Tuesday, 5 June 2018

SOUTH AFRICA: Visit Port Elizabeth, The Friendly And Windy City

Port Elizabeth is South Africa's fifth largest city and is located on the Indian Ocean coast half-way between Cape Town and Durban, in the Eastern Cape, about 260 km from Knysna.

Port Elizabeth is known as the friendly city and the windy city, it tends to live up to both names.

A perfect complement to the Garden Route, the Friendly City is a major sea port and tourist destination set along the beautiful shores of Nelson Mandela Bay.

The centre of the South African motor industry is spoiled by moderate and warm temperatures all year round with scattered rain throughout the year - climatic attributes which contribute to an outstanding quality of life.

A popular and significant destination for water sports, Port Elizabeth also offers many historical attractions, such as the Historic Donkin Heritage trail, taking visitors along the footsteps of the 1820 settlers.

British heritage is reflected in the Port Elizabeth Cricket Club, and the Oldest Bowling Green in South Africa. Port Elizabeth’s greatest treasures, however, are malaria-free wildlife areas in its vicinity, and clean beaches washed by warm water.

Port Elizabeth or The Bay is one of the largest cities in South Africa; it is situated in the Eastern Cape Province, 770 km (478 mi) east of Cape Town.

The city, often shortened to PE and nicknamed The Friendly City or The Windy City, stretches for 16 km along Algoa Bay, and is one of the major seaports in South Africa.

Port Elizabeth is the southernmost large city on the African continent, just farther south than Cape Town.

Port Elizabeth was founded as a town in 1820 to house British settlers as a way of strengthening the border region between the Cape Colony and the Xhosa.

It now forms part of the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality, which has a population of over 1.3 million.

Port Elizabeth was founded by British settlers in 1820 and was named after the wife of Rufane Donkin, Acting Governor of the Cape Colony at that time.

The city is located on the Algoa Bay and forms together with the neighboring towns of Uitenhage and Despatch the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Municipality.

The tourist information centres are in the Donkin Reserve in the town center, at The Boardwalk - Marine Drive and at the Airport Arrivals hall.

Hunters and gatherers ancestral to the San first settled the area around what is now called Algoa Bay at least 10,000 years ago.

Around 2,000 years ago, they were gradually displaced or assimilated by agriculturalist populations ancestral to the Xhosa people, who migrated into the region from the north.

The first Europeans to visit the area sailed with the Portuguese explorers Bartholomeu Dias, who landed on St Croix Island in Algoa Bay in 1488, and Vasco da Gama, who noted the nearby Bird Island in 1497.

For centuries, the area appeared on European navigation charts marked simply as a landing place with fresh water.

The Portuguese Crown had as one of its main goals in the Indian Ocean taking over the lucrative trade of Arab and Afro-Arabian merchants who plied routes between the East African coast and India.

As they took over that trade, the Portuguese strengthened trading with Goa, their main trading point in India. The name Algoa means - to Goa, just as the port further north in present-day Mozambique, Delagoa means - from Goa in Portuguese.

With the establishment of the Coega Industrial Development Zone (CIDZ), foreign direct and also national-level investment has improved substantially in the region of Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth.

The IDZ, under the stewardship of the Coega Development Corporation (CDC), since inception has managed to attract to its investment account in excess of R140-billion into the economy of the Eastern Cape and has enabled the creation of over 45 000 jobs.

This is significant for the sustainability of the IDZ, Nelson Mandela Bay, and the economy of the Eastern Cape.

The CDC consistently continues to demonstrate its capability as the leading catalyst for socio-economic growth in the Eastern Cape, with a view to becoming so for South Africa.

In 2001 the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality formed as an administrative area covering Port Elizabeth, the neighbouring towns of Uitenhage and Despatch and the surrounding agricultural areas.

The name honours former President Nelson Mandela. The combined metropolitan area had a population estimated at around 1.3 million in 2006.

The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium hosted eight World Cup games, featuring South Korea, Greece; Ivory Coast, Portugal; Germany, Serbia; Chile, Switzerland; Slovenia, England in the First Stage, then Uruguay, South Korea in the Group of 16.

