Dramatically beautiful and surprisingly diverse, KwaZulu-Natal, in the northeast of the country, packs in many of South Africa’s most popular attractions, despite its small size. With the warmer weather now upon us, KZN is a perfect destination for holiday trips for all those who are looking at taking a little vacation with their family and friends.
Here is a list of fun and adventurous activities to do in and around KwaZulu-Natal.
Pay the Big Five a visit
For those who would like to visit South Africa’s famous Big Five, a visit to the Thula Thula Game Reserve in Empangeni might be worth your while. The reserve was established in 1911 and covers an impressive 4500 hectares of land.
Thula Thula is a luxury safari destination which is also known for its spectacular game drives which are led by experienced tour guides with their incredible knowledge of all the animals inside the reserve including over 350 bird species. It’s also the home of Nana, the elephant who was made famous in the bestselling book, The Elephant Whisperer.
Perfect home base
Staying in a convenient spot, close to all local activities is ideal, and BON Hotel Empangeni is located in the heart of the town’s central business district, half-way between Durban and Swaziland and 15km from Richards Bay. A mere five minutes’ drive from museums, restaurants and a casino, it’ll serve as a great home base for your exploration of a beautiful part of KwaZulu-Natal.
Sunset horseback riding
Whether you’re a novice or an ‘old hand’; at horse riding, there are few places in the world you can ride in an area as unspoiled or beautiful as the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. Bhangazi Horse Safaris offers relaxing beach rides at the Main Beach in St Lucia, with kilometres of clean white sand with the Indian Ocean rolling in alongside.
This amazing place offers all kinds of wonderful sites throughout the year. During the whale season (June-November) you could expect to see Humpbacks breach from the warm Indian Oceans as they make their way to their breeding grounds in Mozambique. From November to February, you may see tracks of turtles who have dug their nests on the warm sand along the beach.
The rich history of Zululand
South Africa is a country filled with centuries of history, and a significant part of that history is rooted in the Zulu culture, which can be explored at the Empangeni Art and Cultural History Museum. Erected in 1916 by local sugar farmers, the museum first served as the Old Town Hall, where locals held weddings, dances, concerts and other social gatherings.
On your visit, you’ll see extensive historical objects collected to preserve the history of the town, and works by renowned artists like Andrew Verster, Trevor Makob and Bonnie Ntshalintshali, the famed ceramicist known for her work at Ardmore Ceramics.