Considering a Sustainable Pastime?



Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
Gabrielle Thorn Print Monokini


Image Sourced Warren Witte on Instagram @warren_witte
Sparks Bay Day Camp Tidal Pool


Image Sourced Warren Witte on Instagram @warren_witte
Miller’s Point Tidal Pool, Simon’s Town


Image Sourced Gabrielle Swimwear on Instagram
Gold Plunge One-Piece

Wanting to shine a bright light on the plight of the world’s oceans? Keen to try an activity that helps release stress and promotes deep sleep, one that relaxes muscles, repairs the whole body and sharpens the mind? On top of all, sick of dragging yourself off to a sweaty gym?

Well …

The global trend for sea water swimming has never been more popular than over the past eighteen months of lockdowns with public swimming pools out of bounds. Neither are sea water and wild water swimming purely reserved for the epic annual Scottish bottom-baring Hogmanay skinny dip. There are devotees all over the globe who start every day – come rain or shine, Summer or Winter, with an invigorating wild water dip!

With South Africa’s ‘human polar bear’, UN Patron Of Oceans, endurance swimmer and eco-celebrity Lewis Pugh continually making waves in conservation circles in his quest to save the world’s oceans, this enthusiasm has rubbed off on many local swimming aficionados as well as those who have never before dipped a toe in freezing wild water. Wild water swimming is not exclusively reserved for scorching hot summers days either, thousands of exuberant devotees have been taking to oceans and rivers throughout the Autumn and Winter months too, sans wetsuit, au naturel, braving the seasonal drop in temperature.

If you’re fortunate enough to stay near an ocean or river, try wild water swimming. It ticks all the boxes and it’s free! The physical and mental health benefits of this form of exercise are undeniable and add to that the symbolic focus on our oceans … it’s an undisputed win-win.

Now, if you do this while also sporting an ethically produced swimsuit, you’re firing on all eco-cylinders (wind powered of course)!


Image Sourced Lewis Pugh on Facebook
Lewis Pugh has just completed ‘the toughest swim of his life’ across Greenland’s Ilulissat Icefjord to show the dramatic impact of the Climate Crisis.


Watch a video of Lewis Pugh in action in the Arctic here:

South Africa has one of the most epic coastlines with super scenic beaches and scores of free-to-use open-air tidal pools in and around Cape Town alone. Sea water swimmers are spoilt for choice when it comes to picking their personal piece of heaven. No doubt plunging into a tidal pool is a baby step in getting up close and personal with the dolphins and whales in the majestic Atlantic and Indian Oceans. (Nothing, of course stops you whale watching from the vantage point of your tidal pool!)

We’ve rounded up a few of the numerous seawater tidal pools around Cape Town to whet your appetite and thought we’d throw in a little selection of Cape Town Slow Fashion swimwear designer Gabrielle Swimwear’s extraordinary creations too, in keeping with the ethical, conservation vibe that comes with shining a torch on the plight of our planet’s oceans.

Give it a try, wherever you are in the world!

Gabrielle Swimwear is a designer swimwear label based in Cape Town, with a strong focus on sustainability and ‘slow-fashion’.  They’re renowned for their exclusive prints – from iconic protea to aloe, thorn bush to arum lily, strelizia to acacia – showcasing the immense natural beauty of South Africa. These works-of-art swimsuits are ethically produced, made of the highest quality fabric and come in a delightful array of styles.

All fabric, trims, printing and production are locally sourced, supporting fair trade and the lycra used is certified by Reach and Okea-tex. The latest collection and all future pieces are made up using REPREVE fabric, which is 82% recycled plastic bottles cleaned up along coastlines. With a strong focus on sustainability, the environmental impact is considered from start to finish, including the selection of materials, quality, production and packaging.

Another awesome thing about this range is that you can access them at select *Stockists from South Africa to Sri Lanka, Botswana to Texas as well as online!

“I believe in slow fashion. Quality goods that have been ethically produced and show off the beauty and diversity of South Africa’s natural environment. I want to bring awareness to the general consumer and help put South Africa on the map for swimwear fashion”

– Gabrielle Kool, managing director and designer


Image Sourced Dan Grinwis on Instagram @dangrinwis
Maiden’s Cove Tidal Pool


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
Flame Lily Bikini – The name says it all: Gloriousa Superba. This exquisite flower is found in the Southern parts of Africa and is the national flower of Zimbabwe.


Watch Gabrielle Swimwear’s latest videos here, showcasing their stunning products as well as the natural beauty of Cape Town’s coastline:



Image Sourced Maku Visuals on Instagram @maku_visuals
Fick’s Pool, Hermanus


Image Sourced Florence Poretti on Facebook
Early morning aquarobics at Camps Bay Tidal Pool, Cape Town, with the Twelve Apostles Mountains in the background.


