Zululand, KwaZulu Natal
Once you've booked your hotel or Zululand accommodation explore our destination pages below for info on attractions, events and what to do in Zululand.
Just north of the Dolphin Coast, in a malaria-free area, Zululand extends up to Richard’s Bay along the north coast of KwaZulu Natal and inland into the rural heart of KwaZulu Natal, extending north to Pongola, and including the little towns of Ulundi and Vryheid that lie on the border of the Battlefields Route.
Lying beneath the baking heat of a subtropical sun, Zululand is how many regard KwaZulu Natal in their minds eye - peaceful, green hills, waving grasslands, abundant forests, unhurried lifestyle, and a soil imbued with the strength of the Zulu nation who fought for this land.
It is thus an area rich in symbolism and tradition, and the age-old Zulu culture remains today, as visitors are invited into the heart of Zulu villages like Shakaland and Dumazulu where one can visit a sangoma, watch a rural wedding ceremony and experience Zulu hospitality. Learn also about life in King Dingane’s capital uMgungundlovu.
There are numerous parks, farms and nature reserves - including the Siyaya Coastal Park, the Umlalazi Nature Reserve, and the Amatikulu Nature Reserve - in an area dedicated to conservation.
The Zululand Birding Route, with over 650 species of birds, offers an incredible diversity of bird species with over 30 local guides and a series of useful brochures and information packs linking the top 70 birding spots in the area on 14 local routes. Dlinza, one of the most beautiful forests of Zululand, lies in the Dlinza Nature Reserve close to Eshowe, one of the finest places to spot birds, hike and see wild fig and African plum trees.
Destinations / Towns & Suburbs of Zululand
Where to Stay: Zululand Accommodation
Paulpietersburg is a small, pretty town nestling in the foothills of the Dumbe Mountain - a big, flat-topped, triangular mountain in the middle of flatlands territory, popular with paragliders and hikers and named after ... Paulpietersburg information
Where to Stay: Accommodation in Pongolapoort
Lying in the heart of the Lebombo Mountains on the northern shores of the Dam (also known as Lake Jozini), the town of Pongolapoort is one of a number of places around the dam that include Jozini, Nkonkoni, Candover ... Pongolapoort information
Where to Stay: Accommodation in Richards Bay
The town of Richards Bay lies at the sea edge of an ancient floodplain, almost halfway between Durban and Kosi Bay and forms the tourist gateway to Zululand and Maputaland. Richards Bay began its life as a makeshift ... Richards Bay information
Where to Stay: Accommodation in Rorkes Drift
Rorke’s Drift, 46 kilometres southeast of Dundee, describes a natural crossing presented by a rocky outcrop that allows one to cross the Buffalo River on foot. To give one an idea of its significance, just 4 kilometres ... Rorkes Drift information
Featured and "Must See" Attractions in Zululand
Whilst the name of the route brings the battlefields of Ladysmith, Colenso, Dundee and Volksrust to mind, Route 66 is of a slightly different nature. Rather than heading up and around the N3, Route 66 takes one along a parallel route, slightly further north east, that links the towns of Gingindlovu, Eshowe, Melmoth, Ulundi... more information
Roughly an hour's drive from Durban, the Amatikulu Nature Reserve is one of those rare natural spaces where, not only will you be one of few people (particularly during the week), but you can see wildlife feeding on forested dunes overlooking the sea – there aren't many spots elsewhere in ... more information
Boasting 10 000 hectares, the Amazulu Private Game Reserve is made up of a varied ecosystem. This diversity includes savannah, mountains and wetlands which makes it the ideal home to the "Big Five" as well as giraffe, warthog and hyena not to mention over 15 different antelope species, hippopotamus and ... more information
Deep in the bushveld of South Africa, away from bustling cities and noisy streets, you’ll find a plethora of birdlife with a variety of colors that no artist’s palette could cover. Bird watching or 'birding' in South Africa allows you to be privy to an incredible diversity of South African birdlife. Home to over 850 different species ... more information
Found just outside the little town of Eshowe, the Dlinza Forest is one of two indigenous forests that lie close to one another in this southern part of Zululand; the other is Entumeni. Dlinza, 250-hectares of incredibly beautiful forest bisected by numerous walking trails and a 10-metre high aerial boardwalk, is ... more information
Set in the valley also known as the Valley of Kings, eMakhosini Opathe Heritage Park lies less than 10 kilometres south of the town of Ulundi on the banks of the White Mfolozi River and incorporates the Ophathe Game Reserve and the eMakhosini Valley. This beautiful and large heritage park aims to ... more information
a small game farm, with sand forest vegetation. On the premises, you can walk with the wildlife including Impala, Nyala, Grey Duiker and other antelope. Birdlife is abundant. Emdoneni is a nature lovers paradise. The Emdoneni Cheetah and Serval Project cares for wild Cheetahs and Serval Cats, which have been orphaned or ... more information
Empangeni Arts and Cultural History Museum
This museum has a representative collection of contemporary Kwa-Zulu Natal artists works and an ethnographic collection of the regional culture. Consisting of the Harrison Collection of the pioneer sugar farmers and the Mthethwa collection of Zulu Culture. It provides continually changing exhibitions in the main hall.