A quarter-final between Netherlands, Brazil was hosted, then for the Third Place playoff, Uruguay, Germany were hosted at the stadium. The World Cup was played between 11 June 2010 and 10 July 2010. Spain were the eventual champions.

The Windy City has a subtropical climate with light rain throughout the year. The area lies between the winter rainfall, Mediterranean climate zones of the Western Cape and the summer rainfall regions of eastern South Africa.

Winters are cool but mild and summers are warm but considerably less humid and hot than more northerly parts of South Africa's east coast. The climate is very even throughout the year with extreme heat or moderate cold rare.

There is a vast length of marine coastline on the city's outer encroachments particularly southwards. Beaches like Kings Beach, Hobie Beach, Bluewater Bay, Sardinia Bay, and the beaches along Marine Drive are abundant.

Kings Beach is adjacent to Port Elizabeth's harbour, and the longshore drift from Cape Recife provides a plentiful supply of sea sand.

On the north westerly coastline of Port Elizabeth,the contours tends to be rockier than the area between Cape Recife, and the Port of Ngqura.

Port Elizabeth has a few rivers, of which the Baakens River is the most prominent. This river usually floods when a reasonable amount precipitation is observed, especially at low level crossings.

North End Lake is the largest natural freshwater body in Port Elizabeth, but has experienced a form of contamination from industry.

It is not recommended to ingest anything from this lake, numerous smaller lakes are in the surrounding area, namely Lake Farm.

Port Elizabeth as a whole, the entire Eastern Cape is experiencing a devastating drought, of which a disaster has been declared by the current office bearers of the greater municipality.

Water restrictions are in place, and measures are in place to provide enough water in the near future, namely freshwater treatment works being constructed to acquire additional water from the Gariep Dam.

Historically, the majority of trade in the region came through Port Elizabeth. In the 1830s, at least five ships regularly transported goods to Europe.It became a free port in 1832.

In 1833, about 50 vessels had moved through the port. In 1828, 55,201 pounds, (25038 kg), of goods were imported through the port, increasing by 1832 to 112,845 pounds, (51185 kg), imported in that year.

Port Elizabeth exported 41,290 pounds, (18738 kg), in 1828, with a large increase to 86,931 pounds, (39431 kg), goods exported in 1829.

Exports included wine, brandy, vinegar, ivory, hides and skins, leather, tallow, butter, soap, wool, ostrich feathers, salted beef, wheat, candles, aloe, barley, and more

Home of South Africa's motor vehicle industry, Port Elizabeth boasts most vehicle assembly plants, General Motors, Ford, Volkswagen, Continental Tyres and many other automotive-related companies.

As of 2018, after GM's exit from Port Elizabeth and South Africa, Isuzu took over their production plant in Struandale. FAW also have built a multi-billion rand plant in the region.

Most other industries in Port Elizabeth are geared towards the motor vehicle industry, providing parts such as wiring harnesses, catalytic converters, batteries and tyres to the vehicle manufacturers.

Port Elizabeth is also a major seaport, with the most significant ore loading facilities in the southern hemisphere. As part of the ongoing development, a new Industrial Development Zone with expanded port facilities has been built at Coega.

Located at the end of the picturesque Garden Route along the Cape coast, the city has beaches in and near it. The most popular swimming beaches include King's Beach and Hobie Beach.

Many local historic attractions are linked by the Donkin Heritage Trail. These include the Campanile the bell tower, built in 1923 to commemorate the arrival of the 1820 Settlers and offering a viewpoint over the city.

The city hall (1862); the Donkin Reserve park and monument; and the old stone Fort Frederick itself (1799). The CBD also boasts the towering Eastern Cape post office headquarters.

Route 67 is a walking trail consisting of 67 public artworks, symbolising 67 years which Nelson Mandela dedicated to the freedom of South Africa.

The artwork is a celebration of South African culture and history and is scattered along the route as it starts from the Campanile, up the stairs to the Vuysile Mini Market Square and to the large South African flag at the Donkin Reserve.

The artworks were created by local Eastern Cape artists.

Other attractions include the gardens at St George's Park, the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum, formerly known as the King George VI Art Gallery, the museum and oceanography room at Humewood, and the new Boardwalk waterfront complex.