Image Sourced James Medcalf on Instagram @jamesmedcalf
A drone shot of Camps Bay Tidal Pool, Cape Town


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
The Protea Shaped-Top Bikini: Protea is the national flower of South Africa.


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
Strelizia Reversible Scoop Top Bikini: exploding with vibrant hues, Strelizia is one of South Africa’s most popular indigenous flowers.

Image Sourced Warren Witte on Instagram @warren_witte
Brass Bell Tidal Pool in the exquisite seaside town of Kalk Bay


Image Credit Cape Grace Hotel (
The inimitable St James Tidal Pool flanked by its colourful beach huts


Image Credit Surfers Corner
St James Tidal Pool


Image Sourced Warren Witte on Instagram @warren_witte
Another tidal pool on the Deep South coastline


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
The Acacia Thorn Backless One-Piece


Image Sourced Gabrielle Swimwear on Instagram
The iconic Protea features beautifully on this swimsuit.


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
A sultry Protea Bikini for balmy days


Gabrielle Swimwear


South Africa:

Purr, Lifestyle Centre Cape Town @purrclothingsa

Houtbay Collective, Hout Bay #houtbaycollective

Xpression on the Beach, Muizenburg Cape Town #expressionsonthebeach

Spence and Mae, Hillcrest @spenceandmae

Not Sheep Boutique, Southbroom @notsheep_boutique

The Oysterbox, Durban @theoysterbox

Sabi Sabi Luxury Game Lodge , Kruger Mpumulanga

International :

Flying Solo, NYC @flyingsolonyc

Okavango Wilderness Safaris, Botswana #okavangowildernessafaris

Oscar and Olive, Namibia @oscarand olive_boutique_namibia

Le Ketiya Boutique, Sri Lanka

Asch Building, Texas @aschbuilding

Online Stockists: International:

Flying Solo NYC  –  – US

Saski – – Poland

AKOJO Market  –  – UK

That Pretty Place –  – AU



Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
Take the plunge in the Protea Vintage Set!


Image Sourced Warren Witte on Instagram @warren_witte
Sparks Bay Day Camp Tidal Pool


Image Sourced Warren Witte on Instagram @warren_witte
Woolley’s Tidal Pool


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
Green Aloe Banded Plain Janes


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
Protea Plunge One-Piece


Image Sourced Florence Poretti on Facebook
Camps Bay Tidal Pool


Image Sourced Gabrielle Swimwear on Instagram
Sleeved Aloe Bikini in White


Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
Take on the world in this Guinea Plain Jane Bikini! The Guinea Fowl is a unique South African bird.

Image Credit Gabrielle Swimwear
White Aloe Brazilian String Bottoms


Now that you have your ethical string bikini, here’s a list of a few super scenic natural seawater TIDAL POOLS around Cape Town to show off your assets!

Camps Bay Tidal Pool – Victoria Road, Camps Bay

Dalebrook Tidal Pool – Off Main Road, Dalebrook

Glencairn Tidal Pool – Glencairn Beach, Glencairn

Graaff Tidal Pool – Sea Point Beach Front, Beach Road, Sea Point

Harmony Park Tidal Pool – Jan Bruin Street, Strand

Kalk Bay 1 Tidal Pool – Off Main Road, Kalk Bay

Kalk Bay 2 Tidal Pool – Off Main Road, Kalk Bay

Maiden’s Cove 1 Tidal Pool – Off Victoria Road, Camps Bay

Maiden’s Cove 2 Tidal Pool – Off Victoria Road, Camps Bay

Miller’s Point Tidal Pool, Simon’s Town

Milton Tidal Pool – Off Beach Road, Sea Point

Monwabisi Tidal Pool – Off Baden Powell Drive, Khayelitsha

Saunders’ Rock Tidal Pool – Sea Point Promenade, Beach Road, Sea Point

Shelley Point Tidal Pool – M6, Glencairn

Silwerstroom Tidal Pool – Silwerstroom Resort, Silwerstroom

Soetwater 1 Tidal Pool – Lighthouse Road, Kommetjie

Soetwater 2 Tidal Pool- Lighthouse Road, Kommetjie

Sparks Bay Day Camp Tidal Pool – Clarence Drive, Gordon’s Bay

St James Tidal Pool – Main Road, St James

Strand Tidal Pool – Beach Road, Strand

Wooley’s Tidal Pool – Kalk Bay


Cecile Paul

Author at Pynck

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