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Port Elizabeth 17 Fun and Fabulous Things To Do

Port Elizabeth: 17 Fun and Fabulous Things To Do

Port Elizabeth is fast becoming a favourite for travellers. Beyond its reputation as the ‘Windy City’, Port Elizabeth is also famous for its picturesque beaches, nature and wildlife tours, many museums, and more! 

If you’re ready to uncover these treasures, it’s time to explore our top things to do in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

See wildlife at Kragga Kamma Game Park


Address: Kragga Kamma Rd, Theescombe, Gqeberha, 6000, South Africa

Phone: +27(0)41 379 4195

Operating Hours:

  • Open daily – 8 AM to 5 PM

Kragga Kamma Game Park is an impressive destination to check out the awesome wildlife like rhinos, cheetahs, and giraffes. You can either drive yourself around or hop on a guided tour with a professional guide.

You can also take a walk on the treetop boardwalk, watch some birds and monkeys, or just chill with a picnic in the shaded area. And here’s the cool part: they’re serious about protecting the animals, so no hunting is allowed. 

Pro Tip: 
For a memorable experience, you can dine at The Bush Café, a cosy restaurant that serves delicious meals with a view of the waterhole. You can also stay overnight at one of the accommodations in the park.

Try scuba diving at Sardinia Bay Beach

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Sardinia Bay, sandwiched between Schoenmakerskop and Seaview, is the spot to hit up for Port Elizabeth locals. It’s more than just a beach – it’s the go-to place for scuba diving around here.

You can book a scuba diving session with a certified instructor who’ll guide you through the basics and take you to explore the underwater world. You’ll see colourful corals, fish, rays, turtles, and maybe even sharks!

Pro Tip: 
If you want to enjoy more of the natural beauty of Port Elizabeth, you should also try the Sacramento hiking trail. This trail is about 8 km long and follows the coast from Schoenmakerskop to Sardinia Bay.

Stay at Cape Recife Lighthouse Villa


Address: ERF 2410, Summerstrand, Gqeberha, 6011, South Africa

Phone: +27 083 234 3454

Cape Recife Lighthouse Villa in Port Elizabeth is an enchanting accommodation option, nestled in a historic lighthouse. From there, you get killer views of the ocean and nature reserve.

The villa has two bedrooms, a living room, and a fully loaded kitchen. Plus, you’re in for a treat with a private beach, barbecue spot, and activities like windsurfing, diving, and fishing. 

Pro Tip: 
For an unforgettable adventure, try the Helicopter Tour that will take you over the Cape Recife Nature Reserve and the Thunderbolt Reef, where many ships have met their end. 

Have Fun at Boardwalk Casino and Entertainment World


Address: Beach Rd, Summerstrand, Gqeberha, 6019, South Africa

Phone: +27 41 507 7777

Operating Hours:

  • Open daily – 8 AM to 5 PM

Boardwalk Casino and Entertainment World in Port Elizabeth is a fantastic spot, offering fancy hotel digs just a stone’s throw from the awesome Hobie Beach. It’s also your go-to for a good time with entertainment, great food, and meetings.

Plus, it’s the only place in the city with a legit casino, serving up a mix of slots and table games. And let’s not forget the tempting sidewalk joints and bars – some of the best eats in Port Elizabeth are right here.

Pro Tip: 
If you’re looking for a place to eat around the hotel, you can try The Bayside Pantry for a buffet of international dishes, Lobby Lounge for a relaxing drink and snack, or Sun Cafe for a casual and cosy atmosphere.

Explore Route 67 art and culture trail

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Route 67, put together by MBDA, is an awesome walk through Nelson Mandela’s story with 67 Public Art Works created by local talents.

Starting at the Campanile, it takes you up to Vuyisile Mini Market Square through St Mary’s Terrace, showing off the city’s heritage with bursts of colour and art. It’s a fun celebration of Mandela’s 67 years of hard work for South Africa’s freedom.

Pro Tip: 
As part of the Nelson Mandela Bay Arts Journey, there’s more to explore, like art galleries and spots like the Red Location Museum and Uitenhage Market Square.

Volunteer at SANCCOB


Address: Cape Recife Nature Reserve, Marine Drive, Gqeberha, Eastern Cape 6011

Phone: +27 (0)41 583 1830

The Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB) is doing some meaningful volunteering experience in Port Elizabeth. They’re all about saving seabirds, especially the endangered African penguins.

