Mbhashe Local municipality is strategically allocated in the south eastern part of the Eastern Cape Province, and is bound by the Qhora River in the south to Mncwasa River in the north along the Indian Ocean.
The municipality is comprised of three main urban centres, namely Idutywa, Willowvale (Gatyana) and Elliotdale (Xhora). Idutywa is the administrative head centre of the municipality.
The municipality prides itself of its beautiful coastline, countless tourism attractions and places of interest. The towns of the municipality are hospitable and are rich in heritage, beauty and adventure:
The municipality is named after the beautiful Mbhashe River which flows from the banks of Engcobo, flowing through Idutywa, Gatyana, Xhora and a number of rural settlements. The town Dutywa, which has the main administration offices is derived from a Xhosa expression: ukudutywa (a place of disturbance), this was after a scuffle broke out during an invasion by raiders from Natal in the 19th century. Initially the town was called Idutywa, but was officially changed to Dutywa” on 16 July 2004.