The wider area surrounding PE also features game viewing opportunities, including the Addo Elephant Park, 72 kilometres (45 mi) to the north near the Zuurberg mountain range and National Park.

Port Elizabeth is also a destination for whale watching with humpback whales sighted between June and August, and again between November and January, southern right whales sighted between July and November, and Bryde's whales sighted all year round.

The biggest sporting events in Port Elizabeth, is the annual Ironman triathlon and the Herald Cycle tour. The Tuna classic deep-sea fishing competition attracts anglers from all over the world.

The city has facilities catering for cricket, rugby union, athletics, association football, field hockey and many other sports. Its coastal location also makes it a base for many watersports.

Port Elizabeth is the location of the St George's Park cricket ground, which holds test cricket matches.

St George's Park is the oldest cricket ground in South Africa, and was the venue for the first Test match played outside of Australia or England, between South Africa and England on 12 and 13 March 1889.

The Warriors, a franchise cricket team in South Africa, is based in Port Elizabeth. The stadium is also known for its band that entertains fans at the Proteas games.

The headquarters of the Southern Spears rugby franchise was in Port Elizabeth.

The long-standing Eastern Province Rugby Union, now commonly known as the Eastern Province Elephants, formed the basis of the Spears franchise together with East London's Border Bulldogs.

The remnants of the Spears were later reconstituted into the Southern Kings, also based in Port Elizabeth, which joined Super Rugby in 2013.

The Southern Kings did not participate in Super Rugby in 2014 or 2015, and returned to Super Rugby in 2016, 2017, but were dropped for economical reasons by SARU.

The team now competes in the Guinness Pro14. The Eastern Province Rugby Union play their home matches at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, built for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

In December 2011, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium became the new home of the South Africa Sevens, the country's leg of the annual IRB Sevens World Series in rugby sevens.

The event had previously been held in three other cities, most recently in George in the Western Cape from 2002 to 2010. As of 2015, is hosted annually in Cape Town, in the Western Cape.

The city's main football club is Chippa United, they currently use the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium as their home ground.

Previous clubs to play in the country's top tier were Bay United, Michau Warriors, Port Elizabeth Blackpool, Hotspur F.C., Port Elizabeth City and Westview Apollon.

The Algoa Bay Yacht Club operates out of the Port of Port Elizabeth.

Port Elizabeth lies on the N2 road. To the west the road travels the Garden Route to George and Cape Town; to the east, the road runs through the so-called Border Country through Grahamstown, to East London then on to Durban, terminating in Ermelo in Mpumalanga.

The R75 connects Port Elizabeth to the Karoo. The major routes within the city are numbered as metropolitan or M routes.

The city's main bus station is in Market Square. The public bus service is run by the Algoa Bus Company. Between 1881 and 1948, there was a Port Elizabeth tramway network, powered initially by horses, and later by electricity.

The city is in the process of building a bus rapid transit system which was intended for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. This has been a massive failure as local taxi associations have prevented the implementation.

Port Elizabeth lacks a proper public transport system which has had a negative impact on the poorer residents of the city who are dependent on public transport.

Construction of the bus rapid transit network has been suspended due to mismanagement which led to the project missing its May 2010 deadline.

Calls for the project, which has left many parts of the city in a permanent state of construction, have been made recently, and it is expected that the government will make a decision on the matter soon.

Port Elizabeth railway station is served by South Africa's rail network. Local commuter services are operated by Metrorail.

While the Shosholoza Meyl long-distance passenger service links PE with Johannesburg via Bloemfontein where it is possible to connect with other long-distance routes.

The Apple Express narrow-gauge tourist train to Avontuur operated from the separate station in Humewood Road near King's Beach.

It departed regularly for Thornhill Village via Van Stadens River bridge, the highest narrow-gauge rail bridge in the world.

The Apple Express was launched to provide a service to transport fresh produce and wood from the farms along the line to Avontuur.

The line was completed in 1914 and the train delivered produce directly from the farms to ships in the Port Elizabeth Harbour.

Due to modern transport methods such as containerization, and refrigerated containers and trucks, the Apple Express and its services became redundant. Service has now ceased.

In preparation for the 2010 World Cup Soccer event the Humerail Station was extensively upgraded.

