Friday, May 30, 2008

Kings Beach - Room with a view

Beach front flats looking over Kings Beach. They must have wonderful views of the area.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Kings Beach - Wetland

Sea gulls coming in to land. The wetland provides a quiet haven for the many birds that frequent the area. In the backgrond is the tank farm and the ore dump.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Kings Beach - the good, the bad and the ugly

Every now and again one comes across a gem that you did not know existed, like this wetland at Kings Beach, which is made brighter by these gazanias.
In the background you can see one of the fuel tanks at the tank farm and the manganese ore dumps, that will hopefully be relocated to Coega. These have always been a blight in the area and all efforts to have them moved, up to now, have proved fruitless.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Kings Beach - yacht from the harbour wall

Walking on the harbour wall is not allowed, but if you climb the dunes you can get a good view of what is happening in the area. The bay was very calm on Sunday with very little wind, but it did not deter this yacht from going out.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Kings Beach - harbour wall

It is a comfortable walk from the Kings Beach parking lot to the harbour wall. There is always something happening in the area. On some days you will see dolphins swimming past, or you can watch the water sport, or just enjoy the the variety of sea birds that frequent the area.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Kings Beach - a place of contrasts

In the thirty years that we have lived in Port Elizabeth, we could probably count the number of times we have been to Kings Beach on one hand. The reason being that we have always gone to other beaches. Today I felt the need to go for a walk and while Sue was busy preparing for an exhibition, I took a stroll on Kings Beach and had such a good time, it could become one of my favourite places.

Saturday, May 24, 2008


Time to take a break from climbing bell towers and checking out the view and have some dinner. Tonights choice is Aviators Pub and Grub, which is located in Allister Miller Drive alongside the Airport. It has a distinct aviation feel and atmosphere and serves a great steak.
The aircraft is an Impala MkI. It was used as a trainer in the SA Airforce but has long since pensioned off.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Campanile #6 the clocks

This is a multi-tasking tower. It is a bell tower, a monument, and a clock tower.
This latter function was not working too well until recently, as the clocks had stopped. Because watchmakers are becoming a very rare breed, and maintaining large clocks like this is an expensive business, the City Council battled to sort out the problem. Luckily the funds and expertise finally came together and the clocks are now running like.... well.... clockwork!

Here is the mechanism that drives the clocks, taken from way up inside the tower.

(By the way, if you look at the pillars around the top of the tower, in the top photo, that is where the bells you saw yesterday are installed. Between the pillars and the clocks, you can see arched windows, it is through these that we photographed the views to E W N and S)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Campanile #5

Back at the Campanile, no longer looking outwards, but upwards. We were very lucky to be allowed into the bell tower, so we can share with you views which few people have seen.
The Campanile boasts 23 bells, the most in any tower in South Africa (the next one in Gauteng has 10). It is an extremely tight fit up there, even trying to stitch pictures together is impossible, so we can't really show them all, but they are lovely. I love the soft green patina they have acquired over the years.The biggest ones are so thick and heavy that you can't feel the thickness with one hand.
They were donated by prominent citizens, and some of the well known names in our history are embossed on the sides of the bells. We spotted Frederick Korsten (after whom the suburb was named), Sir Rufane and Lady Elizabeth donkin, from the women of Port Elizabeth, the Jewish community, Captain Francis Evatt (this must have also been dedicated to him posthumously by the donor), but many of the smaller bells were attached to the roof and we could not see their sides.

This "bum" view of Max will give you and idea of the scale.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Still in the country

Another picture taken at Homeleigh farm (see yesterday) as the sun went down. The little wooden tower is part of the kid's play area.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Pastoral Bliss

We still want to show you a few pix in the Campanile series, but my laptop is caput, so until it is fixed they will have to wait. So let's go for a stroll in the country instead.

