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Mazeppa Bay, Wild Coast, Eastern Cape

The Island at Mazeppa Bay, Wild Coast, Eastern CapeMazeppa Bay is another of the Wild Coast’s spectacular geological wonders that has snatched it’s prey in the form of a ship. The Mazeppa was a British vessel on it’s way from Delagoa Bay (Port Elizabeth) to Port Natal (Durban) in 1892. It steered into the bay for shelter and ran aground, giving Mazeppa Bay its name.

But the ship is not the only casualty of the bay. Another craft, a World War II airplane crashed into the rocks at the end of the beach while trying to make an emergency landing. The rocks, now known as One Mile rocks, have become a popular historical place for people to visit on a walk along One Mile beach.

Another popular place to visit here is Mazeppa Bay’s very own island. The island, an attractive outcrop of offshore rock connected to the mainland by a suspension bridge, is famous in this region as it is the attraction for which Mazeppa Bay is characterised. The unspoilt beaches here (which is characteristic of the entire Wild Coast) also add to charm that can only be experienced in little places of coastal paradise like this one.

Mazeppa Bay is very popular amongst fishermen, and famously, the biggest fish ever caught here was a Great White Shark that weighed close to a ton. Other popular activities include beach walks (Mazeppa Bay is one of the best places on the Wild Coast for lowtide beachcombing and shell collecting), hiking, swimming and surfing, and visiting the Manubi Indigenous forest, where the bird and plant life is spectacular.

Getting there: from East London, take the N2 going towards Umatata to Butterworth. Here, follow the Mazeppa Bay road to the bay. Exercise caution along these roads as there are often patches of both dirt and tar roads.

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