The town of Umkomaas is a popular holiday destination. It was developed in the 1860s as a port for the shipment of sugar. Its name is a corruption of the Zulu word Umkhomazi (“River of Cow Whales”), a name given to it by the Zulu king, Shaka, when he saw cow whales and calves basking at the river mouth. The port fell into disuse when the railway to Durban was completed.
Adventure And Sport
Aliwal Shoal Dive Site: A treasure house of marine life awaits divers at the Aliwal Shoal Dive Site. Aliwal Shoal is an enormous sandstone reef situated approximately 5 km offshore from Umkomaas and has been rated one of the 10 best scuba-diving sites in the world. The depth of the shoal varies from 5 to 30 m. It is famous for its hard and soft corals, its sponges and its warm and coldwater reef fish. Turtles, whales and sharks often swim past and spotted ragged toothed sharks frequent these waters from July to November.
Dlangala Wildlife Sanctuary: Dlangala is located in the Umkomaas Valley and comprises true African bushveld. The sanctuary nurses injured and orphaned animals back to health and releases them into the wild again. However, the main attraction is the wide range of adventure activities available including white-water rafting, 4×4 trails, tubing, abseiling, rock climbing, horse-riding, walking trails and game-viewing.
Umkomaas Golf Course: The Umkomaas course has no water hazards, though the profusion of bunkers will present a challenge to most players.
Fauna And Flora
Empisini Nature Reserve: The Empisini Nature Reserve features the natural beauty of the coastal marshland and forest areas.