Water slides are cracked open and filled with sand, and the once-bright paint has faded into pastel hues against the dunes. The Macassar Beach Pavilion in Cape Town has been abandoned to let nature reclaim the water park.
Located near Strand, the abandoned park is situated in the Macassar Dunes Conservation Area — a 2,760-acre reserve that protects the sand dunes and unique fynbos in the area, including the last remaining forest of white milkwood trees in the city. The reserve is also home to the largest and highest dune system in the Cape Peninsula.
The aqua park was built in 1991 and named Macassar Beach Pavilion. It must have been the sweetest eeriest place in the whole of South Africa. Bright blue and green everywhere, wooden beach houses and plastic toboggans with playgrounds filled with sand all around, and of course the bright blue sea of False Bay.
In no time at all, it became a very popular beach resort in the area. It attracted thousands of people from the Cape Flats. Today, however, the resort is left decaying in ruin since it went out of business. The sand dunes have overrun much of the area as if reclaiming what was it’s own.
Financial troubles hit the Macassar Beach Pavilion around the turn of the millennium. Maintenance and financial support for the employees came short. It was a hard work that required a lot of equipment and many hands keeping the place clean from sand. The dunes are known for their unpredictable winds and shifts. Neglect from both the employers and the employees began to show. This resulted with drop in popularity among the visitors, with it the income went down and after a while the water park went out of business and was closed for good.
Sand has completely engulfed the once vibrant buildings, infiltrating concession stands, changing rooms, water slides, and swimming pools. Inside the derelict buildings, window panes are bare, walls are scrawled with graffiti, and chipped blue paint provides the only clue to what the interior once looked like. The ground is littered with broken glass, tiles, and bricks.
the whole area is pretty much succumbing to nature as the dunes move up and over the existing buildings and swimming pools. The bright blue structure contrasts with the sea and sand – signage points to dunes where parking lots and water slides used to be.
The Pavilion provides a unique opportunity for photographers documenting urban decay because its location by the sea makes it an ironic sight: an abandoned water park, right next to the ocean, filled with sand.