Road trip: Taking on a Midnight Trip to Coffee Bay – Day 3 & 4 of 5.
Coffeebay and Hole in The Wall, on the Isuzu mu-X Sport Utility Vehicle 4×4.
A day after our part breath-taking and infamous trip from East London to Coffee Bay, I was thrilled to get up revitalized to take on a brand-new day and its new challenges. We were still on our trip, the second-leg of our maiden, Pride of Africa/Ubuntu Adventure Ride 2019. It was now time to explore the iconic natural wonder Coffee Bay – that we have always head so much about, it is perfectly located on the Wild Coast, in the Eastern Cape.
Day 3 – Coffee Bay Beach
We woke up to the sun rising over a clear 180-degree spectacular view of the Indian Ocean. This was a big sigh of relief, especially if we were to look back at the previous nerve wrecking trip on day 2. The lodges spacious wooden patio overlooking the ocean provided a paradise life like feeling at breakfast time. Because of bad weather and relatively stiff bodies, unfortunately we could only take a short walk to a nearby beach for some sight-seeing, and a local jewellery shopping at a small market located near the entrance of the beach.
Four things to do in Coffee Bay – Says SA Venues:
- Whale Watching in Bluewater Bay
Between July and December of every year, the Eastern Cape coastline is frequented by Southern Right Whales and Humpback Whales. These animals glide past the shore; breaching, lobtailing, and spy-hopping as onlookers appreciate their antics from the beach. The warm waters and extensive coastline of the Eastern Cape make this a fabulous whale-watching destination.
2. Coastal hike to hole in the wall
A scenic hike from Coffee Shack along the magnificent coastline, passing Baby Hole and Hlungwane Waterfall. Hole in The Wall is a spectacular natural feature carved out of a huge mass of rock by millions of years of pounding waves. Simply enjoy the beach and your tasty toasties before having a dip in one of the world’s most beautiful lagoons. If conditions are right, the brave can attempt an adrenalin-pumping, wave-assisted jump into the hole. The trip ends with a bone-rattling 4×4 ride back to the Shack.
3. Hiking Port St Johns to Coffee Bay
The Wild Coast is, undeniably, one of the world’s most spectacular areas. The best way to experience its raw, unspoiled beauty is to explore it leisurely, as opposed to whizzing past it in a car. Hiking from Port St Johns south towards Coffee Bay is challenging but promises some of the most beautiful sights imaginable.
The official hike takes five days (four if your group is an especially experienced, fit group of hikers) and averages eight hours of walking a day. This route takes hikers on a stunning course through river gorges, along Port S Johns’ Third Beach, through the Mngazana Estuary, Silaka Nature Reserve’s dune forest, rural villages the Hluleka Nature Reserve, and the Mfekatye River. Upon reaching Coffee Bay, visit one of the many backpackers for a refreshing cocktail or ice-cold beer. The beaches there are intimate and private, with warm waters and unforgettable scenery as the ideal backdrop.
This hike involves plenty of hills and mountains as well as crossing rivers and negotiating bush, so be prepared for some rough areas. However, the reward of the exquisite landscape and the friendly locals certainly makes this a very special hiking route.
4. Hluleka Wildlife Reserve Trails
The Wild Coast of South Africa has so much to offer travelers. It is the very definition of beauty and variety, and the friendly locals make visitors feel extremely welcome.
The Hluleka Nature Reserve is nestled within these surroundings and is a not-to-be-missed hotspot for hikers and those that love spending their days outdoors. The trails of this reserve lead hikers along the wild, rocky shoreline, across vast expanses of pristine beaches, and through densely wooded ebony forests.
There are several wildlife species that hikers can look forward to spotting on the reserve trails. These include eland, impala, spotted genet, Burchell’s zebra, blue wildebeest, and bushpig. Of course, the stunning vegetation attracts a host of bird species, which include the African finfoot, ground hornbill, osprey, Knysna lourie, and green coucal.
Day 4 – Exploring Hole in the Wall
Still on relaxation mode, for the second day in a row, neither the bikes nor the Isuzu mu-X support vehicle received any attention from any of us, only until late afternoon where we took a drive to Hole-in-the-Wall sight. The walking trail from the parking area at Hole-in-the-Wall Hotel to the actual sight is a short but very scenic trail, I believe it is pet friendly. We didn’t spend much time at the sight as the tide had just come in and the winds were picking up quickly, fortunately, we were able to take a couple of group and individual photos of the sight, we also had a chance to pop a bottle of bubbly to celebrate our 2019 milestones and our Ubuntu Adventures.
Our annual Ubuntu Adventure Ride Leg 2, Day 3 and 4 ended with us back on the dining room table of our holiday accommodation – Eagle’s Nest Backpackers Lodge. As a designated driver for the day, I was super stoked to appreciate what the Isuzu mu-X SUV support vehicle had to offer. Notable the mountains of torque from its tried and tested 3.0l turbocharged diesel engine that has been serving many other Isuzu platforms for many years already, its transmission features ‘Terrain command’ 4WD select dial (2WD-high, 4WD-high, and 4WD-low), switching between transmission modes is at your fingertips. On a gravel road, the ride quality felt very solid and impressive, with 5 adults inside the cabin at the time the mu-X felt very capable and inspiring.
For more about Coffee Bay, click here http://coffeebay.co.za/
For more about Hole in the Wall, click here https://reservations.holeinthewall.co.za
For more about Eagles Nest Backpackers Lodge Coffee Bay, click here https://booking.com
For more about Isuzu mu-X, click here https://isuzu.co.za/suv/mu-x
For more about Honda Africa Twin, click here https://www.honda.co.za/motorcycles/crf1000l-adventure-sport
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR…
God first, village boy originally from KwaZulu Natal, a senior road designer/engineer by trade, chairman of South Africa Road Federation Northern Region (SARF), director at Bikers Social Responsibility Foundation NPO, a biker for over 25 years, motorcycle enthusiast, and contributor at Bike Talk SA