Kidds Beach, named after a former King William's Town mayor, Charles Kidd, is a tranquil seaside holiday village situated on the Mcantsi River about 28 kilometres from East London.
On a rocky stretch of Indian Ocean coastline, it’s a great holiday destination for those who like to be plunged into the elements. Endless beaches of white sand, boulders and breakers can turn from sombre or hectic to bright and peaceful as the weather strolls through sun, cloud, gusting wind and windless basking delight.
With safe swimming for children at the beach, lagoon and tidal pools, wave after wave for surfers, and indigenous flora that supports excellent birdlife, Kidds Beach lures everyone into the rhythms of nature. The nearby Shelly Beach, Fullers Bay and Peter Pan Bay have tranquil waters and great views, while the sandstone headland of Cove Rock is a natural wonder.
It is known to the Xhosa as Gompo, and is a place of historical and spiritual importance, commanding an eerie, respectful reverence.
Kidds Beach is not a shopping mecca (neighbouring East London fulfils this requirement), but the local stores and little restaurants provide adequately for visitors, and there is a range of accommodation, including camping and caravanning.
With great swimming, shelling and wonderful walks exploring reefs and inlets, a holiday in Kidd’s Beach is likely to leave you tanned and happy, after a memorable immersion in timeless nature.
Look out for
The 3 424-hectare East London Coast Nature Reserve conserves half of the coastline between the Great Kei River in the north-east and the Tylomnqa Rivers in the south-west. It has 10 coastal reserves, including Chintsa West, Kwelera, Nahoon, Kidds Beach, and Chalumna, as well as the Umtiza and Fort Pato Forests along the northern banks of the Buffalo River.
Birding enthusiasts will be pleasantly surprised at the number and variety of birds to be found in the indigenous flora of the surrounding hills.
With the Mcantsi River emptying itself into the lagoon at Kidds Beach, fishing opportunities abound and this is a popular spot for anglers.
From May through to August, whales can be spotted offshore. Between May and July, dolphins, game fish, sharks and sea birds follow the annual Sardine Run, an event that generates excitement among locals and visitors alike as they catch the little silvery fish that wash up on the shore.