If you’re up for it and over 18, you can volunteer with them. It’s hands-on – feeding, cleaning, and watching these birds bounce back. Plus, you’ll meet awesome people who share your passion for wildlife and the environment.

Pro Tip: 
If you love penguins and want to support their conservation, why not adopt one from SANCCOB? You can choose from different adoption packages and receive a certificate, a photo, and updates on your adopted penguin. 

Admire Van Stadens Wild Flower Reserve


Address: Cape Rd, Woodridge, Gqeberha, 6001, South Africa

Phone: +27 41 956 0155

Operating Hours:

  • Open daily – 7:30 AM to 6 PM

Van Stadens Wild Flower Reserve is a chill spot in Port Elizabeth, perfect if you’re into nature vibes. You can wander the trails, check out the local flora, and maybe spot some fascinating birds.

It’s a laid-back place to just take a stroll or set up a low-key picnic with your crew. The well-maintained gardens showcase a variety of wildflowers, making it a perfect spot for a leisurely stroll or a picnic with family and friends. 

Pro Tip: 
If you’re looking for a challenging and rewarding hike in the Van Stadens Wild Flower Reserve, you should try the Van Stadens Hike. This hike is suitable for experienced hikers, as it covers 11 kilometres in about 3 hours. 

Cross Storms River Bridge (Paul Sauer Bridge)

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Storms River Bridge, also known as the Paul Sauer Bridge, is a great spot to check out in Port Elizabeth. It’s this awesome 100-metre deck arch bridge that hangs 120 metres above the Storms River.

You can get killer views of the river gorge and nature from the bridge, or chill at the nearby boardwalk and restaurants. Plus, there are info boards and plaques to fill you in on the bridge’s history and how they put it together. 

Pro Tip: 
For a thrilling adventure, don’t miss the opportunity to bungee jump from the Storms River Bridge. After your adrenaline rush, you can relax at the Stormsriver Farm, where you can taste fresh produce and homemade cheese.

Shop at Baywest Mall


Address: 100 Baywest Boulevard, Hunters Retreat, Port Elizabeth, 6017

Phone: +27 41 492 0326

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Saturday – 9 AM to 7 PM
  • Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM

Baywest Mall in Port Elizabeth is the perfect place for shopping and fun with over 180 stores. From fashion and food to entertainment and electronics, it has it all. 

There’s a Food Court, cinema, ice rink, and Fun Factory for different activities. Easy to reach from the N2 highway, the mall has plenty of parking, making it your go-to for groceries and more.

Pro Tip: 
You can also explore Nitro Park, the largest indoor entertainment centre inside Baywest Mall, which features thrilling rides, arcade games, bowling, and more.

Play with animals at Holmeleigh Farmyard


Address: Grey Dawn Road, Kragga Kamma, Gqeberha, 6017, South Africa

Phone: +27 72 324 4059

Operating Hours:

  • Friday to Sunday – 9 AM to 4:30 PM

Holmeleigh Farmyard, just off Kragga Kamma Road in Port Elizabeth, is like a mini paradise for kids and grown-ups. They’ve got tractor rides, pony rides, a jumping castle, and all sorts of play structures to keep everyone entertained.

You can also get up close and personal with farm animals – feed them, take care of them, and learn about farm life. Plus, there’s a charming tea garden and tuck shop in a lovely countryside setting, making it a great spot for any occasion.

Pro Tip: 
A fun and memorable way to celebrate your child’s birthday is to book a Kids Birthday Party package at Holmeleigh Farmyard. It includes animal feeding, tractor rides, playground access, and more.

Take a stroll in St. George’s Park

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St George’s Park, it’s the oldest one in Port Elizabeth, just a stroll away from the city centre. Spanning 73 hectares, it’s got a mix of history and nature with the famous Port Elizabeth Cricket Club and the oldest bowling green in South Africa. 

You can also check out the 1882 Victorian Pearson Conservatory and let the kids loose on the playground. It’s also a popular spot for jogging enthusiasts and a delightful family outing.

Pro Tip: 
Every last Sunday of the month, St. George’s Park hosts an Art in the Park event. You can browse and buy a variety of arts and crafts, from paintings and jewellery to furniture and leatherwork, as well as enjoy live music, food, and drinks.

Learn something new at South African Air Force Museum

Address: Forest Hill Dr, Gqeberha, 6000, South Africa

Phone: +27 79 600 6216

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 8 AM to 3 PM
  • Sunday – 10 AM to 4 PM

South African Air Force Museum, over on Forest Hill Drive in Southdene, is a cool spot near Port Elizabeth Airport. You’ll find nine aircraft there, including helicopters and a speedy jet fighter.

