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The well-laid out village of Jacobsbaai (Jacob’s Bay) on the west coast of South Africa was only formed in the mid-1990s and has proved to be both a relaxing holiday destination and astute investment for property speculators. With an abundance of character and charm, the first beachfront homes were built in the traditional West Coast farmhouse design, whitewashed with lime, a similar shade to the dunes on which they rest.
Origins of the name Jacobsbaai are unclear and the hardy veld would have likely catered for the odd cattle and sheep to sustain the farm owner. The lack of natural water resources and landing rights ensured that no development took place. Water is now piped throughout the region and Jacobsbaai sprang up from unspoilt surroundings.
Out here, one has the feeling of miles of nothingness with only the relaxing sound of the sea breaking the silence. The beaches are pristine – Jacobsbaai has 7 coves in which to tan, swim and surf – and fresh fish, mussels and lobster are on your doorstep, all for the cost of a small licence fee. When the sun goes down in Jacobsbaai, visitors have an unobstructed view of a spectacular sunset over the sea.
Top 6 reasons to visit Jacobsbaai
1. Spend days on the beach enjoying the crisp fresh air and soft white sand. The water is chilly but refreshing and great for surfing and sea fishing. Nearby Kwaaibaai (Cross Bay) is a keen surfing spot.
2. Sample traditional west coast fare at the village’s only restaurant, the Weskusplek. Local fishermen supply the restaurant daily with fresh fish and lobster. Try the Cape fish bobotie off the menu, a form of fish curry.
3. At the start of spring, the west coast is transformed into a sea of colour by wild flowers that appear after good winter rains. The fields in and around Jacobsbaai are swathed in the colours of the rainbow, a truly magnificent sight.
4. Stock up on supplies and purchase local goods at the West Coast Mall in Vredenburg situated 14km from Jacobsbaai. The centre has over 80 stores and ample parking.
5. For those who have the time, a local company guides hikers on a 38km coastal trail that begins at Paternoster and ends in Jacobsbaai. Hikers are treated to top class accommodation along the route and the opportunity to experience this section of the coastline and its people.
6. Looking for more mainstream action? Langebaan is a 20 minute drive away. The town has a casino, a few nightclubs and a number of restaurants overlooking the azure lagoon.
The nearest international airport to Jacobsbaai is Cape Town International Airport, 154km away. Chartered flights land and depart at the Saldanha/Vredenburg airfield, an approximate 15 minute drive. Car rental agencies are located at the Cape Town airport and in Saldanha Bay, otherwise order a rental online. Unfortunately there are no taxi operators in Jacobsbaai, however, there are a number of Cape tour operators that offer shuttle services between the airport, Cape Town and the village.
Did you know?
A popular guest house, conference centre and restaurant in Jacobsbaai is part-owned by one of South Africa’s most controversial figures, Steve Hofmeyer. The politically outspoken Hofmeyer achieved fame as a celebrated Afrikaans songwriter and actor. The property is soon to be sold.
Jacobsbaai has strict building regulations to ensure that the fisherman village theme remains true throughout the town.
Afrikaans is mostly spoken in the area, but English is a 2nd language and there should be no communication barriers.