paddling pools, kiddies playgrounds and fresh water pools. Plenty of Parking and beautiful gardens set between lush green grass. King’s Beach boasts a magnificent 1.6 km wide expanse of golden sand extending from the harbour wall to Humewood. The beach is ideal for swimming, body surfing, sunbathing and long beach walks, and includes facilities such as supertubes for the adventurous, a snack bar, parking area, change-rooms and a lifesavers’ centre. Sunday’s come alive with the Beach Front Traders, skate boarding at the skate park and picnicking in the newly upgraded park.
Maitlands: If you feeling energetic, climb the dunes and take a run along the beach. No Facilities. Parking close to the bathing area, but take care and stay close within your depth. Maitland Beach is a huge beach in the outskirts of the Port Elizabeth metro with spectacular sand dunes, popular with sand boarders, and miles of sandy beach stretching away towards Jeffreys Bay. In the other direction the beach becomes rockier and is favoured by anglers and divers. The beach borders on Maitland Nature Reserve which comprises 250 hectares of indigenous forest offering three marked hiking trails of varying lengths. Maitland River Mouth is located at the foot of the famous Maitland dune “mountain”; sand-boarding is a favourite pastime while kilometers of sandy beach can be explored at leisure. The 250 hectare Maitland Nature Reserve, which is accessed via the Seaview Main Road to Maitland River Mouth, comprises dense indigenous coastal forest, abundant birdlife, an old wagon road which leads to Maitland lead mines, a variety of small animals such as bushbuck, and blue duiker as well as the famous giant Maitland sand dunes. The reserve offers three nature trails which provide easy access into the dense forest, namely; The Sir Peregrine Maitland Nature Trail which is a 3 km self-guided trail along the old wagon road; the De Stades Nature Trail which is 9 km long trail and provides magnificent view of St Francis Bay and Maitland dunes; and lastly the Igolomi Trial which is a 4km walk passing through some of the thickest sections of the dense forest.
New Brighton Beach: A small beach in front of the promenade. New Brighton Surf Lifesaving Club on duty over weekends. Rips and backwash. New Brighton Beach is a large unspoilt beach that is located just before Bluewater Bay. It has a promenade with cafeteria and children’s’ playground, change rooms, lifesavers’ tower, and offers good swimming and angling opportunities. The Beach is accessed by traveling along the N2 towards Grahamstown and taking the Brighton Beach turn-off, just past Deal Party.
Noordhoek: A private beach with safe bathing facilities is situated within the grounds of the Noordhoek Ski-Boat Club.
Nudist Beach: Park at the Parking area close to Noordhoek and walk along the coast toward the Cape Receife Nature Reserve – a natural hollow will be seen on your Left Hand Side opposite a lovely sandy inlet.
Pollock Beach: Bathing area is in front of the Summerstrand Surf Life Saving Club, who patrols the beach over weekends and public holidays and professional Lifeguards during peak season weekdays. Well known to the surfing community because of the excellent waves. Pollock Beach, or the “Pipe” as it is known locally, is favoured by surfers because of its excellent waves and surfing opportunities.
Sardinia Bay: Known locally as “Sards”. P.E.s most picturesque beach, but also one of the most dangerous for swimmers due to strong rip tides and backwash. This unspoilt stretch of our coastline is a magnificent sight and a very popular surfing beach. A favorite with dog and horse owners who bring their pets down for exercise and recreation. Picnic places and braai facilities are available, so pack a basket and spend a day relaxing with family and best friends. Sardinia Bay, which lies between Schoenmakerskop and Seaview, is accessed by traveling along Sardinia Bay Road. This popular beach has picnic facilities and is regarded as one of the best walking beaches with miles of unspoilt coastline. Fishing is not permitted as the coast has been declared a Marine Reserve, but snorkeling and scuba-diving are very popular. Sardinia Bay is also the starting point of the very popular eight-kilometer Sacramento hiking trail.
Secret Beach: One of the best kept secrets of Port Elizabeth. Park at the Noordhoek Parking area and walk along the coast toward the Cape Receife Nature Reserve – the wreck of the MV Patti is just past the Cape Receife Shooting Range and, at low tide, a wonderful warm pool lies just inshore of the wreck. One used to be able to access the beach via a gravel road – 4×4 needed – that would take you to directly above the beach and right next to the Cape Receife Shooting Range – the area is pretty secluded and the worry factor pretty high so we recommend that you go in a group and don’t leave valuables in your vehicle. See: http://mype.co.za/new/port-elizabeths-secret-beaches/10760/2012/01
Shelly Beach: One of three secluded beaches (the others are the Nudist Beach and Secrets) on Port Elizabeth’s ‘Wild Side’. Park at the Noordhoek gravel parking area on Marine Drive before the Noordhoek Ski-Boat Club and walk down the path to the left towards Cape Recife.
St. Georges Strand: Port Elizabeth’s most northern beach. Prepare for a long walk from the parking area to the dangerous surf. Lifeguards only on duty during peak seasons. St George’s Strand is accessed by traveling along the N2 towards Grahamstown and taking the St George’s Strand turn-off, opposite Wells Estate. Apart from offering good swimming opportunities, the area has some fine sand dunes, attractive picnic spots, a large children’s’ playground and a car park.
Wells Estate: Bathing areas close to the beach pier. Lifeguards only on duty during December month. Rip currents and backwash most of the time. Wells Estate is accessed by traveling along the N2 towards Grahamstown and taking the St George’s Strand turn-off, opposite St. Georges Strand. Apart from a large children’s’ playground including swimming pools and waterslides, Wells Estate offers good swimming opportunities on this blue flag beach, the area has some fine sand dunes, attractive picnic spots and Camping is available. The Wells Estate Pier (Jooste Park) has a length of 0.19 kilometres.
Van Stadens: Part of the Van Stadens River Mouth Resort, this beach is patrolled by lifeguards during the peak season only. Stay close inshore. Van Stadens Beach is at the mouth of the Van Stadens River and is managed by the Van Stadens River Mouth Resort. Van Stadens offers an extensive lagoon, tall dunes and a river navigable by small boats to the gorge. The beach forms part of the Van Stadens River Mouth Resort (including cottages and camping sites). Recreational activities incorporate pedal boats, sandskiing and fishing. Lifeguards patrol the beach during peak season. The Van Stadens Wild Flower Reserve is close by.
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