Work up a sweat, get the blood pumping and the adrenalin flowing when you visit or have a staycation in Port Elizabeth during the festive season because the Bay is anything but boring. And thanks to a few new exciting activities on offer - and some golden oldies – you might want to put the ice pack in the fridge to soothe your fun muscles after a few hours of active fun.
Allow the Friendly City to thrill you – and the whole family - with these 5 exciting activities:
Climb to the top
Get to new heights this summer vacation and climb a wall, and not just any ordinary wall but a bouldering cave if you dare. Valley Crag Indoor Climbing Centre is a safe and exciting place for kids, a place for those who don’t know where to start, a place for those who’ll start at the bottom and a place for those hardcore climbers with the ability and skill to move like a spider.
Climbers can look forward to beginner and advanced courses, lead routes, climbing competitions and one heck of an empowering experience. And if it is your first time and you don’t have gear, don’t worry, you can hire a harness, chalk bag and even the shoes (but please bring your own socks).
To find out what, where, when and how much, visit www.valleycrag.co.za.
Get on that fat bike
If 4x4s can have special tyres for certain terrains, then why can’t bicycles? Fat bikes - off-road bicycles with oversized tires – have gained a lot of popularity and adventurers from all over the world are jumping eagerly on the saddle to brave snowy or sandy conditions at a lower tyre pressure.
And while Port Elizabeth has no snow, you bet your fat bike that these wheels will make way for epic adventures on the city’s sandy shores.
Fat Attack Beach Ride offers two guided tours in Port Elizabeth; a 15 km Lighthouse Tour that starts at Hobie Beach and end at Cape Recife, and the 12 km Sacramento trail that is a combination of a single track and beautiful beaches.
To find out what, where, when and how much, visit www.fatbiketour.co.za.
Be a beekeeper for a day
If you have ever been fascinated by beekeeping or what goes on behind that jar of sweet honey, then grab the family and go on a bee tour at the Apiarist Farm Shoppe, situated on the outskirts of Port Elizabeth.
During the tour you will suit up in protective clothing, learn more about beekeeping and exactly what the bees do, grab a smoker (an instrument, not a person) and go into the field to work with the hives and start the harvesting process. With the help of a manual extractor you will extract the honey, bottle it and then it is signed, sealed and delivered to your hands as a reward to keep after all your hard work. Tour duration is 2 to 3 hours, weather depending and only on selective days.
To find out what, where, when and how much, visit www.apiarist.co.za.
Scoot around on a Segway
All aboard the Segway! Wildx is offering four amazing routes for their guided Segway tours along Port Elizabeth’s beach front between Kings Beach and Summerstrand. But wait there’s more. They also have three exciting Forest Park Routes in Happy Valley which is just a hop and a skip – or rather a scoot – away.
This can be a fun and safe experience for the whole family as this self-balancing electric vehicle will help you glide through the carefully planned out trails.
To find out what, where, when and how much, visit www.wildx.co.za.
Mountain bike on the wild side
Hopewell Conservation Estate is situated within an expansive 3 100 hectare urban nature reserve and offers visitors peace and tranquility a mere stone throw from the city. It has several mountain biking and trail running routes available; all have different levels of lengths, terrain and intensities with the shortest one starting at 7 km. There are also other routes available: 20 km, 32 km, 44 km and 55 km. The trails take visitors through a variety of biomes and game species such as eland, kudu, Cape mountain zebra, springbok and giraffe while bird watchers will be pleased to know that 130 bird species have been recorded.
Hopewell Conservation also offers horse riding and guided walks where you can learn more about the unique and diverse fauna and flora of the area.
To find out what, where, when and how much, visit www.hopewellconservation.co.za.
Visitors to Nelson Mandela Bay can purchase a Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism Pass (a smartcard access card) that will give them free admission or a discount to numerous attractions and activities, not only in the Bay, but also for activities as far as Plettenberg Bay. There are different passes to suit your travel style and length of stay. For more info, visit www.nelsonmandelabaypass.co.za.
Anje Rautenbach is the writer behind the blog Going Somewhere Slowly, find her Facebook, Twitter or on Instagram!