The Air Force Museum is busy fixing old planes and has cool aviation stuff. You can also check out the hangar to see enthusiasts working on planes and try the flight simulator linked to a mysterious event in ’69.

Pro Tip: 
If you’re visiting the South African Air Force Museum, you might want to stay at one of the nearby accommodations. Road Lodge, Field’s Rest, and Pine Tree Lodge are some of the options that offer comfort and convenience for your trip.

Discover Donkin Heritage Trail

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Address: Donkin Heritage Trail, Donkin Visitor Information Centre, Central, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, South Africa

Phone: +27 (0) 41 582 2575

Donkin Heritage Trail in Port Elizabeth is a cool 5 km walk on the old hill, honouring Rufane Shaw Donkin. It links 51 historic spots, sharing the story of settlers from 1820 onwards. 

You’ll see the charming Victorian and Georgian houses built around the early 20th century, especially the notable row on Donkin Street. These spots are more than just landmarks; they’re national monuments, preserving a slice of the city’s rich history.

Pro Tip: 
A great way to explore the Donkin Heritage Trail is to start from Fort Frederick and walk along the trail that leads to the lighthouse. Along the way, you’ll see the reserve, museums, and historical buildings that showcase its rich heritage.

Enjoy the museum and marine life at Bayworld


Address: 23 Beach Rd, Humewood, Gqeberha, 6013, South Africa

Phone: +27 41 584 0650

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 9 AM to 4:30 PM

Bayworld is a place where you can learn about the natural and cultural history of Port Elizabeth. You can see amazing displays of dinosaurs, whales, marine life, reptiles, and more.

You can also watch sea and penguin shows at the Oceanarium and Snakepark. Bayworld is a fun and educational attraction for the whole family.

Pro Tip: 
Just a few minutes away by car, Denville Beach is a destination awaiting your discovery when you visit Bayworld in Port Elizabeth. It’s a beautiful and relaxing spot where you can enjoy the sun, the sand, and the sea.

Taste coffee roastery products at Mastertons


Address: 92 Main Road, Walmer, Port Elizabeth, 6070

Phone: +27 41 585 4044

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 8 AM to 5 PM
  • Saturday – 8 AM to 1 PM

Mastertons Coffee Roastery in Port Elizabeth has got you covered if you’re wondering what to do in the city. Since 1924, they’ve been serving up some seriously good hand-roasted coffee.

The best part here is that you can watch the coffee roasting process, sip your expertly brewed cup at the Mastertons Coffee Bar, and explore their range of coffee goodies while enjoying free Wi-Fi and dedicated parking.

Pro Tip: 
Mastertons suggests keeping coffee in a clean, airtight plastic container in a cool, dark place to avoid absorbing unwanted flavours. Refrigerating or freezing coffee is discouraged due to the risk of it absorbing surrounding aromas.

Attend a show at Mandela Bay Theatre Complex


Address: Cnr of John Kani Road and Winston Ntshona Road, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Phone: +27 41 586 2256

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 8 AM to 4 PM

Mandela Bay Theatre Complex, once known as the Port Elizabeth Opera House, is this cool spot in Gqeberha. It’s got two theatres – The Opera House for big productions like musicals and The Barn Theatre for more versatile setups.

They’re like the go-to place for the arts in the Eastern Cape, hosting seasons, festivals, awards, and education programs. It’s a key player in keeping the cultural scene alive and buzzing in the region.

Pro Tip: 
Donkin Reserve and Route 67 are just a stone’s throw away from the Mandela Bay Theatre Complex in Port Elizabeth. These are historical and cultural attractions that showcase the city’s rich heritage and diversity.

Swim at Hobie Beach

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Address: 1 Marine Dr, Schoenmakerskop, Gqeberha, 6013, South Africa

Hobie Beach, near Shark Rock Pier and the Boardwalk, hosts the annual “Splash Festival” and international beach sports events.

It’s a go-to spot for swimming, sunbathing, and body surfing, with sheltered rock pools showcasing diverse sea life. The area provides amenities like eateries, restrooms, and a launch site for sailing and rubber ducking.

Pro Tip: 
For a comfortable and convenient stay, you can also check out some of the nearby accommodation options, such as Beachwalk Bed and Breakfast or Road Lodge. They offer cosy rooms, friendly service, and easy access to the beach.

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