KwaZulu Natal Holidays

KZN, as it is often simply known, is a special place where the history is rich and the culture diverse; where lovers of the great outdoors can indulge in an array of activities From the dramatic peaks of the exquisite Drakensberg Mountains to traditional Zulu villages, historic battle sites of the Boer Wars, the warm Indian Ocean lapping glorious sandy beaches and magnificent game reserves, KwaZulu Natal is a tourist's paradise.

Gateway to KZN is Durban, South Africa's third largest city and one of the fastest growing urban areas in the world. This bustling city is also one of South Africa's most popular holiday resorts thanks to its sub tropical climate and luxury beachfront hotels. Durban is also a sporting paradise with an abundance of watersports and world-class stadia for rugby, soccer and cricket. Ten miles north of Durban is the upmarket resort of Umhlanga. Less developed than the city it offers wide, sandy beaches lined with exclusive hotels, good shopping and a wide range of watersports.

The towering sandstone and basalt peaks of the Drakensberg Mountains are South Africa's highest and most extensive mountain range. The rugged landscape, traversed by gorges and rivers, lends itself to numerous outdoor activities such as kayaking, horse riding, 4x4 trails, hiking, mountain climbing and much more. Hundreds of caves lie hidden within the cliffs and these walls are a living legacy of the nomadic San people with an estimated 600 rock art sites featuring in excess of 35000 images.

The history of KwaZulu Natal is intrinsically linked to its battlefields and the ferocious wars that took place over numerous years between the British, Boers and Zulus. There are a number of self-drive routes that take in the intriguing battle sites, historical buildings, museums, memorials and graveyards. Alternatively, organised tours led by local guides bring alive the events at sites such as Isandlwana, Rorke's Drift, Spioenkop and Blood River.

KwaZulu Natal is also a nature-lover's paradise. The iSimangaliso Wetland Park is a massive wilderness area comprising ecologically important lakes, coastal forests and marine reserves. It borders KwaZulu Natal's hot plains, which is home to many game reserves, including Hluhluwe-iMfolozi. Among South Africa's largest game reserves, Hluhluwe-iMfolozi is one of the best places in the country in which to see endangered rhino, along with other Big Five game, namely elephant, lion, leopard and buffalo. Well-disguised viewing hides overlook pans and waterholes where the birds and animals gather to drink, so you'll be able to see plenty of game at an unusually close range.

No stay in this region would be complete without a visit to a genuine Zulu village. Extending roughly from the mouth of the Tugela River up to St Lucia and inland to Vryheid, Zululand offers fascinating historical and contemporary insights into one of the country's most enigmatic cultures. These traditional villages are living museums offering visitors the chance to learn about the Zulu way of life, sample local dishes and beer, watch spear-throwing demonstrations, learn about Zulu history and the legendary King Shaka.

    Why visit KwaZulu Natal?
  • Dramatic Drakensberg Mountains
  • Intriguing historic battlefields
  • Traditional Zulu villages
  • Sand, sea and surf
  • Fantastic game reserves
  • Warm year-round weather
  • Fabulous hiking opportunities


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Wide choice of tours and hotels in South Africa. Also includes Namibia, Botswana, Victoria Falls, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Uganda, Mozambique and Madagascar.

Where to stay in KwaZulu Natal

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Essential facts about KwaZulu Natal
Local Time

GMT +2 hours

Currency

South African Rand

Travel information

Flights to Durban from the UK are via Johannesburg and take about 13 hours 30 minutes. There are excellent flight links within South Africa to Durban.

Best time to go

KwaZulu Natal is a year round destination. Durban enjoys warmth and lots of sunshine with occasional rain, while further north the conditions are more subtropical with higher temperatures and humidity.

Travelling with children

Parents travelling with children into or out of South Africa may be asked to show the child’s unabridged full birth certificate, and where only one parent is accompanying, parental or legal consent for the child to travel (eg an affidavit from the other parent, a court order or – if applicable – a death certificate). You should travel with these documents in case you’re asked to provide them. There are other requirements for children travelling unaccompanied or with adults who are not their parents. For more information, contact the South African High Commission www.southafricahouseuk.com or the South African Department of Home Affairs www.dha.gov.za.

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