Mossel Bay is a small harbour town situated along the renowned Garden Route, in the Western Cape. It is an important tourism region, known for its boot-shaped Post Office, the Garden Route Casino, 60km of golden beaches, and array of natural, cultural, and historical attractions. Browse our excellent variety of Mossel Bay accommodations.
Mossel Bay is situated halfway between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth, making it an ideal stop over for visitors to the Western and Eastern Cape Provinces. In addition to a range of sprawling attractions, Mossel Bay boasts numerous accommodations, from B&Bs to hotels, to suit every need and wallet.
The modern history of Mossel Bay began in 1488, when the Portuguese explorer, Bartolomeu Dias, landed close to the site of the current Dias Museum Complex. He named Mossel Bay “Angra dos Vaqueirosâ€ (the Bay of Cowherds). Mossel Bay’s current name is believed to have been derived from a Dutch navigator called Paulus van Caerden, who renamed it in 1601 after he found that mussels were a welcome addition to his crew’s diet. Today, Mossel Bay’s mussels are rated to be among the finest in the world.
Mossel Bay’s major tourist attraction is, undoubtedly, the Post Office Tree. This unique feature was established when another Portuguese sailor sought refuge in Mossel Bay after losing his fleet in a storm. He left a detailed account of the disaster in an old shoe he hung from a milkwood tree, which served as a post office for decades afterwards. More recently, a boot-shaped post box has been erected under the now-famous Post Office Tree, and letters posted here are stamped with a commemorative stamp. The Post Office Tree, believed to be around 800 years old, has been declared a National Monument.
Tourism has greatly increased the growth of Mossel Bay, with people drawn by the mild year-round climate and over 60 kilometres of golden beaches. Mossel Bay boasts around 320 days of sunshine per year, and receives most of its rainfall at night - allowing for maximum activity during the day, from surfing, to whale and dolphin watching.
A number of attractions are on offer in Mossel Bay. Explore the Port of Mossel Bay, the smallest commercial harbour on the South African coast, or learn about South Africa’s oldest archaeological excavations at Cape St Blaize Cave, with deposits dating back 200,000 years. Museums to visit include the Maritime Museum (home to a life-size replica of Bartolomeu Dias’ ship), the Granary, the Shell Museum, and the Cultural History Museum. The mountains of Mossel Bay are riddled with San rock art, some of which date back as far as 27,000 years!
Other attractions include the Mossel Bay Yacht and Boat Club, Cape St Blaize Lighthouse, Mossel Bay Golf Club, Ochre Barn, The Old Joinery, the War Memorial, Zorgfontein Game Farm, and Botlierskop Private Game Reserve. A range of adrenaline-inducing activities in Mossel Bay include shark cage diving, shipwreck diving, power-boating, township tours, bungee-jumping, and skydiving.
Extend your visit and book one of the accommodations available in Mossel Bay. As jy in Afrikaans wil bespreek, kan LekkeSlaap jou help. Soek vir Mosselbaai akkommodasie.