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History of Gordons Bay

Although the name of the town underwent many changes, it eventually was indicated on the maps as Gordons Bay in honor of Robert Jacob Gordon, Commandant of the Dutch troops at the Cape from 1777 to 1795.

The recorded history of Gordons Bay goes back 350 years to when the little nook was explored through various expeditions by the Dutch East India Company as it started venturing inland after having settled into its “Cape of Good Hope”.

The DEIC decided to establish a fishing post in the Hottentots – Holland in 1672 and called it Vischers Baaij. It later went through a number of name changes reflecting its fishing allure, including Vischbaai, Visch Hoek and Fish Hoek.

The first development came in 1678 when Free Burgers were given leasehold in the Hottentots – Holland. More and more farms were allocated with time, soon little houses began to appear around the bay and by the end of the nineteenth century a little town had been established.

It gained renown as a holiday resort, with an advertisement in 1889 calling it “the future Brighton of South Africa”. From then the town has grown but without losing its “Charm and Beauty”.


Gordons Bay Is surrounded by the mountains and sea and is a 40 minute drive from Cape Town, 30 Minute drive from the airport and 30 minute drive from the famous wine farms in Stellenbosch.

Things to do in Gordons Bay

The most obvious choice is a day of sun worshipping at either Main or Bikini Beaches. Fishing from the rocks, the old harbor wall, the harbor wall at Harbor Island and Deep Sea diving remains a popular pastime.

There are two very nice boat clubs (one in each harbor). The Gordons Bay Yacht Club is very popular for theailing enthusiast and has a very active sailing program. The yacht club has hosted the Lipton Cup sailing race twice and numerous regattas are regularly held. The Gordons Bay Boat Angling club is very popular for the sports fisherman. The club hosts the Broadbill Classic which is the biggest game fishing event in South Africa. It also participates in the inshore and offshore fishing league which is very exciting.

There are also a number of other sporting events held in Gordons Bay such as the Iron man Triathlon and the False Bay 50km run. There are also a few walks and trails available, including the Danie Miller trail above the village and the historic cannon and wagon wheel walk at Sir Lowry’s Pass. And there’s s certainly no shortage of restaurants for the culinary enthusiast to explore.

Of course the emphasis is on seafood and no seaside visit would be complete without a steaming hot plate of fish and chips.


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