Several disused narrow gauge goods wagons were scrapped and removed from the site, several buildings in the area have also been renovated and revamped.

Port Elizabeth Airport serves the city for both passenger and cargo traffic.

It is the fourth busiest airport in South Africa after Johannesburg International Airport, King Shaka International Airport in Durban, and Cape Town International Airport.

International visitors to the city must currently fly to either Johannesburg, Cape Town or Durban, and then take a domestic flight to Port Elizabeth.

An upgrade to the terminal building, completed in 2004, created the necessary facilities to handle international flights although none are scheduled as yet.

Port Elizabeth has a harbour in Algoa Bay, and the construction of an additional international harbour at Coega has supported an increase in the size of the city's industries and the addition of new industries.

Port Elizabeth is served by a few radio outlets, namely Algoa FM, radio broadcasting to the residents of Port Elizabeth, as well as the entire Eastern Cape, and Garden Route, and globally, online.

The Herald serves the English populace in terms of newspaper, on a daily basis. Die Burger serves the Afrikaans communities as well with a well established readership base.
There are various social media news groups in Port Elizabeth, which is used at most as neighbourhood watch groups.

The SABC has a regional office in Port Elizabeth.

Port Elizabeth Airport is located just a few kilometres out of the city centre and has regular flights to Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and other South African airports. See also Discount airlines in Africa.

The central train station is in the city centre near the harbour.

Shosholoza Meyl operates daily inter-city trains to Johannesburg and Bloemfontein. You can also get to Cape Town, Kimberley, Pietermaritzburg and Durban by changing trains in Bloemfontein.

To East London by changing trains in Noupoort, Colesburg or Bloemfontein, to Mthatha by changing trains in Noupoort and Amabele or to Grahamstown by changing trains in Alicedale.

Premier Classe operates twice-weekly luxury trains to Cape Town via George and Oudtshoorn.

MetroRail operates frequent commuter trains to Uitenhage and the surrounding suburbs during weekdays, with a reduced service over weekends.

The Apple Express is a narrow-gauge (2 feet/610 mm) tourist train that operates from a separate station in Humewood Road near King's Beach.

It departs regularly for Thornhill Village via the Van Staden's River bridge, the highest narrow-gauge rail bridge in the world.

Port Elizabeth is easily accessible by motorways from Cape Town (790 km) via the Garden Route, Bloemfontein and East London (310 km). Of course, you can also drive from Johannesburg.

All major South African coach companies offer regular schedules to and from Port Elizabeth. The city is also on the Baz Bus route.

All the national car rental agencies have offices in the city.

There is a public bus transport system within the city. For the world cup 2010, the system has gone a major renovation with new buses and you wait no longer than 15 minutes to get a bus.

Maybe the buses do not cover the nooks and crannys of the city, but then why not hop on one of the many city tours available?

In Port Elizabeth, using the Public transport has not been a problem - this is used commonly by tourists, students and locals.

Yes in South Africa, like in many countries in Africa and other continents, tourists should remain alert, aware of their environment and use common sense.

- Algoa Bus Company.

- Metered Taxi.

- King Cab. Credit cards accepted.

- Hurter Cabs. Credit cards accepted.

- Taxi

The main form of transportation for most people is the (minibus) taxi. Toyota Hiaces or VW Caravelles or the like, modified to cram in as many seats as possible, will take you across town for approximately R7.00.

Some of them are still more a road hazard than anything, but a recent clean-up in the taxi industry means that their standards are improving.

Each taxi operates on a laid-out route. They are more frequent during daytime than at night.

How to get on. Stand on the curve of a trafficked road. When a taxi approaches, it may flash its headlights to ask if you want to go. Just stick your hand out.

How to get off. You might be able to tell the bouncer your desired destination when you pay, but in any case just tell the driver next stop, in a clear, firm voice, if you can make yourself heard above the music pounding from the sound system.

Note that this is not always a safe way to travel.

Taxi strikes have become common. Taxi drivers are protesting the new transportation plans and upgrades ahead of the 2010 world cup.

In early February a Port Elizabeth taxi protest turned violent with taxi drivers stoning buses and possibly aiding in the derailment of a train outside Port Elizabeth.

