Top Eastern Cape Beaches

Surfers at Sunrise over Eastern Cape Beaches

South Africa’s Eastern Cape boasts some of the best and most picturesque beaches. Imagine 800 km of unspoilt coastlines stretching from South Africa’s Wild Coast in the north to East London in the South. These Eastern Cape beaches are surrounded by lush subtropical forests and brimming with alluring birds and diverse wild- and marine life. This is where the warm waters of the Indian Ocean roll out on white sandy beaches.

Eastern Cape Beaches
Eastern Cape Beaches

Eastern Cape Beaches

The Wild Coast

How to get to the Wild Coast

Driving from Kwazulu-Natal’s Port Edwards, South Africa, you can take the R61 regional route (future N2 Wild Coast Toll Route) via Bizana, Mthatha, to Port St Johns in the South. Avoid travelling by night and watch out for cattle, goats, and donkeys crossing the road.

Port St. Johns Beaches

Laid-back Port St. Johns, South Africa, is famous for hiking, fishing, snorkelling, and diving. If you want to try fishing, ask the locals where the best spot is.

During your time in Port St Johns, the chances are good that you will meet other like-minded people from different countries and cultures all over the World.

Visit the Coastal Silaka Nature Reserve, South of Port St Johns. When is The Ideal Time to visit Port St.Johns on the Wild Coast?

Nguni Cattle at Port St Johns Beach
Nguni Cattle at Port St Johns Beach
Main Port St Johns beaches
Main Port St Johns beaches

Coffee Bay Wild Coast

The Eastern Cape beaches around Coffee Bay are unspoilt and spectacular.

Don’t be surprised when you see dogs and cattle roaming the beaches and streets. Coffee Bay, South Africa, is known as a backpacker’s paradise.

The village derives its name from a ship that lost its cargo of coffee beans on the Wild Coast of South Africa many years ago. To check updates on the Coffee Bay climate, visit Coffee Bay Weather.

Hole in the Wall Eastern Cape Beach

Located near Libode in the Eastern Cape, the Unique Hole in the Wall Beach consists of a tidal island that contains a natural arch (Hole) in the sandstone shale. The distance between Coffee Bay and Hole in the Wall is about 8 kilometres.

Morgans Bay

The picturesque seaside village of Morgans Bay is a top holiday destination for nature lovers looking for tranquillity and getting away from their busy lives. Morgan Bay’s mile-long beach is ideal for walks along the unspoilt coastline with dramatic sea cliffs.

The warm waters of the Indian Ocean are perfect for swimming and various water sports, from board sailing to canoeing and even paddleboarding. Another attraction is the Inchara River estuary which hosts numerous waterbirds.

Haga Haga Beach

The small coastal village of Haga Haga is a declared nature and marine conservancy protecting an abundance of indigenous fauna and flora species. Located 60 km northeast of East London, the Haga Haga Nature Reserve is secure and crime-free. Here you can explore the unspoilt secluded beach surrounded by rock pools, river valleys and cliffs, swim in the warm Indian ocean or try your luck at fishing.

Hole in the Wall South African Wild Coast
Hole in the Wall South African Wild Coast

Beaches on The Sunshine Coast

The coastline of the Eastern Cape, South Africa, is brimming with pristine beaches, tranquil rivers, impressive cliffs, diverse fauna, and flora. Furthermore, the Wild Coast and Eastern Cape of South Africa are known for having summer rainfall.

East London Beaches

Bonza Bay beach

The lovely Bonza Bay beach is situated just off the Quinera Lagoon in East London and offers the best of everything with excellent swimming conditions. Things to do besides swimming and taking long walks on the sandy beach are birdwatching and fishing. Also, the ideal place to picnic is one of the many secluded nooks on the beach.

Gonubie Main beach

Access one of the most enchanting and beautiful beaches in South Africa on a raised wooden boardwalk and the coach. Take your pet along to the pet-friendly Gonubie Beach.

Boardwalk along Gonubie beach Eastern Cape South Africa
Boardwalk along Gonubie Beach

Cave Rock beach

Although the beautiful Cave Rock beach is unsuitable for swimming, it is famous for snorkelling and surfers. In addition, scuba divers love to dive here for its stunning underwater fauna and flora.

Nahoon beach

The Pet-friendly Nahoon Beach is also one of the many pristine beaches in East London with cliffs that protect against the wind. The beach is famous for its warm water and lifeguards on the shore. But, unfortunately, there are still people who don’t throw their rubbish in the rubbish bins. To check climate temperatures, visit Weather in East London this week.

More Sunshine Coast Eastern Cape Beaches

Port Alfred Beaches

Kellys Beach

Located on the Sunshine Coast, the 400m long Kelly Beach Port Alfred is one of South Africa’s prestigious international Blue Flag beaches near the Kowie River.

