Hamburg, Sunshine Coast

Just south of the mouth of the Kieskamma River, the (very) small town of Hamburg lies on the coast between the popular coastal city of East London and the as popular beach resort town of Port Alfred.

As such, Hamburg is often overlooked and passed by without a backward glance, or an understanding of the little town's merits as a place in which to get away from it all. Think of it as one of those very few 'undiscovered' coastal gems.

And yes, the name Hamburg is a direct connection to its German counterpart as it was named by a group of British-hired German legionnaires turned farmer who wanted to establish a port at the mouth of the river, which then went a little pear-shaped when the harbour kept silting up.

The legionnaires, apparently, quickly returned to their former roles as soldiers, finding farming a little difficult perhaps, but a second wave of German settlers could farm and soon established the coastal town as a great spot for would-be fishermen.

Then Hamburg was incorporated into the Ciskei by the apartheid government and for a while it was ignored by holiday makers. The beach though is so pretty (although 'pretty' is an understatement – it is rather rugged, vast and mostly unfrequented) that it was only time before it resumed its position as a popular beach side resort post 1994.

Whilst fishing is the major draw card to the area (it is known as the land of the monster kob) and you won't hit the beach without sighting at least a couple of lines out, there are also great heritage hiking trails, the chance to canoe, windsurf and bird watch.

In short, if you're looking for beach holiday away from the madding crowds, this is it.

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