The coast of KwaZulu-Natal stretches for 600 km from Port Edward in the south to Kosi Bay in the north. All along this magnificent stretch of sub-tropical coastline are beaches to match the very best on the planet from golden, sandy beaches perfect for families looking for a fun-filled holiday by the sea to wilder, more remote stretches of wilderness on the north coast.
Looking out over the balmy waters of the Indian Ocean, Durban’s ‘Golden Mile’ (actually 6kms) stretches along the beachfront punctuated by activity parks, pools, fountains, walkways, gardens and market stalls. South Beach is ideal for families with children as it is protected by a breakwater. All swimming beaches are protected by shark nets and many have professional lifeguards in attendance.
Four beaches along the South Coast south of Durban have been awarded Blue Flag status - Hibberdene, Margate Main beach, Marina/San Lameer and Ramsgate - all meeting the Blue Flag organisation’s strict standards for water quality, environmental education and information, safety and services. The most highly rated South Coast beaches include Southport (Anerley), Banana Beach, Bazley Beach, Beach Terminus, Big Tree Beach, Clansthal, Glenmore Beach, Margate Beach and Marina Beach. The latter is a pristine stretch of coastline just south of Southbroom close to the awesome Mpenjati river mouth and lagoon.
Ballito, about 40 kms north of Durban, is the North Coast’s largest town. Willard Beach is the town’s main swimming beach with a scenic boardwalk and spectacular views. The beach is very safe and patrolled by lifeguards with shark nets to protect it. Ballito’s second beach, Clarke Bay, also has lifeguards and shark nets while Salmon Bay is a popular surf spot.
Generally considered to be among the best beaches along the North Coast are Zinkwazi Beach, Umhlali Beach, Tinley Manor Beach, Thompson’s Bay Beach, Sheffield Beach, Shaka’s Rock Beach, Salt Rock, Blythedale Beach, Clark Bay and Tugela Mouth. The North Coast is also known for its tidal pools which provide safe, enclosed areas for children to snorkel. Examples include Salt Rock, Charles Pool at Thompson’s Bay north of Ballito, and two well-maintained pools at the southern end of Ballito itself.
North of the Tugela River, the coastline of Zululand has wilder stretches of coastland where the dunes are larger and the coastal forest more dense. Many beaches are not shark netted and extreme caution must be taken when swimming. However, beaches that are safe for swimming include Alkantrand, Durnford Point, Five Mile Beach, Mbonambi Beach, Mtunzini Beach, Newark and Two Mile Beach.
The Elephant Coast in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park between Kosi Bay and St. Lucia has many long stretches of white, sandy beaches including Black Rock just South of Kosi Bay, Cape Vidal, First Rocks, Hulley Point, Jesser Point, Kosi Bay Estuary, Leven Point, Liefeldt's Rock, Mission Rocks, Rocktail Bay, Sodwana Bay, St. Lucia and St.Lucia Estuary.
South Coast beaches in KwaZulu-Natal
North Coast beaches in KwaZulu-Natal