St Helena Bay, Cape West Coast
Once you've booked your accommodation in St Helena Bay, explore our pages for info on attractions and what to do in St Helena Bay.
St Helena Bay was "discovered" by the Portuguese explorer Vasco Da Gama on 7 Nov. 1497, during his pioneer voyage from Europe to India. He named the bay after Saint Helena, a devout, influential Christian and mother of Roman Emperor Constantine the Great.
It was on the shores of this bay that the first encounter between a European explorer and the indigenous Khoikhoi (nomadic herders of sheep and cattle) took place. Nowadays, St Helena Bay is one of the world's principal fishing centres. The cold Benguela current surges upwards along this part of the coast and brings nutrient rich waters to the bay resulting in the abundant sea life.
In winter, snoek are caught and the harbour is a vibrant, bustling hive of activity, as the fish are sold straight off the boats. More than half of the fish processed annually in South Africa is processed here.
St Helena Bay is one of the most popular bays for whales to visit and calve. From August to November, the Southern Right Whales come in to the bay to calve, and can be viewed from the shore all around the bay. Humpback whales are also present in the area.
Heaviside's dolphins are found in large numbers at any time along with schools of dusky and common dolphins. Large groups can be seen chasing fish along the shore or simply flying through the waves out of sheer enjoyment.
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St Helena Bay Reviews
"While staying at Shelly Point Hotel we explored the area of St Helena Bay. We were very impressed with the styles and designed of the houses of the area. This ..." - Andre Visser, Cape Town
Visitorials: We Love South Africa
St Helena Bay Visitorial
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We’ve asked those in the know to share their favourites things about St Helena Bay. Find out where locals go for the best cup of coffee, lunch suggestions and much more. We’re letting you in on all of their secrets ... I Love St Helena Bay because ...
Featured Attractions in (or near) St Helena Bay
Stretching all the way from Diep River in Milnerton, to the Berg River close to Velddrif on the West Coast, the Cape West Coast Biosphere Reserve (CWCBR) was designated as such by UNESCO in 2000. The beautiful area of the Cape Floristic Region is deemed worthy of protecting internationally, particularly as ... more information
Rocherpan enthusiasts who head off along the West Coast to visit this nature reserve near Velddrif will possibly mention to you that the bird life is incredible, but what they will not reveal is that it is also a wonderful setting in which to spot whales. The Rocherpan Nature Reserve is set a mere 25 kilometres ... more information
Our suggestions for a self-drive, three day trip up the Cape West Coast with ideas on what to do and where to stay! Note that this is a Three-day itinerary for the West Coast – OUT of flower season! Leave Cape Town via the R27 – there is a lot to do en route and day one is jam-packed. Look out for the Darling Wind ... more information
Just inland from the secluded harbour of Saldanha Bay one finds the azure waters of the Langebaan Lagoon, focal point of the West Coast National Park. Thousands of seabirds roost on sheltered islands, pristine golden beaches stretch endlessly into the early morning mist and brooding salt ... more information
The West Coast is not only esteemed for its seafood. You are also more likely to spot whales north of Cape Town, than in and around the city. The West Coast gets its fair share of the southern right whale, particularly at Melkbosstrand, Bok Point, Yzerfontein, the Rocherpan Nature Reserve near ... more information
Things To Do in St Helena Bay
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Things to Do in St Helena Bay
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