Donkin Reserve. In memory of Rufane Donkin and his wife Elizabeth, after whom the city is named. The lighthouse built in 1861 is open to the public. PE tourism has their office here.

Townships: organized tours are offered by the Tourist information. There is a safety concern regarding township tours though.

Alexandria Dune Fields. The largest coastal dune field in the southern hemisphere is located just outside Port Elizabeth at the villages of Colchester and Cannonville.

Tour Nelson Mandela Bay City, Dickens Street, Central Port Elizabeth. See Town Hall, Feather Market Hall, the Old Post Office, Fort Frederick, Donkin Reserve, Settlers Park, and the Horse Memorial all in one fabulous tour.

Wezandla African Arts and Crafts Gallery, 27 Baakens Str. Browse African Art

Museums, Galleries and Heritage

South Africa Airforce Museum. Open 8AM to 3:30PM Mon to Fri and 10AM to 6PM on Sun. Entrance is free.

Bayworld, Marine Drive, Humewood. Open 9AM to 4:30PM.. Has a museum, oceanarium and snake park. There are currently no dolphin performances.

Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum, 1 Park Drive, Central (St George's Park entrance). M-F 9AM-5PM, Sa-Su 2PM-5PM. A selection of South African art, especially from the Eastern Cape.

No 7 Castle Hill Museum. Open 10AM to 1PM and 2PM to 5PM, Tuesday to Friday. 2PM to 5PM on Mondays and 10AM to 1PM on Saturdays. Dating back to 1827, it is the oldest Settler cottage in PE. Entrance fee is R6.

Red Location Museum. 10am to 4pm Tues to Fri and 9am to 3pm Sat and Sun. The museum which bridges the past with the future Adults:R12, Pensioners, Disabled and Unemployed: Free on Wed between 12pm and 4pm, Discount for students.

4pm, Discount for students.
Hobie Beach, Port Elizabeth is a wonderful jumping-off spot for game viewing.

There are elephants and other birds and animals at Addo Elephant National Park and many privately owned game reserves in the area, as well as great area for viewing marine life in the form of dolphins, whales and African penguins.

Raggy Charters. Whale & Dolphin Watching, Penguin Island Cruises and Beachfront Cruises.

African Dawn (Wildlife Sanctuary), Thornhill. 9am-5pm. African Dawn Bird and Wildlife Sanctuary offers a selection of birds and wildlife to view including Cheetahs, Servals and much more. Braai and picnic places available.

Beaches. Hobie, Humewood, Kings and Wells Estate Beach are the main swimming beaches. Humewood, Wells, Kings and Hobie have all been awarded Blue Flag status .

Algoa Bay Yacht Club. Have a meal and go sailing.

Apple Express. A 100 km narrow gauge classic steam trip with a stop on the Van Stadens River Bridge. R130 for adults and R60 for kids under 13.

Boardwalk Casino.

Kragga Kamma Game Park, Follow the M15 west from the city center for about 15 minutes. Gates are open from 8AM to 5PM. You can either sleep in the camp or take self drives during the Day.

White Rhino, Buffalo, Cheetah, Giraffe, Zebra and others. Excellent value small park. R30 entrance fee.

Links Humewood Golf course.

The Mountain Club of South Africa. Climbs, walks and a rock climbing school.

Voetsac Hiking Club. There are a number of hiking trail, and walks in and around the city: Maitland Nature Reserve, Aloe Hiking Trail and more.

The Peoples Observatory, cnr Westview and Macfarlane, Newton Park. Meetings every first and third Wednesday of the month at 8PM. View the southern skies.

Roseate Tern hiking trial, Next to Pine Lodge Resort off Marine Drive, Summerstrand. 9 km circular trail.

Sandboarding. The Maitland dune mountain is one of the largest in the country and perfect for sand boarding.

Surf. The Pipe at Pollok Beach is where you want to go for surfing.

Eastern Cape Wilderness Motorcycle Tour, Central Port Elizabeth, Dickens Street. A motorcycle tour starting and ending in Port Elizabeth that takes you through the superb Eastern, Southern and Western Cape regions of South Africa.

Chelsea Mashie Golf Club (Chelsea Mashie Golf), Follow the M15 west from the city center for about 15 minutes, Next to 'Kragga Kamma Game Park'.

