Just beyond Durban’s bustling urban metropolis you’ll find a wealth of phenomenal places to get up close and personal with captivating South African wildlife. From aquatic creatures to giant land-dwellers, Durban’s animal attractions are many. If you’re visiting the iconic Oyster Box hotel, you’re perfectly positioned to explore the local indigenous wildlife. Take a look at some of our favourite locations, from reptile parks to game reserves.
One of nature’s true wonders, this annual event sees a feeding frenzy on the KwaZulu-Natal Coast. Taking place from May to July, the Sardine Run is the migration of large sardine shoals in one giant band up the coast. Such a giant movement naturally attracts predators like sharks, gamefish and birds. Of course, humans too are drawn to this magnificent spectacle, and word spreads like wildfire as soon as the Sardine Run is in action. Observe it from the beach or by boat – or daredevils can dive.
Centre for Rehabilitation of Wildlife
One of South Africa’s first ever wildlife rehabilitation centres, CROW is dedicated to the recuse, rehabilitation and release of indigenous orphaned and injured wildlife. Caring for everything from baby antelopes and genets to tortoises and mongooses, the centre tends to over 3000 animals each year. CROW host open days on the last Sunday of every month, where visitors can take a guided tour of the complex and animals as well as discover more about their commitment to wildlife and nature conservation.
Home to big game like rhinos, hippos and elephants, Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park is South Africa’s oldest game park. Take a day safari to experience the majestic beauty of the South African wilderness. Located in picturesque rolling hills, the park’s open grassland landscapes present prime game-spotting opportunities, so get those binoculars ready.
iSimangaliso Wetland Park
South Africa’s first ever World Heritage Site, iSimangaliso Wetland Park is a natural wonder containing eight interlinking eco systems. With three major lakes, 25,00 year old coastal dunes and most of South Africa’s remaining swamp forests, it’s home to a wealth of wildlife including over 500 bird species plus elephants, rhinos, hippos, leopards and giraffes. Visitors can enjoy horse riding, a game drive or turtle tours.
Beach and Bush Escape at Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve
In conjunction with Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve, The Oyster Box hotel offer an unforgettable Beach and Bush Escape experience. Harmonising the raw beauty of Zululand’s wildlife with the stunning Umhlanga Rocks coastline, the escape allows you to immerse yourself in the glorious surrounds of Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve for two nights, followed by a four (or more) at The Oyster Box; one of South Africa’s best-loved and most charming hotels.
When visiting Durban, be sure to explore its wondrous wildlife before returning to your luxurious room at The Oyster Box.
Image Credits: Main image © Shutterstock/Travel Stock. Sardine Run: © iStock/atese. Springbok: © iStock/simoneemanphotogrpahy. Macaws: © iStock/cherryjuicestockphoto. Green mamba: © iStock/mjf795. Rhinos: © iStock/elleon.