Orca in Algoa Bay

Over the last couple of weeks local whale watching outfit Raggy Charters has spotted two different pods of orcas on two occasions while out cruising in Algoa Bay. Owner Lloyd Edwards also saw the one pod cruise by Seaview a little less than a week ago. Yesterday there was excitement in St Francis Bay when a pod was encountered in the bay. We are fortunate to have these visitors to the area every once in a while, but I haven't…

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Orcas off Port Elizabeth with Expert Tours

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2cnvy1qMu8&w=500&h=400]Usually this time of the year the sardines start to gather off the Port Elizabeth coastline before they start their run up the east coast.  It gives divers and film crews the ideal opportunity to observe the bait balls along with all the dolphin, whale, shark and bird activity that accompanies it.  Expert Tours based here in Port Elizabeth does a number of tours out to see this phenomenon and a week or two ago they had the most amazing…

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Bayworld’s Marine Hall Whale Skeleton

The Port Elizabeth Museum, which forms part of the Bayworld complex, has a very unique exhibit hanging in the Marine Hall.  It's the skeleton of the last Southern Right Whale to be harpooned in Algoa Bay and is the focus piece of a exhibit that covers whales and sharks (amongst others) along with everything associated with them.

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Whale watching in Algoa Bay

https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/a_iY6AeMtyA&source=udsAlan Fogarty of Alan Tours offers a Big 7 tour that starts off with a whale watching excursion with Raggy Charters before heading to Addo to find the rest of the Big 5.  Whales visit our shores mostly between April and November with Southern Right and Humpback whales being the big boys to look out for.  I picked up this whale watching video on YouTube taken on one of Alan's tours.

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Baitball activity off Port Elizabeth during the Sardine Run

https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/0j3kZpEFLkE&source=udsEverybody knows that the Sardine Run moves up the east coast of South Africa every year with awesome sightings off the Wild Coast and thousands of sardines coming so close inshore at KwaZulu Natal that people can scoop them up with buckets.  Very few know that the sardines gather off the coast of Port Elizabeth before they start their trek up the coast.  It is here where Rainer Schimpf takes divers and television crews from all over the world to experience…

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Penguin Island Cruise with Raggy Charters video

https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/qXCbY-KcHyY&source=udsAt the recent 2nd annual South African Tourism Lilizela Awards Raggy Charters of Port Elizabeth won the Marine Experience category in the customer experience section.  It is a huge accomplishment not just for Lloyd Edwards and his team but also a feather in the cap of Port Elizabeth and Algoa Bay.  It proves that this area can compete with the best the rest of South Africa has to offer as far as marine experiences   I came across this video by Ellie Bottomley on YouTube that…

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Port Elizabeth diver nearly swallowed by whale

https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/a-Ph1CWYivg&source=udsBefore the sardines travel up the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu Natal coastline during the annual sardine run they have to gather somewhere in preparation for the migration.  That somewhere is off the coast of Port Elizabeth.  Local marine film maker and dive operator, Rainer Schimpf of Expert Tours is an expert on the sardine run and takes a lot of foreign visitors and film crews out to experience it off the PE coastline.  Rainer has taken some extraordinary footage of the sardine bait…


Dem Bones, dem bones, dem dry bones….

A whale skeleton at the Bayworld Museum. This used to be one of my favourite places to visit, and take our kids, as well as visiting neices and nephews. Unfortunately their shortsighted pricing policy now makes it a less attractive idea, and I know of lots of would-be visitors who no longer go there as a result. We went there recently to introduce our 4 year old grandson to the delights to be found there, but were told we had…


Cruising around the bay…..with Raggy Charters

Continuing with our whale watching trip from last week, the map from google earth will give you a better idea of where we went. In the next few days we'll continue to show you the highlights.Along the way, the skipper, Lloyd, (facing the camera, in red and white jacket) fountain of much knowledge about the marine life of the bay, stopped to explain about the penguins we had just seen. He mentioned that they mate for life, and do not…

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Still on a high

There is a man in Port Elizabeth who is both passionate and very knowledgable about marine life in Algoa Bay. His name is Lloyd Edwards, and he owns an operation called Raggy Charters. Lloyd is involved in all sorts of marine conservation, education and research projects, and in order to fund these, he has written a stunning book called Scenes from Algoa Bay, full of photos he has collected over his years of boating in the bay. In addition, he…