Did you know?
The original lighthouse in Doringbaai was an aluminium structure. Built in 1963, gale-force storms destroyed it in 1991. The current operational lighthouse is a concrete tower.
In the small West Coast fishing village of Doringbaai, relaxation is the order of the day. About 300km west of Cape Town, it is fairly remote. So if you’re looking for a breakaway from the noisy urban centres, you will adore this West Coast town.
Doringbaai’s outdoor activities are the best way to experience this part of South Africa. With plenty to do and see on land or in the water, this area is particularly well known for southern right whale watching. These marine mammals come to the shores of Doringbaai from late July until November every year.
The surrounding mountain ranges and cliffs make for great hiking and mountain biking. There is some excellent birdwatching to do in the area and, in spring, the wild flowers are in bloom.
You can also dive for crayfish or fish from the shore (only with the required licences). Other water sports include kayaking, windsurfing, bodyboarding and snorkelling. Nearby Bamboesbaai is known for its good surfing conditions. All-day sunbathing and swimming are on the menu too.
Further afield, head to the Olifants River where you can kayak and birdwatch. If you know a thing or two about geology, you can examine the diamondiferous gravel along the West Coast and watch diamond vessels operate near the shore in good sea conditions.
Wine tours and the opportunity to play a few rounds of golf will round off the full sightseeing itinerary.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Matzikama Tourism (Vredendal branch)
Tel: +27 (0)27 201 3376
West Coast Wine Route
Tel: +27 (0)27 213 3126
How to get here
Doringbaai is 355 km from Cape Town. Follow the N7 from Cape Town all the way to Klawer, where you will turn left onto the R363 to Lutzville via Vredendal. At Lutzville, take Station Road/R362 left to Doringbaai via Ebenhaezer.
Best time to visit
Doringbaai sees many southern right whales visiting from the end of July to November every year. For Namaqualand wild flowers, visit from the end of July to the end of September.
Around the area
Freyer’s Cove is a wine farm just 820 m from the Atlantic Ocean and only 20m above sea level.
Where to stay
For catered accommodation, De Anker Guesthouse comes highly recommended. Self-catering units can be rented from Thornbay Accommodation.
What to eat
Only the freshest seafood is served at the Cabin Restaurant. There's also a great pub.