KWA-ZULU NATAL

KwaZulu-Natal,called the garden province, is the home of the Zulu nation. It extends from the borders with Swaziland and Mozambique to the Eastern Cape in the south. Inland it is bound by the Kingdom of Lesotho, and the Free State and Mpumalanga provinces.

KwaZulu-Natal or the Zulu Kingdom includes Durban, the Drakensberg (including East Griqualand), Elephant Coast, Pietermaritzburg and Midlands, Zululand, South Coast, North Coast (Dolphin Coast) and the Battlefields regions.

 

 

The coastline is dotted with small towns, many of which serve as seasonal recreational hubs. North of Durban is locally referred to as "The North Coast", while south is "The South Coast". The Kwazulu-Natal Tourist board includes towns like Margate,Port Shepstone, Scottburgh and Port Edward in its definition of what constitutes the South Coast, while Ballito, Umhlanga and Salt Rock are quintessentially North Coast resort towns. Superb beaches of world-class quality are to be found along virtually every part of South Africa's eastern seaboard, with some of the least developed gems found in the far southern and far northern ends of the province's extents. The beach at Marina Beach (and its adjoining resort San Lameer) was recognized in 2002 as a Blue Flag beach.

An extraordinary natural phenomenon that is witnessed annually on the KwaZulu-Natal coast during late autumn or early winter is the "sardine run". Also referred to as "the greatest shoal on earth", the sardine run occurs when millions of sardines migrate from their spawning grounds south of the southern tip of Africa northwards along the
Eastern Cape coastline towards KwaZulu-Natal following a path close inshore, often resulting in many fish washing up on beaches along the coast. The huge shoal of tiny fish can stretch for many kilometres and is followed and preyed upon by thousands of predators, including gamefish, sharks, dophins and sea birds. Usually the shoals break up and the fish disappear into deeper water around Durban. Many questions surrounding this exceptional event remain unanswered

Whales can frequently be seen off the KwaZulu-Natal coast from July to November - mainly Humpbacked Whales, and occasionally Southern Right Whales. From July to September the whales are moving north on their way to their breeding grounds off the Mozambique coast, and from September to November they return, heading for the nutrient-rich waters of Antarctica.

The Humpback Whale is approximately 15m in length and weighs in the order 30 tons. Usually black on top and white underneath. It also has long, narrow flippers. They perform spectacular 'breaches' - leaping out of the water. The Southern Right Whale is also usually approximately 15m, but is heavier 50 – 60 tons. This whale does not have a dorsal fin and is often covered in wart like growths.

Probably the best way to view whales and dolphins up close is from a boat. However, unless you are aboard a boat licensed by the Department of Marine and Coastal Management you are not allowed by law to approach 300m of a whale. There are currently three boat- based whale watching license holders in KwaZulu-Natal:

- A brief overview of South Africa's province of KwaZulu-Natal and the interesting things to do and places to visit.

Battlefields, the Drakensberg Mountains, Durban, the Elephant Coast, Pietermaritzburg & the Midlands, North Coast(Dolphin Coast), South Coast and Zululand
- Natural/Wildlife attractions or experiences:
Beaches,game/Nature Reserves, Hiking & other Trails, Birding, Scuba Diving & Snorkeling, Whale Watching Dolphin Watching and Tours, Turtle Tours, Fishing, Hunting, Sardine Run, Other Adventure Activities, Botanical Gardens, Parks and Nurseries, Waterfalls.

Museums Art Galleries, Cultural Villages, Theatre and Music, Craft Making and Markets, Battle Sites, and many other Cultural Attractions.Animal Farms, Aquaria - Marine Parks, Bird Parks, Boat Charters, Casinos, Croc Parks, Routes and Meanders, Shopping Facilities, Snake Parks, Steam and Mini Trains, Zoos, Other,
- Golf Courses, Surfing, Other Sport Facilities.

whale watching accommodation in south africa

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