Situated just north of Richards Bay, Mapelane is the southern most reserve found in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park at the uMfolozi River mouth, with the town of St Lucia on the opposite bank.
A popular getaway for surf as well as deep sea fishing, this is also a birders paradise with over 200 species being spotted in this small area alone.
Along the pristine beach there are tidal pools to explore, and with a licence obtainable from the parks authority, crayfish, mussels and oysters can be harvested in a responsible and sustainable manner.
The self-guided Umphafa trail will take you through the dunes and coastal forest, with sightings of small buck, monkey, mongoose, red squirrel being possible, along with hippo and crocodile at the estuary’s edge.
For accomodation try Online Bookings for KZN Wildlife