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Things are swinging again at Jungle Monkey in PSJ!

The enchanted entrance to The Jungle Monkey in Port St. Johns

Things are swinging again at Jungle Monkey in PSJ!

After a devastating fire that literally ate the Monkey whole last year, the new Jungle Monkey is born. Many buckets of effort and lots of thought have produced an airy new vibe with views near to 360. Glass and local material have been blended atrium style. With different levels and chilling zones spread out all over  – it’s also gonna be the ultimate party venue all over again.


 

Take a hike out the back off Port St. Johns to find a bit of real African magic.

Take a hike out the back off Port St. Johns to find a bit of real African magic.

Port St. Johns (PSJ as it’s affectionately called by locals), is a very interesting place. Steeped in old timer stories, this was and still is, the wild west of Africa. Planted at the base of a magnificent chasm of rock on a huge African river mouth, tales of shipwrecks, tribal factions and war, political unrest and social turmoil are behind every rock. It’s wild! Wild enough to be graced as the epi-centre of the Transkei “Wild Coast”.

 

And it’s out here on the edge, that real rewards are to be found. Indelible sunrises. Trippy cloud formations. Views that put you in an aeroplane. Hikes that will make you lost in a real good way. Much of the surrounds of PSJ are still completely untouched. Almost impossible to access. This is where Jungle Monkey can hook you up with the very best local tour operators.

Going into the wild accompanied by a local guide – just ask at reception. It’s real affordable and so much fun when you have a connection to the community through the guide. Do not ever go alone! Local knowledge is crucial anywhere in Africa.

Out to sea in the annual sardine run to swim with sharks and all sorts? Click on over to Offshore Port St. Johns (http://offshoreportstjohns.com). These guys have been in PSJ for ages, and have a wealth of experience in these waters, and vested in the activities they do. Completely safe, well, errr – “Keep your arms tucked in!” is one of my favourites! But it is the biggest shoal on earth and David Attenborough loved the spectacle. Bryde’s Whale is another favourite sighting – but I’m sure that’s the one got Jonah by mistake! Dolphins are the most plentiful, and all the animals in the water with you, are far too focused on the sardines to be a real threat. The sharks are just gorging themselves and the whole lot of them actually work together. Even the birds! Gannets become underwater fighter planes as they zap down from the sky using all their momentum to get as deep as they can, and then start swimming around between the sharks and dophins nailing plenty sardines in one sortie.

 

SeaCandyMedia by Anthony Kobrowisky

SeaCandyMedia by Anthony Kobrowisky

Then when that store of adrenalin runs out after the season in August, Offshore can be seen bobbing up and down the wild Umzimvubu on Bobalong – on their huge party boat. It’s so big it even has a bathroom at the back. Music. Chairs and tables?! Ask at Jungle Monkey reception to hook you up with a sunset booze cruise or a champagne breakfast. It’s also the time when some of the Offshore team head out to other waters to swim with sharks. If you are this crazy then Diving with Sharks can get you in with tigers, zambezis, hammers – even a white if you ask nicely! http://divingwithsharks.co.za is where you get your toes properly wet.

 

And now we can finally mention the fishing. Jungle Monkey is 200 metres from the favourite kob and garrick spinning spot – under the cliff as the river pours in from the sea at the incoming high tide, and fills the deep basin a cast away. It would be called catching if we caught every time. And would become down right boring. But if you really want to raise your chances of encountering your trophy fish, come to PSJ. We practise catch and release. But if you get a nice shad on your spoon, bring it home! Licenses and restrictions apply, if you’re new to the game!

 

You only need to catch one of these magnificent fish - in your whole life!

You only need to catch one of these magnificent fish – in your whole life! This fish caught just out front of Jungle Monkey – the Rasta Priests from Ethiopia staying here at the time, were eveer so slightly impressed!

The most fun is to have a medium spinning stick with casting braid, and a Mydo Luck Shot or SS Spoon. Weighing in from 0.7 Ounces up to 3, choose your weapon that works best with your rod. Then work out your retrieve to mimic whatever baitfish are around (usually mullet or sardine), and cast to the horizon. Nothing will prepare you for when that garrick, or two or three of them charge in at your lure, turning away at the very last moment. Metres from where you are standing. This can go on over and over – you got to change your retrieve, change the tempo – until bang! Eish these garrick are much bigger in this area too. Real dogfighters as they jam you left and right and up and down the rocks.

 

And that’s just the garrick! Wait til you spot a shoal of huge daga salmon, or kob as they are known further south. Spawning in the estuary. 30kgs plus. So many of them. But they will not bite whilst so preoccupied with the job at hand. In full view they loll and flop around eachother in a cloud of white. A miracle to see. Then straight after, they belt it back out to sea, and this is when they are so vulnerable. To replace spent energy they must feed, and feed fast. Stories of absolute slaughter are recorded each year. You can do your bit by returning your fish. And reporting anyone who takes more than their allowed two. DAFF details can be clicked here.

Unfortunately swimming and surfing is a big no-no anywhere around PSJ. This is where you come to encounter sharks,  prepared for them and under the protection of your team – and on some of your terms at least. Not flailing about or paddling and splashing right where every Zambezi in the local ecology has to swim past to get into the river. They go up far to drop pups. Little zambezis that become huge zambezis. And they all live in the area. The real locals. The great news for swimmers is that there are whispers that the long overdue tidal pool at 2nd beach (between Shark Point and Shark Point), is gonna be built soonish. Africa time. Surfers just go somewhere else rather or come with a Shark Shield at least. Jet ski or boat another requirement. Coffee Bay a little further on has a mild reputation for safe surfing and periodic good waves.

Jungle Monkey puts you right in the middle of all this action. It’s well serviced and has cheerful staff always ready with a huge smile. There are many accommodation options. Singles, doubles, dorms, chalets…the place is actually huge. And a fantastic kitchen producing a delicious menu. African fusion? Veg meals too.

There you have it. Sitting atop a little hill. Overlooking the ocean out front, and up the mountains out back. Enjoying a meal from the excellent new kitchen (fire-proof). A golden coldie. And…

Adrenalin on tap.


You can read a bunch of fishy and other types of tales from the Port St. Johns waters, by clicking here…http://thesardine.co.za/?s=port+st+johns


And a cool gallery…


And to get to Jungle Monkey…


Or get in touch at their website http://junglemonkey.co.za


 

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