On the outskirts of town are several areas of small holdings and small farms. One enterprising owner along the KraggaKamma Road has turned his farm into a popular place incorporating a Touch farm, where kids can come and interact with a wide assortment of animals, as well as a wedding venue, restaurant and large fields for setting up marquees for functions. Wandering around the farm at sunset, we came across this delightful scene.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Campanile #4

In showing you so many images of the historic areas and beachfront on this blog, there is a danger that we could give the impression that this is a quaint holiday resort. The truth is that, despite being a delightful place to visit and live, PE is primarily an industrial city, and at the heart of the industries which drive the City's economy is the motor industry. Here, while catching our breath at the top of the Campanile, and looking East, we see VWs and Hummers waiting to be loaded into one of the huge container vessels which frequently come into the harbour. On this day, the port was unusually bare of shipping, but you can see the little fleet of tugs which shepherd the large ships in. They look tiny from here but when you are on board they are not so small at all.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Campanile #3

We are still at the top of the Campanile, but looking south today towards Humewood. This freeway is a "monument" to bad town planning and there has been talk of decommisioning it, in favour of renewing the CBD. (Parts of it just hang in space, ending abruptly, because the planners took it for granted that the mosques that were in its path would be demolished, along with the rest of the South End area, in an Apartheid blitz. But spirited opposition from the Muslim community succeeded in preventing it, and so the freeway provides a reminder that even the most draconian governments do not ALWAYS have things their own way!)

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Campanile #2

After climbing the 204 steps to the top of the Campanile, aside from being out of breath, you get a great 360 degree view of the city.
This is the Westerly view, looking towards the Donkin Reserve. Prominent Port Elizabeth landmarks, from the left are: the Edward Hotel; the lighthouse, which is no longer in use; the memorial to Elizabeth Donkin (after whom Port Elizabeth is named), wife of Sir Rufane Donkin, who administered the then colony from 1820 to 1821; the spire of the Holy Trinity Anglican Church and alongside it the original Grey Institute building, which has been beautifully restored.

Friday, May 16, 2008


The Campanile was built in 1920 to mark the centenary of the arrival of the 1820 settlers who came from Britain to help populate the frontier of the Eastern Cape.
Taller than it looks here, the Campanile is a tall tall tall (ok you get the idea, it has 204 steps, which your intrepid blog hosts staggered up in the interests of unusual photos, which we'll post in the next few days.)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Something Good

Another PE landmark, this roadhouse has been around as long as I can remember. It is one of the few old fashioned drive-in restaurants still around (the new breed of franchise drive thrus is somehow not quite the same.) This is the good old "flick lights for service" type, and as a bonus, it is situated on the beach with a spectacular view across the bay. Softserve anyone?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


We recently went to Lesotho ( aptly nicknamed "the Mountain Kingdom") for 9 days, and have been posting photos of the journey on our personal blogs, as we took SOOOOOOOO many! It is such a stunning place, so if you are interested in joining the journey, check out the last few posts.......Arty Fartying Around and the maX files


This stunning old building on the corner of Cape Road and Eastbourne Road has been a familiar PE landmark for many years. Until fairly recently, it was a guesthouse called Richly House, and a whole row of houses along Cape Road were bought up and painted the same colour as part of the complex. Then this lovely old double story was converted into an Irish Restaurant, but sadly it seems too much was spent on the conversion, and it did not last long. So it got yet another coat of paint, and is now Dagwoods. It is cool sitting on the balcony, chilling over a good meal, and watching the world go by!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Port Elizabeth Station

The beautiful old Victorian Railway Station in PE underwent a renovation in the mid 80s. The round painted panels depicting scenes from the city were commissioned, and painted by Bernard Horn. A great restaurant was opened and the Station Restaurant was the in place for a while. They served all sorts of exotic African meats, like Zebra and crocodile! Sadly it went the way of the rest of PEs historic areas, and urban decay set in. Although the building is still attractive and reasonably maintained, it is in a part of town where most citzens don't really feel safe to go, and the restaurant has long since closed.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

End of the line

It looks like the old narrow gauge line come to the end of its life, as part of our transport infrastructure. At one time this line transported much of the fruit that was grown in the Langkloof to Port Elizabeth. Coaches can be seen decaying at many of the sidings along the line. These were photographed at the Greenbushes siding.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Apple Express

The narrow gauge Apple Express still runs every Saturday from Humewood to Thornhill and is a great family excursion. The train makes frequent stops along the way to allow trippers to get off and enjoy the scenery.

