Port Elizabeth of Yore: The First Account of Algoa Bay

The fact that Bartholomew Diaz, a nobleman of the Portuguese royal household and explorer, sailed around the southernmost tip of Africa in 1488, reaching the Indian Ocean from the Atlantic, would  reverberate for centuries to come. At the very least, the coastline should have been documented but it took 87 years for this to occur.

This is the narrative of Manuel de Mesquita Perestrelo’s 1575 voyage at the behest of the Portuguese king, Dom Sebastian. 

Main picture: 1575 map of Southern African coastline from Cape of Good Hope to Inhambane

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