Wild Coast Holidays

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Wild Coast Holidays

The Eastern Cape Wild Coast of South Africa offers peaceful, laid-back holidays away from the tourist hoards with enough footprint-free beaches, lazy lagoons, natural wonders and rocky headlands for everyone to enjoy. Accommodation ranges from camping, bed & breakfast and self-catering apartments to hotel luxury.

The Wild Coast originally encompassed the rural 'Transkei' region only, and stretched from the Kei River in the south to the Mthamvuma River, 250km to the north. Included in the Wild Coast region today, are the pretty seaside villages of the Jikeleza Route that run south along the coastline between the Kei River and East London.

The Transkei is so far off the beaten tourist track that it has remained relatively untouched and unspoilt. Apart from the larger towns of Port St Johns and Coffee Bay, most settlements north of the Kei River are made up of only a handful of fisherman's cottages, with accommodation in the form of a lone backpackers hostel or hotel.

Scenically, the Transkei is at its best on the coast, the roads to which lead through unforgettable scenery that offers interesting glimpses into the way of life of a people living in a manner totally different to that of those in Europe or America. It is a place of spirit and adventure; of rugged coastline rich in diversity and wilderness; of sweeping estuaries and beautiful sandy beaches broken by rocky headlands. Many of the rivers and villages here have names known only to the adventurous few who have been there.

The Wild Coast is well known for its magnificent hiking trails, including the legendary "Strandloper Trail", which begins near Kei Mouth and passes through Morgan Bay, Haga Haga and the Jikeleza Route villages, before terminating at Gonubie. Wrecks along this stretch of rugged coastline will stir the imagination and intrepid explorers will be thrilled by the pontoon adventure, as vehicles and passengers are ferried across the river at Kei Mouth. Famous landmarks include "the Gates" at Port St Johns, Hole in the Wall, Magwa Falls, Waterfall Bluff, the Jacaranda shipwreck, Nongqawuse's pools, the Morgan Bay cliffs and bead beach at Double Mouth, where it is thought the Santo Espirito floundered in 1608. It's the perfect place to do a little treasure hunting for Ming porcelain and Carnelian beads.

Witness a spectacular sight during the winter months, as shoals of sardines attract a frenzy of activity from gannets, seals, dolphins and predatory fish as they migrate up the Wild Coast. Vantage points along the coastline, such as the cliffs at Coffee Bay and Morgan Bay are great places to do some dolphin and whale watching. Humpback and Southern Right Whales migrate from the Antarctic to the shores of South Africa to calve and are often seen from these vantage points.

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