Port Elizabeth Travel Guide, South Africa
Port Elizabeth lies in the center of the Eastern Cape region of South Africa. It is located halfway between Cape Town and Durban. The city is often referred to as the ‘settler country’. In the early 19th century the British settler families arrived here in prospects of a better economy specially after suffering economic hardships due to the industrial revolution in England. Their arrival in Port Elizabeth instigated the local Xhosa people and they had to strengthen their defenses against the locals. Finally they came to the Algoa Bay where the small British Fort Frederick welcomed them.
Ever since the city has developed into a principal port and is presently a major industrial town. Even though it is primarily a manufacturing town, Port Elizabeth draws many tourists mostly due to its historical sites and east coast attractions. The waters of the Indian Ocean lap the golden sandy beaches of the city on the eastern side. The beach boasts of a pier consisting of best tourist activities and facilities.
Port Elizabeth benefits from more sunshine than any other city of South Africa. All year round the temperature is moderate and it varies from 16 degrees C in winters to 23 degrees C in summer.
Getting around in the city:
Port Elizabeth has poor transport system. The bus services are erratic. Basically one has to rely on the minibus taxis that can be found on most of the streets. These are also very crowded and the drivers don’t pay much attention to the traffic rules. Therefore it is advisable that the tourists use this means of transport only during the day time and in the well known sectors. There is an option of the metered taxis but hiring a car is generally easier and better.
The most popular and beautiful attraction of Port Elizabeth is the beachfront complex that comprises of an Oceanariuam, a museum and a snake park. Both the oceanarium and the museum are a great place to spend time but the Snake Park is for snake lovers! Port Elizabeth has a beautiful market square that is an architectural heritage. It features various historic buildings including the famous city hall and the public library. Yet another tourist attraction is the Donkin Reserve. It stands on a hill above the centre of the city. The St. George’s Park is a lovely and scenic recreational area in the city. It is spread over an area of 73 hectares.
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