North of Durban is locally referred to as “The North Coast”. Ballito, Umhlanga, St.Lucia and Salt Rock are the North Coast main resort towns.
Beaches of world-class quality are to be found along virtually every part of South Africa’s eastern seaboard, with some of the least-developed gems found in the far northern ends of the province.
iSimangaliso Wetland Park is South Africa’s third-largest protected area, spanning 280 km of coastline, from the Mozambican border in the north to Mapelane south of the Lake St. Lucia estuary.
Another attraction is the early winter phenomenon on the KwaZulu-Natal coast of the “sardine run”. Referred to as “the greatest shoal on earth”, the sardine run occurs when millions of sardines migrate from their spawning grounds south of the southern tip of Africa northward along the Eastern Cape coastline toward KwaZulu-Natal.
They follow a route close inshore, often resulting in many fish washing up on beaches. The huge shoal of tiny fish can stretch for many kilometres; it is preyed upon by thousands of predators, including game fish, sharks, dolphins and seabirds. Usually the shoals break up and the fish disappear into deeper water around Durban.
Also special to the area, are the local traditions and ceremonies of the Tsonga people. In February is the Marula Festival. Marula beer is a local speciality and the festival is held to celebrate the end of the harvest season.