It’s hard (impossible?) to write anything about Jeffreys Bay without leading with the fact that it’s an international surfing Mecca.
That’s no small feat. Every year, tens of thousands of visitors descend on this little Eastern Cape town to enjoy the winter festivities and international surf compo that is frequented by the world’s surfing legends.
But, for the rest of the year, it’s completely sedate. It has wide roads and homes with big gardens, restaurants dotted along the seashore and the hardy green vegetation of this windy stretch of coast.
It’s a great family holiday destination too because there’s plenty of affordable accommodation, Port Elizabeth is less than an hour away, and the beaches are absolutely gorgeous. So, we’ve put together a few places that you can book overnight accommodation, eat and explore while you’re in Jeffreys Bay.
There are so many guest houses, B & B’s, lodges and apartments in JBay. So, this list is by no means exhaustive. For many more options, head to this page. Here are some of our faves:
BEACH HOLIDAY ON A BUDGET
If you were any closer to the Indian Ocean, you’d be swimming in it. This three-star B & B is all about enjoying gorgeous views of unbeatable swell in a homely, comfy spot. In addition to a number of suites for two, there is a family unit for four. There is free Wi-Fi in each room and the outdoor deck is the perfect place for sundowners.
Perched in the pretty scenery of the Noorsekloof Nature Reserve, this spot is a lovely getaway from the city. Each of the five suites has a fan, heater, coffee station and basic toiletries. Dolphin View is simple and tastefully decorated. The in-house tour operator is a fantastic feature – book some amazing excursions and explore the Eastern Cape.
A1 Kynaston is only 500 metres from the beach and has held onto its comfortable look and feel. There is a pristine swimming pool, barbecue (or braai) area and Wi-Fi. The outdoor deck is the ideal place to relax after a day of swimming and sun-tanning. From here, watch the sun dip behind the ocean with a cold beer or a hot cuppa.
What makes Houtbosch Bay 13 so economical is that it sleeps six people. It is in a nature reserve in Aston Bay (just six kilometres from JBay’s town) and has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a well-equipped kitchen and an open-plan dining and entertainment area. There is a balcony with braai facilities and breath-taking sea views.
A SPLURGE ON THE SANDS
Four-star luxury awaits visitors that are craving salty spray and the sound of the crashing waves. There are 12 units, each of which is gorgeously decorated and irresistibly inviting. There is a lounge and bar upstairs for guests, as well as verandas, from where the most impressive vistas work their magic.
Mandyville Hotel offers individually-decorated rooms, each with a touch of opulence. They are spacious and tasteful, and all within walking distance from a Blue Flag beach (Dolphin Beach). An elegant lounge is the perfect retreat after a day spent swimming, surfing and shopping. There is a fire pit outside and a games room.
Although Dio Dell’Amore is a five-star spot, the overnight rates remain affordable, so indulge yourself. This luxurious escape is right at the river mouth of the Kabeljouws and promises exquisite views of both the river and the sea. Each room has an en-suite bathroom and elegant finishes.
On the doorstep of Supertubes (one of the best surfing beaches in JBay and the country) is this little gem. It has three bedrooms and two bathrooms (ideal for six guests) and exudes a minimalist sense of style and simplicity. There is air-con, a fireplace, and a lovely garden with braai facilities. Two of the bedrooms boast impressive views of the waves.
Stone Olive Guest House is reasonably priced and less than a kilometre from the beach. The accommodation here achieves a balance of comfort and luxury, with lovely views of the golf course and oceans to boot. There are five suites (each for two guests), a crystal-clear swimming pool, and serene courtyard.
This is a fantastic option for groups of up to 10 people that can split the cost of this gorgeous apartment. The contemporary self-catering home is right on the beachfront and has five bedrooms and five bathrooms. More than this, it has an indoor and an outdoor braai area, outdoor shower (heated) and a steam room. Sigh…
Jeffrey’s Bay has a lot of great spots to enjoy fresh seafood, meaty grills, great vegetarian meals, or decadent treats. Many of these (including Spur and Kitchen Windows) are on the beachfront for the best views. Other great restaurants that are well worth a visit in JBay include:
Situated right on the gorgeous coastline, just inches from the sand, is this unique restaurant. The food is cooked over open coals or in clay ovens for an authentic flavour. The freshest seafood, home-baked breads, and other moreish winners are all on offer.
With a menu that includes local dishes and those that are more exotic, De Viswijf combines delicious flavours with impressive Indian Ocean views. Fresh seafood, incredible red meat and a very special wine list are on the cards for hungry diners.
This is more than a coffee shop, it’s an experience. There are homemade cakes and pastries and excellent coffees on offer, of course. But, Potter’s Place is also great for a full breakfast and a spot of shopping.
The main appeal of Jeffrey’s Bay is, without a doubt, its beaches. The water is warm, the waves consistent, and the long, white stretches of sand near-perfect. But, there’s a lot more to JBay too. We’d recommend:
- Meeting some awesome species at the African Dawn Wildlife Sanctuary – these include a massive array of birds (look out for the vultures and flamingos), porcupine, lynx, cheetah and crocodile.
- Having a quick browse around the pretty shells of the Jeffreys Bay Shell Museum on the beachfront.
- Joining the celebrity sports-folk and learning to surf on some of the world’s most consistent waves. Then, head to the Surf Museum for a glimpse into the history and culture of this water sport.
- Getting adventurous. For a bit of boarding of a different kind, try your hand at sand-boarding down the stunning dunes of the Eastern Cape.
- A long horse ride along the beach and through the dunes is the perfect way to unwind, connect with these animals and enjoy the natural beauty of Jeffrey’s Bay from new perspectives.
For plenty more things to do and see in Jeffreys Bay, click here.