Unspoiled and rare: North Coast options for the winter school holidays
Category Rental Advice
There are few places as beautiful as KZN's North Coast, where unspoiled towns kiss the shores of the warm Indian ocean and nearly perfect weather draws in holidaymakers throughout the year - and especially during the June / July school holidays in SA, as families look to escape the colder weather elsewhere in the country.
"And when contemplating a holiday on the North Coast, Ballito is the most popular choice because it is the most established centre, with stunning beaches and facilities as well as world-class accommodation with panoramic sea-views," says Karen von Weilligh, Ballito holiday rental manager for the Chas Everitt international property group.
'However, the North Coast offers many other gems, too. As you venture further afield, you will find a mix of quaint coastal villages, each with its own personality and distinct atmosphere, such as Westbrook, Chaka's Rock, Salt Rock, Sheffield Beach, uMhlali, Tinley Manor and Shakaskraal.
"What is more, the white sandy beaches in each town are perfect for swimming, enjoying sunlit picnics, and taking lazy strolls in the evenings, and considering that this region experiences 320 days of sunshine a year, you can be sure that your holiday getaway will be a sunny and warm one."
She adds that some towns are popular for their tidal pools, such as Granny's Pool at Salt Rock Beach, and Charlie's Pool and Hole in the Wall in Chakas Rock. "There are also tidal pools at Sheffield Beach where you can usually find a number of people spearfishing. For adventure seekers, Charlie's Pool also offers snorkelling among an abundance of fish, coral and other sea life."
On the development scale, these places are all less developed than Ballito, which means that their holiday homes are often surrounded by unspoiled nature and pristine coastlines that highlight the local flora and fauna, Von Weilligh notes. "There is also a distinct feeling of family and community that makes the region a perfect holiday destination for every member of the family, including beloved pets. In fact, one of the most frequent requests made by holidaymakers is for pet-friendly accommodation, followed by easy beach access and good sea-views."
Self-catering holiday apartments, complexes and estate homes with wifi and air-conditioning are the property types most in demand, she says. "As for the price point, rates for holiday homes on the North Coast start from as little as R600/night in low season, R900/night in semi-season and R1450/night in peak season - and play a big role in drawing more tourists to our shores each year from international destinations as well as from other parts of SA, especially Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Limpopo, Northern Cape and the Free State."
The King Shaka International Airport, which is just a short drive (under 30 minutes) from most North Coast destinations, has made it even easier for tourists to access these towns, which also offer a variety of unique restaurants and attractions such as Crocodile Creek, golf courses, art galleries, health resorts and spas as well as exciting activities like microlight flights, skydiving, mountain biking and deep sea fishing.
For those who enjoy retail therapy, there is also a wide choice of shopping centres large and small, with all national fashion and food chains being represented alongside independent outlets offering unique local food, fashion and crafts.
*To book holiday accommodation along the North Coast, contact the Chas Everitt International holiday letting office in Ballito on 032 586 0154
Author: Meg Wilson