Top 10 sailing spots in Southern Africa

Posted on 12 June 2013

It’s interesting to see that besides the Volvo Ocean Race, sailing seems to have become a honeymooners-only activity.  Scores of newly-weds visit aquarelle streams and lustrous deep blue oceans while many people deprive themselves of the joy of sailing. The question you should be asking is why you haven’t sailed the waters in your area? (Here’s a quick catch up on the basics of sailing.) We have put together top 10 sailing spots in Southern Africa to help you unleash the Jack Sparrow inside you. Ahoy!

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Image source R.I Pienaar

1. Cape Town, South Africa

With the adventure -fillled Atlantic Ocean a step away,  Cape Town is perfectly located for a great sailing experience.  The cool thing about sailing in the Mother City is that it’s not a single-route sailing haven. You could experience the beautiful V&A Waterfront, head out to Robben Island or simply journey up to Saldahna in the West. With Table Mountain and Cape Point in the vicinity, there’s plenty of sightseeing. The whales in the ocean make the experience a lot more exciting.

Cape Town Sailing Academy information

Price: From R1000.00 per person for half-day charter.

Tel:086 689 4890, email: [email protected],

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Image from Catamaran Charters

2.  Walvis Bay,  Namibia

Walvis Bay has one of most beautiful and active harbours in Southern Africa. Not only is the area the main harbour town of  Namibia but has a magnificent lagoon that houses both marine and birdlife. Among the animal species you can encounter during a visit to the harbour are seals, whales, turtles and dolphins.

Namibian Charters information

Price: From R480.00 per person for 3.5 hours

Tel: 00264 -64 – 200798, email: [email protected]

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Image by Darren J Glanville

3. Knysna, South Africa

Knysna, situated on the lush green Garden Route, is the kind of  city that graces the pages of many brochures. Located at the mouth of the Atlantic Ocean, Knysna boasts a beautiful lagoon. A cruise on the calm waters of the ocean allows to feast your eyes on the exquisite surrounding including the Knysna Heads (two beautiful cliffs located on the lagoon) and caves surrounding the area.

Springtide Sailing Charters information

Price: R460.00 per person for 1.5 hours

Tel :+27 (0)82 470 6022, email:[email protected] ,

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Image from Getaway

4.Vaal River, South Africa

At 1 20 km, the Vaal River is the second largest river in South Africa, after the Orange River. With scenic views, the river isn’t only the source of life for water-based activity in the interior but  also its fishing capital.  The mighty Vaal’s location within four provinces: Free State, Gauteng , North West and Mpumalanga makes it the perfect spot for a quick weekend sailing trip for the sealess interior-dwellers.

Lake Deneys Yacht Club  information

Price :R150 per person

Tel: 016371 1393 , email: [email protected],

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Image from Getaway

5. Zambezi River

Navigating the Zambezi River is every sailor’s dream. Not only is the river the fourth largest in Africa, it supports wildlife animals such as elephants and giraffes, and is home to the majestic Victoria Falls. Running from the Democratic Republic of Congo to Zambia, the 2,574 km long river leaves sailors yearning for more.

Sail Safaris (Zambezi Sailing) information

Tel :+263 4 335668 ,email: [email protected] ,

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Image by ellenbuse

6. Port Elizabeth

With a coastline located approximately 135 km between Cape Recife and Cape Padrone, Port Elizabeth has become a hot-bed for sailing activity , and a breeding ground for marine species such as whales and dolphins. The Swartkorps River, also within the city’s confines, is a popular fishing and sailing site.

Redhouse Yacht Club

Tel: 041 373 0741,

top 10 sailing spots southern africa

Image by Claire Lee

7. Durban

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Durban? Great food, beautiful weather and a city brimming with cultural diversity. Now take that and blend it with a voyage down the Indian Ocean. Sounds great, right? That’s not all. While floating in the ocean, you will be greeted by dolphins while enjoying scenic views of the east coast of South Africa.

Durban Charter Boat Bookings

Tel :031 7090797 , email :[email protected],

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Image by Han-shan

8. Benoni, South Africa

It’s almost impossible to imagine a sailing boat in Benoni. I mean, the town is known for gold mining and producing beauties such as Charlize Theron and Olympian swimmer Princess Charlene of Monaco. Well, there’s more to the East Rand dorp: like the beautiful Homestead Dam, for instance. Tucked near Tassenberg Road, north of Benoni, the dam offers a sanctuary for sailors within the Joburg area.

Sail Benoni information

Price:R200 per session

Tel :0823710904, email: [email protected] ,

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Image from Getaway

9. Quirimbas Archipelago, Mozambique

With over 30 islands, the Quirimbas Archipelago, off the north coast of Mozambique, is definitely on every sailing fanatic’s bucket list. The five main islands, Ibo, Quilalea, Matemo, Medjumbe and Vamizi Island in the area are unihabited, allow the visitors space to discover them. The warm waters of the Indian Ocean and amazing marine life makes sailing here an experience of a lifetime. (Read: A dhow sailing and kayak adventure in Mozambique.)

African Islands Yacht Charters

Tel: +27 21 789 0769, email:[email protected] ,

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Image by shawnrdavis

10. Langebaan, South Africa

If you’re an adrenaline-junkie who finds sailing stale and dry, then you should try your hand at hobie sailing. For those who don’t what hobie sailing is, it’s basically a more intense form of sailing using a kayak-like boat. The great thing about hobie sailing is that it allows you to man the boat alone and could be used for racing. In Langebaan, this kind of adventure is made easy by the awesome West Coast weather, great lagoon and the Hobie Cat store in the area.

Hobie Langebaan information

Price: From R695

Tel :022 77 22 445 , [email protected],

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