The Wild Coast

Some places do live up to the hype. 

Not long after arriving in Cape Town with no idea where I should go, people starting mentioning the Wild Coast as a great place to go to.

“It’s the most beautiful part of the coast.”

“It’s where you can find the ‘real’ South Africa.”

The lagoon and main beach in Cintsa.

The lagoon and main beach in Cintsa.

Armed with only positive words about the Wild Coast, I decided to devote some time to seeing it. After spending Christmas and New Year’s along the Garden Route, I went to Cintsa and stayed at Buccaneers Backpackers. Many travellers recommended it to me and it didn’t disappoint at all. Between beach volleyball, surfing, stuffing my face on the delicious dinners, and laying out by the pool I kept myself quite busy there.

Our mini surf camp in Coffee Bay.

Our mini surf camp in Coffee Bay.

After 3 days in Cintsa I went to Coffee Bay, a tiny town right on the coast. The big draw here is the surfing, the hiking trails, and the laid back vibe. I took part in some of the daily activities organised by the hostel (Coffee Shack), took a few surf lessons (50 rand per lesson), went hiking, partying, visited a Xhosa village, and spent a fair bit of time laying in a hammock. In total, I spent 6 awesome days in Coffee Bay and could’ve easily stayed much longer.

The "Hole in the Wall"

The “Hole in the Wall”

One of the highlights of Coffee Bay was the hike to the Hole in the Wall. It’s a beautiful hike along coast with some dramatic scenery. We were told beforehand that the easier route was to stay up on top of the hills. But of course we took the other path and ended up walking along a narrow wet grass path with a 200+ metre sheer drop to the rocks and ocean below. It definitely got my blood pumping. In the end, we didn’t lose anyone and got a ride back rather than risk our lives again 🙂

A nearby Xhosa village.

A nearby Xhosa village.

Practical Info While Cintsa lies just a few km off the main highway, Coffee Bay is about 95km off the main highway. Other than the last km or 2, the road to Coffee Bay is fully paved, although you do have to watch out for cows. There are no ATMs in either town, but the hostels I stayed at both accept bank and credit cards for nearly all expenses.

Some of the kids from the Xhosa village. The one furthest on the right is a cheeky one!

Some of the kids from the Xhosa village. The one furthest on the right is a cheeky one!

After one of many surf sessions.

After one of many surf sessions.

The little "hole in the wall"

The little “hole in the wall”

The verdant rolling hills of the Wild Coast

The verdant rolling hills of the Wild Coast

One of many deserted beaches

One of many deserted beaches

Is the Wild Coast on your South African must-see list?

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