Port St Johns


Gentle refuge on the Wild Coast


Beneath the bastion of twin mountains, the powerful Mzimvubu River cuts a colossal gorge through the luscious landscape of the Wild Coast on its way to the sea. This dramatic setting is in stark contrast to the atmosphere of the small town of Port St Johns lying at the river’s mouth. Here, backpacking travellers take refuge from the wilderness and bask in the relaxed atmosphere which permeates through the town.

Port St Johns is peppered with reminders of its Xhosa heritage which can be sampled at shops selling authentic African items or on guided tours to the neighbouring Pondo villages. But in a place where thick bush encroaches on the town itself, its natural beauty is by far the main attraction. Visitors are invited to watch dolphins frolic in the waves from unspoilt beaches or journey into the forests in search of over 250 different bird species.

Fitting for a town known for its backpacking travellers, Port St Johns has a wide range of excellent backpacker lodges. The moderate climate of the area ensures that Port St Johns is a year-round destination. Most of the town’s points of interest are within walking distance, which adds to the laid-back atmosphere.

 
Highlights
  • The Mzimvubu River cuts a colossal gorge through the Wild Coasts’ landscape, creating a dramatic backdrop to the town
  • A laid-back atmosphere pervades the town
  • Port St Johns’ rich Xhosa heritage can be sampled at shops selling authentic African goods
  • Explore the surrounding unspoilt beaches and dense forests, inhabited by over 250 different bird species 
  • Features an excellent range of backpacker lodges and other accommodation options
  • A great rest stop on a journey through the Wild Coast

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