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Margate, Port Shepstone

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Margate at a glance

Area Profile:

Margate has always been one of South Africa’s favourite holiday and leisure destinations. It has become synonymous with fun-filled, exciting holidays, as it is undoubtedly the vibrant holiday centre of the South Coast.

It is an energetic, colourful and cosmopolitan town; offering something for everybody. Its bustling CBD is home to many fine restaurants, shops, galleries, clubs, and sports bars – all within easy walking distance from the centre of town. For those who prefer a little South Coast souvenir shopping, Margate boasts some exceptional art galleries and craft shops, catering for all tastes and budgets.  

Besides being regarded as the foremost South Coast beach spot, where many local and foreign tourists spend their holidays, Margate beachfront is also the centre for nightlife on the South Coast; whether you want to go clubbing, enjoy some fine dining, or have a beach party with friends.

Margate’s famous wide golden beach has brilliant waves for swimming, surfing, kayaking, and much more. During season there are lots of planned beach activities for the whole family to enjoy. Life guards are also on duty year-round, to ensure safe, enjoyable bathing. The main beach is also THE venue for exciting festivals; like Mardi Gras, music concerts, the annual national bike run, flea markets and numerous exhibitions (to name but a few)! The annual New Years’ Eve festival and party are legendary, with thousands of revellers partying until dawn.    

For those who don't want to spend their holiday just lazing on the beach, Margate also offers leisure and sporting facilities galore, including water sports such as boating, skiing, kayaking, diving, snorkeling and deep-sea fishing. There are scenic walks; along Margate beach to Lucien (at the northern end), and further along the lovely Lillie Crona road, offering spectacular ocean views (keep an eye out for the resident Rock-dassie colony, Vlei loeries, Woolly-neck storks and Egyptian geese), for about 2.5 km to the Uvongo fishing pier – a firm favourite among anglers. The view from here is breath-taking: over the sheltered beach, the lagoon, and a natural waterfall flowing into it. If you’d like to walk south from Margate; there’s also the Ramsgate Marine Ramble. This walkway offers hikers and nature enthusiasts a well-maintained and easy-to-follow 6 km path from just outside Margate in the north, to Southbroom in the south. This gorgeous stretch of coastline offers spectacular views of the ocean, coastal forest and dunes. Whales and dolphins are also often and easily spotted along this route.             

For golf lovers, Margate Country Club features superb greens and abounds with tall trees and stunning South Coast scenery. Lower South Coast golf courses are a much sought-after destination for golfing enthusiasts. These courses stretch from Southbroom Golf Club, to Port Shepstone, Selborne and Umdoni, most of which are within a leisurely hour’s drive from Durban.

Nearby Attractions and Activities

The warm Indian Ocean flowing past Margate, provides a natural haven for a multitude of tropical fish living on the abundant South Coast coral reefs, which allows for excellent diving and snorkelling.

For the more adventurous, there are two world-renowned dive-sites nearby: Aliwal Shoal (about 5 km offshore from Scottborough), and the Protea Banks (about 8 km offshore from Shelly Beach). Experienced dive operators offer diving trips to these reefs and the chance to encounter any of at least seven shark species, with frequent sightings of Zambesi, Tiger, Ragged Tooth, and Hammerheads. Soft cage diving is also offered for less skilled divers.

South Coast fishing in and around Margate is superb, and the rocks off Margate's shore abound with mussels, although a license is required to remove them. To the delight of fishermen and everyone else, each year, Margate comes to life with an energetic buzz of visitors and locals when the annual South Coast Sardine Run takes place. Considered to be the greatest shoal on earth, these millions of tiny silver fish are followed by numerous larger game fish, dolphins, sharks, seals, whales and a variety of birdlife, all joining the hunt for their annual feast. This is without a doubt, one of the most exciting and spectacular marine events on the South Coast.

For cycling and trail running enthusiasts, The Burry Stander Bike Park is only about 20 km north of Margate, inland from Umtentweni. For more information on this and other great biking trails, simply click https://www.bundubashers.org/trails-bundu-bashers-mountain-bike-trails-south-coast/.

Also visit these other towns near Margate

North of Margate:

Manaba Beach - 2.3km from Margate Beachfront
Uvongo - 4.55km from Margate swimming Beach
St Michaels-on-Sea - 5.8km from Margate main swimming beach
Shelly Beach - 7.7km from Margate Beachfront
Oslo Beach - 16.8km from Margate Beach
Port Shepstone - 20km from Margate Beachfront

South of Margate:

San Lameer - 11.4km from Margate main beach
Southbroom - 14.1km from Margate main Beach
Marina Beach - 14.5km from Margate beachfront 

For some serious shopping and pampering, spend the day at one of these South Coast malls near Margate:

Shelly Beach Mall (about 7 km from Margate)
South Coast Mall (about 9 km north from Margate)

Rendezvous Mall (1.22km from Margate)
 

Other worthwhile attractions:

Bushbuck Trail (about 16 km south from Margate)

Pure Venom Reptile Park (7.09km from Margate)
Riverbend Crocodile Farm (7.59km north from Margate)
Frederika Nature Reserve (8.80km from Margate)
Port Shepstone Lighthouse (15.12km north from Margate)
Mpenjati Nature Reserve (15.60km from Margate)
Natal Space Centre (26.41km from Margate)
Umtamvuna Nature Reserve (28.13km from Margate)

Beaver Creek Coffee Farm (30 km south from Margate main beach)

References:

  1. https://www.wheretostay.co.za/town/margate

   

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