Kick up some sand along the Wild Coast's lesser known beaches. (Photo: iStock)
If you book a breakaway to South Africa’s Wild Coast, you’re certainly not one of those crowd-loving kind of travellers.
No, you enjoy the company of close friends and family – and sometimes your own company is more than enough to keep you happy, too.
The Wild Coast is the best place for a personal, low-key getaway.
Cellphone reception is bad, the weather is perfectly mild and the days are long and lazy – perfect for reading an entire book in one go on a secluded beach…
CHECK OUT: 8 Secret Beaches on the Sunshine Coast
Speaking of secluded beaches, here are Traveller24’s favourite secret beaches found scattered along the Wild Coast:
1. Pebble Beach - about 10km from Port St Johns
You have to hike to get to this one. Stick to the coast and head south from Amapondo backpackers for about 10km. You’ll hike up steep mountains, but the sweet reward at the stony beach over the hill will be worth the sweat.
2. Port St Johns' Third beach
If you’re not up to hiking 10km, head to Third Beach rather. This beach lies less than 1km from Port St Johns, yet it’s completely isolated from the more popular first and second beaches closer to the town. It lies in the Silaka Nature Reserve. Book into the Silaka Nature Reserve Chalets for the ultimate experience.
SEE: 7 Secret beaches in the Overberg
3. Hole in the Wall - Coffee Bay
The village's unusual name stems from a ship that was wrecked here in the 19th century, losing its cargo of coffee beans. The coffee beans washed ashore, and Coffee Bay was named.
The beach is a pebbled one, overlooking the massive Hole-in-the-Wall landmark. When you swim to and through the gigantic cavity in the island mountain you’ll find yourself completely alone overlooking the Indian ocean.
4. Dwesa-Cwebe Wildlife Reserve & Marine Sanctuary
Two fairly small sister nature reserves - the Dwesa and Cwebe – surround one of the most pristine Wild Coast beaches. The reserves are separated only by the Mbashe River on the central wild coast, bordered on one side by the forest-fringed shores of the Indian Ocean, and on the other by the undulating hills and grasslands of the former Transkei. Book into The Haven Hotel to stay right on the Mbashe river and get the ultimate secluded experience.
5. Waterfall Bluff
This one is not technically a beach per se, but one of the most secluded, most beautiful places to swim in the world. Waterfall Bluff is a river estuary where the river falls straight into the ocean from a cliff – and you can swim underneath it if you hike down the rocky coastline.
READ: Wild Coast: A guided trip into SA's last unspoilt wonderland
6. Mkambati Nature Reserve falls and pools
This reserve is situated in the northern part of the Wild Coast, lying between Port Edward and Port St Johns. Mkambati hosts several waterfalls and rock pools, as well as some small secluded beach strips. The most accessible beach pool and fall is Mkambati Falls in the middle of the reserve, one of the few in the world (along with Waterfall Bluff) that cascade directly into the ocean.
7. Hluleka beach
This rocky coastline, its unspoiled beaches and rolling grasslands are the epitome of the Wild Coast. The beach lies in the Hluleka Nature Reserve within the district of Ngqeleni and is a virtually flawless cove, bounded by coastal forest. It’s the perfect place for long strolls, picnics, fishing and spotting dolphins and whales.
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