The Cartist

Nelson Mandela Bay - South Africa





Professional automotive artist and designer Clive Botha is proud to operate The Cartist Automotive Art & Design Agency which incorporates MotorMedia Communications based in Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa.

Nelson Mandela Bay has got everything a visitor may expect to find on a trip to South Africa! Named after Nelson Mandela (Madiba) - humanitarian, freedom fighter and world icon of peace - it is located 763km east of Cape Town and 1045km south of Johannesburg.  Nelson Mandela Bay is regarded as the official gateway to the scenic Eastern Cape Province and the world-renowned Garden Route and is sometimes referred to (by the people who know her best) as the ‘Friendly City’ or the ‘Watersport Capital of Africa’.  Nelson Mandela Bay is also recognised as both the Mohair and Bottelnose Dolphin Capital of the World, and is home to the largest breeding colony of African Penguins in the world.


Coastal & Beaches


Situated on the shores of the Indian Ocean, overlooking Algoa Bay, this bustling seaport city boasts an atmosphere of relaxed year-round fun and excitement.  Warm, dry summers and mild winter temperatures entice watersport lovers to Algoa Bay throughout the year.  The breathtaking 40km seashore has a perfect combination of warm water, protected beaches and invigorating sea breezes.  Here you will find some of the world's best sailing venues, first-rate scuba diving with colourful coral species, beautiful reefs and shipwrecks, near perfect conditions for wind-surfing, angling, snorkelling, kite-surfing, fly-fishing and canoeing.

If your interest is sea life, go on a boat trip and experience close encounters with our ‘in-bay’ seals, whales, dolphins and even ragged-tooth sharks.  Or if lazing on the beach is your idea of fun, then this is the place to be.  Nelson Mandela Bay has received the ‘Cleanest Metro in South Africa Award’ and ‘Blue Flag Status’ has again been awarded to most of the beaches.  This is an international award only given to those beaches that meet excellence in safety, amenities, cleanliness and environmental standards.


History & Culture


Another drawcard to the metro is the charming architectural profile which follows a chronological historical pattern throughout the city - starting with Victorian styles, followed by art nouveau, art deco and modern buildings. The biggest number of art deco buildings in South Africa is to be found in the city centre!

The metro ‘townships’ that came into being because of the apartheid laws, are steeped in history, tradition and culture. From their humble beginnings, they have flourished into hubs of activity and social life and the feeling of ‘Ubuntu’ (meaning 'Humanity' in Xhosa) surrounds their very existence. Visitors may opt for a selection of exciting social, historical and traditional township tours. At the Donkin Reserve, stand next to the figure of Madiba at the head of the iconic 1994 Voting Line, the first truly democratic elections held in South Africa, while craning your neck to look up at the largest South African flag in the world.


Wildlife & Nature


In addition, the city and environs offer a wide selection of attractions; the sheer diversity of which will excite and inspire! These include a rich historical heritage, as well as nature-based eco-offerings, activities and experiences. The area supports the most diverse array of vegetation types in South Africa; six of the country's seven terrestrial biomes (bio geographic areas) are represented in the Eastern Cape.

As gateway to the Western Region of the Eastern Cape, the metro is the perfect complement to the many scenic tourist routes that emanate from it. These include the Sunshine Coast, Frontier Country, Sundays River Valley, Kouga, Tsitsikamma, Garden Route, as well as the Karoo Heartland Routes and Route 62.

Nelson Mandela Bay is also the gateway to more than a million hectares of the malaria free game reserves of the Eastern Cape. This includes the Addo Elephant National Park, as well as numerous private reserves offering the 'Big 5’ experience. Nelson Mandela Bay is also the only metro that boasts the ‘Big 7’ (Elephant, Buffalo, Rhino, Lion, Leopard, Humpback Whale and Great White Shark), all within 45-minutes of the city. There are also smaller game parks available in the city for those rushed for time where you can explore the African wildlife.


Business & Commerce


The infrastructure and accommodation facilities in Nelson Mandela Bay make this the perfect basis from which to experience and explore what the metro, the region and the surrounds have to offer. The constructive efforts of the local Town Council to make the metro one of the most growth-oriented cities in the ‘new’ South Africa are evident in the sound infrastructure, sophisticated services, communication systems and health care services available.

