8 waterscape tips from Africa’s most southerly point
A stay in our Black Oystercatcher Cottages is NOT complete without a trip to the most southerly tip of Africa.
It’s the place where the two mighty oceans meet. And it’s also our next waterscape feature: A haven for holidaymakers, surfers, fishermen and fisherwomen, nature lovers and adventurers alike.
Here’s our top tips of things to do and see during a trip to Africa’s most southerly point:
1. The actual place where the two oceans meet:
This waterscape is a must-see – simply for the symbolism attached to it. It’s situated at the most southerly rocks on the African continent within the Agulhas National Park. And supposedly where the Indian and Atlantic Oceans fuse. A few years back, SANParks added a walkway up to the tip. And more recently, they’ve built an Iconic Map of Africa Monument here – capturing the continent in a 30m map.
2. The Lighthouse
This 171-year old building is the second-oldest working Lighthouse in South Africa. While it’s not a waterscape as such, it’s the perfect viewpoint to look out at the Agulhas oceans. But be warned: Not the ideal playing space if you’re a bit nervous of heights.
3. Pretty cool surf spots
This is especially for beginners. The beach at Langezandt Fishermen’s Village is the usual training spot for beginner surfers and lessons are available at Robbie’s Surfing Lesson’s. But there’s a nice break just off the harbour, where waves can prove ideal for surfers (and they’re usually pretty gentle). The old Nostra beach is also lovely and calm – great for stand-up paddling (and catching some waves).
4. Crazy kitesurfing
The Struisbaai Main Beach is THE waterscape for kitesurfing. The experts suggest you head a little further down the beach, to make the most of some cross shore winds. And while there are flat water conditions to start, the swell at the backline can get pretty big at times.
5. Don’t miss Parrie the Stingray
He’s a bit of an institution. Parrie lives at the Struisbaai harbour, and is rather used to people (especially the bits of food that fall off the fishing vessels). (We certainly don’t encourage feeding Parrie). What’s more, over the years, Parrie has encouraged his friends to join him at the harbour – so you could see a ‘school’ of stingrays during your visit.
#DidYouKnow: Parrie was once removed and taken to the Two Oceans Aquarium. The furious locals demonstrated, and Parrie was soon returned to his home.
6. The best Struisbaai fishing spots
No, we don’t know exactly where these are. But on a good day, you could find fishermen and -women all along the coast, from Langezandt Fishermen’s Village up to the Main Beach. And there are loads of fishing spots off the rocks all along the coast between Struisbaai and Agulhas. Yellowtail is often on the menu, thanks to linefishing here.
7. Protecting our waterscapes
A number of new Marine Protected Areas have been announced in 2019. This is great news. It means our oceans are protected from trawlers in these sensitive locations.
For example, the 300km square Browns Bank Corals MPA was proclaimed THIS YEAR. It’s on the western edge of the Agulhas Bank. Here you’ll find fossilized corals (at depts of up to 550m), which hold clues to past climates. The Agulhas Mud MPA was also proclaimed in 2019. Now critically endangered shallow mud habitats are protected (they’re only around 80m to 100m deep). This is the home of the Agulhas sole (a flatfish targeted by trawlers in the past). And the proclamation allows their numbers to recover.
8. And so much more
We’ve not even covered the half of it. There are loads of great places to grab dinner, drink a glass of cool-climate wine, look out over the ocean, stroll along the beach, and so much more. This is a waterscape not to be missed – and only a short drive from the Black Oystercatcher Cottages.
A SPECIAL THANKS TO STEFAN SMIT PHOTOGRAPHY
FOR SHARING HIS PHOTOS WITH US.
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In 2017, the Black Oystercatcher’s Dirk Human decided to solve a wine mystery
Now we travel a little bit east from De Mond, along the coast, to the small town of Arniston (or Waenhuiskrans).
#Waterscapes: The natural wonder of the Agulhas Plain
You depend on water – it’s the basis of life. The same goes for the Black Oystercatcher. But – because of our unique setting, we depend on an intricate water network. We don’t just turn on a tap. We connect with a vast water system that must function fully.
Because our #waterscapes are at the heart of our existence, we’re highlighting these natural wonders of the Agulhas Plain. It’s a tribute to our corner of earth in the Overberg – and the life-giving systems you’ll find here.