Swim with the dolphins in the warm waters off the KwaZulu Natal North Coast and indulge your senses in all the finer things in life from great food, luxury accommodation to big game safaris in Zululand and coastal adventures in Maputaland.
You can explore this area by horseback or microlight, on boat cruises or by game drives, the entire North Coast of KwaZulu Natal is rich in history and natural attractions. Hundreds of bottlenose dolphins drawn by the warm waters and shallow coves along this part of coastline frolic in the waters as do the more serious whales in the months between June and November. Follow their example and explore the coastline by boat, kayak or go diving or snorkelling in the warm waters off the KwaZulu Natal North Coast.
Combine explorations of coastal treasures and cultural experiences with visits to the private and mostly malaria-free game reserves in the Zululand region. Home to the Big Five and an abundance of other wildlife, these luxury lodges effortlessly combine exclusive wildlife experiences with decadent living. Mostly located around the oldest game park in South Africa, the Hluhluwe Umfolozi Park, game reserves such as the Zululand Rhino Reserve, Thanda Game Reserve, Mkuze Game Reserve and Phinda Private Game Reserve offer you up close encounters with Africa’s majestic animals. If you are lucky while on a game drive in this area you might even spot the elusive white rhino as well as its black counterpart.
Linger longer along the Coastal Maputaland section of the KwaZulu Natal North Coast to visit the iSimangaliso Wetland Park where the coastal reefs are home to more than a thousand fish species creating a paradise setting for scuba divers and snorkelers. Surround yourself with hippos and crocodiles on the clear waters of South Africa’s largest freshwater lake, Sibaya, or choose an exclusive beach experience in the Coastal Forest with its pristine beaches and beautiful dunes. Water lovers should head to the world-class diving destination Sodwana Bay for the coral reefs teeming with more than a 1 000 species of fish and the legendary Coelacanth. This wildlife and nature reserve is sheer heaven on earth for bird lovers as more than 500 species have been spotted here. Enter into Africa’s largest estuarine system, St Lucia, with its flocks of pelicans, ducks and aquatic species, watch out for the 800-odd hippos and crocodiles when exploring by kayak or foot. Look in the summer months for the giant leatherback and loggerhead turtles struggling up the beach from the sea to lay their eggs in the warm sands. The Park contains three lake systems, eight interlinking ecosystems and 25 000 year-old coastal dunes.
Divide your time between the coastal reserves and the inland game viewing opportunities that abound in the mountain foothills, coastal forests and rolling grasslands of the North Coast of KwaZulu Natal for an African luxury vacation you will never forget. Contact the Southern Africa Travel team today.
South Africa’s first World Heritage Site
The name iSimangaliso means ‘miracle and wonder’ which is an apt name for the paradise on earth that is the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. The endless beaches, coastal treasures and sheer unspoilt beauty of the place are unrivalled anywhere else in the country. Come and enjoy the outdoor experience of a lifetime.
The Sardine Run
This natural phenomenon occurs during late autumn or early winter every year when millions of sardines migrate from their southerly spawning grounds up the coastline. This migration is a fantastic feeding opportunity for thousands of predators that follow in their wake. An awesome sight, that is not to be missed if you are in the area at the time.
Take on a Tiger Fish
Test your fishing skills against the ferocious Tiger Fish in Lake Jozini, they are known as the African piranha because of their needle-like teeth so be prepared to work hard to land one! Set in the beautiful Pongola Game Reserve, Lake Jozini is the most southerly body of water in which Tiger Fish are found.
Learn how to weave a Zulu basket
Ilala Weavers, just past Hluhluwe, is the place to go for woven goods. Not only does it house the largest collection of Zulu baskets in the world but is also home to a Zulu Cultural Museum with unique and antique Zulu artefacts dating back to early in the 19th century. Spend some time here relaxing in the restaurant, picking up tips from the crafters or browsing the African Art Museum.
Explore the ‘muti’ trail
Discover the traditional medical uses of indigenous plants in the Harold Johnson Nature Reserve along one of the nature walks. The reserve is also known for its abundant birdlife and antelope species.
6 Nights | 7 Days
Forget the winter blues with this six-night South African escape to the sub-tropical climate of KwaZulu-Natal’s Elephant Coast. We combine a thrilling safari adventure in the untamed Thanda Private Game Reserve with the romance of the untouched, white sandy beaches of Thonga Beach Lodge.
7 Nights | 8 Days
Discover the beauty of KwaZulu Natal, the sun-drenched beaches, the famous KwaZulu Natal battlefields and the magical African wilderness.
From $197 USD Per Person Sharing
Fairmont Zimbali Lodge, a luxurious destination where a personalised service is to be expected. The lodge is set under a forest canopy in a sub-tropical paradise. Guests can enjoy a round of golf on the stunning 18-hole championship course.
From $283 USD Per Person Sharing
Set along South Africa’s sublime east coast, nestled between a forest reserve and a shimmering sea, the Fairmont Zimbali Resort is a tranquil retreat offering the utmost in comfort and service.
From $253 USD Per Person Sharing
Indulge in a romantic and decadent stay at the luxury Thanda Private Game Reserve. With nine luxurious villas located in the bush with their own swimming pools and decks, Thanda is an exclusive safari destination. Indulge in pampering treatments at the award-winning spa, immerse yourself in local Zulu culture and enjoy the colonial-style safari experience.
From $367 USD Per Person Sharing
Dip into an unspoilt wilderness landscape when staying at the luxury Thonga Beach Lodge in Maputaland, KwaZulu-Natal. Set above a private beach in the stunningly beautiful Isimangaliso World Heritage Park, this exclusive lodge promises you access to the natural surrounds as well as spa treatments, fabulous food and a romantic atmosphere.
All in all it was perfect— Maureen Adamson
Our vacation was fabulous— Jürgen Schäfer, Germany
What a holiday— Anne Hand