RICHARDS BAY IN SOUTH AFRICA
The triumph of Richards Bay, South Africa is that it has retained its natural beauty while growing into a sophisticated, highly industrialized business center that is able to offer top-class facilities and accommodation to the international traveler. Environmental protection began as early as 1935 with the establishment of the Richards Bay Game Sanctuary to protect indigenous subtropical fauna and flora around the Mhlatuzi River lagoon. This was later expanded to form the Richards Bay Park, which is a haven for nature lovers. Much of the original wetlands around Richards Bay have been preserved intact as a nature reserve, and are popular places for walking and game spotting. Because of the rich variety of bird life over a number of habitats, avitourism has become one of the area’s main attractions. Dolphins can be seen almost all year round in the waters, and majestic whales visit in the summer breeding season. Special whale-watching expeditions are offered by local tour operators. There are safe beaches for fun activities with calm, warm seas and spectacular views for those who want to laze or paddle. And there are others with giant breakers for surfing enthusiasts. The mini resorts of Naval Island, Pelican Island and the Tuzi Gazi Waterfront provide equipment and expert guides for anyone keen on angling, canoeing, power-boating, jet-skiing or sailing. Horse riding, helicopter flights, mountain- and quad-biking and microlight flights are other ways to experience the scenery. Visitors can drive along the magnificent Zululand coastline, stretching almost to the Mozambique border, and shop for attractive Zulu and Tsonga crafts to take home as mementoes. The traditional tribal ways of life have been preserved in many parts, and visitors are invited to visit Zulu kraals (villages), such as Shakaland and Duma Zulu, which are open to the public year round.