Midmar Dam Nature Reserve, KwaZulu Natal
The large stretch of fresh water from the uMngeni, coupled with 1000 hectares of game park that contains red hartebeest, blesbok, reedbuck, black wildebeest, oribi and zebra, is what makes the Midmar Dam Nature Reserve so attractive. And the fact that its just 7 kilometres from Howick and 24 kilometres from Pietermaritzburg.
Day visitors find shady picnic spots along the shoreline of the dam and braai facilities that make picnicking at Midmar Dam Nature Reserve such a pleasure. Water sports abound, swimming is fun for everyone, although sticking to the shoreline is probably a good idea with all of the boat activity.
The Midmar Mile, the worlds largest open water swimming event, sees some of the strongest swimmers in the country compete to swim the dam in record time. First swum in 1973, 153 competitors entered the event. By 1981 entries began to top 3000 and by 2003, there were 16 050 entries, including overseas competitors.
The Midmar Dam is renowned for its fishing and carp, bass, scalies and bluegill are plentiful although one needs a freshwater fishing licence, which you can pick up at the office on your way in through the gates. The Midmar Dam is zoned for yachts and powerboats and sticking to these zones is imperative for the safety of everyone. People also windsurf, canoe and mountain bike around the dam. Below the dam, which overflows during the rainy season, the uMngeni plunges over the Howick falls and into the uMngeni valley, to continue on its way to the Indian Ocean.
game and nature reserves in kwazulu natal