The Empangeni Country Club was formed in the early 1900's and photographs of the first Club president and honours board indicate that record keeping was initiated in 1921. The original 18 hole Golf Course was laid out and maintained by predominately farmer members. In the late 1980's, Peter Matkovich was ... more information
The Enseleni Nature Reserve is a small reserve of 293 hectares lying just inland from the town of Richards Bay, almost midway between Empangeni and Richards Bay. Obviously it is a popular day's outing for visitors to the area, and the coastal grasslands and forest that dominate the reserve are particularly ... more information
Just outside the historical Zululand town of Eshowe, in the heart of the balmy KwaZulu-Natal Province, lies the beautiful forest reserve of Entumeni. This is a small nature reserve, occupying only about 750 hectares, but is rich in plant- and animal life. It shows off the natural splendour of ... more information
Falaza, a privately owned game park, protects the remnants of this once mighty sand forest which evolved over 150,000 years ago. For the bird watcher, Falaza offers an extraordinarily wide variety of birdlife, including rare species such as the Pink Throated Twinspat, the African Broadbill, Rudd's Appals and the ... more information
This beautiful old fort was originally created in the middle of the Dlinza Forest in eShowe in 1883. Around 90 barefoot Zulu police (known as the Nongqayi or 'restrainers') moved into the building to maintain law and order in Zululand in what today functions as Zululand's biggest museum village. Within the village of Fort ... more information
The Hluhluwe Umfolozi Park is the only park under formal conservation in KwaZulu Natal where the Big Five occur. Established in 1895, this is the oldest game park in South Africa along with nearby St Lucia Reserve. Set in the heart of Zululand this is the oldest game reserve in Africa, where Zulu kings ... more information
iGwala Gwala Nature Reserve lies just outside of Ithala Game Reserve and is a registered Heritage Site. As such the reserve has a rich biodiversity with tracts of riverine and other forest in the lower parts of the reserve that attract a particularly rich assortment of birds, not least of which ... more information
This magnificent Ithala Game reserve, tumbling from the heights of the Ngotshe Mountains a thousand meters down into a deep valley, carved over the aeons by the Phongolo River revealing the world's oldest rock formations, is a game viewers paradise. Situated in the rugged, mountainous thornveld of northern ... more information
Weavers Nature Park is wonderfully situated in the heart of Southern Maputaland. Within a 1/2 hours drive you can be anywhere you choose. On the beautiful beaches of Sodwana Bay or the famous Hluhluwe Umfolozi Big "5" Game Reserve. The Greater St Lucia Wetland Park (a world Heritage Site) is just 10 minutes ... more information
Situated in northern Zululand, this 40 000 hectare reserve was proclaimed a protected area in 1912. Mkuze Game Reserve constitutes the north western spur of the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park a World Heritage Site. A place of great beauty and high contrasts, Mkuze is renowned as a mecca for bird lovers ... more information
Situated in the heart of historic Zululand in the South African province of KwaZulu Natal, Mkuze Falls is one of only two Private Game Reserves in the region where you can view the 'Big 5' - lion, leopard, buffalo, rhino, elephant and for bird lovers, nearly 400 species of birds are resident. Experience the unique ... more information
Just 140 kilometres north of Durban in KwaZulu-Natal, the rolling hills of Zululand are home to the Mtunzini Country Golf Club. This is an 18-hole, SAGA-affiliated golf course that offers magnificent views of the surrounding greenery of the eastern coast of South Africa, as well as stunning ... more information
56 kilometres north-west of the town of Eshowe, once the capital of Zululand, is a beautiful forest; one of the most magnificently beautiful in the province. Nkandla Forest is a rare type of high wet rain forest of which there are few examples left. Nkandla covers the ridge ... more information
South Africa's smallest and arguably most beautiful wilderness area is Ntendeka, consisting of 5 250 ha of undulating grasslands, verdant forests and dramatic cliffs with breathtaking waterfalls. Rivers and streams have formed deep valleys and the varied topography has resulted in great ... more information
Ngoye Forest Reserve, better known as the Ongoye Forest Reserve, lies in the north of KwaZulu-Natal between Mtunzini, Eshowe and Emangeni, some 150 kilometres north of Durban. Ongoye is regarded as one of the 'gems' along the Zululand Birding Route for its rather impressive 605 bird species, particularly ... more information
Come face-to-face with lions and rhino before breakfast, swim with dolphins after lunch and catch a marlin before dinner - that's the Phinda experience, one of the most exciting safari destinations in South Africa. Located between the azure waters of the Indian Ocean and the lush waterways of the World Heritage ... more information
The Pondoro Private Game Reserve comprises a pristine malaria free wilderness area of some 2500 hectares. Access to the reserve is restricted, enabling guests at Pakamisa to enjoy the exclusive experience of natural African bushveld with its unparalleled abundance of wildlife and exotic vegetation. Guests can ... more information
The Pongola Game Reserve was first proclaimed in 1894 and is the second oldest reserve in the world and the oldest in South Africa. Pongola Game Reserve is a sanctuary to a large variety of wildlife, including elephant, giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, impala, hyena, buffalo, rhino and leopard ... more information
The Reserve has remnant stands of swamp forest, the Thulazihleka Bird viewing hide in small swamp and the Tidal Mudflats and shallows south of the Mhlatuzi river. 300 species of birds have been recorded in these habitats including several rare migrant species new to the list of KwaZulu Natal birds ... more information
Shakaland has been hailed as one of the best Zulu experiences on the continent, thanks to its authenticity and the sheer element of fun that infuses every part of it. This is, technically, a replica of a traditional Zulu homestead. But, in reality, it is so much more... more information
The largest African elephants in the world, along with rhino, buffalo, leopard, hippo and antelope species in a 300km² park on the South Africa / Mozambique border. Excellent birding opportunities exist and scuba diving on the nearby Tongoland reefs. Situated in Maputaland, the north-eastern region ... more information
South of Vryheid, in the north-western parts of Zululand, lies an area of of rolling grasslands, bushveld and undulating hills. It is essentially cattle and game farm country although the Thaka River Valley and its intensely hot summers allow for the growth of some heat-loving crops. It is the Thaka River ... more information
Situated 23km north of Hluhluwe in northern Zululand, Thanda Private Game Reserve is a celebration of the Zulu people and their rich culture. Not only will guests have the opportunity to learn more about their history and traditions, the people from the adjacent tribal land will benefit in many ... more information
Thula Thula is a private game reserve, said to be the oldest such reserve in KwaZulu Natal and set in a malaria free zone on the Elephant Coast roughly two hours' from Durban. As such it is family operated and lies in the heart of Zululand with a history that dates back to the days in which Shaka and his men held ... more information
Ubizane Wildlife Reserve boasts a variety of wildlife including white rhino, giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, most species of antelope, and over 350 species of birdlife. You can view the game from the comfort of equipped game viewing land rovers, on foot for a more thrilling encounter or on horseback for a ... more information
Umlalazi Nature Reserve is a strip of green on KwaZulu-Natal's north coast at the town of Mtunzini, roughly half an hour's drive from Richards Bay. The reserve is probably most famous for its protected group of Palmnut vultures, and the raphia palm forest, even if this (the forest) is strictly ... more information
The Zululand Rhino Reserve in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa, was created in 1995 in a strategic partnership between the World Wildlife Fund, Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife and property owners, to provide a haven for the fast dwindling black rhino population. This has culminated in the creation and preservation of 23 000ha of ... more information
Featured Things To Do in Zululand
Holiday Accommodation in Zululand
destinations / attractions in kwazulu natal