Share this:

17 Things to Do for Under R30 in Port Elizabeth – #17adventures

17 Things to Do for Under R30 in Port Elizabeth – #17adventures

One of the reasons we relocated our family to Port Elizabeth was the fantastic lifestyle the city offers, at an affordable price. While our teenage relatives in the bigger cities are trawling shopping malls, our PE kids are catching waves, climbing dunes and hugging ancient trees in hidden forests. As our kids have grown into teens, their taste has started to become more pricey with the lure of IMAX movies, trips to the ice rink and trendy restaurants. But the good news is that while our purse strings are being pulled tight by politicians, it is still possible to have a fabulously affordable and fun time with your family in PE.

Here are 17 of our top things to do in Port Elizabeth for under R30 per person:


  1. Climb Lady’s Slipper Mountain

The view from the top of Lady’s Slipper is incredible. It stretches all the way from PE to St Francis in the South and overlooks mountain after mountain as far as you can see in the North. There are some magnificent boulders right on top, perfect for striking a mountaineering pose and snapping a selfie, which is what you will find all the families doing as they reach the summit after a hot and sweaty walk up.

Cost: R20 per person

  1. Kings Beach Skate Park

Grab a skate board, roller skates, scooter or anything with wheels and head on down to the  Kings Beach promenade. There is a skate park complete with smooth concrete surfaces, ramps of varying degrees and shady spots for parents to sit around the edges.  The kids adore trying to stay on their boards as they whizz down the slopes and emulate the cool moves of the pro’s that frequent the park. Best of all, it is absolutely free.

Cost: Free

  1. Ice Creams at Shark Rock Pier

The little ice cream parlour at Shark Rock Pier has been operating for donkey’s years and they dish up some of the best gelato in town. You can choose between multiple flavours of ice cream, sorbet and soft serve. Order it in a sugar cone, normal cone or cup, finish it off with a topping of your choice and voila – a delicious cool treat to enjoy while you stroll to the end of the pier and admire the gorgeous view.

Cost: From R7 for a soft serve cone to R28 for a sugar cone with a double scoop of ice cream

  1. Fishing at Pearson Park Resort

Pearson Park Resort borders the lazy Sundays River as its fresh water completes its final journey before merging with the salt waters of the Indian Ocean. The Sundays River estuary is not only breathtakingly beautiful, but also brimming with fish of every shape and size. So no matter whether your kids enjoy occasional bait fishing, rock and surf or lure fishing, or like ours are avid fly fishing enthusiasts, this is one of PE’s best fishing spots in a location that is enjoyable for everyone in the family.

Cost: R65 for a vehicle and the first 2 passengers, R15 per additional person.

  1. Stock Car Racing at Victory Raceway

I must say I was really surprised how much I enjoyed watching stock car racing. Our kids had been nagging us to take them, so we headed out on a race day, bought a ticket for our car and drove all the way round the track to an embankment where we could park the car and watch all the action from the comfort of our bonnet. Kind of like an old fashioned drive-in movie. We watched guys and girls zoom round the track in reconditioned and very loud vehicles and it was fascinating and incredibly entertaining.

Cost: Track Parking R20, Adults R50, Kids U/13 R10 (for our family of 5 plus a car this averages at R30 per person)


  1. Sandboarding at Sards

Port Elizabeth may not have snow, but we still have some of the best ski slopes in the country. OK, board slopes…sand boarding that is. Sardinia Bay (Sards) is surrounded by some pretty serious dunes – from long gentle slopes to steep drops, there is something to suit every sand and speed enthusiast. Cian has a real sand board and stands up as he zooms down like a pro. But you can equally enjoy tearing down on a piece of Masonite, bum board or even cardboard. Not only will you be able to absorb the best view ever, you will also be rewarded with happy and exhausted offspring and an early night to bed.

Cost: Free 

  1. Hike the Island Nature Reserve

The Island is an oasis that starts in Seaview and stretches for kilometres inland along the coastline. It boasts a pristine dune forest, which can be accessed by a network of hiking trails. The trails start at one of PE’s most delightful braai and picnic spots and are split into 5 sections, so you can choose to do just a short walk with one section or to combine some or all of the full network of 17km. Trails 3 & 4 are our favourite as they head deep into the wilderness, but lots of families choose to do trails 1 & 2 which are a great way of trying out hiking.

Cost: R30 per person

See also: PE’s Top 5 Braai Spots


  1. Food Truck Friday

Food Truck Friday is a coming together of friends and families in a celebration of food & live entertainment. It is held on the second Friday of every month in the Baakens River Valley, and has a festive carnival atmosphere. Families are encouraged to bring picnic blankets and camping chairs and you are sure to bump into loads of friends as you tuck into some of PE’s very best street food.

