Umzumbe River Trails Adventures


Tourism is a big part of life on the KZN South Coast. Another very important aspect of life is the culture and heritage of its people. It only makes sense that on the KZN South Coast, tourism should meet culture to transform the local economy, as well as create sustainable job creation in the area.

One unique and exciting way this is happening is the newly announced Umzumbe River Trails. This adventure is designed to provide visitors with an authentic cultural Zulu experience. Guests are led by trained local guides, with an intimate and unmatched knowledge of the area and its people, along a collective 70km “Green Flag Trail.” There are 6 trails, and they can be followed by either walking, hiking, trail running, mountain biking, or horse riding, offering you ample choice in how you undertake your adventure.

Guests can interact with 8 Zulu clans that live a traditional lifestyle along the banks of the Umzumbe and Mhlabatshane rivers and learn about their way of life and the culture of the Zulu people. The trails and routes boast stunning views of the breath-taking landscape. Along the route, there are a number of incredible attractions to look forward to.

The Isivivane seNkosi uShaka is a traditional pile of stones left by Zulu warriors to honour their ancestors. Dating back to 1828, when King Shaka himself came through the area leaving an isivivane, one would spit on a stone and add it to the pile. Guests can now participate in this cultural ritual, leaving a part of themselves on the KZN South Coast forever.

The Ntelezi Msani Heritage Centre is a cultural hub of knowledge about the Zulu people, as well as more specific history relating to the area. Providing historical insight into the “Poll Tax System” and the subsequent uprising in the area, guests can learn about Ntelezi Msani, as well as witness traditional stick fighting and combat techniques, beadwork,
and reed weaving. Seminars on health and lifestyle are also on offer.

The Nazareth Baptist Church is the 2nd largest African-initiated church. It was founded by Isaiah Shembe in 1910. It reveres Shembe as a prophet sent by God to restore the teachings of Moses, the prophets, and Jesus. Experience the merging of Christian and African culture at this historic religious site.

The KZN South Coast is known for its beaches and proximity to the ocean, but it offers a much deeper and richer cultural experience as well. Tradition and heritage dating back centuries are still felt deeply by the local people, and initiatives such as this allow the local economies to thrive while providing both local and international tourists alike, with the opportunity to interact and explore the beauty of the Zulu Kingdom and its people.

While the trails are not yet operational, we look forward to the opportunity to experience this unique cultural experience.

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