It’s only human to dream about an island getaway. What can be more blissful than lazing the hours away under a coconut tree and sipping a piña colada as you gaze across the azure ocean that stretches endlessly to the horizon? Unfortunately a holiday in the Maldives, Seychelles, and Palau is just a wee bit too expensive for us mere mortals. Well, lucky for you we’ve found the next best thing ─ a stretch of South African coastline that boasts a balmy climate, subtropical forests, coral reefs, and a warm ocean. Scroll down and take your pick of 7 subtropical stays along KwaZulu-Natal‘s North Coast!


6 Imbali Lakes

Enjoy supreme luxury at 6 Imbali Lakes in Zimbali. Lose yourself in the ocean, lake and forest views.

  • Sleeps 8
  • Attractions: golf course, squash and tennis courts, private pool
  • Distance from King Shaka International Airport: 18.9 km

10 Akrotiri

Situated in the famous Santorini complex in Ballito, 10 Akrotiri has stunning sea views and a Smeg kitchen.

  • Sleeps 4
  • Attractions:direct beach access, 6 swimming pools, tennis courts
  • Distance from King Shaka International Airport: 24 km

2 Glen Drive

2 Glen Drive’s pool deck calls for early-morning coffee and drinks with little umbrellas when the sun sets. This house in Zinkwazi Beach is ideal for large families in search of the perfect getaway spot on the North Coast.

  • Sleeps 12
  • Attractions:rim-flow pool, firepit, DStv, and a fully-equipped kitchen
  • Distance from King Shaka International Airport: 57.4 km

Lidiko Lodge

Lidiko Lodge is a 4 star lodge in St Lucia in the heart of the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lidiko is the ultimate destination for those seeking a bush and beach holiday in one!

  • Sleeps 32
  • Attractions:big five, fly fishing, horse riding, mountain biking
  • Distance from King Shaka International Airport: 212 km

Rhino Coast Guest House

If you’re looking for a tranquil escape to a subtropical paradise, Rhino Coast Guest House is it! This 4 star B&B in St Lucia offers elegant en-suite rooms and traditional African braais on request.

  • Sleeps 12
  • Attractions: a variety of restaurants
  • Distance from King Shaka International Airport: 212 km

Umlilo Lodge

Umlilo is another lodge in St Lucia surrounded by the rivers, lakes, marshes, and mangrove swamps of the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park. All the necessary creature comforts, such as air conditioning, DStv, and free Wi-Fi, are catered for.

  • Sleeps 32
  • Attractions:: hippo, crocodile, large variety of bird and fish species in the park
  • Distance from King Shaka International Airport: 212 km

Ballito 404

Wake up to a stunning sea view in this spacious self-catering apartment in Ballito. The family room leads to a patio with braai facilities, ideal for a sunset braai with your loved ones!

  • Sleeps 4
  • Attractions: microlight flights, Crocodile Creek, King Shaka Heritage Route
  • Distance from King Shaka International Airport: 18.7 km

(Sub)tropical Activities

  • Contact Umhlanga Scuba or Scuba St. Lucia to enjoy diving not far from Durban. Or head to Sodwana Bay for the coral reef experience of a lifetime ─ we recommend Sodwana Bay Lodge Scuba Centre.
  • Catch stumpies, pompano and kob at Sweet Waters. Snoek, couta, kingfish, and queenfish at Salmon Bay and Ballito Pool. Labotes, shad, rock salmon, kingfish and cob at St. Lucia’s river mouth ─ the grunter and springer usually bite within the estuary. These are only three of many great fishing spots in the area, the North Coast truly is a fisherman’s heaven.
  • Laze about on the safe swimming beaches and tidal pools at Ballito, Umhlanga, Salt Rock, and Umdloti.
  • Grab a cocktail in tuck into some awesome seafood at The Galley Beach Bar & Grill Seafood Restaurant in Ballito, witness the craft of artisanal cocktail mixing at 31 Degrees in Zimbali, or pretend you’re Captain Jack Sparrow and order rum punch at The UGLY Mug-Grill and Stout in St Lucia.

There you have it! You don’t need to apply for a new passport, endure a yellow fever vaccination, or consider a second mortgage on your house to make your tropical dreams come true. Just click here and book your North Coast getaway today!

Feature image: Maldives paradise beach  (Bigstock)

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