Cost: Free entry, all meals are under R45

Facebook: @BaakensFoodTruckFriday

  1. Park Run at Hobie Beach

Every Saturday at 8am, hundreds of families gather at Hobie Beach to run 5km, racing their own previous times. This is fitness with a view and the collective energy of the group is extremely catching. Go at your own pace, and don’t forget to take your bar code along to register your time.

Cost: Free, but register before your first run

  1. Climb the Donkin Lighthouse

When you think of PE, the first picture that comes to mind is the distinctive mosaic with the pyramid, huge South African flag and lighthouse at the Donkin Reserve, right? Did you know that you can climb to the top of the lighthouse for one of the best views in town? It’s a bit of a scramble through the small doors and up the series of very narrow ladders, but the kids love it and so will you when you reach the top and admire our lovely city from every direction.

Cost: R10 per person

  1. Milkshakes and Musical Fountains

Head to the Boardwalk in the evening, grab a milkshake-to-go from Wimpy, and sip it with a front row view of the magical 25 minute long musical fountain display which happens every week night at 7pm and at 8, 9 and 10pm on weekends.

Cost: R29 for a Wimpy Milkshake, Musical Fountains are free

  1. Walk the Dogs or Cuddle the Cats at Animal Welfare

Here’s an idea that will delight your kids as well as some furbabies in need of special loving. Volunteer hours are every day from 10 until 2. You must attend a short orientation and training session before your first shift – these are held every Saturday at 9-30am and Sunday at 10am. Walk the dogs, cuddle the cats…whatever you decide to do, you will be delighting some souls who really need it and teaching your family to give something back, which is a truly enriching experience.

Cost: Free

Visit Animal Welfare Port Elizabeth for more details


  1. Footlongs at the Wurst Wagen

Gunter’s legendary footlongs are that for a reason. They are a super-duper delicious combo of a giant soft bread roll with a cheese filled sausage that must be longer than a foot. These treats are made even tastier by the stunning location at Sardinia Bay beach. You will find the cute caravan which looks like an Austrian ski chalet parked at Sardinia Bay on most weekends and holidays and it is the best way to start or end an epic visit to the best beach in town!

Cost: R24 for a ‘Kasegriller Footlong’

Find the Wurst Wagen on Facebook

  1. Dance it off at Zumba

If you have never been to a Zumba class, you are missing out. Think funky loud music and some seriously fun dance moves and the best thing is it is all in the name of exercise. Don’t be shy – it doesn’t matter if you don’t have the moves just yet.  Although the Zumba instructors are co-ordinated with a capital C, the rest of the folk are quite normal and mostly move the wrong way, but it’s so much fun that no-one is judging. You can laugh out loud while you get your groove on and although my teenage boys are not big dancers, this is one massive hit for parents with girl teens and tweens.

Cost: The first class is free, thereafter it is R30 for one class a week if you sign up monthly.

  1. VW Autopavilion and Factory Tour

Nelson Mandela Bay has long been the motor manufacturing hub of the country. Why do you think VW calls its cars PEople’s cars? We love our VW factory and all the jobs it creates for the local motor industry. Make sure you take your kids to check out how it all happens with a tour of the massive Volkswagen factory in Uitenhage. You get to sit back and relax in a “train” made from Volkswagen parts and then end your tour with a morning of edutainment at VW’s high-tech, interactive expo and heritage centre. Would you believe, it costs absolutely nothing?

Cost: Free (make sure to pre-book your factory tour)

  1. Snorkel at Duck Pond

I am sure by now you know how much we love Sards (Sardinia Bay beach). Besides the fabulous sand dunes, incredible rock pools, stunning views, amazing walks and contagious beach culture, it also offers some of PE’s best snorkelling. Climb over the dune from the car park, swing right and about a kilometre along you will see a series of still pools protected from the crashing waves by a rock reef. Do yourself a favour and take a mask and snorkel along. It’s a whole other world beneath the surface!

Cost: Free

  1. Watch a Penguin Release at SAMREC

SAMREC’s mission is to rescue tired, dehydrated and injured marine birdlife that become stranded on PE’s shores. The awesome team at SAMREC (SA Marine Rehabilitation and Education Centre) regularly release their rehabilitated penguins back into the wild. Keep an eye on SAMREC’s Facebook page for details on their upcoming penguin releases and pop in anytime for a heart to heart chat with their dedicated staff on anything to do with issues of endangered and rare marine species, or just to say hi to their cute patients who are building their strength before rejoining their families out at sea again.

Cost: R20 for children/pensioners, R30 for adults.


A post shared by melanie (@melanie_nagy) on


So there you have it – 17 affordable family adventures to keep your family entertained this year.

Let us know if we missed anything out in the comments section below and remember to follow us on Facebook  for all things PE.


Yours in travel




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *