Welcome to Station Eight of the Mossel Bay Historical Tourist Route.
Google Maps Co-ordinates -34.18297171963456, 22.15261331609024
The Route is +/- 5km long and introduce you to the “Story” of Mossel Bay town and the Mossel Bay community. It is a circular route, so you can start at any point.
Feel free to take short cuts, stray from the route, but whatever you do, do not rush through our beautiful town. You will not get to know Mossel Bay by rushing, but you will experience Mossel Bay by taking your time and taking it in. The Route introduce you to things to do, food and drink to enjoy and sights to see.
General Tour Guide Tips:
Read the First People Story on the pedestal or below.
Station 8 is located in the Saint Blaize Cave area next to the War Memorial. The War Memorial is located to the north and was constructed in 1920 to commemorate those who laid down their lives in the 1st and 2nd World Wars. Head up the hill to the Saint Baize cave. The cave area is an excellent vantage point to enjoy the beautiful Point views. This area is also the starting point of the Saint Blaize Hiking Trail. The trail follows our beautiful coastline for 13.5 km (6 hours – one way) and ends in Danabaai. Visit the Point Discovery Centre where more information regarding the “origins of modern humans” and the archaeological discoveries at the Pinnacle Point Cave Complex can be obtained. A visit to the Mossel Bay Lighthouse (1864) is a must do. The lighthouse is one of the best vantage points to appreciate the Mossel Bay Point Area as shaped over thousands of years. Support the local restaurants, coffee shops and other related activities in the area.
Proceed along Point Road in a westerly direction, past the War Memorial on your righthand side and the Saint Blaize cave on your lefthand side to Station 9 (220m).
THE FIRST PEOPLE
A very, very long time ago, they were here first… with the sea providing a continuous source of food, and safe shelter available in caves along the rocky coastline, Mossel Bay was a natural choice for Stone Age people to settle some 164 000 years ago.
The potential importance of the Pinnacle Point Cave Complex was confirmed during a development application investigation process in the late 1990s. Since 2000, a series of caves have been excavated by an international team of experts which revealed that caves in this vicinity were home to Middle Stone Age people who exhibited significant modern behaviour. A small group of men and women survived the Ice Age right here along our coastline – which was habitable due to the moderate climate. It is believed that they ate roots and seeds from the hardy and diverse local plant species and supplemented their diet with shellfish as a source of protein. It is thought that shellfish may have been crucial to the survival of these early humans. Excavation findings have confirmed some interesting points: food was harvested from the sea, complex bladelet technology was in use, and ochre was used for symbolling.
The St. Blaize cave, where you are standing, was excavated in 1888 by George Leith – making it one of the earliest cave excavations in South Africa. The excavation revealed evidence of occupation of the cave dating back to the Middle Stone Age.
The St Blaize Cave and the Pinnacle Point Cave Complex are Western Cape Provincial Heritage Sites. The Pinnacle Point Cave Complex is currently engaged in a nomination process for World Heritage Status.
Suggestion… visit the Pinnacle Point Cave Complex via a guided tour – contact the Tourism Office or visit www.visitmosselbay.co.za , the Tourism Office’s website for more information.