Kasouga Beach

The spectacular serene Kasouga beach in Port Alfred is just another gem and a photographer’s paradise with abundant birds and wildlife—one of the favourite Eastern Cape beaches for surfing, canoeing and hiking.

Kenton on Sea

Bushmans River Beaches

Shelly beach Kenton on Sea South Africa beach with its Aquamarine water Eastern Cape beach
Kenton on Sea South Africa’s Shelley beach with its Aquamarine water

Shelley Beach Kenton on Sea

Do not miss the scenic cove of Shelley Beach, situated close to Bushman’s River Mouth. Spectacular rugged cliffs surround the coastline here, and water pools with clear turquoise waters and sea life.

Check the Kenton on Sea tides, and start your walk from Middle Beach to Bushman’s River Mouth during low tide. Allow at least an hour each way to ensure you are back before high tide.

Kariega Beach

The secluded Kariega Beach is next to a nature reserve between the Kariega River and Bushmans River. The Pet-friendly beach with its clear blue water is any photographer’s dream.

Kariega beach Kenton on Sea
Kariega Beach Kenton on Sea

Middle Beach

The unspoilt Middle Beach, with its soft sand, crystal clear warm water and rock pools, is something to experience. You can even find sea stars and other sea creatures during low tide. We had a fantastic experience swimming in the 6 feet deep crystal clear pools.

Scenic Eastern Cape Beach Kenton on Sea Middle beach
Kenton on Sea Middle Beach


The peaceful local blue flag beach is the main attraction in Boknes. Its wide, unspoilt beach and ideal water temperatures make it a famous swimming beach with lifeguards during peak seasons.

Cannon Rocks beach

The small seaside town is known as one of the best kite surfing locations globally and is popular among anglers. With its black rocks and dune fields, Cannon rocks beach looks quite different from most other beaches. It’s unspoilt beaches.

Cannon rocks border the coastal belt of the Greate Addo Elephant National Park. A 7 km walking trail takes you through thick forests, cliffs, and stunning dune fields. The seaside village is home to the highly-rated Cannon Rocks Camping Resort within walking distance from the beach. For the Weather Cannon Rocks and more on these stunning places, check out our unforgettable 3-week road trip from Johannesburg.

Sunset Cannon beach
Sunset Cannon beach

Port Elizabeth Beaches

With so many best beaches in Port Elizabeth, it isn’t easy to designate one beach above the other.

Sardinia Bay Beach

The exceptional Sardinia Bay is located in a nature reserve between the quaint seaside village of Schoenmakerskop and Seaview. Declared a Marine Nature Reserve, Sardinia Bay Beach is most famous for scuba diving and snorkelling and is known as the starting point of the eight-kilometre Sacramento hiking trail. Fishing, however, is prohibited.


The hidden gem of Schoenmakerskop is one of Port Elizabeth’s prettiest suburbs and begins where Summerstrand ends.

Eastern Cape beach The Willows Resort Port Elizabeth
Willows Resort Port Elizabeth

The Willows Beach Port Elizabeth

With safe swimming beaches and a sea pool, the Willows is one of the best Eastern Cape beach resorts with beautiful self-service chalets and Willows camping facilities.

Jeffreys Bay Beaches

The laid-back seaside town of Jeffreys Bay, or J’Bay, is a favourite amongst many. Jeffreys Bay is one of the Eastern Cape beaches most popular for surfing. Indeed well known as one of the five best-surfing destinations in the World.

Dolphin Beach Jeffreys Bay

This blue flag beach is mainly known for its famous surfing spot called Supertubes. However, Dolphin Beach Jeffreys Bay also holds the annual Billabong Pro competition.

Beginner surf lessons are available at Dolphin Beach and are ideal for surfing as there are no rocks or significant currents. So while you’re at J’Bay, consider taking surfing classes at one of the few schools.

Supertubes at Dolphin Beach Jeffreys Bay popular Eastern Cape beaches
Supertubes at Dolphin Beach Jeffreys Bay

Paradise Beach

With turquoise water that laps on the long sweep of white sandy beaches, Paradise Beach is quieter than most other Jeffreys Bay beaches. The beach is also ideal for those who like to take long walks.

Aston Bay beach

The beautiful Aston Bay lies between Jeffreys Bay town and Paradise Beach in the Eastern Cape. Aston Bay is home to the sought-after Lifestyle estate Marina Martinique. This is also where you’ll find the popular Walskipper restaurant on Aston Bay Eastern Cape Beach.

Beaches in East London Eastern Cape Beaches
Surfer Surfing JBbay Eastern Cape beaches- Surfing in Jeffreys bay at Supertubes
Beaches in Jeffreys Bay Eastern Cape Beaches

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  1. So many beaches to visit. Thanks