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TRAVEL: Jeffrey’s Bay
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Jeffrey’s Bay
A place to soak up the sun and sink your toes in the sand

By Leoni Botha

bt 201911 travel 02You have probably never heard of a place called Jeffrey’s Bay, unless you are an enthusiastic surfer. Jeffrey’s Bay, or Jbay, as it is affectionately called by the locals, is not just a small seaside town, but is listed as No. 2 of the Top Ten Surf destinations in the world and has been awarded Blue Flag beach status since 2013.

Lying peacefully on the Sunshine Coast of South Africa, the bay was undisturbed for thousands of years, until a little village developed in the 1800s. It was only in the 1950s that the legendary John Whitmore, who is regarded as the “father of South African surfing’, discovered the now famous right breaking point surf on a business trip.

Since then, Jbay has hosted the annual Billabong Pro Jeffrey’s Bay World Surf League from 1996 to 2017. In 2018 and 2019, it was renamed the Corona Open J-Bay World Surf League. Surfers from all over the world come to Jeffrey’s Bay to take part in this competition. Guests from the popular TV series Baywatch also attended the World Contest Tour.

bt 201911 travel 03杰弗里海湾位于南非的阳光海岸上,不仅是一个海滨小镇,还位列世界十大冲浪目的地的第二位,并被授予蓝旗海滩的名誉。

St Francis Bay and Port St Francis

bt 201911 travel 06St Francis Bay, another popular surfing village just a stone’s throw away, was idolized and promoted in a surf film, The Endless Summer, in the 1960s. Here is also a beautiful small port, St Francis Port, a working harbour, where fresh fish is brought in from the sea every day by the many fishing boats. For the hungry and thirsty, there are a number of good restaurants from where you can watch the activities on the fishing boats or elegant yachts leaving for the sea.

St Francis is home to a world class golf estate, The Links Golf Estate, where you can enjoy a round of golf and a gourmet meal at their famous restaurant.

Fortunately, the discovery of the now-famous right breaking point waves has not spoiled the relaxed atmosphere or the pristine white beaches of Jeffrey’s Bay and surrounding villages.

bt 201911 travel 05圣弗朗西斯湾和圣弗朗西斯港。这是一个热门冲浪村庄,也是一个美丽的小港口,可以享受从渔船上运来的新鲜的鱼。圣弗朗西斯是世界级高尔夫庄园的所在地。

Nature Reserves

bt 201911 travel 07Jeffrey’s Bay lies between the Kabeljous and Seekoei Rivers, which form lagoons and host numerous water birds. It is ideal for water sports like canoeing, boardsailing, fishing and sandboarding. The Kabeljous Nature Reserve on the banks of the Kabeljous River is a walk-about reserve, which is known among anglers for its diverse number of fish. The Kabeljous estuary is one of the best preserved estuaries in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. The lagoon is home to waterfowl, herons and a variety of waders.

bt 201911 travel 08The Seekoei River Nature Reserve lies between Aston Bay and Paradise Beach, which is home to over 120 species of birds, including candy-floss pink flamingos, making it a popular destination for bird watchers. Small antelope like the duiker and bush buck also abound here. For the adventurous tourist, there is a 3-hour circular hiking trail that starts with a trip on a raft over the lagoon and runs through fynbos and subtropical vegetation.

bt 201911 travel 09Migrating whales on the way to Hermanus, close to Cape Town, to give birth, can be seen almost every day during season. Dolphins leaping in the surf are also common and many surfers eagerly relate their encounters with these friendly and playful creatures.


bt 201911 travel 10But - nothing beats the endless sandy white beaches and the gentle rolling blue sea that breaks in white foam wave after wave. The wide beach runs for 6 km and is known for the shells that washes ashore with each new wave. If you are lucky, you might even spot the elusive pansy shell.

Spoilt for Choice

bt 201911 travel 12Jbay is a vibrant little town that offers a variety of restaurants and shops. There is the famous Surf Village, where you can buy brand names like Billabong, Roxy and Quicksilver at their factory outlets. Hand-made leather shoes, jewellery, imported goods from Bali and Turkey and surf shops rub shoulders in this open-air centre.

The many restaurants cater for all tastes. Each has its own specialties and fresh seafood dishes are favourites among locals and visitors. The town boasts two local beer breweries, where you can try some of the finest craft beers, while having a snack or a meal. On the beach at Aston Bay are two restaurants known for their sea sand floors and seafood platters.

Visitors can choose to laze away the sunny days on the beach or go for beach horse riding, do kite-surfing, windsurfing or skydiving. For the young at heart, there is a water-slide and an 18-hole mini-golf course at the Dolphin Beach Entertainment Centre. Or you can visit the Surf Museum and Shell Museum, both conveniently situated on the beach.

bt 201911 travel 13休闲之选。杰弗里海湾充满活力,提供各种餐馆和商店。这里有著名的冲浪村,餐馆独具特色的海鲜菜肴是当地人和游客的最爱。游客可以在海滩上享受阳光,进行冲浪或跳伞。

Jeffrey’s Bay remains a small town in essence. In summer, which stretches from October to April, it becomes a hive of activity when tens of thousands of visitors flock to the town, but during the rest of the year it remains a sleepy little town. You might see a lone surfer riding the crest of a wave at dawn. Or an oystercatcher caring for its chicks among the surf-washed rocks. If you are early riser, you might find a virgin beach and you will be the first to leave your foot prints in the cool sand….

bt 201911 travel 04For general and accommodation information, contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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