The financial infrastructure of Nelson Mandela Bay is also well established. All the major banks, building societies, insurance companies and telephone companies, have their provincial regional offices in Nelson Mandela Bay. They are connected with all the major financial centers of Southern Africa and the rest of the world.

The Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber is one of the largest voluntary business associations in the Eastern Cape with a membership of businesses in a diverse array of sectors and is a leading catalyst for economic development in the area.   The city is always buzzing with business visitors, investors and conference attendees, exploring the new entrepreneurial opportunities created within the Bay.


Industry & Manufacturing


The port of Nelson Mandela Bay, with its proximity to a heavily industrialised city, intensively farmed areas and the Coega Deep Water Harbour, has facilities for the handling of all commodities - bulk, general and container cargo. Being the centre of South Africa's motor vehicle manufacturing industry, the port imports large volumes of containerised components and raw materials for this industry. Today, employment in the metro is mainly through the automotive, auto component, food, pharmaceutical, tourism, agriculture, textile and rubber industries.

Nelson Mandela Bay may be smaller than South Africa’s other metropolitan cities, but when it comes to motoring production, the city enjoys international stature.  In fact, South Africa’s highest concentration of motor manufacturing firms and auto component suppliers can be found in Nelson Mandela Bay – earning the city the title of ‘Motoring Mecca of Africa’.

Here Volkswagen of South Africa (VWSA), Isuzu Motors South Africa, Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa, Goodyear and Continental Tyres straddle the city’s manufacturing sector – accounting for billions in turnover annually.  In addition, Hi-Tech Automotive positions Nelson Mandela Bay as a world leader in vintage sportscar replica production.


Lifestyle & Entertainment


Nelson Mandela Bay is an ideal entertainment and shopping destination; offering various kinds of entertainment to suit every age and personality. Enjoyable evening entertainment includes sundowner cruises, nightclubs, award-winning cocktail bars, late-night music spots, fine art, movies, restaurants, theatre and cultural performances.

The restaurants, pubs and taverns in and around the city offer a wide range of cuisine, reflecting the diverse cultures and peoples of the area.  Nelson Mandela Bay has the highest per capita ratio of restaurants in South Africa, and an excellent selection of restaurants offering a wide range of cuisine to satisfy any palate.

The active tourist can enjoy the excitement of the Boardwalk Casino and Entertainment Complex in Summerstrand; which has a full mix of family fun, entertainment, shopping, dining and gaming. Other entertainment options in the metro include numerous sophisticated shopping malls, as well as annual and seasonal festivals and events.


A Brand New Day


Nelson Mandela Bay embodies a laidback environment, where a balanced lifestyle is as important as work.  Yet, this is also a city with a vision that strives ambitiously for progress and growth.  It is a city where people seek new tomorrows and a better life for their families. 

The locals give visitors a welcome as warm as the weather.  Basking in more sunshine hours than any other coastal city in South Africa, the Bay is tangibly blessed.  It is not surprising that families, professionals and investors from other centres in South Africa are increasingly ‘Packing for Nelson Mandela Bay’.

As a transformed South African city – seeking to redress the imbalances of the past and move forward sociologically and economically – it is establishing itself as a responsible entity serving its citizens.  Exciting new developments, on the investment-front, energise the growing economy while tourism bodies are marketing the assets of the city and nearby attractions in fresh and exciting ways.

Nelson Mandela Bay is on the cusp of continued positive growth and enjoys a new economic vitality – it is a city moving into the light and revelling in the warmth of a brand new day.


Nelson Mandela Bay - Discover Freedom



Nelson Mandela Bay - Investment Hotspot


 Fact File:


Co-ordinates:  33°57’29”S, 25°36’00”E

Area:  1952 km² (2nd largest in SA)

Population:  1,254,000

Languages:  Xhosa, English and Afrikaans

Temperature range:  18°C – 30°C in summer and 8°C – 20°C in winter

Climate:  Nelson Mandela Bay has the fourth best climate in the world for a coastal city



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