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East London, South Africa

As South Africa’s only large river and sea port, East London is important for the export of citrus fruit, mineral ores and wool. A considerable amount of goods are imported here as well.

The first documented vessel to arrive in these waters was in 1688 while searching for survivors of a shipwreck. In 1848, a proclamation annexed the area to the Cape Colony. Today, East London serves as the area’s commercial centre and is a bustling town with a population of approximately 175,000.

The town’s small museum contains the world’s only surviving egg of the extinct dodo bird, as well as a mounted coelacanth caught near East London in 1938, a fish thought to be extinct.

Pier Information

The ship is scheduled to dock at the Port of East London, located a short distance from the town centre. Taxis are generally available at the port exit when a cruise vessel is in port.

Shopping

Shops in town cater mainly to local clientele. The local currency is the rand.

Cuisine

Dining opportunities in East London are limited. At Latimer’s Landing there are cafés known for home-baked pastries.

Other Sites

Latimer’s Landing
This new harbourside development near the Buffalo River features a variety of shops and restaurants.

Lock Street Gaol
This former garrison fort, later a women’s prison, has been turned into a small complex of shops and cafés.

Private arrangements for independent sightseeing may be requested through the Tour Office on board. Please note that private arrangements should be booked well in advance and are strictly subject to availability at the time of booking.