iSimangaliso Wetland Park Activities

Officially South Africa's first World Heritage site (Unesco 1999) iSimangaliso Wetland Park is a wildlife paradise. Enjoy Hippos strolling freely in St Lucia, witness Humpback Whales migrating, LeatherBack turtles nesting, pristine beaches, abundant wildlife, and most importantly amazing people.

iSimangaliso Wetland Park offers the most diverse array of activities within the Province of KwaZulu Natal. Situated a mere 2,5 Hours North Of Duban, is it not about time you too experienced this wonderful wonderland?


isimangaliso wetland park activities

Nowhere else may one be surrounded by Hippos, the St Lucia Estuary and its abundance of wildlife will ensure that you get up close and enjoy some magical sightings. Home to 800 Hippos and 1200 Nile Crocodiles not to mention the amazing amount of Bird species.

Largest Hippo Population

in South Africa

800 Free Roaming Hippos

1200 Nile Crocodiles

Boats Departing Daily

Some Rather Impressive Facts

3289 Square Kilometers

110 Elephants

195 Bird Species

3rd Largest protected Park in S.A.

13 Lions (Mkuze)

60 Million year old fossils

iSimangaliso Wetland Park - Access Points

It is important to understand where to travel to in order to see and do the various iSimangaliso Wetland Park Activities.

Accessing the Park:

Southern Part of the Park, St Lucia

St Lucia is the southern part of the park and lies within the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. A small and quaint town home to approximately 1000 residents. This is the most popular area from which to explore and enjoy the southern area of the park as it offers visitors to the following access points of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park.

  • Western Shores is primarily bush country with amazing wildlife
  • Eastern Shores (Cape Vidal) the eastern shores have both bush and beach options
  • The St Lucia Estuary is home to the Hippos and Crocodiles
  • Indian Ocean and its pristine beaches

Mkuze Game Reserve

From St Lucia traveling back on the N2 in a northerly direction one may explore Mkuze Game Reserve which was incorporated into the iSimangaliso Wetland Park in the mid-2000. Lions were reintroduced in 2007. This park is primarily known for its amazing birdlife, hyena, and now Lion sightings.

Sodwana Bay & Kosi Bay

Traveling eastwards back towards the coast from the town of Hluhluwe one can access Sodwana Bay and Kosi Bay (the most northern part of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park) which borders Mozambique.

On the northern side, Sodwana Bay is primarily known for its magnificent Scuba Diving options which happens to be of the best in South Africa. Deep Sea Fishing is also very popular. Further North, Kosi Bay is synonymous with its Fish traps that date back hundreds of years.

st lucia activities & safaris

iSimangaliso Wetland Park Activities, Maps, Safaris, and Accommodation

iSimangaliso Wetland Park Activities range enormously from Day Safaris, Sunset Safaris, Snorkeling, Scuba Diving, Deep Sea Fishing, Whale Watching, Turtle Viewing, Guided Bush Walks, Bird Viewing, Zulu Cultural Tours, Bike Tours, and much much more.

The most visited areas within the Park include St Lucia, Cape Vidal, and Sodwana. These are the primary areas that offer accommodation within the park.

st lucia tourist attractions

iSimanagliso Wetland Park stretches from the Cape St Lucia Lighthouse in the South to the border of Mozambique in the North. South Africa's very first world heritage site was cited by Unesco in 1999 this area is incredible. St Lucia in the south is one of the top stopovers not only small in size but wild with wildlife, just imagine seeing Hippos walking down the main road at night yes this still happens to this day.

