iSimangaliso Wetland Park

The iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a Unesco World Heritage site, stretches for 220 glorious kilometres from the Mozambique border to Maphelane, at the southern end of Lake St Lucia. With the Indian Ocean on one side and a series of lakes (including Lake St Lucia) on the other, the 2038-sq-mile (3280-sq-km) park protects five distinct ecosystems, offering everything from offshore reefs and beaches to lakes, wetlands, woodlands and coastal forests. Loggerhead and leatherback turtles nest along the park’s shores; whales and dolphins appear offshore and the park is occupied by numerous animals, including antelopes, hippos and zebras. The ocean beaches pull big crowds during the holiday season for everything from diving to fishing.

iSimangaliso means ‘Miracle’ or ‘Wonder’ and, given its extraordinary beauty, it’s an appropriate title.