Price range, per nightmin R max R
Quigney is the oldest section of the city of East London, South Africa. This suburban area was formed in 1873 and land sales only took off after a tramline was built to reach the beach and easier access established into the suburb. Today, Quigney is the heart of East London where top hotels, edgy restaurants and the aquarium line the beachfront.
Sometimes known as Settler Country for the influx of German and British immigrants to the area in the mid-1800s, East London is South Africa’s only commercial river port harbour, overlooked by Quigney suburb. The city is nestled between the warm Indian Ocean, the Amatola Mountains and the East London Coast Nature Reserve that incorporates several marine and land reserves.
The suburb has a charm to it that long-time residents strive to maintain and is considered a trendy locale for students attending the East London campus of Fort Hare University. With a beautiful stretch of beach on its doorstep and within easy reach of the CBD, Quigney is the favoured destination for visitors to East London.
Top 6 reasons to visit Quigney
1. Spend a day on the soft white sands of Quigney beach with warm surf and all conveniences nearby. For those wanting a more active pursuit, Nahoon Point further north offers good surfing.
2. Visit the 80+ year old East London Aquarium before it’s demolished and replaced with the estimated R100-million Ocean Discovery Centre planned for Quigney beachfront. The aquarium has a coelacanth on display, caught nearby in 1938, and a whale viewing deck.
3. The Khaya La Bantu Cultural Village gives the visitor an opportunity to experience art, culture and traditional ways of the Xhosa. Learn about their hairstyles, dress and complex adornments while sipping on homemade beer and sampling dishes handed down over generations.
4. Ferry operators offer a sunset cruise beginning at the harbour and travelling down the Buffalo River. Other water activities available in the area include deep sea fishing, canoeing and snorkelling.
5. For a full day’s entertainment, there are over 140 stores, a food court and 7 movie theatres at Hemingways Mall. Alongside is Hemingway’s Casino to continue with the fun well into the evening!
6. Travel to Chintsa to experience natural beaches, indigenous forest, pristine estuary and golden dunes. The area is spectacular and dining on a mussel pot on the elevated deck of a Chintsa restaurant with panoramic sea views is a blissful moment.
The East London Airport is located only a few kilometres from Quigney and all international flights are routed via the Cape Town, Durban or Johannesburg airports. Various car rental agencies operate out of the city centre and East London Airport or you could book a rental online. Traditional taxi companies are available throughout East London. If you have the Uber app, book a ride using your mobile phone.
Did you know?
The coelacanth, an ancient breed of fish, was believed to have died out millions of years ago until a live specimen was caught in a trawl net in the waters of East London in 1938. The coelacanth has changed little for over 400 million years and is inedible to humans but remains the most endangered of all animals due to irresponsible fishing techniques.
In the run-up to the annual Discovery Surfer’s Challenge, the streets and beaches are filled with runners of all ages preparing for the event. The popular course takes runners into the surf, over boulders, along tough sandy stretches of beach, through a river to finally end at the Nahoon lifesaver’s club.