With the easing of restrictions on travel in lockdown Level 1, many South Africans are taking ample opportunity of the freedom, finding unique places to explore within the country. However, the interrupted business year means that many are having to make the rands and cents go much further, with affordability a major contributor. Fortunately, the stunning KZN South Coast, with its many nature-based #adventure sites to #visit and activities to enjoy, provides tourists with quality, yet cost-effective family excursions. 

“The KZN South Coast has long been a key destination for local and international visitors, and its continued to retain the popular family holiday feel without overpricing the many accommodation venues, sites and activities,” explained CEO of Ugu South Coast Tourism (USCT), Phelisa Mangcu. “The area’s affordability, coupled with the incredible nature-based activities, has seen a spike in local tourism recently. We want to share some of these great options with South Africans looking for fun and relaxation in one of the country’s most idyllic locations.”

Top 20 activities for under R150

1. Vernon Crookes Nature Reserve in Scottburgh
This is a stunning coastal forest with many hiking trails that give visitors the chance to view a range of bird- and wildlife. Great for a family day out and picnic in nature.
Cost: R30 per adult, R15 for children U12.
Contact: 039 974 2222 or 073 911 8200
or email zeph.dindikazi@kznwildlife.com
Website: www.kznwildlife.com

 

2. TC Robertson Nature Reserve in Scottburgh
This is another beautiful coastal forest on the south bank of the Mapambanyoni River. There are many great trails and picnic spots, just a 10 minutes’ walk from the beach.
Cost: R30 per vehicle with 5 passengers, R10 more for an added passenger
Contact: 082 406 9891 or info@tourismsouthcoast.co.za               

 

3. Ntelezi Msane Heritage Site in Mthwalume
The KZN South Coast has a rich cultural heritage, reflected in this unique site that honours the liberation stalwarts who were arrested here in 1906. The heritage centre showcases local African history, as well as sharing indigenous knowledge and creative arts.
Cost: R140 per person for a minimum of five people per group
Contact: 060 473 3712 or info@tourismsouthcoast.co.za             Website: www.visitkznsouthcoast.co.za 

4. Umzumbe Surf Camp
Run by Ali & Rich, owners of SA Surfari and South African Surf Tours, visitors can hire out surfboards  from the Umzumbe Surf House. Those willing to pay a bit more can learn to surf with a few lessons.
Cost: R150 for board hire
Contact: 073 536 8728
Website: www.umzumbesurfcamp.com

5. BBS Farm in Southport
This wonderful women-owned agri-tourism gives visitors tours of the macademia nut and tomato plantations grown by the local community.
Cost: R50 per adult, R30 for children aged 8 to 18 years
Contact: 079 568 1815  

6. Wild 5 Adventures in Oribi Gorge
Located at the Oribi Gorge Hotel property and set amidst world-renowned view sites, Wild 5 Adventures has a series of incredible guided hiking and birding trails. At an extra cost, the company offers various extreme adventures including a 110m abseil, foefie-slide, 85m suspension bridge, white water rafting on the uMzimkhulu and paintball.             
Cost: R25 per adult, R20 for children aged 6 to 12 years
Contact: 082 566 7424 or info@wild5adventures.co.za
Website: www.wild5adventures.co.za

7. Oribi Gorge Nature Reserve near Port Shepstone
This is a wonderfully scenic area with many excellent hiking opportunities just 21 kilometres inland of Port Shepstone.
Cost: R30 per adult, R15 for children aged 3 to 12 years
Contact: 039 679 1644 or info@tourismsouthcoast.co.za
Website: www.kznwildlife.com

8. Oribi Vulture Viewing Hide near Port Shepstone
Located close to the Oribi Gorge Nature Reserve, the Barry Porter Memorial Vulture Viewing Hide gives visitors the chance to observe Cape Vultures in their natural habitat.
Cost: R100 per adult, free for children under 14 years
Contact: 072 893 3794
Website: www.vulturehide.blogspot.com 

9. Lake Eland Game Reserve
This is a great venue for day visits or a family holiday offering self-drive game drives to view a variety of wildlife. There are also horse rides, bike trails, 4×4 trails and picnic sites, with an on-site restaurant and tea garden alongside a children’s playground.
Cost: R65 per adult, R40 per child under 8 years
Contact: 039 687 0395 or reception@lakeeland.co.za    Website: www.lakeelandgame reserve.co.za 

10. Pure Venom in Shelly Beach
This family-run business – the biggest reptile farm in Africa – gives visitors the chance to view a wide variety of reptile species which are bred at the farm. There is also a petting zoo with farm animals and many exotic birds.
Cost: R120 per adult , R90 per child aged 4 to 12 years
Contact: 082 492 8256 or info@purevenom.com
Website: www.purevenom.com 

11. River Valley Nature Reserve in Manaba
This is one of the few remaining privately-owned pockets of natural habitat on the KZN South Coast. Through a series of walking trails, visitors can visit a variety of ecosystems home to abundant birdlife, antelope and small mammals. There are picnic facilities on site.
Cost: R25 for people over 2 years
Contact: 083 263 5537
Website: www.rivervalleynaturereserve.co.za  

          

12. Polka.dot.coco in Umdoni
These renowned local crafters specialise in handmade accessories using locally-sourced material with their range including African prints, beaded earrings, beaded hairclips, wooden lapel pins, African Bowties as well as necklaces.
Cost: Between R80 and R150
Contact: Nelly and Zi Zama on 076 681 1516 or 081 5087672 or nellyp.zama@gmail.com

