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What is still an undiscovered treasure trove of pristine beaches, incredible mountain ranges, rich geographic diversity and the most amazing carpet of wild flowers in spring has become an important Cape Town vacation route along Route 27 Almost undiscovered treasures of pristine beaches, incredible mountain ranges, Rich geographic diversity and the most amazing carpet of wild flowers in spring have become an important holiday route from Cape Town along Route 27.
St. Helena Bay got its name from the Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama. He discovered the bay on November 7, 1497 on his way from Europe to Asia. Near the mouth of the Great Berg River, the Portuguese refreshed their supplies and recovered for a week on the beautiful beaches.
Here it was also where the first bout between a sailor and a group of Khoi-Khoi developed. A small memorial at St. Helena commemorates Gama’s landing pad. St. Helena Bay is one of the world’s best fishing areas. The cold Benguela stream provides nutrient-rich water, which he literally pushes into this bay. The 12 fish processing factories along the coast can not be overstated.
St. Helena Bay was “discovered” by Portuguese explorer Vasco Da Gama on November 7, 1497 during his pioneering journey from Europe to India. He named the bay after St. Helena, a pious, influential Christian and mother of the 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 (nomad shepherds of sheep and cattle) took place. Today, St. Helena Bay is one of the most important fishing centres in the world. The cold Benguela stream ascends this part of the coast, bringing nutrient-rich water into the bay, resulting in a rich marine life.
Britannia Bay is 160 km from Cape Town, a convenient 90-minute drive along the Cape West Coast region. Britannia Bay is 35 km from Vredenburg (the region’s main commercial centre) and 45 km from Saldanha Bay. Britannia Bay offers many un-spoilt, safe beaches. The bay is very sheltered and the water is a bit warmer than most places on the west coast, as the Benguela current does not penetrate the bay. The bay is teeming with Southern Right and humpback whales for up to ten months of the year, which are always a pleasure to watch, as are the scores of Resident Delfin.
The unpretentious, picturesque seaside village of Lambert’s Bay is located on the West Coast, not far from Clanwilliam and only 2.5 hours drive from Cape Town. This part of the coast is just beautiful, with wide white sand beaches under a clear blue sky and endless opportunities to experience seafood in the heart of the Crab Country. The open-air restaurants along the coast have become an institution and offer unforgettable, traditionally prepared seafood right next to the coast as the sun sets.
The popular town of Langebaan is just over 100 km from Cape Town on the west coast of the R27, next to Langebaan Lagoon. The white Caribbean beaches that surround the crystal clear waters of Langebaan Lagoon are one of the main attractions of Langebaan.
Langebaan has a modern Country Club and offers many excellent holiday facilities. For water sports enthusiasts who prefer a weekend getaway or vacation in Langebaan, the vibrant resort town offers plenty of water sports and fishing. Water sports enthusiasts can enjoy windsurfing, kite surfing, sailing, fishing and much more in the turquoise waters that are bland for the Cape.
Paternoster, which means Our Father, derives from the prayers of shipwrecked Portuguese sailors. Paternoster is a small, idyllic and picturesque fishing village about 145 km (90 minutes by car) from Cape Town and 15 km northwest of Vredenburg. Paternoster visitors can watch whales and dolphins frolicking in the sea (ten months a year). After the first spring rains, the landscape turns into millions of native flowers that rip the earth in bright colours (usually between the end of July and September).
Saldanha is a coastal town located in the northernmost corner of Saldanha Bay – the country’s largest and deepest natural bay. The picturesque harbor town of Saldanha is about 110 km west of the Cape West Coast of Cape Town and is mainly operated by the export and the fishing industry. Crayfish, fish, mussels, oysters and kelp are driving the economy.
The sheltered harbor here is dominated by the Sishen-Saldanha iron ore project and houses a naval base, the South African Military Academy and a fleet of fishing vessels that give the bay a special character. Seagulls, cormorants, cape boobies, duckers and terns live in this largely untouched part of the world, surpassing humans by a million to one, and eco-tourism is very popular.
Only 130 kilometers north of Cape Town is Vredenburg, which is considered the business center of the West Coast and a springboard to the coastal cities of St. Helena Bay, Langebaan, Paternoster and Saldanha Bay, which it is closest.
Yzerfontein is a quiet seaside village 80 km north of Cape Town on the R27 and marks the beginning of the beautiful Cape West Coast region. Yzerfontein offers pristine shores with rocky and sandy beaches, including the famous 16-mile beach that stretches to the Postberg Nature Reserve in the West Coast National Park. Yzerfontein is known for its natural beauty, extensive beaches and tranquillity.