Draw a line from Port Alfred north along the coast as far as the Kei Mouth, and now extend this block north west from the coast, as far as Aliwal North. This is the Amatola and Stormberg Region that includes a portion of the Eastern Cape known as Frontier Country, the plains of the Karoo and the Stormberg region that lies beyond.
It can get a little confusing when writing about the Amatola and Stormberg Region. Essentially it is named after two mountain ranges – the Amatola (and Katberg) Mountains lie to the north of Grahamstown and King Williams Town, west of Stutterheim, whilst the Stormberg Mountains (regarded as the southern Drakensberg range) are further north east, seen looming above the Karoo town of Burgersdorp.
East London is the biggest town that, together with its other coastline counterparts of Port Alfred, Gonubie, Kwelera, Haga Haga and Kei Mouth, draws countless sun worshippers intent on a seaside escape that admittedly seldom fails to meet expectations.
But the Amatola Mountains offer hiking trails that are amongst the most scenic in the country, particularly the Amatola Hiking Trail that traverses 100 kilometres starting just outside King Williams Town and ending at Hogsback, taking in mountain scenery like no other, a feast of mountain pools, waterfalls and indigenous forests.
Head off to the Stormberg region and heart of the Frontier, called so after the Battle of Stormberg fought between the Boers and the British in 1899, and take in the historical towns of Queenstown, Molteno and Hofmeyr.