Top 10 Must-Try Activities On The KZN Upper South Coast


The New Year is the perfect time to start afresh and if it’s a getaway you’re after why not start by exploring the many incredible family-friendly ecotourism offerings on the KwaZulu-Natal Upper South Coast.

“It is fortunate that the many nature-based offerings of the KZN South Coast fall within the restrictions of Level 3, with our local tourism establishments guided in all the latest Covid-19 safety protocols,” explains CEO of Ugu South Coast Tourism (USCT), Phelisa Mangcu. “The Upper South Coast, which stretches from Scottburgh to Mtwalume, has a number of wonderful experiences and locations that are easily accessible to all our welcome visitors.”

Here’s a look at what’s on offer at the Upper South Coast.

1.Scuba diving

For those looking to learn how to scuba dive, or for the more experienced divers looking to explore one of the world’s top diving sites, then the Upper KZN South Coast is the place to visit.

Aliwal Shoal, just 5km offshore of Umkomaas River, is home to a number of ocean creatures, prompting several international documentaries and attracted an influx of global tourists.

2.Shark cage diving

Visitors to the Upper South Coast can partake in one of the most exciting ocean adventures with shark cage diving. With experienced instructors, visitors are able to get close to some of the region’s beautiful apex predators in their natural habitat. An incredibly thrilling and unforgettable experience awaits.


Known colloquially as ‘The Golf Coast’, the KZN South Coast boasts an abundance of well-maintained golf courses, many of which are located in the Upper South Coast region. From the novice to the pros, there’s a green for every golfer – most of which are surrounded by coastal forests with stunning sea views.

4. Microlight adventures

Experience the Upper South Coast region from the skies through a thrilling microlight adventure. Organised by experienced pilots, a microlight trip gives visitors an overview of the oceans, forests and other natural wonders found in this part of the world.

5. Wildlife experience

The natural abundance of the Upper South Coast extends to its animal inhabitants as well, with the area renowned for its diverse birdlife, as well as the many unique animal species.

At Scottburgh’s Crocworld Conservation Centre, families are able to engage with these incredible animals while the knowledgeable staff share insights and perform daily feeding demonstrations for audiences. There is also an on-site restaurant, Fish Eagle Café, and a fun animal farm and playground for youngsters.

6. Shop for handmade accessories

Artistry and craftmanship can be found throughout the KZN South Coast with the globally-renowned Polka Dot Coco Fashion conveniently located in the Upper South Coast. The brand specialises in handcrafted accessories using locally-sourced materials, such as the famous Shweshwe.

  • Polka Dot Coco Fashion (Scottburgh)

7. Nature reserves

Visitors have ample opportunity to get out in nature and experience the great outdoors throughout the Upper South Coast. The area is rich with coastal forests and reserves which are home to a myriad of wildlife and local bird species.

8. Local heritage

Integral moments of South African history were set against the backdrop of the Upper South Coast, determining a trajectory that has brought us to where we are now. Visitors will get a chance to experience the rich cultural nuances of this area at the Ntelezi Msani Heritage Centre where local guides bring history to life through story, crafts and song.

  • Ntelezi Msani Heritage Centre (Mthwalume)

9. Beach days

As a renowned coastal holiday resort, the Upper South Coast offers visitors expansive golden sands and warm Indian Ocean water at its many beautiful beaches. Even with beach restrictions, visitors are able to enjoy a beachside meal while taking in the stunning sea views and even catching site of the resident dolphins.

  • Scottburgh Beach
  • Pennington Beach
  • Hibberdene Beach
  • Umzumbe Beach

10. Mountain biking and running trails

Getting exercise has never been this much fun! The #KZNSouthCoast consists of some of the country’s best running and mountain biking trails that traverse coastal forests and local farmlands for a truly immersive natural experience.

  • TC Robertson Nature Reserve (Scottburgh)
  • Umdoni Parkrun (Pennington)
  • Vernon Crookes Nature Reserve (Umzinto)
  • Umdoni Park Trust, Golf Club & Nature Reserve
  • Rocky Bay Resorts

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