Price range, per nightmin R max R
*All distances listed are as the crow flies, and not actual travel distances.
From a satellite photo, Tietiesbaai appears as a perfect cove, protected from the rough Atlantic seas by two rocky headlands on either side of the bay. The name Tietiesbaai is an amusing Afrikaans slang word for a small female breast (tietie) and baai meaning bay, however, the origin is from a French trader Jacques Titius who gave his name Titius Bay to the area. As with so many South African places, foreign names are corrupted and then adopted.
Tietiesbaai falls within the Columbine Nature Reserve, a stretch of pristine coastline that incorporates several tidal bays and vast dunes, and contains a lighthouse which can be visited during the week. Expect to see tortoise, snakes, mongoose and a host of marine birds in the reserve. Whales are regularly seen along this section of the coastline, often during periods when least expected. Dolphins and seals also frequent the area.
Tietiesbaai is best known for its camping site, however, it’s also a good place to fish (bring your own bait before visiting) and there are several hiking routes and mountain bike trails spread throughout the reserve. Rock pools are fun to explore and the bay is calm enough for kayaking and safe swimming. If visiting during crayfish season, purchase your permit from the post office, hire a wetsuit and snorkel and try your hand at diving for these sought-after shellfish. Note that there is a daily limit and the crayfish must be of a certain size before removing.
Tietiesbaai is a short distance from Paternoster where several beach facing restaurants offer fresh seafood dishes and accommodation is readily available.
The best time to visit Tietiesbaai is at the start of spring when the wildflowers are out and the wind hasn’t yet picked up. The flowers carpet the barren fields in a range of spectacular colours.