Two great South African leaders had their homes in this region and today lie buried here. King Shaka Zulu is buried near the town of Stanger, also known as KwaDukuza, and Chief Albert Luthuli is buried nearby. Albert Luthuli was the first South African to be awarded a Nobel Peace Prize. The Luthuli Museum near Groutville provides interesting information about the life of the great South African leader, Albert Luthuli.
A large Indian community is settled on KZN’s North Coast, enlivening the area with beautiful temples, lush market gardens and farms, numerous fresh produce markets and delicious, spicy Indian cuisine.
The North Coast has always been popular with anglers because the fishing is so good. This may be due to the many sheltered lagoons which open into the Indian Ocean and which serve as nurseries for small fish and other sea creatures. The area is also known for its good surf and the internationally recognized Mr Price Pro-surfing contest, which draws competitors from all over the world, is held in Ballito annually.
Outside the domestic holiday season and long-weekends, many of these places are quiet and peaceful. However, during the seasonal influx of vacationers, the many holiday homes, excellent restaurants and nightclubs fill up, as do the family experiences such as beach days, kiddies’ animal farms and the crocodile farm. Many visitors enjoy taking a break on mountain bike trails through the sugar cane fields and forests, or with a few rounds of golf at one of the many excellent North Coast golf courses.
North Coast Properties
BALLITO & ZIMBALI
Ballito, the heart of the Dolphin Coast, lies nestled between rippling fields of KwaZulu-Natal’s famous Green Gold and is flanked to the east by golden beaches and the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. Ballito is the Pearl of the Dolphin Coast.
Blythedale Beach is just one of several holiday resorts at the northern end of the Dolphin Coast boasting a beautiful caravan park, self-catering accommodation, chalets and a first class restaurant. The nearby Umvoti River mouth is prolific in bird life and forms part of the Blythedale Conservancy. Blythedale Beach is protected by shark nets and is popular for swimming, surfing and fishing.
KWADUKUZA – STANGER
KwaDukuza – Stanger issituated inland from Blythedale and the name epitomises the historical background of the area. The town is home to King Shaka’s memorial monument to commemorate his death. The monument stands over the grain pit into which his body was cast following his assassination. The town has a vibrant central business district with a distinct Eastern flavour catering for visitors and locals alike.
Salt Rock is situated just north of Shaka’s Rock and Ballito – a gem of a holiday resort which creates a relaxed holiday atmosphere and even for the locals.The name Salt Rock originates from King Shaka’s days when his handmaidens used to collect dried salt off the rocks at low tide. Near the main bathing beach complete with lifeguards is yet another large tidal pool.
Shaka’s Kraal is a one-street-town which was also the site of King Shaka’s royal military homestead called KwaHlomendlini. Culture remains an integral part of Shakaskraal with its blend of African and Indian traditions. The history of the mosque which towers majestically above all other buildings will give locals the opportunity to delight you with their anecdotes.
Shaka’s Rock is a small residential area with much accommodation to choose from. Home to a lovely stretch of sandy beach, it also boasts a beautiful tidal pool flanked by picturesque rocky cliffs. The beach is a favourite ski- boat launch site and beach-goers are often treated to the spectacular launching and beaching of the daredevil wave riders returning from a deep sea fishing trip.
Sheffield Beach has some beautifully sheltered coves and superb rock pools to delight the snorkel-enthusiast. There are also excellent fishing and diving spots at Sheffield’s northern most beach Christmas Bay. Sheffield Beach is the most northern resort town on the Dolphin Coast. Self catering, bed and breakfast and guesthouse accommodation is also available, most with breathtaking sea views and some only a stone’s throw from the beach.
Four kilometers off the N2, on the northern bank of the mighty river, nestles the village of Thukela Mouth. Thukela Mouth hosts major fishing tournaments and the annual Thukela Raft Race. It is a wonderland of walks, fishing, spectacular birdlife, indigenous forest, water sports and endless beaches. Thukela Mouth has affordable accommodation options. Thukela Mouth’s warm coastal waters support a variety of fish and shelfish, whales and dolphins are present all year round.
The beautiful sea views and beaches at Tinley Manor will take your breath away. Although there is only limited holiday accommodation here, the growth potential of the area is promising. On the southern boundary of Tinley Manor is a wonderful lagoon which opens into the Indian Ocean. There is abundant bird life on the waters and the lagoon also provides a safe venue for paddle-skiers and wind-surfers.
Inland from the coastal resorts of Salt Rock and Sheffield Beach is the farming village of Umhlali. Established by English and Scottish settlers in 1850, Umhlali was the site of a fort which led to it originally being called Fort William. Umhlali is the Zulu name for the Monkey Orange tree which grew abundantly along the banks of the Umhlali River. The name also means ‘place of waiting’, because settlers and locals would have to wait on the river bank before crossing the water.
Zinkwazi Beach nestled between beach and lagoon, is a nature lover’s wonderland of walks, fishing, spectacular bird life, indigenous forest, water sports and endless beaches. The tranquil lagoon at Zinkwazi is the longest in KwaZulu-Natal, ideal for a gracious picnic in the company of the ‘izinkwazi’ or fish eagles perched along the banks of the lagoon. Zinkwazi has a magnificent caravan park with an abundance of indigenous trees and bird life.