Karridene offers so much for families wanting to explore everywhere within short distance drives. Picture: Supplied/Picasa.

The KwaZulu Natal South Coast offers some really cool spots for relaxation and activities. 

Avukile Mabombo, Group Marketing Manager of Protea Hotels by Marriott provides us with some activities we should try when we down the South Coast.

One of them is diving. Just 10kms from Karridene is Umkomaas, where you can find dive centres that train and facilitate diving trips to the well-known Aliwal Shoal.  Charters are available for all levels of divers, and reviews of the diving conditions are outstanding.  If you’re a non-diver, having to bide your time while other family members go deep, there’s Amanzimtoti. It has water parks, the Galleria shopping centre (which includes an ice rink), golf courses and a trampoline park to work off some extra energy. 

Although Karridene is a great place to unwind from the hustle and bustle, it’s important to note that Durban is still a short drive away. So lazy lunches at one of the many beach front restaurants overlooking the Durban piers, or a cocktail or two at Joe Cools (a Durban institution), is always an option.  And for the kids, a visit to Durban cannot come without a trip to Ushaka Marine World for a day of family fun.

Further north is Zinkwazi Beach which offers the longest lagoon in KwaZulu Natal – perfect for a calmer beach day, if the waves are too high.  On this same coast are the highly ranked golf resorts Zimbali and Prince’s Grant.  For the family, the Ndlondlo Reptile Park is situated just outside Ballito and has over 20 species of reptiles for you to meet and learn about.

Moving inland, the Valley of 1 000 Hills is a beautifully scenic area – with plenty to do, especially for the kids. There’s a fun animal park, equipped with a trampoline, at Hillbilly’s Restaurant and Lifestyle Centre. From there head to PheZulu Safari Park: a Reptile Park and Cultural Village. You can also experience South Africa’s wild in the beautiful private game reserve. And for the culinary adventurous, try an exotic crocodile dish in the restaurant.

Further into the Midlands area, and a great day trip from Karridene lies Howick. It’s known for its stunning waterfall and the annual Highlander Mountain Bike Race.  Another 40km along the N3 highway is Nottingham Road, a quaint area with loads of activities to keep you occupied. From fly fishing to horse riding, the area is great for outdoor enthusiasts – and there are loads of options to try out local cuisine and the craft beer.

KwaZulu Natal may have some of the best beaches in South Africa, so don’t forget to explore next time you’re there.