Finding Mindfulness in Nelson Mandela Bay

  • 08 July 2019 | By Anje Rautenbach

Want to practice mindfulness and wondering where you can find some zen in Port Elizabeth and the greater Nelson Mandela Bay?

Breathe in.

Breathe out.

We got you sorted.

Mindfulness is about more than meditation. Mindfulness is about maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of your thoughts, senses, feelings as well as your environment and there are plenty of places in the Bay where you can tune into your mind – into the present moment – and just be.

8 Places to find Mindfulness in Port Elizabeth

Whether you want to indulge your senses, spend time in nature, in silence or be active, here is where and how you can find your inner calm in and around Nelson Mandela Bay.

Secret Sunrise

Secret Sunrise is a global movement and platform to share positivity and get the world grooving, celebrating, feeling united in joy, and making a global change. Young and old gather around the world and celebrate spaces in cities and nature with wireless headphones, which encourages you to be free, connect and dance without disturbing the neighbours during sunrise... or even sunset.

On Friday the 19th of July there is a Secret Sunset Global Dance for Madiba taking place in Port Elizabeth from 16:30 to 17:30. Click here to find out more about the event and to stay up to date with future events in our city.



Yoga is not just a form of exercise but it also improves strength, flexibility and mind-body awareness as it incorporates breathing techniques, meditation and poses which are designed to encourage relaxation and reduce stress.

There are various spots around the Bay where you can practice yoga; join a yoga class at your nearest gym, head to the beach for a DIY-yoga session or attend classes at a dedicated yoga studio.



If you find your calm in the ebb and flow of the ocean, surfing might just be your outlet as you become deeply embedded and one with nature while studying each and every wave.

Algoa Bay is home to a number of great surf spots such as Pipe, Shark Rock Pier, Humewood and Millers.

If you want to learn how to surf Oceanside Surf Store is there to help. 


Arts & Crafts

Be one with your mind and release your inner-artist; whether that is by joining a Painting with Grapes evening, doing formal fine art classes or attending craft-orientated classes where you can bring your project home still on the same day. Have a look at what is on offer at local arts and craft shops.

Of course, you can also treat your eyes to art exhibitions at galleries and museums in the Bay. Why not visit Art on Target and attend one of their workshops, GFI Art Gallery, ArtEC Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum (which also hosts workshops), Wozani Art Gallery and the Athenaeum.


Skate Parks

For many skateboarders, skateboarding is a means of meditation and it lies in the awareness of the ride, the moment, your body and your surroundings when you move around and nail some gnarly ollies, nollies and kickflips.

If skateboarding is your escape then head to the King’s Beach Skate Park. For those who do not own a skateboard, Oceanside Surf Store has skateboards as well as rollerblades available for rent.

It was professional skateboarder, Rodney Mullen, who said: "Skateboarding is as much, or more, an art of mode of expression than it is a sport. What skateboarding has given me is precisely that: a form of expression that drew me to it, and, in so doing, I was able to express and be who I wanted to be through it, in a sense."


Visit an Animal Shelter

A lot of people find comfort in animals; whether it is playing with a dog, petting a cat or viewing wild animals in their natural habitat. Unfortunately there are many domesticated animals that have been abandoned, ended up in animal shelters and that are deprived of human touch and love. Why not soothe your soul with a furry creature at an animal shelter and lend a helping hand?

Every day, between 10:00 and 14:00 you can volunteer at Animal Welfare Port Elizabeth (you have to attend an orientation first which takes place on and Sundays at 10:00).  Click here for more information. 


Head To The Mountains

Hiking is a great way to escape the hustle, bustle and pressures of the city; quiet your mind in nature, go on a walking trail and find serenity while remembering to stop and smell the flowers.

There are various hiking trails in the Bay, from the Doringnek Hiking Trail at Zuurberg (part of the greater Addo Elephant National Park) to the Sacromento Trail at Schoenmakerskop to Lady Slipper, a short drive from the city.


Cooking Classes

Did you know that cooking promotes and boosts creativity as well as mindfulness? The preparation of food, combining flavours and creating dishes can be very therapeutic; cooking is about being aware, appreciating the moment and nurturing yourself (and others).

Keep your eye on cooking classes happening in and around Port Elizabeth. If you want to master the art of plant-based cooking, The Kindred Kitchen in Richmond Hill will be hosting a cooking class on the 17th of July 2019, click here for more information (event is fully booked but private classes are available). One of the Bay’s favourite outlets selling all that is sweet, buttery and flaky, Pastryworks, also has The Pastryworks Pastry & Cooking School with regular cooking classes, click here for more information. 

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