Uvongo River Nature Reserve, KwaZulu-Natal
Did you know?
The buff-spotted flufftail, sometimes heard but seldom seen, is endemic to the Uvongo River Nature Reserve.
The 28-hectare Uvongo River Nature Reserve on the south coast of KwaZulu-Natal flanks the iVungu River, not far from where it plummets steeply to meet the Indian Ocean.
The reserve falls within the environs of popular seaside town Uvongo, famous for its gorge and a waterfall that drops 23m into one of the deepest lagoons in the country.
Uvongo is a popular swimming and surfing beach, with large rock formations that provide a great vantage point for visitors simply wishing to take in the view or anglers looking to land a big one. Pedal boats may be hired to explore the upper reaches of the river.
Easily accessible walking trails along both riverbanks extend upstream from the Uvongo Beach Lodge on the north bank and from the Thure Lilliecrona Park on the south bank, providing easy access to the riverine forest that's a popular south coast birding spot.
Bring your bird checklist along and you’ll be able to tick off most of these feathered species: Green-backed heron; African finfoot; African black duck; Wahlberg's eagle; African crowned eagle; African fish eagle; African wood-owl; tambourine dove; purple-crested turaco; narina trogon; spotted ground-thrush; brown scrub-robin; and yellow-bellied greenbul.
Some of the lesser-known birds found here, which you will have to be very patient and observant to spot, include the grey sunbird, purple-banded sunbird and grey waxbill.
Bird lovers should also make a point of visiting the adjacent Uvongo Bird Park, which has walk-through aviaries. A but further down the coast lies the Umtamvuna River Gorge in Port Edward, where vultures can be seen soaring above the cliffs.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
iVungu River Conservancy
South Coast Tourism
Tel: +27 (0) 39 682 7944