Weather in Eastern Cape
Summer (November – March) It can be hot with temperatures likely to reach 35C and it is generally dry.
Spring (September/October) Temperatures generally in the high 20C. There can be rain at this time of year and evenings and early mornings can feel chilly especially on a game drive.
Autumn (April/May) Temperatures generally in the high 20C. There can be rain at this time of year and evenings and early mornings can feel chilly especially on a game drive.
Winter (June – August) Mild with daytime temperatures rarely below 18C. This is the time of year when storms can occur.
Facts about the Eastern Cape
- History This is an interesting area of historic conflict between the Xhosa and the Boers but in 1820 the British settled farmers here in 1820 promising them a land of milk and honey!
- Beaches There are some great beaches including Summerstrand, Kenton-on-Sea, East London, Coffee Bay, Umngazi River Mouth.
- National Parks The Addo National Park is one of the main attractions but there is also Cradock Mountain Zebra National Park as well as the Camdeboo National Park with the historic and scenic town of Graaff-Reinet at its centre.
- Private Game Reserves are numerous and range from ultimate luxury to the more affordable.
- Towns Port Elizabeth is rather tired but the historic centre is interesting. The Oceanarium is worth visiting as is the Boardwalk development. Grahamstown is the historic seat of learning in South Africa with Rhodes University.
- Horse riding can be arranged at many of the properties featured.
- Golf There are a number of good golf courses in this area particularly around Jeffrey’s Bay, Port Elizabeth, East London and Grahamstown.
- The Wild Coast is the most northerly and eastern part of the region and covers the area also known as Transkei. This is the home of the Xhosa tribe as well as the birthplace of Nelson Mandela. Here you will experience rural Africa with hilltops dotted with round thatched huts normally painted green, and deep river valleys. Where the main rivers arrive at the sea there are holiday locations with beautiful coastal scenery and evocative names such as Coffee Bay.Accommodation tends to be modest but with typically South African hospitality. Although the main N2 highway is in good condition, many of the local roads are potholed which makes driving slow and sometimes hazardous so you must allow plenty of time for your journey. Cattle and other domestic animals roam freely providing another driving hazard particularly after dark. Once there, however, you will be rewarded with sensational scenery, way off the beaten track and friendly people who are genuinely pleased to encounter tourists. We do, however, tend to recommend this area only for our clients who are experienced travellers in South Africa
Accommodation in Eastern Cape
For Safari lovers the Eastern Cape includes the Addo National Park This was established in 1931 to protect the last herd of wild elephants in this region. In 1952 the black rhino was reintroduced now most of the indigenous species have been re-established….with the exception of crocodiles! The park was extensively enlarged in the late 1990s and now extends from the Indian Ocean to the Zuurberg Mountains. This is an area of South Africa that is totally free from Malaria and you will be enchanted with the range of accommodation from luxury Private Safari Lodges and boutique hotels to more modest bed and breakfast accommodation.