sardinia bay MPA

"port elizabeth’s secret"

Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape


Rolling dunes, sandy shores and sub-tidal reefs.

This small 12.9 km2 MPA is situated along 7 km of coast west of Port Elizabeth between Schoenmakerskop and Bushy Park. The MPA extends 1.8 km out to sea and protects mixed, rocky and sandy shores and offshore sub-tidal reefs with unique communities. It has the highest number of endemic species of any other MPA. The MPA provides valuable protection to abalone, which is heavily over-exploited in open areas, and musselcracker. The MPA was established in 2000 and is zoned as a no-take area, with no fishing or harvesting allowed in the MPA. It is managed by the Nelson Mandela Metro and is adjacent to the Sardinia Bay Nature Reserve. The pristine coastline of Sardinia Bay is considered to be one of the best coastal walks in Port Elizabeth, with little development in the area.



  • protects abalone

  • protects linefish species such as musselcracker

  • protects uniquely South African sponges, soft corals and seasquirts