St Helena Bay is one of only three natural bays on the world's mainland coastlines where one can view both a sunrise and a sunset over the sea. It is also recognised as one of the calmest bays in the world. "A calm and tranquil bay" - Vasco Da Gama
Approximately 150 km from Cape Town it offer's relatively easy access to big city facilities such as theatres, large hospitals and shopping malls - yet is also far enough away to allow a true escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
St Helena bay is situated within easy reach of Vredenburg, Saldanha, Langebaan, Port Owen, Velddrif, Paternoster and the West Coast Winelands. It is the perfect base for day outings around the West Coast.
The snoek mass here in winter and crayfish cluster around the rocks in large numbers. St Helena Bay is therefore a haven for keen anglers and crayfish divers will not return home empty-handed.
Furthermore this area is loved by bird watchers for the variety of species that can be observed all year. Dolphin and whales can also be spotted in the bay while the region erupts in colour when the wild flowers bloom during late winter and early spring.
One can walk along the beach and admire the wide variety of shells that can be found here.
A curious phenomenon is the virtual absence of the rust problem plaguing surrounding villages - it is thought that the row of small hills to the west of the town shields it from salt spray.
St Helena Bay is a boating and fishing paradise with its safe & tranquil waters.
Recommended guesthouse in the area: www.oystercathcerlodge.co.za
A taste of the West Coast.
St Helena Bay fish pie
2 kg white fish fillets
1 large onion, sliced
2 small cloves garlic, crushed
1 large bay leaf
1/2 t (2,5ml) dried marjoram
salt and pepper to taste
1 c ( 250 ml) white wine
6 potatoes, peeled
1 T ( 15 ml ) butter or margarine
1 small can anchovies,
drained and the oil reserved
2 egg yolks
milk or cream
6 hardboiled eggs, sliced
Preheat the oven to 200 °C.
Use an ovenproof dish with a tight-fitting lid; it must be just large enough to hold all the fish, without allowing too much space around the fillets. Arrange the fish fillets on a layer of onion slices and crushed garlic, with the bay leaf in the centre.
Sprinkle over the marjoram, salt and pepper and add enough wine to almost cover the fish. Cover with the lid and bake for 20-30 minutes, until done but not overcooked.
Meanwhile, boil the potatoes until tender. Drain. Mash with the butter or margarine, oil from the anchovies, egg yolks and enough milk or cream to make a fairly moist mixture that is smooth but not runny. Transfer the cooked fish and onions to a large bowl. Flake the fish (not too finely). Quarter the anchovies and mix, together with 3-4 tablespoons (45-60 ml) of mashed potatoes, with the fish. Arrange the egg slices on top and cover with the mashed potatoes. Level the surface, then use a fork to create a ridged pattern on top. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until heated through and slightly browned on top.