The practicality and efficiency of a diesel powered engine has replaced steam. This is such a pity, because Granny Smith and her "sisters" had a charm of their own and exuded the romance of a by-gone era.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Sunset up Cape Road

Travel up a normally uninteresting part of a street at the right time of the day and voila, it is transformed by a sunset into something special.

Thursday, May 8, 2008


The Oceanarium, with its dolphin shows, has been one of the icons associated with Port Elizabeth for many years. It has had its ups and downs, but an upgrade is planned, and it always offers an interesting time to tourists, as well as useful research on and help for marine species.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

bonus extra

Yes, yes, I know, the rules say 1 post of 1 picture a day, but I have just received 2 more stunning pix from the GIZA Regatta, and couldn't resist sharing them with you now! So consider it a bonus, from Port Elizabeth with love!
Yachts jostle for position on the start line. On the RHS on the bow is Scott Stephens part of the youngest crew sailing on Chris Frost from Durban's Pacer 3. The crew consisted of Thomas Ochabski (14), Scott Stephens (15), Michael Collier (15), Philip Straton (16), Luke Mann (19) and Chris Frost. Pacer 3 came 11th in Class 1 overall and 5th in the Pacer 27 fleet.

Aerial shot of Just in Time and Warrior at the top mark. Just in Time is a J27 skippered by Andrew Ward which came first on elapsed time and 1st in the IRC Class in the Giza Challenge. Warrior is a Simonis 60 skippered by Phil Gutsche which came 6th on elapsed time overall, 4th in the IRC Class and was 1st over the line in every race.Images by Leon Hugo

(thanks again to Alan for sharing these with us.)

more of the regatta....

Here are a couple more images taken by Leon Hugo for the Algoa Bay Yacht Club during the GIZA Challenge Regatta last weekend.

In the top picture, colourful spinnakers brighten up a somewhat grey bay.

The bottom picture (pun intended) includes a bit of a bum view of the Commadore of ABYC, Alan Straton, (in black top and red shorts) on the yacht Cooking - a Ladd 27, owned by Gavin Stephens.

I particularly like this action shot because it shows the intensity of racing, as opposed to some of the previous relaxed shots we have shown of leisurely jaunts around the bay.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Sailing along

No wonder Port Elizabeth is gaining a great reputation as a watersport capital. We recently showed you the swimming phase of the Ironman contest. This weekend PE was host to another major event. The GIZA Challenge is the Algoa Bay Yacht Club's premiere annual regatta attracting a strong fleet of local yachts as well as entries from around South Africa. We are very grateful to Alan Straton, Commadore of ABYC, for sharing some of the photos they had taken during the event, by photographer Leon Hugo.

This is such a cool one because you get an unusual aerial view of our beachfront.

And this is Warrior, - owned by Phil Gutsche, a Simonis 60 foot racing yacht which has previously taken part in the Cape to Rio. (We have been lucky enough to go for a sunset cruise out past Cape Recife lighthouse on Warrior, she is an amazing vessel!)

We'll show more tomorrow..... thanks Alan!

