East London is a port city situated in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, bordered by the warm Indian Ocean. Snuggled on the estuary of the Buffalo River in the south, it meets the Nahoon River in the north.
East London’s calling card is its stunning natural surroundings. It’s also the southern gateway to the unspoilt wilderness of the Wild Coast, a blissful 250-km stretch running north to the KwaZulu-Natal border.
The subtropical climate, warm ocean waters and soft sandy beaches make the city and its surroundings, a popular year-round destination, away from the hustle and bustle of the big cities.
The beaches do get busy in the December and January school holidays but you can still find quieter patches of sand to spread out your beach blanket. Outside of school holidays, the beaches are undisturbed, frequented only by friendly locals.
Also a short drive from East London, there are two malaria-free, Big Five private game reserves. They are ideal for travellers wanting a game viewing experience with fewer crowds than some of the larger, well-known parks in the north.
East London Airport is serviced by South African Airways and FlySafair from Johannesburg and Cape Town. The city is also just over a three-hour drive from Port Elizabeth.
What to do in East London
East London’s beautiful beaches are a huge draw for visitors, but if you think that’s all the city has to offer, you’re in for many pleasant surprises.
Where to stay in East London
Where to eat in East London