The Wild Coast
The wild coast is an almost unspoilt paradise, where everything is rural, simple and nearly overlooked by development. This is a rocky coastal area, with beautiful remote beaches, numerous rivers, waterfalls and pristine beaches, clear green open spaces, where you have a view of valleys as far as the eye can see. It is a place of untouched forests, rich culture and awesome adventure away from the crowds. The name wild coast is due to the many ship wrecks that have occurred on this part of the coast.
What to see and do
Traditional Xhosa and Pondo culture
The Wild Coast is still strongly rural. The Xhosa and Pondo poeple live in bright thatched mud-brick huts that dot the hills. Most live without electricity and running water and farm small vegetable patches. They keep cows, goats, sheep and pigs. Traditional customs involve ceremonies, drumming and dancing. Sangomas, or healers, prescribe herbal remedies.
Hiking in the Wild Coast is special. Walk where few footprints are made and even fewer are seen. Hike between remote beaches and camp out on the beach or in the forest. Follow cattlepaths along cliffs to waterfalls.
Nelson Mandela Museum
Nelson Mandela was born in Mvezo near Mthatha in 1918 and spent his childhood in the village of Qunu. The museum in Mthatha has a ‘Long Walk to Freedom’ exhibition that details Mandela’s life in his own words.
This village is cultural, fun and educational tourism at its best. A big chunk of the backpackers is owned by the villagers, and the activities are run by them. Modern technology, thankfully, completely failed to discover this village. There are no roads, no traffic –apart from the Transkei big five; goats, sheep, stray dogs, cows and pedestrians-, no electricity and very little has changed here in centuries. Mamas and young girls still walk around with babies on their backs and pales balanced on their heads, water still gets fetched from the river and the men still sit huddled by the kraal, discussing very important manly things.
Backpacker Accommodation in Bulungula
An idyllic beach destination bordered by an estuary and sand dunes. Ideal for long walks on the beach and bathing in the sun. It is a perfect retreat from the sometimes tiring life of travel. Novice surfers will find the beach break on Chintsa beach perfect for practicing their turns. The more experienced surfer should make friends with the locals to know where the good, uncrowded and well hidden spots are.
Backpacker Accommodation in Chintsa
Most travelers who visit this rural village fall in love with its honeyed beaches, blue waters, rolling green hills, easy atmosphere and the modest Xhosa way of life. The people are always smiling and greeting you and Hole in the Wall is a short drive out of Coffee Bay it is named for the prominent rock feature off the beach.
Backpacker Accommodation in Coffee Bay
This new backpacking destination is a scenic coastal village flanked by the winding Mncwasa River, with views that will make you believe you can fly, the sky and valleys appear to meet halfway and drop in the ocean. This is the kind of place to get away from everything, except maybe hiking, heading off to the beach and fishing the deep waters off Mbolompo Point.
Backpacker Accommodation in Lubanzi Village
'You can debate it until the cows come home, there’s no contest, Mdumbi is the best beach in Southern Africa’ – Getaway Magazine. The surfing is spectacular and the water is uncrowded.
Backpacker Accommodation in Mdumbi
As uncomplicated and pristine as the Wild Coast can get. Mpande is cloaked in lush vegetation and overlooks the Sinangwana river mouth and the ocean. Hike to waterfalls or along the coast to see a shipwreck.
Backpacker Accommodation in Mpande
Port St. Johns
Get your cameras ready for your first sighting of the Umzimvubu River winding between the imposing cliffs of Mount Thesiger. Port St Johns’ is so small, but like any typical Transkei town it is teeming with people, everywhere, who do not pay any attention to cars, so drive carefully. The greenery here is awesome; there are tropical dense forests wherever you look. It has three beaches, imaginatively named, 1st, 2nd and 3rd beach. Our little tip is for you to do your taste buds a favour and swing by delicious monster restaurant on 2nd beach, ask at reception for directions. Don't forget to let us know what your taste buds thought.
Backpacker Accommodation in Port St. Johns
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