13. Butterfly Valley Farm in Ramsgate
This beautiful farm specialises in indigenous butterflies with on-site butterfly breeding giving visitors the chance to view this unique life cycle. Outside of the butterflies, the centre has several interesting creatures to view, including bearded dragons and Australian spiny leaf insects.
Cost: R75 per adult, R30 for children 3 to 13 years  C
ontact: 073 422 5357 or 072 235 3688
or butterflyvalley@ymail.com
Website: www.butterflyfarm.co.za 

14. Riverbend Crocodile Farm in Southbroom
At one of the most successful breeding basks in the country, visitors can view some 200 resident Nile crocodiles and enjoy daily crocodile feeds. The on-site Crocodile Café also serves great meals and snacks – with crocodile on the menu.
Cost: R80 per adult, R40 per child over 3 years
Contact: 039 316 6204 or info@crocodilecrazy.co.za     
Website: www.crocodilecrazy.co.za 

15. KwaXolo Caves
For a unique nature-based heritage experience, visitors can visit the KwaXolo Caves, home to historical San rock paintings dating back centuries. There is a guided hiking route with visitors securely harnessed as they walk along the mountainside, enjoying views of the valley and waterfall. There are also picnic sites near the caves.
Cost: R150 per adult, R120 per child 8 to 16 years
Contact: 076 185 3447 or 074 887 3742
or the ‘KwaXolo Caves Adventures’ Facebook page       

16. Mpenjati Nature Reserve in Trafalgar
For an incredible outdoors’ experience, this coastal reserve has two stunning hiking trails; the Ipithi Trail on the south bank of the river is 1.2 kilometres, and the Yengele Trail, which winds through the dune forests is 1.8 kilometres.
Cost: R15 per adult , R5 per child under 12 years
Contact: 0784756792
Website: www.kznwildlife.com

17. Beaver Creek Coffee Estate near Port Edward
The world’s southernmost coffee plantation gives visitors the chance to explore this fragrant farm, with coffee tasting and the on-site restaurant a delicious addition.
Cost: R60 per adult
Contact: 039 311 2315 or info@beavercreek.co.za
Website: www.beavercreek.co.za 

18. Clearwater Trails in Port Edward
This beautiful farmland has extensive mountain biking trails, weaving through macadamia nut and banana plantations, small forested areas, open grasslands, dams and streams. There are also views of the Umtamvuna River Gorge and the Indian Ocean from the trails.
Cost: R20 per adult
Contact: 083 549 6710 or info@clearwatertrail.co.za
Website: www.clearwatertrails.co.za 

19. The Red Desert near Port Edward
This is KZN South Coast’s most unique geographic formations, and the smallest desert in the world at only 200m in diameter. The desert consists of red soil beneath which has been found archaeological artefacts dating back millions of years.
Cost: R30 per adult
Contact: 083 631 9331
Website: www.reddesertnaturereserve.co.za 

20. Umtamvuna Nature Reserve in Port Edward
Another great day out is this stunning coastal reserve which has several marked trails for fantastic wild- and birdlife viewing. There is even a large colony of endangered Cape vultures which can be observed in their nesting sites.
Cost: R20 per person
Contact: 039 311 2383
Website: www.kznwildlife.com

Visitors to the KZN South Coast will most likely want to extend their stay for a few days to maximise on as many of the top 20 list as possible! To #GoMakeMemories on the KZN South Coast, simply download the free ‘Explore KZN South Coast’ app on the Apple Store or Google Play, or visit www.visitkznsouthcoast.co.za. Alternatively, follow the KZN South Coast on social media – ‘South Coast Tourism’ on Facebook and YouTube, or @infosouthcoast on Twitter and Instagram.

About Ugu South Coast Tourism
Ugu South Coast Tourism (USCT) is the official destination management organisation of the Ugu District Municipality in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), South Africa. The Ugu District comprises four local municipalities that include Umdoni, Umzumbe, Umuziwabantu and Ray Nkonyeni. USCT’s mandate is to grow tourism within the KZN South Coast. This involves implementing marketing and development initiatives that are aimed at showcasing the diverse offerings and experiences of the South Coast as tourist destination. A board of directors oversees USCT, headed by CEO, Phelisa Mangcu.

About KZN South Coast
Known as the ‘Paradise of the Zulu Kingdom’, the KZN South Coast stretches 120 kilometres from Scottburgh to Port Edward and inland to Harding. Here, the spirit of adventure can be discovered among the many cultural experiences, as well as the 35 nature trails and 58 beaches, ideal for activities like river rafting, abseiling, suspension bridges, paintball, surfing, SUP, canoeing, beach horse rides, shark cage diving and free diving. Nicknamed ‘The Golf Coast’, there are 11 golf courses on the KZN South Coast ranging in difficulty, with endless hiking, mountain biking and 4×4 trails for more rugged excursions. Promoting sustainability, the KZN South Coast has a growing agri-tourism sector that offers world-class produce and hosts tours and excursions. The region boasts a number of permanently managed Blue Flag beaches, and is home to some of the world’s top diving sites, Aliwal Shoal and Protea Banks. The originality continues with the annual Sardine Run, coined the #GreatestShoalonEarth, which is the largest biomass migration on earth and a marvel to witness. The region’s many nature reserves are inhabited by indigenous bird and wildlife, and it holds the title for ‘smallest desert on earth’, The Red Desert in Port Edward. The KZN South Coast is a fast-emerging MICE destination which also plays host to a number of high-profile events including the The Bike Fest, Uvukile Gospel Festival, Ugu Jazz, Ugu Film Festival and the South Coast Fever MTB & Trail Run Series.

 

Issued on behalf of:
Ugu South Coast Tourism (USCT) 

Disseminated by:
Olivia Jones Communications 

For more information please contact:
Olivia Jones Communications
Cell: 083 653 1720
Email: media@oliviajones.co.za