PMGY volunteer in South Africa Wildlife participants are based on the Sidbury plains in the Eastern Cape. The reserve was initially home to Sidbury village, built by British settlers to support sheep farming communities.
On the reserve, you will encounter the impressive Big 5 roaming freely on the Sidbury plains. Kwantu Reserve is located off the beaten track around a 90-minute drive from central Port Elizabeth. At weekends transfers to and from the reserve and Port Elizabeth are included in the Program Fee. Due to the more remote location of the project, you usually stay on-site at the reserve for the entire week.
Participants generally volunteer on a Monday-Friday basis and the weekends are free to relax or travel further afield. As our volunteers will testify, the wider travel opportunities are extremely important to the whole experience and it is something we certainly recommend. Our local team are able to arrange activities, transport and accommodation but please note this is usually an independent experience outside of the core program.
Port Elizabeth is a city on Algoa Bay in South Africa’s Eastern Cape Province. Port Elizabeth (PE for short) fringes Algoa Bay at the western end of the Sunshine Coast, and offers many good bathing beaches, great surf spots and excellent water sports. Marine life in the bay is also sensational, with plenty of dolphins and whales that can be spotted throughout the year. The city centre, once a place to avoid, has started to smarten up thanks to a few urban regeneration projects, and it boasts numerous heritage buildings that are well worth a gander.
Mossel Bay is a harbour town, populated by about 130,000 people on the Southern Cape (or Garden Route) of South Africa. It is an important tourism and farming region of the Western Cape Province. Mossel Bay lies 400km east of the country’s seat of parliament, Cape Town, and 400km west of Port Elizabeth, the largest city in the Eastern Cape Province. A popular activity here is shark cage diving, with the area famous for having some of the best conditions for diving with Great White sharks – if you’re feeling adventurous!
Jeffreys Bay is a town located in the Eastern Cape province and is one of the five most famous surfing destinations in the world. Jeffreys Bay is a popular tourist destination because of its surfing opportunities and the Blue Flag beach. Jeffreys Bay is famous for abundant seashells, great seafood and calamari. The nearby Kabeljous, Seekoei and Krom River lagoons host numerous water birds and are also ideal for many different watersports including canoeing, boardsailing and fishing.
TSITSIKAMMA NATIONAL PARK
Tsitsikamma National Park is an area of the Garden Route National Park, on South Africa’s southern coast. It encompasses a marine reserve, deep gorges and local vegetation. The Mouth Trail crosses a suspension bridge over Storms River. The Otter Trail leads you to Nature’s Valley, with birds including the Cape batis. Bungee jumping is popular reason for volunteers and adventurers to visit Tsitsikamma. Bloukrans Bungy is the highest commercially operated Bungy Jump from a bridge, in the world.
Plettenberg Bay is a seaside town on the Garden Route in South Africa’s Western Cape Province. The sandy Central Beach and Lookout Beach both have surf breaks. To the south, Robberg Nature Reserve is a rocky peninsula with trails and the Stone Age Nelson Bay Caves. Northeast is Birds of Eden, a free-flight bird sanctuary in the indigenous forest, and an elephant sanctuary. Whales come near the coast in migration season. For those looking for adrenaline filled activities, Plett can be a popular location to embark on a skydive.