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St Francis Bay (Afrikaans: St Francisbaai) is a holiday village in Cacadu District Municipality in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, roughly one hour’s drive from Port Elizabeth.
Fire damaged buildings
On 11 November 2012 a fire destroyed 76 homes in the mostly thatched roofed town.
The building style of the village includes white painted houses with black roofs (either thatch or tiled roofs) on the canals or around the golf course, or a Mediterranean building style in Santareme and Port St Francis. The Kromme River is navigable for 10 km upstream, and is linked to the St Francis canals system.
Whales can be spotted in the Bay from May to late October and dolphins can be seen daily on their way back and forth between the bays of Cape St Francis and Jeffrey’s Bay. The Cape clawless otter is also ever present, frolicking in the waves and rock pools around Port St Francis and at Otters Landing. Bird life is abundant with over 200 species recorded in the area including the rare African oystercatcher and fish eagle.
Port St Francis includes a commercial and recreational harbour, built to host the squid industry freezing vessels, as well as a small harbour resort village. It lies in a sheltered nook of the bay and provides a safe anchorage for the boats, pleasure craft, and oceangoing yachts. St Francis Field is an airpark close to the Port that caters for those who wish to fly in.
Cape St Francis, a rustic fishing village, sits adjacent to St Francis Bay. Popular for surfing at Seal Point, its beautiful stretch of beach and the historic lighthouse, built in 1878. Walking trails wind along the rocky coast, through the Irma Booysen Floral Reserve, and along the Cape St Francis point links it to the village of St Francis Bay.
Cape St Francis is the 8km from Thyspunt, the preferred site for South Africa's next nuclear power station.
Eastern Cape, St Francis Bay. GPS: -34.1617775, 24.8301792