Sukume Museum & Xhosa Culture Centre, Human Dignity Centre (On the road leading from Walmer 10th Ave to Schoenmakerskop (Victoria Drive) Beyond and opposite the Walmer Country Club. 9-15H00.

The Walmer Township is one of the only areas in south Africa that avoided forced removals. The friendly community is poised to welcome you to their culture and to show you their history.

Tours leave every hour on the hour Monday to Friday from the 14th June 2010. If you contact us before visiting, we will ensure a Xhosa Culture presentation.

You will also be able to view a children's project and locals will be available to take you into the township to see shacks and local life first hand. R20 p.p.

Pumba Private Game Reserve. Day guests can experience the Day Safaris, which are conducted all year round. Each package is tailored to the needs and wants of the individual group, but individual safari times will depend on the season.

Visitors can look forward to seeing cheetahs, rhinos, elephants, hippos, lions, buffaloes, White Lions, leopards and a host of other exciting animals.

South End Museum, Cnr.Humewood & Walmer Blvd - South End. 09.00 -16.00. The South End Museum offers glimpses of the lost past.

From its walk-on map to historical photographs and displays of the life and times of the people of South End, the Museum provides a living memorial to the victims forcibly removed by the infamous Group Areas Act. donation.

Scuba diving. There are a number of very good diving locations:

- Bell Buoy, Depth 12m to 18m. Colorful soft coral and a rocky bottom.

- Devil's Reef, Depth 7m with pinnacles up to 1m.

- Evan's Peak, Depth 12m to 40m. Close to St. Croix island.

- Haerlem Wreck, Depth 21m. Navy vessel sunk in 1987

-- Phillips Reef, Visibility up to 10m.

- Riy Banks, Depth 18m to 40m. Coral and game fish.

- Thunderbolt Reef, Depth 15m to 30m. Orange and lilac hard coral.

Dive operators. Ocean Divers International, 10 Albert Road, Walmer. One of the oldest dive schools in South Africa. PADI courses, own training center with indoor pool.

Pro Dive, At Hobie Beach.

African Curios for sale can be found in the places below:

- Curios can be bought along the beach. Haggle down the prices though.

- African Hides can be purchased by appointment from Ostrich Emporium SA.

- Siyalcha Dolls. Traditional Xhoza dolls.

Shopping Malls in Port Elizabeth:

- The Boardwalk Shopping Complex

- The Boardwalk, Marine Drive, Summerstrand. Offers several shops. fast-food restaurants and a casino.

- Greenacres Shopping Centre. An excellent place to spend a Saturday at around noon. There are many, many shops and plenty of restaurants. There is a lively vibe over the weekend, and the mall can be reached easily.

It is also commonly refered to as - The Bridge - because it is joined to the mall of that name.

- Walmer Park Shopping Centre. A nice place to eat at, and there are a few nice shops.

Eat places in Port Elizabeth:

Brooke's Pavilion has excellent views over the beaches and ocean. Any one of the restaurants there are a good idea for breakfast with a view.

- Blue Waters Cafe. Well priced and has an excellent view of the ocean.

- Fishmonger, The Broadwalk, Marine Drive, Summerstrand. Indulge yourself in succulent prawns, calamari, fish & chips and curries.

- Leonardo's, The Broadwalk, Marine Drive, Summerstrand. Fantastic pizza, and has a very pleasant atmosphere.

- Mauro's, Restaurant No. 1, McArthur Bath, Beach Road, Humewood. About R100 a meal.

- Ocean Grill, Mercado Centre, Corner of Admiralty and Strandfontein Roads, Summerstrand. Seafood restaurant with classy and elegant decor; serves good sushi and other seafood meals.

- Old Austria. Is just off Cape Road and is one of the classier restaurants in Port Elizabeth.

- The Oyster Catcher. Located in the harbour. The seafood is particularly tasty. Very popular - if you want to get a table you must make a reservation.

- Tiffany's, Brookes Hill, Beach Road, Humewood. Tea, coffee, light meals and fantastic pastries and cakes in a great location looking out over the sea.

- Ginger Restaurant, Marine Drive. The atmosphere is friendly, airy and chic and the food a combination of the finest, fresh ingredients with an Eastern Cape influence.

