From the dramatic sandstone peaks of its Drakensberg Mountains backdrop, KwaZulu-Natal’s spectacular setting spills down through wildlife-rich wetlands and grasslands to the pristine beaches of its Indian Ocean coast.
Elephant, Phinda Private Game Reserve
Set in the prestigious Hluhluwe National Park, Phinda Private Game Reserve comprises 17,500 hectares of prime conservation land.The reserve is home to the Big Five, over 400 bird species and six unique lodges by luxury safari company, andBeyond.
Durban & Umhlanga
Lighthouse, Durban coast
Long overshadowed by its better-looking Cape Town cousin, Durban’s cosmopolitan sprawl is finally finding its own feet. A thriving café, shopping and cultural scene has sprung up along the revamped waterfront and in nearby beachfront suburbs such as Umhlanga, while its sizeable Indian population has lent the city a colourful, multicultural and unmistakably Asian feel. It’s also the gateway for trips to the UNESCO-listed Drakensberg Mountains, a 200-kilometre escarpment where the highveld plunges down more than 1,000 metres to the eastern lowveld plains below.
Drakensberg Mountains, KwaZulu-Natal
Mountain biking, white water rafting and several scenic hikes, such as the Sentinel Peak Trail and the Amphitheatre HeritageTrail, are all popular ways to explore the magnificent landscapes of the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg World Heritage Site, one of South Africa’s most spectacular regions.
Isandlwana battlefield site, KwaZulu-Natal
A number of scenic self-drive routes run through the battlefield sites of Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift. Poignant reminders of the Anglo-Zulu and Anglo-Boer Wars, they’re crucial to understanding KwaZulu-Natal’s turbulent history.
iSimangaliso/Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park
Hippos, Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park, KwaZulu Natal
Back to KwaZulu-Natal’s coast, the country’s best beaches frame rich ecosystems and an abundance of wildlife, best seen in the iSimangaliso/Greater St Lucia Wetland Park. Here, in South Africa’s first World Heritage site, wandering hippos and elephants share an endless network of rivers, lakes and coastal dunes with some 526 species of bird.