Monday, May 5, 2008

The Pier again

............well it's just so photogenic! This was taken by our son on one of his visits home. We were away for the last 10 days, but thanks to the wonderful new scheduled posting innovation available on blogger, we posted ahead before we left. So thanks for all the comments, and we'll get back into visiting as soon as possible!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Garden Centre

The Sherwood Garden Centre is in one of the outlying suburbs, and is a great place for the whole family. The kids adore spending time at the playground and animal touch farm, while mom and dad shop for plants etc. There are beautiful walkways, this one features a fountain which can be seen from the coffee shop.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Neighbourhood Cafe

This little bakery and supermarket serves the Richmond Hill area. As is usual throughout the world, Coke signs are all over it!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Spaghetti Junction

Looking down from the flyover at the Russell road interchange. Port Elizabeth is a strange mixture of big City with a small town feel. It has areas that are historic, next to modern high rise buildings. Donkey carts share the roads with the latest hi-tech cars. This freeway system runs parallel to narrow little one way streets which were laid out in the early 1800s.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Monthly Theme Day, numbers

There are so many ways in which numbers are invaluable in a City. House numbers, telephone numbers, dates on buildings, and of course, they are particularly significant on headstones. So much of a City's history can be gleaned from the information on old gravestones, like this one in Russell Road. There were many Irish amongst the early settlers.
Many City blogs around the world are participating in this Monthly Theme.