- Fushin Sushi & Eastern Cuisine, Shop 5, Stanley on Bain, Stanley Street, Richmond Hill. Port Elizabeth's most exclusive sushi restaurant, this place is trendy, intimate and friendly.

Located in the upmarket, historic area of Richmond Hill and very centrally located.

- Primi Coastal, Marine Drive, Humewood. A very trendy pizza restaurant ideally located on the beachfront.

- Salt, 30 Stanley Street, Richmond Hill. Budget-friendly and something on the menu for every mood. The burgers are particularly tasty, the brie and cranberry burger is a definite recommendation and the green salad sauce is to die for.

Drink places in Port Elizabeth:

- Barney's Tavarn. Lively pub. It overlooks Algoa Bay and is situated a stone's throw away from the water's edge. The pub has a great balcony, with good draughts and food.

A local favorite, many Johannesburg travellers' first stop is at this watering hole to catch up with friends. Live music is available most weekend nights.

- Ekhaya Pub. For African Jazz.

- Ibhayi Brewery Tours, 47 Kohler Street. Tour the beer brewery and have a couple of pints at the Bay and Barrel afterwards.

- News Cafe. Located at the Boardwalk and is always lively and full. They serve good food, and it is a nice place to catch a drink.

- Blackbeards Tavern, Within The Chapman Hotel. Does a splendid Seafood Extravaganza.

- Tapas, Part of Brookes pavilions. Live music over weekends. Good place to get loaded on beers. Get there early if you want to sit down.

- Rasoi, 79 Heugh Road, Walmer. This is an excellent place for Indian food. The ambiance is nice, and the staff is extremely friendly. It is a great idea to catch a dinner at Rasoi when in PE.

- BuZZ Bar, Humerail. Located next to the Paxton Hotel, BuZZ is a very popular night spot for PE's young people. Playing urban dance music and boasting a very trendy atmosphere, BuZZ is a favourite in Port Elizabeth.

- Cubana, Port Elizabeth, Marine Drive, Humewood. Port Elizabeth's most exclusive nightspot definitely not to be missed.

- Salt, 30 Stanley Street, Richmond Hill. Budget-friendly. Wide range of drinks: beers, wine and great cocktails.

Accomodations in Port Elizabeth:

Accommodation consists of hostels, budget, mid range and luxury accommodation. Whatever you want, you can find without trouble.

- Umoya Self Catering Cottages, 84 5th Avenue, Newton Park. Modern self catering cottages. With a fully equipped kitchen, private braai (bbq) area and full satellite television, you are guaranteed a relaxing and enjoyable stay.

Umoya Cottages are located centrally in Newton Park, Port Elizabeth. From R165.

- Kings Beach Backpackers, 41 Windermere Road, Humewood. Cool little backpackers with friendly staff. Check out the kitchen you have to add your name and comment to the millions added over the years by previous backpackers.

The staff can arrange safari trips to Addo and Schotia Safari Parks for around R1000 be warned that this is R200 more expensive than doing it yourself, but this does include travel to and from the parks, which are approx 30 miles away. From R60 pppn.

- Lungile Backpackers, 12 La Roche Drive, Humewood. Offers private single/ double rooms as well as dorms and has a pool.

- Port Elizabeth Backpackers, 7 Prospect Hill, Central. Doubles R220, singles R150 and dorms R80pn.

- Algoa Guest House, 87 Brighton Drive, Summerstrand, Port Elizabeth. checkin: 3PM; checkout: 11AM.

They are located in the beautiful upmarket seaside suburb of Summerstrand - only 200 metres from the beach and in close proximity to the airport, university, golf course, restaurants and casino.

Tourists and business people alike enjoy a relaxing stay at Algoa Guest House. All suites are private and comfortable with a mini kitchenette and their own entrances and patios.

Suites are serviced daily and have free internet access, TV’s and DVD facilities. from R320 per person sharing.

- The Admiralty Beach House, 9 Admiralty Way, Summerstrand. Located 100m from Summerstrands Beach, near Marine Drive. It features a wonderful garden and some rooms have sea-view. ADSL is available in all rooms From R340.

