KwaZulu Natal Facts & Information

All you need to know about Kwazulu Natal

Kwazulu Natal is South Africa's most populous province with an estimated 10 million people. Most of these are Zulus, descendants of the famous King Shaka. These people are still fiercely protective of their tribe and culture and they swear allegiance to King Goodwill Zwelethini. You will certainly meet these people on your visit to KZN and you can relive the history of their kingdom and their famous tussles with the Boers and British by visiting the Battlefields.

The capital of Kwazulu Natal is Pietermaritzburg but its premier city is Durban, Africa's busiest port with a population of about 3 million. There are pretty beaches around the city but we recommend you head up the North Coast to savor silky white sand and tropical warm waters. There are 2 World Heritage Sites - the greater St Lucia Wetlands Park, an excellent addition to a Kwazulu Natal Safari and the Ukhahlamba/Drakensberg Mountain Range with the country's highest peaks. Once the hunting ground of the Zulu Kings, the Hluhluwe Umfolozi Game Reserve is home to the Big Five as well as being famous for its white and black rhino protection program.

“The St Lucia Wetland Park must be the only place on the globe where the world oldest land mammal (The Rhino) with the world’s biggest terrestrial mammal (The Elephant) share an ecosystem with the world’s oldest fish (The Coelacanth) and the world’s biggest marine mammal (The Whale).” - Nelson Mandela

More Facts & Figures

-20% of all tourists to South Africa visit KwaZulu Natal
-It contains 2 World Heritage Sites - the greater St Lucia Wetlands Park and the Ukhahlamba/Drakensberg Mountain Range
-It has the second largest economy in the country
-Durban Port is the busiest port in Africa
-Richard Bay Port is the deepest port in Africa
-KZN manufactures all the sugar needs of South Africa
-It is the most populous province in the country
-Best transport system in SA - travel by road, rail, sea and air

Weather and When to Visit:

The best time to tour KwaZulu Natal is definitely early autumn through winter and into spring. Summer can be very hot and humid. Game viewing is better in late June, July and August when the grass is shorter, many trees have lost their leaves, and the animals tend to congregate around waterholes.

Speaking Zulu:

Zulu people are naturally very polite and its considered rude not to greet someone. These little phrases will help you immensely.

Good morning/afternoon/evening - Sawubona (Sing) / Sanibonani (Plural)
Goodbye - Uhambe kahle / Usale kahle
Yes / No - Yebo / Cha
Excuse me - Uxolo
Thank you - Ngiyabonga
Thank you very much - Ngibonga kakhulu
How are you? - Kunjani?
I'm fine, thanks - Ngiyaphila

Buying Zulu Arts and Crafts:

While shopping for curios, you might purchase these from the Zulu women who crafted the goods. She will always pass the artefact to you using her right hand only. The palm of the left hand will be under the right forearm. This custom is significant, and serves to assure you that there are no hidden weapons and you have nothing to fear from her. A popular souvenir for visitors is Zulu beadwork. One of the most fascinating manifestations of this traditional craft is its unique language. Every colour has a different meaning and a Zulu woman can weave a message of love, grief, jealousy, poverty or uncertainty into her patterned creation.

NB: We are Kwazulu Natal experts and can help you plan an itinerary that suits your needs. Get free, no-obligation advice to plan your tailor-made trip!

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