Escape to the Amathole region
Did you know?
A major Amathole regional attraction is East London's fossilised Nahoon footprints, dated at 200 000 years old.
Visiting the Amathole region, Eastern Cape, is like visiting 10 different destinations simultaneously. Mountains, rivers, beaches, estuaries, nature reserves, rural landscapes and historic settler towns are some of the Amathole attractions waiting to delight visitors.
Amathole, which means ‘the calves of the Drakensberg', is a coastal area stretching from the famous Wild Coast to the Drakensberg foothills, where you can see traditional Xhosa herdsmen grazing their Nguni cattle.
The area's rich cultural legacy, combined with its historical past, presents a unique heritage experience. Do the Makana, Sandile, Maqoma or Phalo heritage routes to uncover the 350 local heritage sites, including forts, mission stations and burial sites of Xhosa kings.
To start off your tour of activities in the Amathole region, take a trip to Cathcart and view spectacular San rock art, or visit the Hogsback art community or Fort Hare University, with its renowned African art collection.
Round off your cultural experience at the Mgwali Cultural Village near Stutterheim and enjoy traditional African arts, crafts and food.
Amathole's predominant tourism routes are the Wild Coast, Sunshine Coast, Frontier Country and Amathole Mountain Escape.
The Wild Coast is a rugged strip of coastline that boasts excellent fishing, swimming and whale watching spots. Its scenic beauty and biodiversity are rarely matched, so a visit to this area, including the Dwesa Nature Reserve, is a must.
The Sunshine Coast comprises urbanised East London, which features fantastic beaches, historical sites and the fossilised Nahoon footprints, believed to be the world's oldest human footprints.
Delve further into the region's rich history on the Frontier Country route. The trail chronicles the frontier battles that were fought in this area, and offers a fascinating glimpse into frontier life.
Venture inland and explore the forested heights of the Amathole Mountains on the Amathole Mountain Escape - offering adventure activities like mountain biking, abseiling and rock climbing, hiking, kayaking and 4x4 trails.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
The Eastern Cape Tourism Board
Tel: +27 (0) 43 701 9600
Eastern Cape Parks
Tel: +27 (0) 43 705 4400