EC's Oyster Bay increasingly popular

31 Mar 2009

Instead of heading for the usual coastal hot-spots, tourists are now increasingly seeking alternatives among the more remote and less commercialised coastal getaways.

So says John Cooper from Chas Everitt International in the Eastern Cape, who adds that one such destination is Oyster Bay. "It has less than 300 developed stands and a tiny permanent population of just 45 families, and is already much sought after by those looking for a tranquil coastal retreat. The village itself is diminutive and safeguarded against over-expansion by lack of open land for development".

Cooper says only 220 more stands are still available for development, a factor which places a premium on existing properties and which will undoubtedly drive up values in the future.

Currently, empty stands measuring 600sq m cost between R350k and R2,2m depending on location and proximity to the beach, while freehold homes are priced at between R900k and R3m.

"Opportunities to build holiday flats or a retirement village at the bay are not really feasible given the lack of space and facilities such as hospitals. However, the buy-to-let market holds significant investor potential. Demand for holiday homes and rentals will no doubt rise further once the market turns upwards once more."

Besides the beach, draw cards to Oyster Bay include the fact that it is well-located as a base for those exploring the attractions of the Eastern Cape. It is close to the Tsitsikamma forest and the Addo Elephant Park and also within easy reach of Humansdorp, the surfing mecca of Jeffreys Bay and the restaurants and shops of St Francis.

The village itself has a small convenience store, a popular caravan park and a four-star lodge.

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