Few regions of the world can match the extraordinary beauty and diversity of this province of South Africa. From the Drakensberg mountains, to the unspoiled Indian Ocean beaches, from coral reefs to golf courses, from craft shops to spice markets, rhinos to whales, battlefields to beaches, KwaZulu Natal has it all. Stretching from the borders of Swaziland and Mozambique in the north to Lake St Lucia in the south, KwaZulu Natal’s unspoiled wetland parks are African wilderness at its best. A new road and airstrips have recently opened this isolated region to visitors, now renamed the Isimangaliso Wetlands Park.
When to go to KwaZulu Natal
KwaZulu Natal is an all-year destination, although it is humid and hot in the South African Summer (December - February) and it can be chilly high up in the Drakensberg Mountains in the winter (July - September).
Greater St Lucia / Isimangaliso Wetlands Park
The Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park is flanked by the Indian Ocean, and has over 200 kilometres of untouched sandy beach, coral reefs, pristine estuaries, lake systems and has recently been designated a World Heritage coastline.
The Game Reserves
Among the highlights of the region are its game reserves including Hluhluwe-Umfolozi, the jewel in KwaZulu Natal’s crown. It’s a vast reserve, covering 95,000 hectares, and is worldfamous for its work in conserving the White rhino. There are also several well-known private reserves in the area, including Amakhosi, Thanda and Phinda Reserve.
In the centre of the region is Zululand, the area and its people rich in history and tradition. A visit with one of our expert guides to the famous battlefields of the Zulu Wars is a most moving and memorable experience. Durban, the vibrant provincial capital, provides some fascinating contrasts, and the beach resorts of Umhlanga Rocks, Ballito and Shaka’s Rock are very popular.
And finally, on the east side of the province are the astonishing Drakensberg Mountains which soar to altitudes of over 3,000 metres. From here it is possible to take the Sani Pass up into mountainous Lesotho.
Where to go in KwaZulu Natal
- Exceptional wildlife at Phinda Private game Reserve
- Track the endangered Rhino
- Relax on the untouched beaches of Mozambique
- Exhilarating helicopter transfer from the lodge in Mozambique
Amakhosi Safari Lodge is a charming 5-star lodge is set on the banks of the Mkuze River near Pongola inside the beautiful, mountainous, 12,000-hectare Amazulu Private Reserve. The six spacious river suites are luxurious, very well-appointed and decorated in muted natural tones. They have a separate bedroom and lounge, so are suitable for families. Two ultraluxurious Umntwana honeymoon suites have ...
The unique Kosi Bay lake system, part of an estuary that runs into the Indian Ocean at the Mozambique border, is one of the most pristine environments in Southern Africa.A long term favourite at Rainbow Tours, we recommend a two or three night stay. You can kayak, learn to trap and spear fish and snorkel with game-viewing in nearby Tembe Elephant Park.Accommodation is in simple en suite reed chale...
The little town of St Lucia, by Lake St Lucia, at the southern end of the wetland beaches, is a hub for all kinds of outdoor activities.You can cruise on the lake, go fishing, kayak, ride horses on the beach and explore the coastal forests, now a nature reserve with over 500 bird species. There is boatbased whale-watching between June and November.Offering a ‘home from home’ experience...
Cathedral Peak Hotel is an established resort hotel beautifully set in a quiet valley among the rugged peaks of the Central Drakensberg.Since it first opened in 1939, the owner’s family has provided warm hospitality and exceptional service, and the hotel has won numerous awards, including the 2006 ‘Best Leisure Hotel’ award. With its exceptional mountain scenery, abundant birdlif...
Cleopatra Mountain Farmhouse is a mecca for food lovers in the Drakensberg.It's an intimate, luxury gourmet retreat beside a dam in the beautiful Kamberg Valley, just two hours from Durban in the Highmoor section of Giant’s Castle Nature Reserve. Richard and Mouse Poynton, the owners of this welcoming lodge, are renowned chefs. The menu changes every evening, and according to season and ...
Fordoun Spa Hotel is a boutique hotel and world-class spa located at Nottingham Road in the heart of the KwaZulu Natal Midlands Meander. The hotel's spa offers an extensive choice of treatments, but the unique aspect of a stay here is the well-known ethnobotanist and spiritual guide or sangoma, Dr Elliot Ndlovu, who offers consultations using traditional African herbs and plants, as well as a...
Fugitives' Drift Guest House offers alternative accommodation on the Fugitives' Drift Reserve, just five minutes away from the Fugitives' Drift lodge. It has just six rooms, each with a private verandah, grouped around an old farmhouse and set in lovely gardens that help to create a very peaceful atmosphere. Guests staying here are encouraged to visit the lodge museum and can make use of the faci...
You feel steeped in history at Fugitives' Drift Lodge.The main building stands on 5000 acres, close to Rorke’s Drift, and is a museum of the Zulu Wars. It was founded by the late David Rattray, acknowledged as the leading expert on the Battlefields, and a consummate storyteller. His Battlefield tours, of Rorke’s Drift and Isandlwana, were immensely moving and quite unforgettable.To...
Ghost Mountain Inn is a stylish, privately owned four star, country hotel situated in Mkuze, Northern KwaZulu-Natal.It is just 500 kilometres southeast of Johannesburg and 300 kilometers north of Durban, the perfect situation to explore the abundance of wildlife as well as the coastal reserves in Maputaland and the Elephant Coast.The inn has 50 guest rooms to choose from, these include the 22 stan...
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