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants
Albuquerque (NM), USA by Helen, American Fork (UT), USA by Annie, Arradon, France by Alice, Aspen (CO), USA by IamMBB, Athens, Greece by Debbie, Auckland, New Zealand by Lachezar, Austin (TX), USA by LB, Avignon, France by Nathalie, Barrow-in-Furness, UK by Enitharmon, Barton (VT), USA by Andree, Belgrade, Serbia by Bibi, Bellefonte (PA), USA by Barb-n-PA, Bicheno, Australia by Greg, Bogor, Indonesia by Gagah, Boston (MA), USA by Sarah, Whit, & Leyre, Boston (MA), USA by Cluelessinboston, Bucharest, Romania by Malpraxis, Budapest, Hungary by agrajag, Buenos Aires, Argentina by Karine, Busan, Korea South by iamnbinb, Canterbury, UK by Rose, Chandler (AZ), USA by Melindaduff, Chateaubriant, France by Bergson, Cheltenham, UK by Marley, Chesapeake Daily Photo (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Chicago (IL), USA by Focused Light, Christchurch, New Zealand by Michelle, Clearwater (FL), USA by Smaridge01, Clearwater Beach (FL), USA by Smaridge01, Cleveland (OH), USA by iBlowfish, Cologne, Germany by April11, Concordia Sagittaria, Italy by Patrizia, Coral Gables (FL), USA by Jnstropic, Corsicana (TX), USA by Lake Lady, Dallas (TX), USA by turtle, Dunedin (FL), USA by Smaridge01, East Gwillimbury, Canada by Your EG Tour Guide, Evry, France by Olivier, Forks (WA), USA by Mary, Geneva (IL), USA by Kelly, Greenville (SC), USA by Denton, Gun Barrel City (TX), USA by Lake Lady, Hamilton, New Zealand by Sakiwi, Hampton (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Helsinki, Finland by Kaa, Hobart, Australia by Greg, Hyde, UK by Gerald, Inverness (IL), USA by Neva, Ioannina, Greece by Christos-Ioanna, Jackson (MS), USA by Halcyon, Jefferson City (MO), USA by Chinamom2005, Jogjakarta, Indonesia by Jogja Portrait, Joplin (MO), USA by Victoria, Katonah (NY), USA by Inkster1, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia by Edwin, Kyoto, Japan by Tadamine, Las Vegas (NV), USA by Mo, Le Guilvinec, France by ds2944, Lisbon, Portugal by Sailor Girl, Lisbon, Portugal by Maria João, Lodz, Poland by ritalounge, London, UK by Mo, London, UK by Ham, Mainz, Germany by JB, Malaga, Spain by Paula, Manila, Philippines by Heyokity, Maple Ridge, Canada by Susan, Marseille, France by Alex, Melbourne, Australia by Mblamo, Melbourne, Australia by John, Memphis (TN), USA by SouthernHeart, Menton, France by Jilly, Mexico City, Mexico by Carraol, Mexico City, Mexico by Poly, Minneapolis (MN), USA by Greg, Minneapolis (MN), USA by Mitch, Minsk, Belarus by Olga, Misawa, Japan by kristen havens, Monrovia (CA), USA by Keith, Monte Carlo, Monaco by Jilly, Monterrey, Mexico by rafa, Montpellier, France by Marie, Moscow, Russia by Irina, Mumbai, India by Magiceye, Mumbai, India by Kunalbhatia, Nashville (TN), USA by Chris, Nelson, New Zealand by Meg and Ben, New Orleans (LA), USA by steve buser, New York City (NY), USA by • Eliane •, New York City (NY), USA by Ming the Merciless, Newport News (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Norfolk (VA), USA by ptowngirl, North Hampton (NH), USA by Amy, Norwich, UK by Goddess888, Nottingham, UK by Gail's Man, Ocean Township (NJ), USA by Josy, Omsk, Russia by Nataly, Orlando (FL), USA by OrlFla, Oslo, Norway by Lothiane, Owasso (OK), USA by Jennifer, Paris, France by Eric, Pasadena (CA), USA by Can8ianben, Pasadena (CA), USA by Petrea, Penang, Malaysia by Maltelda, Perth, Australia by Elevation7, Pilisvörösvár, Hungary by Elise, Port Angeles (WA), USA by Jelvistar, Port Elizabeth, South Africa by Sam, Port Townsend (WA), USA by raf, Port Vila, Vanuatu by Mblamo, Portsmouth (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Prague, Czech Republic by Honza03, Quincy (MA), USA by Cluelessinboston, Rabaul, Papua New Guinea by Jules, Riga, Latvia by Famous, Rollag, Norway by Stormel, Rotterdam, Netherlands by Ineke, Saarbrücken, Germany by LadyDemeter, Saigon, Vietnam by Simon, Saint Paul (MN), USA by Kate, Salem (OR), USA by jill, Salt Lake City (UT), USA by Eric, Salt Lake City (UT), USA by atc, San Diego (CA), USA by Felicia, San Diego (CA), USA by Zentmrs, San Francisco (CA), USA by PFranson, San Francisco (CA), USA by Louis la Vache, Seattle (WA), USA by Chuck, Seattle (WA), USA by Kim, Selma (AL), USA by RamblingRound, Seoul, South Korea by Phil, Sesimbra, Portugal by Aldeia, Setúbal, Portugal by Maria Elisa, Sharon (CT), USA by Jenny, Sofia, Bulgaria by Antonia, St Francis, South Africa by Sam, Stanwood (WA), USA by MaryBeth, Stayton (OR), USA by Celine, Stockholm, Sweden by Stromsjo, Stouffville, Canada by Ken, Subang Jaya, Malaysia by JC, Suffolk (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Sunshine Coast, Australia by bitingmidge, Sydney, Australia by Julie, Székesfehérvár, Hungary by Teomo, Tacloban City, Philippines by agnesdv, Tel-Aviv, Israel by Olga, Terrell (TX), USA by Jim K, Terrell (TX), USA by Bstexas, Test City (MA), USA by , Tokyo, Japan by Tadamine, Torun, Poland by Torun Observer, Toulouse, France by Julia, Turin, Italy by Livio, Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina by Jazzy, Twin Cities (MN), USA by Slinger, Vichy, France by Delphsnl, Victoria, Canada by Benjamin Madison, Vienna, Austria by G_mirage2, Virginia Beach (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Wailea (HI), USA by Kuanyin, Washington (DC), USA by Rachel, Wassenaar, Netherlands by Rich, West Paris (ME), USA by crittoria, West Sacramento (CA), USA by Barbara, Weston (FL), USA by WestonDailyPhoto, Williamsburg (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Willits (CA), USA by Elaine, Yardley (PA), USA by Mrlynn,