Places to Visit

Kings Palace South Africa St Lucia Accommodation – Places To Visit

 

Mission Rocks

Travel along the Cape Vidal road for approximately 14km then turn right onto the gravel road. Along the way to Mission Rocks you can stop at the lookout point from where you can look down on the Eastern and Western shores. At Mission Rocks there are picnic, braai facilities and toilets. Off the rocks to your left, walk approximately 2km to bats cave which has a large population of Egyptian Fruit Bats. To your right along the rocks, you will find many rock pools with an abundance of marine animals. Best time to go is at low tide. Only 25 vehicles per day.

 

Cape Vidal

32km From St Lucia you will find the beautiful coastal resort, Cape Vidal which holds the unique distinction of allowing visitors access to both the wildlife of the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park as well as the marine life of the Indian Ocean coast.

 

Within this park area we have four of the BIG 5 of which the lion is absent.

 

Kings Palace South Africa St Lucia Accommodation   Kings Palace South Africa St Lucia Accommodation  

 

The sheltered bay has a designated launch site for ski boats with excellent off-shore angling, spear fishing, surfing, swimming and snorkelling.

This family destination also offers guided walking trails around the fascinating wetlands and the Lake Bhangazi shoreline.

Only 100 day visitors per day are allowed to enter the park.

 

Sodwana Bay

Sodwana is situated within the Maputaland Marine Reserve and the only scuba-diving area along the GSLWP coastline. Classified as one of the top dive sites in the world this 50km reef complex boasts with approximately 95 species hard and soft coral, sponges, other invertebrates and in the region of 1200 fish species. It is visited by approximately 35,000 scuba-divers per year. For a distance of 2km vast valleys of 700m deep are scattered around. We call these Submarine Canyon. It was in one of these canyons on the 27th November 2000 that the Coelacanth was rediscovered.

 

  • Diving conditions :
  • Visibility : February to August a viz. of over 25m. Rain and river run-off could influence visibility.
  • Depth of Dives : 8 35m
  • Marine life : Indian Ocean species together with colder water species. Humpback Whales; Ragged Tooth Sharks; Whale Sharks; Tiger Sharks; Manta Rays.
  • Dive qualifications : Minimum qualification is NAUI Open Water 1
  • Reefs : Antons Reef; Chain Reefs; Pinnacles and Gullies; Potholed and Sponge Reefs; Caves and Overhangs; Bikini Reef; Gotham; Ramseys Reef; Ribbon Reef; Green Coral Tree; Seaweed Gardens and the sand habitats.

Hluhluwe/Umfolozi Game Reserve

  • The entrance to the Hluhluwe/Umfolozi Game Reserve is approximately 60km from St Lucia and makes up part of the Elephant Coast but is outside the boundaries of the Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park.
  • This 96 000ha park was established in 1895 and is considered one of the oldest game reserves in Africa.
  • This Big 5 (elephant, rhino, buffalo, leopard and lion) game reserve was the hunting grounds for Zulu kings such as Shaka. Conservation laws were introduced to protect the wildlife for future generations to view.
  • The Hluhluwe and Umfolozi game reserves are joined and function as one reserve with only a once off payment for the day at the gate.
  • The main roads in the game reserve are tarred but there are gravel roads that turn off the main route.

Mkhuze Game Reserve

  • Situated at the south western extremity of the Mozambique coastal plain and constituting the north western spur of the Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park, the Mkhuze Game Reserve spans over an area of 40,000ha, and was proclaimed a game reserve in 1912.
  • The game reserve has a cultural village and a wide variety of plants and animals. More than 420 bird species have been recorded which makes this a bird watchers paradise.
  • Natural habitats are the eastern slopes of the Lebombo mountains, raverine forest, acacia savanna swamps, woodlands, fig forest and a rare variety of sand forest.
  • Only 35km north of Hluhluwe you will find the turn off to Mkuze Game Reserve. Travel approximately 15kms along a gravel road where you will see a signposted road which takes you another 10kms through the Lebombo mountains to the entrance of the game reserve. It is really worth the travel.

Phinda Game Reserve

  • Phinda is situated between the Indian Ocean and the waterways of the Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park.
  • In 1991 it began as a degraded farmland of 7,500ha. A year later a further 6,000ha was acquired and today Phinda spans over 18,000ha covering seven ecosystems.
  • The name Phinda, which means the return in isiZulu is very appropriate as game was reintroduced to the area as tribute to conservation through ecotourism includes lion, cheetah, elephant, giraffe, rhino and zebra.

Lake Sibaya

 

Lake Sibaya also forms part of the Maputaland Marine Reserve. It is situated slightly north and inland from Sodwana. This is the largest fresh water lake in South Africa with a surface area of 77 square kilometers and an average depth of 13m. The lake was connected to the sea but the estuary mouth had closed. Over the years that followed the water changed from salt to fresh water. Many marine creatures were trapped and had to adapt. Several fish that are now found in Lake Sibaya will be found nowhere else in the world. There are approximately 280 species of birds.