Things To Do in Cape AgulhasQuoin Point Lighthouse
Where? Cape Agulhas, Western Cape
How much? Price on request
There is a rather menacing peninsula or promontory that lies between Danger Point and Cape Agulhas, known as Quoin Point. It forms the outer eastern point of the Danger Point Peninsula area and lies only a little less further south than Agulhas, the most southern tip of the African continent. Unsurprisingly, reaching the lighthouse entails a 4X4 vehicle over rather rough terrain.
On Quoin Point a steel lattice tower with an AGA 500 mm acetylene gas lantern, open flame gas flasher and sunvalve has stood since November 1946. Around it are a series of little cottages, owned by families who live in nearby Elim – the Schippers and the Octobers (many of the former slaves, who originally came to live in Elim, took their names from the month in which they were freed).
The steel tower was replaced with an aliminium lattice tower in October 1990 that came from Cape Agulhas, where it served temporarily whilst that lighthouse was restored. Virtually marooned out here thirty two metres above the sea below, Quoin Point is perhaps best known for the ship wrecks on the rocks below.
Seven of these at least have been documented and include Johanna (1682), the first English East Indiaman to wreck on the coastline of South Africa the remains of which were re-discovered after 300 years, the Danish ship the Nicobar (1783), the Doncaster (1836) en route to England from Mauritius from which there were no survivors, the English steamer Teuton (1881), the Avala carrying coal destined for Rangoon, City of Lincoln (1946), the Esso Wheeling (1948), an oil tanker the oil from which drifted towards Dyer Island killing a third of the colony of African penguins,
Between Danger Point and Cape Infanta there has been a huge concentration of shipwrecks – roughly 140 in all – centred around Quoin Point, Arniston and Agulhas.