KwaZulu-Natal is one of the most popular provinces in South Africa for wildlife safaris. Here visitors will find the Royal Natal National Park, the Valley of 1000 Hills and the Drakensberg mountains. Located in the far northeastern corner of South Africa, this province touches the Indian Ocean to the east, Mozambique and Swaziland to the north, and Lesotho and three other provinces to the west. It’s capital is Pietermaritzburg while the largest city of the province is Durban.
KwaZulu-Natal’s history dates to the Bushman hunters. Later, they were ejected by the Bantu who formed the Nguni tribe. This tribe quite liked the region and settled in, forming a collection of many tribes which were later united by Shaka Zulu under the name of the Zulu clan. This clan formed the most impressive military force seen in Africa and were fairly wealthy in terms of land and livestock. Both Afrikaners and the British arrived in the early 1800s. At that time there was little conflict as the Europeans imported Indian workers rather than use the local Zulu tribes. However, in 1879, the British insisted that the Zulu clan give up their military style of government which resulted in the first major war in KwaZulu-Natal. This war was won by the British after the Zulus suffered severe losses. Twenty years later, the Second Boer War broke out between the British and Afrikaner populations. The British won again. Many years later, KwaZulu-Natal became a part of the Union of South Africa which later manifested itself into the country we now know.
Today, KwaZulu-Natal is arguably the poorest of the South African provinces. Apart from a few of the wealthiest people in the country, many have suffered at the hands of the political dispensation. The Indian population still outnumbers the white population and tensions in race relations are visible between the Indian and black population. However, tourism is making its way to the province and now two areas have been named as UNESCO World Heritage sites, namely the iSimangaliso Wetland Park and the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park.
KwaZulu-Natal offers visitors a wide range of activities for keeping busy during surface intervals. Holidaymakers might be interested in seeing the second highest waterfall in the world, which is located in Royal Natal National Park. For history lovers, the museums and battlefields in Ladysmith, Spioenkop, and Frere are extremely educational about the Anglo-Boers Wars. Exploring Zulu culture in the Valley of 1000 Hills will also delight those interested in local events, and hiking in the Drakensberg mountains and exploring the many national and wildlife parks are the perfect diversions for nature lovers. Finally, the beaches along the coast of KwaZulu-Natal are some of the best in South Africa. You sure won’t be bored on your trip to this wonderful and wild province.
King Shaka International Airport in Durban welcomes South African domestic flights and a few international flights from Dubai, Mauritius and Maputo. It is also possible to reach KwaZulu-Natal and Sodwana Bay by road from Johannesburg and Pretoria or by train from Johannesburg and Cape Town. If you have your own transportation, the N2 and N3 highways connect this province with others in South Africa.