- Alcyone Accommodation, 29 Admiralty Way, Summerstrand. Offers you self-catering accommodation in private en-suite units that sleep 2max, family unit sleeping 4-5, and a 1 bedroom appartment with views sleeping max 3.

500m from the beach, close to the Humewood Golf course and Hobbie Beach; self-contained, fully equipped and with complimentary Wi-Fi From R400.

- Sta-Plus Guest House, 11A 10th Avenue, Summerstrand. Large sheltered swimming pool, BBQ facilities, off-street parking, laundry service. 150m from Pollock Beach, 5 min from golf course, university, or boardwalk casino.

- Beachwalk B&B, 1 Second Ave, Summerstrand. 60m from the beach and 400m from the Boardwalk. 4 star From R250 pp sharing.

- Bishops Inn, 14 Killarney Road. checkin: 2:30PM; checkout: 10:30AM. Bishops Inn offers superior rooms and 1&2-Bedroom self-catering suites opposite Kings Beach. All rooms have Wi-Fi access. From R540 to R1200 per unit per night.

- Conifer Beach House, 39 Windermere Road, Humewood. 4 Star accommodation. Saltwater swimming pool, 2 minutes walk from Kings Beach, off-street parking, laundry service, WiFi. Close to golf course, university and boardwalk casino.

- Edward Protea Hotel, Belmont Terrace. Located on the northern end of the Donkin Reserve. May have seen better times but still offers Edwardian style and wonderful views over the Donkin Reserve to the Ocean.

- Holiday Inn, La Roche Drive, Humewood. Close to King's Beach. The hotel is a short walk away from Bayworld Aquarium.

- Homeleigh Halt Guest House, 253 Main Road, Walmer. From R290pps incl. breakfast.

- Jabula Lodge, 36 Avonmount, Summerstrand. From R560 per room.

- Kragga Kamma Game Park, Follow the M15 west from the city center for about 15 minutes. Luxury tents, thatched chalets, log cabins and thatched lodges. Book for two nights or more and get a free game drive From R150 to R300 per person per night.

- Pine Lodge Resort, Marine Drive, Cape Recife. 3 star log cabins in the Cape Recife Nature Reserve From R300 to R1000 per unit per night.

- Seaview Hotel, "20. Built in 1935.

- Sir Roys at the Sea, Cnr Perrot and Newcon roads, Humerail. From R350 pp sharing.

- Treetops Guest House (Guest House Port Elizabeth), 44 Albert road, Walmer. Free transfers to and from the airport.

- Shamwari Townhouse Boutique Hotel,Brighton Drive, Summerstrand. The four star hotel offers homely comfort in its 58 spacious, en-suite bedrooms with all modern amenities, a stunning pool deck and three superb restaurants.

- Hacklewood Hill Country House, Prospect Road, Walmer. Unsurpassed luxury five star hotel in the classic country house tradition. Imagine a bygone era of colonial charm, good conversation and the fine dining.

- The Radisson Blu, Marine Drive and 9th Avenue, 041 509 5000, Opened in 2009 and offers the best that Radisson Blu brand has to offer.

Activities and places to visit in Port Elozabeth:

- Go to Jeffreys Bay for surfing.

- Tour the Garden Route on your way to Cape Town.

- Drive to the City of Saints (Grahamstown) and back through pineapple plantations and along the rugged coast.

There are many local safari and nature parks within easy reach of Port Elizabeth:

- Visit Addo Elephant National Park.

- Kariega Game Reserve, 90 minutes outside Port Elizabeth.

- Shamwari Game Reserve, 45 minutes outside Port Elizabeth.

- Pumba Private Game Reserve, 60 minutes outside Port Elizabeth transfers available. Discover wildest Africa in true luxury at the Pumba Private Game Reserve in South Africa.

- This Eastern Cape safari lodge has achieved a 5-star rating for its unrivalled beauty, world-class service and the abundance of wild animals on its doorstep.

In addition to the famous Big 5 - lions, leopards, buffalos, rhinos and elephants, guests of the game reserve have the rare opportunity of seeing the magnificent White Lion, stalking prey and lazing under the trees in its natural environment.

- Visit Mountain Zebra National Park.

- Visit Tsitsikamma National Park.

Tourism Observer

No comments: