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48 tried-and-tested hours in Port Elizabeth

It may be the windy city, but Port Elizabeth and greater Nelson Mandela Bay is one of the tastiest cities in South Africa. I know now you’re wondering what the hell I’m going on about, and I’ll start elaborating in a bit, but here’s a round-up of what I would suggest you do when you’re next in PE…

Cruise around for public art

Route 67 in Nelson Mandela Bay is one of the most interesting and relevant public art experiences in South Africa. I’ve visited it several times over the years and just keep going back each time I’m in the city.

Developed by the Mandela Bay Development Agency, Route 67 is just one of the projects on the go that will position the city as a great urban destination for travellers. This inner city development is a literal route of 67 pieces of art in all its forms that beautify the city. The artworks range from pictures, to sculptures, mosaics and even architecture. While the route is still under development in some sense, the majority of the pieces are there for anybody to see.

I’ve written about it before on this blog, and you can read more about Route 67 Nelson Mandela Bay here.


My favourite mosaic in the ENTIRE country is at the Donkin Reserve in Port Elizabeth and forms part of Route 67.

Eat everything

So this is what I was referring to when I claimed Port Elizabeth was a tasty city! There are so many excellent restaurants that I couldn’t get to them all in my 48 hours. My favourites were definitely Fushin Sushi and Mella’s Dim Sum.

Just a small selection of what I actually ate!

Neither restaurant is particularly new, but both offer such gorgeous Asian-inspired dishes that it would be a pity to miss either. Fushin can be pricey, but it’s such a good spoil accompanied with bubbles!

Other favourites on my list include:

  • Bridge Street Brewery – epic pizzas, pies and beer tastings, of course
  • Vovo Telo – the Richmond Hill one is the original one!
  • Grass Roof – Great thin-crust pizza with a little deli on the side
  • Bocadillos – started by the same family as Vovo Telo


Grass Roof really does have a grass roof, guys!

Help a penguin in need

I’ve always had a funny affection for how awkward penguins are The way they wobble about is ridiculous and endearing all at once, and anybody on a mission to rescue these birdies when they’re in trouble is an angel in my books.

SAMREC looks after injured penguins that need some love and attention to get back on their feet. You can visit their facility by arrangement, but even better is to check whether they’re doing a release while you’re in town!

Recently, a bunch of travel bloggers adopted on of these birds. Her name is Pax (which means peace), you can read more about her here on the Going Somewhere Slowly blog.


Meet my co-adopted penguin, Pax, she’s only got one eye but that doesn’t hinder her. credit: Anje Rautenbach.

Hit the boardwalk

The Port Elizabeth seaside is one of my favourites. It was a little blustery when I headed out there last time, but it made for some great moody landscapes. There were tons of people out on the pier, enjoying the sun despite the gusts of wind too! We headed to the nearby Something Good Roadhouse to escape the wind and watch the waves with a little wine in hand.


Grumpy Port Elizabeth weather makes for good photos!

Hunt down some antiques

When we were in Port Elizabeth, we stayed at Belvedere Cottages. The owner was super helpful and insisted that we spend some time sifting through the city’s antique stores – one of my favourite things to do. While we didn’t get to them all, nearby in Lawrence Street we found the treasure trove that is Books and Bygones, and just down from that, Old Curiosity Shop. Both were definitely worth the visit, and I’m still sad about leaving behind a Trechikoff coffee table book.

Talking about coffee and antiques, you’ll also find Mastertons Coffee, South Africa’s first coffee roaster right here. Mastertons’ just smells amazing and is so fun to pop into. We’ve got some Hazelnut dessert coffee in the cupboard right now waiting to be consumed soon!

Planning on visiting Port Elizabeth (at least to eat)? Cheapflights will help get you there, while Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism will give you some suggestions on what to do other than follow my restaurant suggestions.


Spot the die-hard fishermen at the end of the pier!

This post was sponsored by Cheapflights and Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism. As with all my posts, the words are my own.

Travel & food blogger helping adventurous South Africans find their next escape.

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