The Diamond Coast
Did you know?
The Namas, Bushmen and Strandlopers who walked the Northern Cape shores centuries ago used to pick up diamonds as they lay glinting in the sand and give them to their children as toys.
The Diamond Coast in South Africa winds along the Northern Cape Province's wild and rugged far north-western coast. Situated in Namaqualand it is renowned for its rich plant life and visitors can feast their eyes on the mass displays of flowers in spring.
This pristine and little known tract of coastline includes Alexander Bay, a previously restricted diamond mining area, which can now be visited on organised tours. Glittering stones are not the only treasure to be found here as it also holds great indigenous natural treasures.
Visitors can soak in this mysterious and unspoiled part of Northern Cape coastline on organised tours and hikes that wind past dramatic shipwrecks, where mariners met their fate in the icy Benguela current. The Diamond Coast is still being mined and explored for diamonds and visitors can also tour current diamond mining sites like Port Nolloth, where diamonds are being vacuumed from the ocean floor, and learn more about the historical significance of this area and its precious mineral deposits.
The Diamond Coast has held allure for geologists, adventurers and fortune seeking diamond miners for more than a hundred years, which adds to its fascinating history.
Swimming in the ocean along the coastline of the Northern Cape is invigorating because the water is extremely cold, and its beautiful coastal dunes can be explored by 4x4 as part of the shipwreck trail. The Diamond Birding Route is a must for birders, where a familiar sight along the coast is the African Black Oystercatcher.
Misty and picturesque the small town of Port Nolloth offers visitors a range of accommodation. Due to its dramatic landscapes the Diamond Coast is perfect to explore on foot and a 5-day hiking trail offers this opportunity. This piece of coastline is definitely off the beaten track, which adds to its romantic appeal.