Best Things to Do in East London

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East London is a fabulously fun city to explore. This Sunshine Coast city offers plenty to see and do – whether it’s a day by the beach, time spent exploring a museum or heading to a secret spot beloved by the locals, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Here are some of the best things to do in and around East London:

#1 Explore gorgeous Nahoon Beach

Whether you are keen to surf, swim, go for a walk or simply sit and soak up a bit of the sun, Nahoon Beach is arguably one of the best beaches to enjoy in the Eastern Cape.

It’s not only extremely beautiful but it’s clean and neat to boot, with soft beach sand and unspoilt natural surroundings. Blessed with a lovely wooden walkway for admiring the scenery, Nahoon Beach is perfect for the whole family.

Contact: N/A

Website: N/A

Address: Nahoon Beach, Beach Road, Nahoon East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

#2 Hop on a Buffalo River Cruise

Southern Cross Cruises
Southern Cross Cruises

Southern Cross Cruises offer an exciting local experience: river cruises along the beautiful Buffalo River.

Catering to social groups, birthday parties, weddings or simply soothing sundowner trips, this family-friendly cruise (suitable for all ages) is a wonderful way to experience some local natural beauty in a real and intimately fun way… This is a must for locals and tourists alike!

Contact: +27 (082) 938 6275, +27(043) 735 1918, info@southerncrosseastlondon.co.za

Website: www.southerncrosscruises.co.za

Address: Southern Cross Cruises, 1 Sheerness Place, East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

#3 Head to Lavender Blue Market

Loved by locals, Lavender Blue Market (open daily) is a wonderful, family-friendly farmer’s market, where you can enjoy browsing stalls, buying great, value-for-money eats and enjoying an all-round charming experience.

The market is spread between a large, vibey indoor space and a tranquil outside area, which is perfect for kids to run around freely in.

This is a truly delightful spot in the city – and one you definitely need to visit for yourself.

Contact: +27 (043) 732 1172, lavenderbluemarket@telkomsa.net

Website: www.facebook.com/pg/Lavender-Blue-Market-446394015407549

Address: Lavender Blue Market, Old Gonubie Road, East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

Lavender Blue Market via Facebook
Lavender Blue Market via Facebook

#4 Visit East London Museum

Founded in 1921, this time-honoured museum is one of South Africa’s most interesting and informative cultural and natural museums.

East London Museum offers a range of exciting exhibits, with highlights including the ‘World War 1’ and ‘Plants and People’ exhibitions.

This is an educational experience, suited to families, history buffs, tourists, locals and school groups alike. (Happily, the museum also offers disabled parking and wheel-chair access on both levels.)

Note: The museum is closed on Sundays and public holidays. For opening times and admission fees, please see their website or contact them direct.

Contact: +27 (043) 743 0686, derekh@elmuseum.za.org

Website: www.elmuseum.za.org

Address: East London Museum, 319 Oxford Street, Southernwood, East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

#5 Explore Ann Bryant Art Gallery

The Ann Bryant Art Gallery is a beautiful and well-known art museum and gallery. As one of the best art spots in town, it offers an interesting array of exhibits.

There is also a lovely garden for you to ample around once you have finished appreciating the art.

Note: Ann Bryant Art Gallery is also a National Monument.

Contact: +27 (043) 722 4044, annbryant@intekom.co.za

Website: www.annbryant.co.za

Address: Ann Bryant Art Gallery, No 9, St Marks Road, Southernwood, East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

Ann Bryant Art Gallery via Facebook
Ann Bryant Art Gallery via Facebook

#6 Immerse Yourself in Nahoon Estuary Nature Reserve

If you are looking to escape the confines of the city and immerse yourself in the peace and quiet of the outdoors, Nahoon Estuary Nature Reserve is the place for you.

Walk through the mangrove swamps, head down to the pristine beach or simply pack a picnic and enjoy seeing all the natural flora and fauna.

Either way, you win and will enjoy a special day out with those you love!

Contact: N/A

Website: N/A

Address: Nahoon Estuary Nature Reserve, East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

#7 Treat Yourself at Friesland Milk Bar

If you’re craving a sweet treat, then Friesland Milk Bar is a must-visit spot.

This delightful milk bar is famous for its ice-cream and milkshakes, which come in over 20 droolworthy flavours, with many delicious ice-cream sauces besides… Pop by for something tasty to enjoy the sweeter side of East London!

Contact: +27 (043) 722 3260, sameer.cassiram@gmail.com

Website: www.facebook.com/pg/FrieslandMilkBar

Address: East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

#8 Eat Out at Pinecreek Restaurant and Farmstall

This fun, family-friendly spot (with great play facilities for kiddies) is well-worth a visit – if only for its beauty, especially thanks to its stunning Cape Dutch-style architecture.

Combining a lovely restaurant and farmstall, it allows you to enjoy a relaxing meal or pack in some goods for the road ahead.

Either way, you can enjoy a lovely time out at Pinecreek Restaurant and Farmstall.

Contact: +27 (043) 732 1101, bookings@pinecreek.co.za

Website: pinecreek.co.za

Address: Pinecreek Restaurant and Farmstall, Road A1, Holm Hill, Main Road, Beacon Bay, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

Pinecreek Restaurant and Farmstall
Pinecreek Restaurant and Farmstall

#9 Head to East London Aquarium

First opened in 1931, this long-standing museum is one of the oldest public aquariums in all of Southern Africa.

It might not be large but it offers a good variety of interesting and fascinating sections and displays nonetheless. Highlights include the penguin area and beautiful fish.

Contact: +27 (043) 705 2637

Website: www.eastlondon.org.za

Address: East London Aquarium, 13 Esplanade Street, Quigney Beach, East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

#10 Visit Mpongo Park Game Private Reserve

Last but far from least, we have the stellar Mpongo Park Private Game Reserve, situated a short distance out of East London.

This quality establishment and game reserve allows visitors to get up close and personal with some amazing game and wildlife. The reserve also offers accommodation and conference facilities if you expect to visit for longer.

Be sure to enjoy a game drive (including special night and sunset drives, which can be arranged on request), team building activity or safari walk when visiting this incredible private game reserve.

Contact: +27 (043) 705 5000

Website: N/A

Address: Mpongo Park Game Reserve, Macleantown District, N6 National Road, East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

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