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Jeffreys Bay is a small holiday town on the Sunshine Coast in the Eastern Cape Province near Port Elizabeth. The beautiful deep blue bay with a magnificent beach is bordered by nature reserves and rivers, and is a subtropical paradise.
The tiny village became famous internationally, but not locally in South Africa, at first. Hordes of surfing American hippies began to descend upon the tiny fishing town in the 1960’s, due to the fantastic surfing waves and it became a super cool hippie destination.
This was to the bewilderment of the conservative religious inhabitants of the village at the furthest edge of Africa, who certainly did not care for Flower Power and psychedelic music and the culture clash continues to this day.
The town was established by Captain Jeffrey in 1849, a trader who cruised up and down the Eastern coast on trading missions. It remained a tiny fishing village for a hundred years or so, but these days has grown into a popular holiday resort.
What to Do
The long wide beach is extremely beautiful and exquisitely clean, and obviously has the coveted Blue Flag Status, with lifeguards. Water sports in the safe warm sea of the bay include swimming , snorkeling and scuba diving.
The weather is warm in summer and mild in winter with year round light rain. The Sunshine Coast has the most sunny days in South Africa, 320 out of 365.
The main draw of the little town however is the consistently great surfing conditions. It is apparently the world’s second best surfing destination.
The bay has long, fast, powerful, hollow waves, sometimes allowing a ride of a kilometer in length.The Billabong Super Tubes Festival is held here annually in July.
Canoeing, boardsailing, boating, fishing, sand boarding, paragliding, bungee jumping, dolphin and whale watching are all available and there are numerous rivers and lagoons around the bay.
The Nature Reserves have indigenous subtropical vegetation and fynbos, and great hiking trails. The area is rich in birdlife.
There is a Shell Museum with a huge collection as there are so many seashells on the beach.
Where to Eat
There are restaurants in the town and supermarkets.
Where to Stay
Almost all the accommodation has sea views. There are self catering guest houses, cabanas, holiday homes and b&b’s.
J- Bay, as the surfers call it, is just off the main N2 highway from Cape Town. It is about an hour’s drive from Port Elizabeth 75 kms away.