Did you know?
KwaZulu-Natal's Dolphin Coast - or North Coast - is home to a large Indian community and offers spicy cuisine and fresh produce at a number of markets.
The magical Dolphin Coast on the northeast coast of South Africa is a favoured holiday area for locals and international visitors alike. This lush strip of coastline stretches north of the city of Durban in KwaZulu-Natal Province, from the Tongaat River south of Ballito to the Umhlali River, and is famed for its warm Indian Ocean waters and range of recreational activities.
As its name indicates the Dolphin Coast on the KwaZulu-Natal coastline offers frequent sightings of large pods of Bottlenose Dolphins. It is a playground for all visitors with gorgeous beaches, great waves, nearly year-round warm weather and a relaxed village atmosphere. Swimming, surfing, fishing and all manner of water sports, as well as game reserves and great golfing makes this an ideal holiday destination. Inland it is hemmed in by waving sugar cane fields and also offers visitors a look at South Africa's history at Shakaskraal - the site of King Shaka's royal military homestead and a charming village.
Other points of interest on KwaZulu-Natal's Dolphin Coast is Thompson's Bay's Olympic-sized tidal pool - Charlie's Pool, the Salt Rock holiday resort, Shaka's Rock and its gorgeous beach, Sheffield Beach, which offers great fishing and diving and the charming town of Umhlali. Zimbali, an exclusive hotel set in unspoiled coastal forest, offers a luxurious stay while Tinley Manor is famed for its incredible sea views and spectacular beaches.
Blythedale beach also offers a holiday resort experience and KwaDukuza/Stanger, which lies just inland from here, is home to a memorial to the famous Zulu king Shaka. Hikers can wander along beautiful trails in Zinkwazi, which lies close to Stanger, and is a nature lovers' paradise with its indigenous forests and incredible bird life. The Harold Johnson Nature Reserve north of Ballito contains two national monuments - the Ultimatum Tree and Fort Pearson and sits on the banks of the Tugela River and golfers can up their game at the Umhlali and Zimbali golf courses.