Outdoor Activities in the Eastern Cape
Outdoor Activities in South Africa
There are few countries in the world to rival South Africa when it comes to outdoor activities. The country has everything from rugged mountains to endless desert plains, rushing rivers and crashing waves, big five reserves and wetlands, lush forests and fynbos-covered hills that beg to be explored.
Large numbers of farms are now focusing on eco-tourism activities and the low population density, history of conservation and vast areas of inhospitable terrain has resulted in extensive areas of pristine, protected wilderness, where adventurous types can escape and sleep out under the stars.
The extensive coastline, with the cold Atlantic Ocean to the west and warm Indian Ocean to the east, is a haven for watersports enthusiasts. Scuba divers and snorkellers can enjoy tropical diving on some of the world’s most southerly coral reefs, while adrenalin junkies can get up close and personal with fearsome apex predators – including, from the safety of a cage - great white sharks.
Sea kayakers can marvel at the spectacular coastal landscapes in the company of whales, dolphins and seals, while the many rivers offer rafting from mild to wild. Kayakers can take guided tours of hippo- and crocodile-infested lakes and fly-fishermen can enjoy the grand mountain symphony being played around them as they cast into the many well-stocked rivers, dams and lakes.
Hiking, mountain-bike and 4x4 trails criss-cross the country, giving access to treasures such as rock art or to otherwise inaccessible beaches, mountain peaks and rivers. And it’s so easy to get away from it all here, even if you can’t leave town. All the cities have wonderful day walks and mountain-bike and 4x4 parks, where you can get some fresh air, grind your gears or improve your skills.
The sunny climate is ideal for enjoying the outdoors and while parts of the country suffer climatic extremes, the weather is predictable – so activity plans are rarely scuppered. Best of all, while the outdoor industry is well regulated, there is little of the nanny-state mentality you find elsewhere. In South Africa, the prevailing attitude is one of individual responsibility. There are few restrictions and even fewer crowds; permits and guides are easy to come by and if you want to go out and do your own thing, no-one is going to stop you.
Indeed there’s no room for any excuse, so get out there now!
Articles & Blogs
Swim for Rivers12:16pm 17 Dec
Pics courtesy Swim for Rivers
Main pic above: The start at St Francis Bay Marina, from L to R: Vuyo Zondani (NSRI Waterwise Academy), Mandy Uys, Joy Roach, Nicky van Nierop and Andrew Chin - with NSRI Waterwise and NSRI St Francis crew.
Five intrepid open water swimmers have conquered seven of the estuaries in the Eastern Cape to raise awareness around the poor state of our country’s rivers and to highlight the urgent need to restore them. The athletes set off from the mouth of the Kromme Rivier in St Francis Bay on Saturday 14 October and completed their...
Summer Sport in St Francis9:55am 19 Dec
We recently had the good fortune to meet Esti Stewart, of www.stfrancisvillagenews.com and as you would imagine, she was full of fantastic ideas of things to do in and around her little piece of heaven in the Eastern Cape. We knew we had to share her tips with our readers, and so she’ll be guest blogging for us! The first thing you should check out, if there’s any chance that you’ll be in the area, is the St Francis Sport Summer Series.
Summer Sport in St Francis ...