The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Port St. Johns

Afrikaans name: Port St. Johns

View over Port St. Johns

View over Port St. Johns

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Eastern Cape

Port St. Johns is a small coastal town in the Eastern Cape Provice of South Africa. It is about 70 kilometres away from Mthatha. The town is located in a very scenic location with a deep river gorge, evergreen forest and two headlands.

The name of the town was the result of a mistaken identity. In 1552 a Portuguese ship, called the São João, was wrecked at the mouth of the Mtamvuna River which is near the location of Port Edward today. Settlers arrived in the area in the 1870's and mistook the river mouth as being the location for the wreck of the São João giving rise to the name in English.

The town is located on what is known as the "Wild Coast" and is the most popular tourist destination in the area. Tourists enjoy the scenic beauty of the area, the beaches nearby and the good fishing spots.

Port St. Johns is on the southern bank of the Umzimvubu River which was used as a port for many years. It closed down when the river silted up in the 1940's. The town is serviced by an unusual airstrip; the runway is located on top of Mount Thesiger.

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Port St. Johns shops

Above - Port St. Johns shops

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Port St. Johns beach

Above - Port St. Johns beach

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Cremorne Estate

Above - Cremorne Estate as seen from the mountain on which the airflied is situated

Photo © Johan van Zyl

References and further reading

The Pictorial Motoring Atlas of South Africa - Author: Maxwell Leigh - Published: 1987 - Page: 111

Southern Africa from the Highway - Author: AA RSA - Published: 1991 - Page: 208

Road Tripping South Africa - Author: MapStudio - Published: 2014 - Page: 96

Readers Digest Illustrated Guide to Southern Africa - 4th edition - Author: - Published: 1986 - Page: 402

Places to Visit in Southern Africa - Author: AA RSA - Published: 1995 - Page: 182

On Route - Explore South Africa region by region - 3rd edition - Author: B.P.J. Erasmus - Published: 2014 - Page: 210

go! - Issue 127 - Author: - Published: 2017 - Page: 32

go! - Issue 139 - Author: - Published: 2018 - Page: 35

On Route - A region by region guide to South Africa - Author: B.P.J. Erasmus - Published: 1995 - Page: 110

Getaway - Vol 27 No 09 - Author: - Published: 2015 - Page: 126

Conollys Guide to Southern Africa - 2nd edition - Author: Denis Conolly - Published: 1982 - Page: 174

Book of the Road - 4th edition - Author: MapStudio - Published: 2019 - Page: 139


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