South Africa’s Best (Secret) Beaches

woman walking on an empty beach

When summer hits, there's only one place to be: the beach! Here are seven hidden gems, where you'll skip the crowds and discover sun, sea, sand... and solitude.


Few things will harsh your summer vibe more than overcrowded South African beaches. The good news is that with nearly 3 000km of coastline, there's plenty of South African seafront to go around. Here are seven of the best (and best-kept-secret) beaches in the country for your next seaside escape. Please promise not to tell anybody about them.


Jacobs Bay

Western Cape

You might not have heard about Jacobs Bay because other more famous West Coast towns like Langebaan and Paternoster often hog the spotlight. But that's exactly what makes this beach a secret stunner. It ticks all the #WestCoastBestCoast boxes (think white-washed houses, colourful fishing boats and not a shopping mall for miles), plus it's only two hours from the more crowded Cape Town beaches. What's not to love?


Kwass se Baai, Namaqua National Park

Northern Cape

For a real escape from the holiday crowds, you can't go wrong with the Namaqua National Park. These beaches bring new meaning to the word 'isolated'. You'll need a 4x4 to tackle the sandy tracks along the coastal section of the park, and once you reach the basic campsites you'll need to be fully self-sufficient as all they have is a long-drop, a fire shelter and the clear blue sky.


The rewards, however, are amazing. There are numerous unspoiled beaches up here, and Kwass se Baai is the pick of the bunch.




Durban beaches are extremely popular during the holiday season, so it can be challenging to find a secret spot without too many people around. Luckily KZN has a ton of secluded beaches, most of which are hidden away at the end of a winding sand track.


One of the very best is Mabibi, situated close to the eastern edge of Lake Sibaya, about 25km north of Sodwana Bay. Here the beach is well and truly yours, as there isn't much development apart from a handful of campsites, lodges and self-catering cottages. Pack a diving mask as the water offers some of the best snorkelling on the continent.


Nature's Valley

Western Cape

You'd be forgiven for overlooking the Garden Route in your search for secluded beaches. After all, this stretch of coastline sees thousands of holidaymakers all year, every year. Yet if you know where to look, you'll find some hidden gems, like the sprawling Nature's Valley beach at the mouth of the Groot River. It's just 35km from Plettenberg Bay, so it's basically a secret beach hiding in plain sight!


Cannon Rocks

Eastern Cape

Named for a collection of cannons recovered from shipwrecks discovered on the beach, this tucked-away seaside village is often overlooked for its more popular neighbours to the north, like Port Alfred and Kenton-on-Sea.


The beach is wide and its dunes big, perhaps because it borders the Addo Elephant National Park's coastal section (Woody Cape), which contains the massive Alexandria Dune Field. There's even a 7km walk into Woody Cape, starting and ending in Alice Street, so you get a secluded beach and a nature reserve all rolled into one!


Morgans Bay

Eastern Cape

Located just south of the Kei River Mouth, Morgans Bay has a fair helping of Wild Coast flavour. Think rolling green hills, coastal forests and vibrant rock pools. What's more, the coastline southeast of town is lined with stunning cliffs, making it the ideal place for a walk at sunset.


Ready to go? Then grab your cozzie, your sunnies, your sunscreen and your beach umbrella, and compare quotes on Accommodation at locations across southern Africa.


This article is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as financial, legal or medical advice.

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