Port Alfred, known as the heart of the Sunshine Coast, is a small coastal town situated halfway between Port Elizabeth and East London, in the Eastern Cape. Port Alfred is known for its impeccable beauty and boasts an excellent marina, friendly people, and unrivalled water sporting opportunities. Browse our range of fantastic Port Alfred accommodation.
The town of Port Alfred was established by British settlers in the early 1820s as two separate towns; Port Kowie to the west, and Port Frances to the east. In 1860, Prince Alfred (son of Queen Victoria) visited the town and the name was changed to honour him.
Port Alfred boasts a temperate climate with rainfall in spring and autumn. This makes it an ideal holiday destination, particularly for water sport enthusiasts who seek the ideal conditions of the Kowie River and Indian Ocean. An impressive selection of accommodation is available in Port Alfred to ensure visitors enjoy the very best the town has to offer.
The Royal Alfred Marina is one of Port Alfred’s prime attractions. Built in 1841, it is South Africa’s first man-made harbour and one of the few in the world where each resident enjoys a private waterfront and jetty. The marina boasts a club house, swimming pools, squash court, and tennis court, and has direct access to the Kowie River Mouth and the Indian Ocean where excellent fishing (both deep sea, and rock and surf) can be enjoyed. Visitors to Port Alfred can enjoy boat cruises or canoeing along the picturesque marine canals.
Places of interest in Port Alfred include the Royal Port Alfred Golf Club, Fish River Country Club, and 43 Air School where South African Airways pilots are trained. A number of game reserves surround the area, such as Shamwari Game Reserve, Addo Elephant Park, and Sibuya Game Reserve, where one can spot the Big Five. Make sure you visit the nearby town of Bathurst to see the Big Pineapple. This 16.7m tall feature is a tribute to the agricultural success of pineapples and boasts a tourist shop, static displays, and a great view.
Port Alfred has a number of unspoilt beaches with secluded fishing spots and safe rock pools where interesting marine life can be seen. There are some fantastic swimming beaches, including Kelly’s Beach which has Blue Flag status. Much like Jeffrey’s Bay, Port Alfred boasts an abundance of seashells, with 1800 different shell varieties recorded, including Perlemoen. Dolphins and humpback whales are often spotted in the waves.
Activities to be enjoyed in Port Alfred include boating, water skiing, hiking, hunting, horse riding, bird watching, and surfing. Excellent diving can be enjoyed on Fountain Rocks, one of South Africa’s most colourful reefs and a breeding ground for the ragged tooth shark. Port Alfred’s dive sites are famous for soft coral, numerous shipwrecks, and the incredible "Lunar landing" where hundreds of crayfish live and breed.
Experience all that Port Alfred has to offer at one of our superb accommodations.