Aristea Shipwreck (1945)


Aristea shipwreck, Hondeklipbaai. The Aristea was a fishing trawler for I&J until she was called into duty in WWII as a minesweeper. The Aristea met her unfortunate end on the rocks outside Hondeklipbaai after her captain drunkenly neglected his duties.

The Aristea was built in 1934 in Scotland and she ran aground on 4 July 1945 just south of Hondeklipbaai.

“The South African Navy’s First Fifty Years” as compiled by Commodore Goosen has Aristea listed as a coal trawler owned by Irvin and Johnston. It was taken over by the SANF in November 1939 and handed back to its owners in December 1944.

The story goes that the captain of the ship was too tipsy to take command of the ship in the rough waters off the coast of Hondeklipbaai. On that dark and stormy night, a junior deckhand swam ashore with a rope and anchor to save his fellow sailors. From a crew of 24, only one person died in the shipwreck.

If you want to learn more about the Aristea, ask your host at the Honnehokke Resort in Hondeklipbaai to tell you the story and guide you to the shipwreck.


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