Amanzimtoti is located on the south coast of Durban, Kwazulu-Natal and is a very popular holiday destination for the whole family. According to legend Amanzimtoti got its name from the Zulu King Shaka while he was leading his army down the river to attack the Pondos in 1828. He stopped at the river to have a drink water and proclaimed that the water was sweet; and so the river became known as Amanzimtoti which means Sweet Water.
Amanzimtoti was once known as a town to pass through to get somewhere else, but people became fascinated with the town and would stop and stay because of its peacefulness and beauty. It is now a favourite place for many to escape from the hustle and bustle of life.
Things to do
Amanzimtoti may be a little town, but boy is there plenty to do. Being a beach town, the number one fave activity is fun in the sun; but it's not all there is on offer!
Amanzimtoti beaches are very popular whilst on vacation. There are many restaurants and pubs to grab a bite at, and plenty of beach activities for the kids during the peak season. There are also numerous watersports; with snorkling and bodyboarding being favourites. The wide stretches of beach are also perfect to just relax on - whether you're sunbathing, reading or enjoying a picnic. Some of the beaches to visit include Main beach, Baggies Beach and Pipeline Beach.
For a cooler activity, why not try your hand at ice skating. The Galleria Ice Rink, located in the Galleria Mall, offers skate rental for those without their own blades, and it's a fun activity for the whole family to enjoy.
Situated on Amanzimtoti main beach is the adrenaline fuelled Splash Water World. This fun filled water park is suitable for the whole family and caters for the more adventurous and kids alike.
If water isn't your thing then head over to Spin Zone Bumper Cars. With specially designed bumper cars to create an exhilarating experience, it is the perfect place to go for some good fun. If you like speed and competition then you must go down to Galleria Mall and race your family and friends at the Epic Karting track. For the more relaxed, but still competitive people, go play some tenpin bowling at Super Bowls. They offer a glow in the dark evening option with a variety different size and weight balls
For something different and exciting, try Glow Mini Golf. They have a 9 hole or 18 hole mini golf course with glow in the dark golf balls. You are bound to have many laughs while playing.
For those keen for a more serious round of golf (with spectacular views) then you'll be pleased to know Amanzimtoti has an excellent 18 hole Golf Course located right next to the beach.
Amanzimtoti Bird Sanctuary is well worth a visit. The stunning sanctuary is home to as many as 150 bird species, most who are not shy about being seen. There are also many truly beautiful places to have picnics in the sanctuary. Nature lovers should also plan to visit Ilanda Wilds Nature Reserve located along the Amanzimtoti river. You'll find just over 120 tree and shrub species and 300 different animal species on this small, yet gorgeous reserve.
Where to Eat
Looking for some fine dining with an Italian flare? Then Giorgio’s is the place to go. They have a cosy fire place, elegant decor and a broad selection of dishes to choose from.
Mikes Place is a wonderful family restaurant situated on the edge of the lagoon with a relaxed bohemian atmosphere. They have a tropical garden, braai area and a fire pit for those cooler days.
At The Thirsty Whale you can relax and enjoy a few cocktails with some good food while you watch your kids play in the Splash Water Park just beneath the restaurant.
Enjoy home cakes and light lunches at The Terrace. They serve Sunday roasts and the best lemon meringue in the west coast.
Butcher Boys serves the best beef South Africa has to offer, grilled to perfection with their famous basting sauce. They offer a wide variety with is sure to satisfy your taste buds.
If seafood is what you are craving then Oasis Tropical Restaurant is the go-to place. You'll tuck into delicious seafood platters and relish their fresh catch of the day.
Where to Stay
Hotels: If you are going to be spending most of your time exploring the spectacular Amanzimtoti, then it would be best to choose one of the many hotels Amanzimtoti has to offer.
Guest Houses & Bed & Breakfasts: There is large selection of guest houses and bed & breakfasts to choose from in Amanzimtoti to suit any budget from the more affordable to the luxurious.
Self Catering: Amanzimtoti offers a great variety of self catering options it you are coming in a group of people or just want some privacy.
Backpackers: If you are just traveling through Amanzimtoti, why not stay at one of the backpacker establishments they have to offer.
Air: There is no airport in Amanzimtoti itself. The closest airport is King Shaka International Airport which is about a 64km drive to Amanzimtoti..
Car Rental: The best way to get around Amanzimtoti is to rent a car. It is affordable and is a great way to explore on your own time.
Trains/Busses/Taxis: The trains that go through Amanzimtoti are limited and can’t be taken from all locations. A better option would be to take a bus or taxi to get around, as they a reasonably priced.
Did you know?
Amanzimtoti has a warm climate and receives most of it’s rain during mid summer. The average temperatures range from about 22 degrees in July to 27 degrees in February.
The locals frequently refer to Amanzimtoti as Toti.
The word sweet actually means mnandi in Zulu but King Shaka invented the word toti to replace mnandi out of respect to not wear out his mothers name which was Nandi.
Every year around June/July, there is a Sardine run that attracts many people to the beaches of Amanzimtoti.
Amanzimtoti has The Umgababa Festival every year during 19 december to 5 january which attracts the finest talents and arts & crafts shop from around South Africa.