KwaZulu-Natal, also known as the “Garden Province”, is one of the most naturally diverse and beautiful places in South Africa! It has a wonderful mix of landscapes, from the subtropical coastal region to the rugged peaks of the Drakensberg mountains, and is home to several protected areas, such as iSimangaliso Wetland Park and Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park. On top of that, it offers several cultural and historical sites, such as the Battlefields, which offer a glimpse into the history of the Zulu people and the conflicts between the British and the Zulu in the late 1800s.
Safari enthusiasts can explore several impressive game reserves in search of some of Africa’s most iconic wildlife. Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park is one of the most popular and oldest reserves, known for its diverse activities and large population of white rhinos. Another favourite is iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which is a place of superlative natural beauty, comprising several unique and diverse ecosystems, including wetlands, forests, beaches and coral reefs. For an even more exclusive experience, private game reserves like Phinda and Thanda offer fantastic wildlife encounters.
Another UNESCO World Heritage Site is the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg Park, which is known for its exceptional scenic beauty, great hiking and spiritual atmosphere. The spectacular Drakensberg mountain range is the highest in Southern Africa reaching an elevation of 3482m. One of the most impressive sights in this area is without a doubt the Amphitheatre, a massive wall of sandstone of about 5km in length, and approximately 1km in height.
In KwaZulu-Natal you can also find a plethora of cultural and historical sites, including the Zulu Kingdom, the Anglo-Zulu War battlefields, and the Nelson Mandela Capture Site. The internationally renowned Battlefields Route boasts the largest concentration of historical sites in South Africa explaining the several battles that took place over numerous years which shaped the history of both South-Africa and the British Empire.
KwaZulu-Natal is referred to as the “Place of the Zulu” as it is the historical homeland of the Zulu kingdom. An area rich in symbolism and tradition where the age-old Zulu culture remains today. Zululand is home to authentic Zulu villages, like Shakaland and Dumazulu, where visitors can experience traditional Zulu culture and lifestyle.
The lush province is also a paradise of warm waters and picturesque beaches. From well-developed beaches, like Umhlanga Beach, to more isolated and untouched beaches, like Sodwana Bay and Cape Vidal, which suit every possible taste! With its glorious sub-tropical weather and the warm Indian Ocean it is the ideal place to be for sunseekers!
Overall, KwaZulu-Natal is a vibrant and diverse province that offers something for everyone, from pristine beaches and wildlife conservation to cultural experiences and exceptional scenic beauty.
If you also feel like discovering this beautiful province, after reading this blog, I have designed a tailor-made trip especially for enthusiasts. In my opinion this is a fantastic value for money trip and experience (from €1809 per person for 8 days).
Follow this link for a video impression: Safari, Forest and Beach