What to do in Nelson Mandela Bay when it's raining

  • 16 May 2014 | By Daphney Mngomeni

Port Elizabeth has a very agreeable climate: summers are hot, while winters are nice and warm, reaching highs of around 20 degrees during the day. However, some rainy days are not uncommon and it’s always great to know where to go and what to do when it’s raining...

No 7 Castle Hill

Photo coutesy of Robin Trehaeven

In the 19th century, Port Elizabeth was the landing place for many settlers, and the region displays a variety of architectural attractions that date back to that period.

No 7 Castle Hill is said to be one of the oldest surviving cottages in Port Elizabeth and was opened as a museum in 1965. The interior of the cottage portrays domestic life as enjoyed by a middle-class family in the mid-19th century.

Visitors to No 7 Castle Hill Museum are transported back in time as they explore the vintage furniture and kitchen equipment. They also get a chance to draw water from the old well, spend time in the fairy garden, and take a look at old toys and dolls from the 19th century.

Where: 7 Castle Hill Road, Central, Port Elizabeth
Contact: +27 (0)41 582 2515

South African Air Force Museum

The South African Air Force (SAAF) Museum houses an interesting and varied collection of exhibits covering the full period of the SAAF’s existence.

The museum was officially opened in 1992 and is situated at the old 42nd Air School, one of the largest air schools of the joint SAAF and Royal Air Force Training Scheme established during World War II.

Static exhibits include an Airspeed Oxford G-AITF, a Sud Aviation SE-316B Alouette III, plane engines, VHF radio transmitters and missiles, to name a few.

Where: Forest Hill Drive, Southdene, Port Elizabeth
Contact: +27 (0)41 505 1295/ 1478


Photo courtesy of G Bayliss

Bayworld is one of the leading tourist attractions in Nelson Mandela Bay and boasts a natural and cultural history museum, combined with an oceanarium and snake park.

Diverse museum displays take visitors on a journey through time and offer an experience like no other. Marvel at life-sized reconstructions of prehistoric dinosaurs, the 15m skeleton of the last southern right whale harpooned in Algoa Bay, and a 5m bronze cannon dating back to 1640.

Where: Beach Road, Humewood, Port Elizabeth
Contact: +27 (0)41 584 0650

The Boardwalk and Lighthouses entertainment centre

Lighthouses is an entertainment centre with a vibrant bar area, pool tables and bowling alley, all in a safe and comfortable atmosphere.

Situated at the Boardwalk Casino and Entertainment Complex, it is the biggest family entertainment centre under one roof in Port Elizabeth.

Where: 2nd Avenue Summerstrand, Boardwalk Casino Complex, Port Elizabeth
Contact: +27 (0)41 583 1100

Cinemas at the Boardwalk, The Bridge and Walmer Park

The Boardwalk Nu-Metro is the latest five-screen cinema complex at the Boardwalk Casino and Entertainment Complex. All cinemas offer “love seats”, wheelchair access, digital sound and stadium seating for the most comfortable movie viewing experience.

The Bridge Ster-Kinekor cinema, situated on Ring Road, Newton Park, has eight venue options and operates seven days a week.

Walmer Park Nu-Metro, located on the corner of Main Road and 16th Avenue in Walmer offers cinema lovers eight options, including a 3D cinema.

These cinemas screen the latest movies on circuit. Options for telephone bookings and seat reservations are also available.

Nelson Mandela Bay Science & Technology Centre

The Nelson Mandela Bay Science & Technology Centre is one of the biggest in South Africa.

It offers guided informal educational tours, holiday workshops and corporate team-building events.

It’s not all work and no play at the centre – more than 100 interactive science and technology exhibitions make for an interesting experience. Visitors can also book the centre for crazy science-themed birthday parties.

Where: Corner of Upper Drostdy and Durban Road, Uitenhage
Contact: +27 (0)41 991 5000


AutoPavilion is Volkswagen Group South Africa’s ultra-modern expo and heritage centre and a very popular tourist attraction, receiving around 3 000 visitors a month since it first opened in 2004.

High-tech, interactive displays take visitors on a journey from concept to classic cars, showcasing cars that defined the past and inspire the future.

Where: 103 Algoa Road, Uitenhage
Contact: +27 (0)41 994 5941

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