Leopards have been encountered in and around the town, Nile crocodiles bask on the banks of the estuary during the day while Hippos remain playful. The birdlife in the area is abundant and with Mkuze Game Reserve also within its borders of iSimangaliso one has so much to choose from.

iSimangaliso Wetland Park Map

iSimangaliso Wetland Park Activities:

From St Lucia

giraffe night drive sighting
Night Drive Safaris

These nocturnal safaris take place during the night, no safari to South Africa can ever be complete without participating on one of these. Go in search of the elusive Leopard, Buffalo, Rhino, and Elephant. It's a thrilling experience hearing the African bush come alive. Duration is 3 hours and due to popularity one must pre-book, for a full description

  • Duration 3 Hours
  • Depart Daily
2 night safari package hippos and clients
Hippo & Croc Boat Safari

These excursions are by far the most popular activities while in iSimangaliso, two-hour trips depart daily cruise up the Estuary, and witness the abundance of birdlife, Hippos, and Nile Crocodiles. Our top tip is to pre-book the sunset trip as this truly is the most favorite and splendid time to be on the Estuary. Please note that Hippo Sightings are Guaranteed. For Bookings, Availability please do click on the button below.

  • Duration 2 Hours
  • Depart Daily

iSimangaliso Wetland Park Activities:

isimangaliso wetland park full day safari tour to cape vidal south africa
Full-Day Safari Tour activity to Cape Vidal

Discover why this area has been proclaimed as a world heritage site. Experience both the incredible bush and beach while out on these excursions, some top attractions while out include the highest vegetated dunes in Africa, whales breaching off the beaches during the winter months, incredible scenery of wildlife, mangroves, forests, and much more. For more information

  • Duration 7 Hours
  • Depart Daily
isimangaliso wetland park full day safari tour to cape vidal south africa
Half-Day Safari Tour activity to Cape Vidal

This tour takes you to the breathtaking Cape Vidal Bay where one has the opportunity to enjoy some snorkeling while in a protected bay. Travel through South Africa's very first world heritage site by Open Game Drive Vehicle en route and enjoy some fascinating wildlife. Remember to bring a beach towel along. With subtropical weather round the year, you are in for a treat. Refreshments are also included on this outing.

  • Departs 8:00 am
  • Departs Daily

iSimangaliso Wetland Park Activities:

theo ranger and leatherback turtle
Turtle Tours

Witness Leather Back and Logger Head Turtles along the iSimangaliso Wetland Park Beach. This once-in-a-lifetime experience is a magnificent outing.

  • November to the end of February
  • Weather Dependent
  • Prior Bookings Essential
horse riding st lucia
Horse Riding

Horse Riding takes place from either the beach or the bush these one-hour or two options are incredible and definitely a magnificent way to explore the area.

  • Year Round Excursions
  • Weather Dependant
  • Prior Bookings Essential
st lucia bike tours and excursions
Bike Rentals

One has also the option to rent a bike and zoom around the town of St Lucia an incredible way to discover the area.

whale watching st lucia
Whale Watching

Go in search of the mighty Humpback Whales as they migrate past the iSimangaliso Wetland Park shores.

deep sea game fishing st lucia south africa
Deep Sea Fishing

Set out early morning and go in search of game fish.

cape vidal sunset safari
Cape Vidal Sunset Safari

The perfect way to end any day in Africa.

Half Day Hluhluwe Umfolozi Game Reserve Safari
Bush and Boat Safari

Enjoy both a Big 5 Safari and a Hippo Boat Cruise.

st lucia sunrise safari clients
Sunrise Safari

Enjoy a near perfect sunrise within the iSimangaliso Park.

st lucia south africa ,safaris

Heritage Tours & Safaris offers a multitude of day tours and overnight safari packages while in the area of St Lucia. The company was established in 2003 and is to date the largest privately owned safari tour operator in the area. Experience the best that the area has to offer on Safari.

The iSimangaliso Wetland Park is truly a magnificent destination to enjoy in so many different ways. We would be privileged should you like to join us on one of our numerous adventures.

heritage tours and safaris

isimangaliso hippo boat cruise
cape vidal tour

Still Need a Reason to Visit

iSimangaliso Wetland Park

Nearby Game Reserves

big 5 safari imfolozi

Tembe Elephant Park

imfolozi safari

Mkuze Game Reserve

Open chat
Hello, Please let us know if we can assist you regarding Accommodation or Tours & Safaris.

Top Attraction is the Hippo Boat Cruises at R300 pp