Top 10 Activities for Adventure Lovers in KZN’s North Coast

KZN’s North Coast, otherwise known as the Dolphin Coast, is one of South Africa’s most scenic stretches of coastline. Filled with secluded bays, gorgeous beaches and sugarcane fields, this unique region is a sight to behold.

Add to that the balmy, subtropical climate and warm waters of the Indian Ocean and you have the perfect holiday destination.

As a bonus, the North Coast is also ideal for adventure seekers and outdoor lovers. In this post, we look at the top ten activities for adventure lovers to enjoy in KZN’s North Coast:

#1 See Elephants at Tembe Elephant Park Lodge

For those seeking intimate encounters with these gentle, but majestic giants, there are few better places to visit than Tembe Elephant Park.

Not only is the park an inspiring example of a conservation story come true but it offers guests everything from beautiful accommodation to safari game drives, birding and much more.

Get in touch with your inner adventurer with a stay at Tembe Elephant Park Lodge.

Contact: : +27 (082) 651 2868,


Address: Tembe Elephant Park Lodge,  P522-2, Kwangwanase, North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#2 Explore Zimanga Private Nature Reserve

Zimanga Private Game Reserve

Another gem of the North Coast is Zimanga Private Nature Reserve. Here, guests can enjoy everything from amazing accommodation to incredible activities.

Some of the highlights include open vehicle safaris, photo boats, various hide-based photography and even catch-and-release fishing excursions. There is something to suit everyone here.

Contact: reservations[a]


Address: Zimanga Private Nature Reserve, Mkuze Estates, Mkuze, North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#3 Go Diving in Sodwana Bay

As one of the best, year-round diving destinations in South Africa and indeed, the world, Sodwana Bay – situated within the reaches of  iSimangaliso Wetland Park – needs little introduction.

For those who love to take to the water and get a taste of the underwater world, diving in Sodwana Bay is the perfect outdoor excursion.

These southernmost coral reefs alone are home to some 1200 species of fish and you can also see whales, sharks and more if you are lucky enough and go in the correct season/time of year.

There are a number of diving instructors and shops/operators in Sodwana Bay; simply choose the best fit for you and go find your very own Atlantis.

Contact: Various


Address: Sodwana Bay, North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

 iSimangaliso Wetland Park via Facebook

#4 Visit Lake Sibaya

Another gem situated within the beautiful, freeing  iSimangaliso Wetland Park is Lake Sibaya. Hidden against forested coastal dunes, parallel to the wetland’s coastline, this vast lake is an incredible place to visit and see with your own eyes.

It is home to South Africa’s second largest hippo population; is a paradise for birders, photographers and nature lovers; and offers wonderful kayaking experiences.

For more information on  iSimangaliso Wetland Park, please visit their website.

Contact: +27 (035) 590 1633/1602,


Address: Lake Sibaya,  iSimangaliso Wetland Park North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#5 Trek into Ongoye Forest Reserve

For those seeking a forest adventure, look no further than the endlessly beautiful Ongoye Forest. Here, this botanically rich forest offers visitors the chance to marvel at some 3900 hectares of forest land.

Within it, one finds everything from rare, endemic birds and animals to untamed natural beauty. It is, in all respects, a wonder for both birders and nature lovers alike.

Contact: N/A


Address: Ongoye Forest Reserve, North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#6 Road Trip along the Route 66

Known as the Zululand Heritage Route, KZN’s Route 66 needs little introduction. Travelling and driving along this stunning route allows visitors the chance to see first-hand one of the oldest trade routes through Zululand.

Not only does this route provide a rich history lesson and take you through the heart of Zululand but it also offers a wonderful array of nature reserves, hot water springs and much more along the way.

Contact: N/A


Address: Route 66, North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#7 See the Turtles at Bhanga Nek

Bhanga Nek, tucked away in the midst of pristine South African coastline, is a wonderful, family-friendly destination that offers visitors everything from fishing to hiking trails, birdwatching and more uniquely, turtle tours!

Each year, from October to March, loggerhead and Leatherback turtles nest along the Maputaland Coast and at Bhanga Nek. Through local guides, turtle tours can be arranged to marvel at this amazing natural occurrence.

Contact: N/A


Address: Bhanga Nek, North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#8 Swim in the Shu-Shu Hot Springs

If you prefer to enjoy a more relaxing but no less incredible travel experience in the North Coast, then the Shu-Shu Hot Springs are a must-visit.

The springs bubble out of the ground on an island in the midst of the Thukela River. The hot springs are the perfect holiday or adventure experience because, in addition to their naturally hot waters, this is also a beautiful part of the world.

Contact: N/A


Address: Shu-Shu Hot Springs, North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#9 Explore iSimangaliso Wetland Park

Of course, few attractions in KZN are as iconic and timeless as the amazing  iSimangaliso Wetland Park. Here, everyone from families to adventure seekers to birders can enjoy natural, wild paradise.

Attractions within this special park include everything from bird- and wildlife-spotting, beaches, deep sea fishing, game drives, horse riding and so much more.

This really is one of the most glorious parts of South Africa – so don’t miss out on it!

Contact: +27 (035) 590 1633/1602,


Address: iSimangaliso Wetland Park North Coast, KZN, South Africa.

#10 MTB or Run at Holla Trails

Last but far from least, we have Holla Trails, a paradise for MTB and running enthusiasts.

Holla Trails offers breathtaking MTB trails to suit every level of rider and the team is always on-hand to provide the best recommendations to suit your needs.

For runners, there is just as much fun to be had and again, the trails are suited to all levels. If you prefer to walk the trails, that is fine too!

For more information on Holla Trails, please visit their website.

Contact: +27 (082) 899 3114,


Address: Holla Trails, North Coast, : Sugar Rush Park, Esenembe Road, Ballito, KZN, South Africa.


These are ten of the best activities in the Dolphin Coast. Which is top of your travel list?

Book your North Coast stay today.

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