Earth : Africa : Southern Africa : South Africa : Eastern Cape : Wild Coast : East London
East London is situated on the east coast of South Africa, boasting the only deep water river harbour. Buffalo City Local Municipality incorporates East London, Bhisho and King William's Town, as well as the large townships of Mdantsane and Zwelitsha. and smaller surrounding towns too. Though the renaming is official most people still refer it still as East London. The East London Airport code is still ELS which references to the old naming. However the airport too will undergo a name change in the near future.
In 1938 the then curator of the town museum found an unusual fish in the catch of a local fishing vessel. The fish turned out to be a prehistoric Coelacanth, long thought to be extinct.
If you are coming from or going to Port Elizabeth you should consider taking the scenic R72 "Romantic Coast Road", which takes a bit longer, but offers spectacular views and some nice little coastal towns (such as Port Alfred).
South African Airways flies from East London to Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban, as well as to some smaller cities in the country. Local low-fare airlines 1Time and Kulula.com serve the airport as well. See also Discount airlines in Africa
The central train station is in the city centre, on the corner of Station and Terminus streets.
Shosholoza Meyl operates regular inter-city trains to Johannesburg, Bloemfontein and Cape Town. You can also get to Kimberley, Pietermaritzburg and Durban (by changing trains in Bloemfontein), Port Elizabeth (by changing trains in Noupoort or Colesburg) and Mthatha (by changing trains in Amabele).
The Eastern Cape Department of Transport runs a daily train to Mthatha (previously called Umtata) via Amabele, this service is called "Kei Rail". Passengers are conveyed from East London station to Amabele (76 km north of East London) by bus. Trains leave early in the morning and the trip takes about 12 hours.
MetroRail operates commuter trains to some outlying suburbs of East London, with a reduced service over weekends.
The disused railway line to King William's Town is being upgraded. Passenger services should commence sometime in 2009.
Translux and Greyhound operate regular bus services to all bigger South African cities.
Unfortunately East London lacks a public transport system, so getting around is difficult if you don't have a car. There are many Car Rental Companies available, 3 of which have branches at the airport.But the Goverment promised a BRT system transportation at the cost of 2billion.
Taxis are the best way of getting around East London and the suburbs of the city. They can be pre-booked and are quite cost- effective. A journey from the seafront (Sugarshack hostel) to the Hemingways Mall should only cost around 70 Rand each way(2011 prices).
To get from the Airport to any address in East London, the "Little Red Bus" offers a safe, reliable and good value link. They can be pre-booked by phone or email and will wait at the airport with your name on a sign. There may be other people sharing the bus with you, but the fee is per passenger. The bus will leave when all of the booked passengers have been picked up, so there is no worry about over filling the bus. The return journey to the airport or any other journeys in and around East London can be arranged as well.
If you like dancing, Gonubie farmers hall is the place. You should stick around till the last or sometimes the first (see newspapers) Saturday of each month. That is when you could head over to Gonubie farmers hall, you'll need an extra pair of dancing shoes!
Must try! The Guidos beach front should be visited while here, not forgetting the Milkshake shop and the legendary Windmill now opened is Cafe Neo which caters delicious treats. Paul's Pies in Central East London-Buffalo Street.