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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

What's jumping in Jakobsbaai?

Situated a mere 90 minutes from Cape Town along the R27 lies one of the younger little hamlets on the West Coast. Situated between Saldanha Bay and Paternoster, Jakobsbaai is characterized by a rugged, rocky shoreline, interspersed with small, sandy bays which prove popular among surfing and diving enthusiasts.

Still sparsely populated, Jakobsbaai is somewhere to which one can retreat to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. If you are looking for a getaway far from the rat race, this is the place for you! It’s secluded enough to feel like a proper resting place, but close enough to Saldanha Bay to make buying supplies easy and convenient. It’s definitely the best of both worlds.

One of the first things one notices upon one’s arrival is the absolute tranquillity of the place. Its charm is self evident, with several iconic little West Coast whitewashed buildings dotting the area, some constructed with locally quarried rock. Almost all of the houses are built in the same style – white walls with either thatch or dark tiled roofs.

The area is rich with indigenous fynbos, and the beautiful wild grass fields are incredibly striking. It’s no wonder that the locals refer to it as “Namaqualand by the sea”. The annual Spring splash of colour from blooming wildflowers is as spectacular here as anywhere on the West Coast. Jakobsbaai can also boast a variety of birdlife that would be sure to keep the most ardent bird watcher coming back time and time again.

There are quite a few guesthouses to visit in this small town, such as Klokkiebosch Guest House and Die Herberg B & B, that cater to a variety of clientele types. We chose to visit one that is perfect for budget holidays. The Jacobsbaai Backpackers or ‘The Plot’ is located to your left, just before entering the town. It can accommodate more than thirty guests and is ideal for those travelling with an eye on the wallet. It has a very relaxed feel to it and boasts a bar, braai boma, self catering entertainment area, as well as a children’s playground.

The only restaurant that I could find was Weskusplek, a seafood establishment owned by local celebrity, Steve Hofmeyr. My visit to Jacobsbaai was unfortunately on a cloudy day, but I can imagine that the azure blue water and fynbos backdrop would be an exquisite site to see in the summer, considering the amazing view of the bay. The menu has a wide range of meals on offer, and is reasonably priced. I thoroughly enjoyed sipping a cappuccino while breathing in the fresh sea breeze.

All told, I consider it very serendipitous to have Jakobsbaai as a feature of our 5 Bay Trail product. We find something to marvel at every time we pass by this way, and whether you’re on a trail or not, I believe that this little slice of heaven is well worth a visit.