Mossel Bay and surrounding areas has more activities to offer than just glorious beaches and wonderful surf.
Take the time to experience some of the other interesting activities, however, note that the list below is by no means complete. Adrenalin sports include quad biking, parachuting, skydiving, hiking, bungi jumping, abseiling, surfing, sailing and deep-sea fishing.
Bartolomeu Dias Museum Complex
The museum grounds house five National Monuments, four of which are buildings dating between 1830 and 1902. The museum grounds themselves, situated on the shores of the Indian Ocean, are a magnificent historical setting. The Maritime Museum houses the impressive life-size replica of Bartolomeu Dias’ caravel, the ship in which he sailed into Mossel Bay in the year 1488 as well as a host of maritime treasures. Visit http://www.diasmuseum.co.za or call 044 691 1067.
The Post Office Tree is a giant milkwood tree estimated to be more than 800 years old and declared a National Monument. It is thought to have been underneath this milkwood tree where Pedro d’Ataide left a letter in 1500 in a seaman’s boot for passing ships. Today a replica of a seaman’s boot serves as a postbox next to the tree and all letters posted there bear a special Post Tree postmark.
A Portuguese Padrao, or stone cross, commemorating the padrao planted by Da Gama, was presented to the town in the early 60s, by the Portuguese Government. This Padrao was later moved to the rocky outcrop above Munro’s Hoek, clearly visible from the Tree.
St Blaize Lighthouse, cave & trail
The Cape St Blaize Lighthouse has been a beacon to navigators since 1864. It is open Monday to Friday from 10:00 – 15:00. Billed as the only rock lighthouse on the South African coast, all navigational aids are fully automated now, but a senior lightkeeper and two lightkeepers are still employed.
The St Blaize lighthouse has a 500 watt lamp of 250,000 candle power that can be seen up to 25 nautical miles (about 45km) out to sea. The foghorn can be heard up to 15 miles (25km) out. On a clear day, in the late summer, February and March, one can see the Knysna Heads 30 nautical miles (50km away) to the East.
The St. Blaize Trail is a popular 13.5km hike that follows the 30m contour along the cliffs westwards from the Cape St Blaize Lighthouse at the Point. It begins at the cave below the Lighthouse, and ends at Dana Bay. One can walk it in either direction.
The Santos Pavilion
Santos Pavilion is today the only remaining Pavilion on the beach in South Africa. Built in 1906, it was inspired by the pavilion at Brighton, England. The cost of the original installation was £3 608 sterling. During the 1920’s and 1930’s the Pavilion was a social meeting place for the townsfolk who regularly gathered there to listen to the Band and to exchange news and gossip. In l925 the then Prince of Wales visited the Pavilion during his visit to South Africa. Situated on the Santos Blue Flag beach, this lovely building cannot be missed.
Oystercatcher Trail slackpack trek
The famous Oystercatcher Trail is a love affair with nature! Enjoy a 5 day, 4 night guided coastal walk, exploring areas you never knew existed, with an expert local guide. Carry a light backpack and sleep in comfort at night.
Great White Shark Cage Diving
Experience the Great White Shark in its natural environment above or under water or perhaps just learn a bit more about them. You don’t have to be a qualified diver, nor do you have to be able to swim. Mossel Bay has the most accessible white sharks in the world.
Whale watching season is from May to October, when you can see the whales from almost any elevated position on the shore during their calving season. They play together and stay in the Bay for about three months for the calves to grow stronger. The males will join the females only after the calves have been weaned, when mating takes place, before they all return to the Antarctic.
Point of Human Origins Experience
Experience the amazing story of the Origins of Modern Human behaviour and the ancient history of the Middle Stone Age people on a tour of the Pinnacle Point caves. Recently declared a Provincial Heritage site, the visit includes a presentation on newly-revealed pre-historic dwelling sites and insight into ancient human habitation on the tip of the African continent. Visit www.humanorigin.co.za or call 079 640 0004 for this highly rated activity.
Watch craftsmen design and build model ships – including the much acclaimed Stephens & Kenau range of museum quality models; custom projects for film and interior design and admiralty-style models (plank-on frame – with the inside of the hull an exact miniature of the original). Kits are also for sale.
For more information, go to www.shipyard.co.za or phone 044 691 1531.
Aloe Ferox Factory
Visit the Aloe Ferox Factory for an informative tour and see how aloes are processed. The factory shop stocks cosmetic and health care products, delicacies and pet care products. Tour groups are welcome. Find them on the N2 between Mossel Bay and Albertinia. More information is available at www. aloeferoxafrica.com or phone 028 735 2504.
Take to the dunes
Sand boarding beautiful dunes with amazing views is a popular activity for young and old. Billed as the longest sandboard ride in South Africa, Dragon Dune, situated just outside of Mossel Bay