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- 09 Mar 2021, 3 nights
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The surfing capital of South Africa, Jeffreys Bay is considered one of the world’s best spots to ride the waves. J-Bay, as locals call it, is on South Africa’s Eastern Cape and was a sleepy village before surfers discovered its perfect breaks. Today it’s a thriving beach town and a popular stop on the Garden Route drive from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth. Come to test yourself on the Indian Ocean’s rollers or chill on wide stretches of sand and soak up the beach life vibes.
You can stay in a hostel in Jeffreys Bay perched on a sand dune with 270-degree vistas across the Indian Ocean, where every room has uninterrupted views of the crashing waves. Look for a Jeffreys Bay hostel steps from the world-famous Supertubes surf spot or stay in the centre of town, surrounded by restaurants and surf shops a short stroll from Dolphin Beach. In some places, you can wake up with fresh ground coffee and free breakfast and spend the evening cooking on the traditional braai barbecue.
The main street in downtown Jeffreys Bay is Da Gama Road. Here you’ll find the surf village, with plenty of places to buy or hire equipment as well as other shops and restaurants. The Supertubes break is 3km from the main bathing beach, while swimming spots like Kabeljous-on-Sea are 5km away. The town is bordered by nature reserves and rivers on both sides, with kilometres of pristine beach to wander along as you try to spot dolphins and whales.
Fans flock to see the pros in action during the annual World Surf League competition. The rest of the year, experienced surfers can attempt to ride one of the best waves in the world and plenty of places have lessons for beginners too. Jeffreys Bay is also known for the rich variety of shells found on its shore and some of the most beautiful are displayed in the Shell Museum. Fresh seafood is another big draw here, especially the calamari, and you'll find plenty of restaurants along the coast.
Jeffreys Bay is small enough to get around on foot or by bike. Long-distance buses run between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth, and these stop in Jeffreys Bay at the junction of St Francis St and the N2 road. Regular buses to Port Elizabeth leave from the same stop, with the trip taking about 90 minutes. Port Elizabeth International Airport is 90km away and a transfer via car or shuttle takes around an hour.