diving in Cape Columbine
The rocky coastline
of Paternoster, and especially Cape Columbine, with its tranquil
rocky and kelp waters, is well-known for snorkel diving to catch
crayfish. You can search for crayfish under the rocks between the
kelp, rock crevices and shelves. It is essential that you wear a
protective wetsuit, since the water often are as cold as 10°C.
It may only
be caught during crayfish season, and a recreational licence is
mandatory. A licence can be obtained at the Post Office. It allows
you a maximum of four crayfish per day, no smaller than 80mm length
across the carapace (backside). Crayfish season usually runs from
middle November until end of April.
The Beach Camp
is situated close to Soldatenbaai in the Cape Columbine Nature Reserve.
You camp in A-frame tents with all meals included, and there is
a beach bar. It is ideal for adventurous people, and offers snorkeling,
scuba diving, crayfish diving, mountain biking, fishing and kayaking.
Or lazing in the sun next to the water.
The West Coast
are known for its wealth of flowers during spring, which can also
be experienced at the Cape Columbine Nature Reserve and surrounding
areas. Flowers appear on the flats, between the boulders and rocks,
even close up to the water.
has several long, safe hiking routes.
One of the well-known
routes starts at Tietiesbaai, with the hiking route moving southwards
along the coastline, over dune land, fynbos and rocky coast, past
Trekoskraal all the way to Swartriet north of Jacobs Bay –
a distance of about 17km.
route starts at Paternoster’s Eerste Mosselbank in a northerly
direction, along the beach via Britannia Bay (where it gets rocky
again) until you reach Stompneusbaai – a distance of 30km.
mussels can be harvested from the rocks. A recreational licence
must be obtained from the Post Office, allowing you to harvest 30
mussels per day.
and the Cape Columbine Nature Reserve are well-known fishing ground
for hotnosvis and galjoen. Hotnosvis are caught throughout the year,
while the season for galjoen starts on 1 March and closes 15 October.
from fishing boats
When the fishing
boats return to the beach, you can buy hotnosvis and harders directly
from these fishermen. They will even remove the scales.
There are two
islands with seals in the vicinity of Paternoster: One below the
lighthouse, close to Soldatenbaai with approximately 20 000 seals;
the other is Seal Island near Britannia Bay, with more than 100
000 seals. These seals can easily be viewed from a small boat or