Tourism
uMlalazi Municipality

Notice: 

Notice is hereby given that the Umlalazi Tourism Association will be hosting the following Annual General Meetings during the month of July 2017. Persons from the tourism sector as well as interested public is welcome to attend – kindly reserve your seat on the contact numbers provided.

Eshowe Branch Tourism

Mtunzini Branch Tourism

Umlalazi Tourism Association

Date:     18 July 2017

Time:     14h00

Venue:  Norwegian Mission Chapel

 

RSVP:     Ronel Hulley 035 – 473 3359 /

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Before 17/7/2017

 

 

 

Date:     18 July 2017

Time:     17h00

Venue:   Mtunzini Forest Lodge

 

RSVP:     Ronel Hulley – 035 – 473 3359 /

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Before 17/7/2017

Date:    19 July 2017

Time:    18h00

Venue:  Mtunzini Forest Lodge

 

RSVP:     Ronel Hulley – 035 – 473 3359 /

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Before 17/7/2017

 

Tourism

Eshowe, Mtunzini and Gingindlovu are the three main towns in uMlalazi and offer an array of choices for domestic as well as international tourists. Eshowe, a City Set on a Hill, is situated around a 250 hectare indigenous coasta l scrub forest. The Dlinza Forest Aerial Boardwalk, the first in Southern Africa and exclusive to Eshowe and the second in the world (the first was built in Mali), is a 160 metre long walkway built above the forest floor, which allows visitors to view flora, fauna and avifauna – it has a platform of 20 meters above the forest floor. The Boardwalk employs two trained birding guides. Some of the flora and fauna that exist in the forest are the Green Coucal, Crowned Eagles and Spotted Thrush. The Ironwoods, Wild Plums and other giants give shelter to Orchids, Clivias, Bushbuck, Duiker, Narina Trogons, Delegorgues’s Pigeon and Wood Eshowe. 

Eshowe offers a window on history as it is the oldest town in Zululand. King Cetshwayo was born and died here and it was King Mpande who first invited the Norwegian missionary, the Reverend Ommund Oftebro to settle his mission station here in 1861, thereby forever changing the face of Eshowe. 

Mtunzini is characterised by natural beauty and is a popular coastal town. UMlalazi Nature Reserve, controlled by Ezemvelo KwaZulu-Natal Wildlife, covers 1 028 hectares. The zebra is often found grazing in the nature reserve. The uMlalazi Reserve and the Amatikulu Reserve together form the Siyaya Coastal Reserve, which stretches from the uMlalazi River in the north, in a narrow band along the coast southwards almost to the Thukela (Tugela) River. Amatikulu Reserve and access is via the N2 approximately 30 km south of Mtunzini. There are 5 different ecosystems, namely estuarine, dune scrub, dune forest, coastal riverine and coastal forest which characterise the Mtunzini area providing diverse natural environment. There is a thriving population of giraffe as well as waterbuck and a number of smaller antelope. 

The uMlalazi Municipality has vast potential for enhancing tourism in the area but the access by road is problematic as the areas are mountainous with fores t. The Goedertrouw/Phobane Dam offers the opportunity for a range of water sports, together with camping and picnic spots, however this need to be developed still and once completed will assist local communities with jobs and upliftment. It is supplementary to the areas of eco-tourism in the uMlalazi area. Thukela Valley is an area of outstanding scenic beauty and represents rugged countryside. 

The Eshowe Butterfly Dome is located adjacent to Nongqyai Museum Village, in Eshowe. It is an eco-tourism venture with the purpose of bringing future job opportunities to the community of the uMlalazi Municipality and educates school children and tourists on the value of indigenous vegetation and its connection with the associated insect species. The ultimate goal is biodiversity conservation awareness. The dome is a 20m x 10m geodesic structure covered with insect netting. Inside it is landscaped with indigenous butterfly host plants in order for the butterflies to undergo several life cycles and keeping a steady population of different species. All the butterflies inside the dome are indigenous in South Africa. The person in charge of breeding butterflies, collect few females from the wild and releases them into a breeding cage. There, the butterflies lay eggs which then are collected by the staff member. When the eggs hatch, the caterpillars are raised till they reach the pupa stage. Then they will move the chrysalides to the butterfly dome where they eventually will hatch. Therefore, all the butterflies inside the dome are raised in captivity. The Eshowe Butterfly Dome is part of the Butterfly Route, which is an initiative of African Conservation Trust out of a request by Dr . Americo Bonkewitzz to establish a community based Indigenous Butterfly education project s pecifically for the children of uMlalazi. The Eshowe Butterfly Dome is committed to the enlightment of the local people about the pristine environment, the importance of the forest and the role of the insect fauna in the ecosystem and the advantage over other towns, to have a pristine natural indigenous forest within the town of Eshowe.

Currently there are many attractive tourist sites with many bed and breakfasts in the uMlalazi area which draw large
number tourists to the area.

 

Attractions in Eshowe

tourism

Worthwile to visit in the Forest:
Bishop's seat (an open site where Anglican Bishop Carter used to meditate). Later he cleared it for public use and used to hold an annual picnic for the children of the town. In 1953 a local resident, GS Moberley, feeling the venue appropriate as an outdoor theater, wrote a nativity play entitled "The Forest Noel" for presentation. The play was produced every 3 years from 1953 to 1994. It has just been revived in 2005.


Mpushini Falls and Trails:
This is a historic site from the time of King Shaka where maidens used to bathe. A 20 minutes trail starts from the Museum Village entrance gate through a section of fern forest and over a stream to the head of the falls from where a lower trail can be followed but it is steep, dangerous and risky.


Dlinza Forest Aerial Boardwalk:
A 125m long boardwalk built in the forest, spiraling 20m high, overlooking the canopy of trees.


Dlinza Forest Royal Mile Drive:
This drive was made for the 1947 British Royal visit to eShowe. Enter off Windham Road, turn right into Dlinza Street (opposite the Museum Village) and follow the rough dirt road. At the T-junction in the forest the right hand turn will lead you to Bishops Seat and the left turn will take you out of the forest beside the cemetery where you can turn back towards town and find the entrance again to the Dlinza Forest Aerial Boardwalk.


Norwegian and British Cemeteries:
Many graves of young British soldiers and those of early Norwegian settlers in eShowe. The cemeteries are situated just beyond Fort eShowe off the gravel road.


Ntumeni Forest:
Approximately 15km from eShowe on the Ntumeni road, a 750ha reserve has small buck and a rich birdlife including the Crowned Eagle. Two hiking trails of 1 hour or 3 hours in the evergreen, mist-belt indigenous forest. There are no facilities.

 

 

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