- Written by Tidal Tao
Canoeing & Birding at Amatikulu Nature Reserve
Just a short 30-40 minute drive from Ballito is Amatikulu Nature Reserve, an incredible, tranquil little nature reserve nestled between the Nyoni and Amatikulu Rivers. Great birding walks, canoeing trips, guided trails, all sorts of wildlife including Giraffe and Zebra, birds such as Swamp Nightjar and Green Twinspots ......and gorgeous deserted beaches all for yourself to explore. If you're looking for something totally different and an escape from the normal beach routine, we highly recommenced a day trip up to Amatikulu Eco Adventures.
About Amatikulu Eco Adventures
Amatikulu Eco-ventures is a community-based project initiated in 2004 with the aim to help the youth of Amacambini community. This project is focused around ecotourism development in the heart of Amatikulu Nature Reserve on the North Coast of KZN , between uThukela and Amatikulu River mouths. Amatikulu is about 30-40 minutes north of Ballito and easily accessible off the N2 Highway. Amatikulu Eco Adventures is situated right inside the Amatikulu Nature Reserve which boasts some wonderful coastal lowland forest, beaches, estuaries and unspoilt coastal grasslands - a habitat that has become a rarity along the KwaZulu-Natal coastline.
Amatikulu Eco Adventures is headed up by Junior Gabela whose passion is working with groups of rural school children introducing them to the wonders of nature. Junior has also spent many years working on various monitoring projects along the coast focused around estuary ecosystems, so he knows his stuff. Junior is a hive of information, has a insatiable appetite for finding new things and one of the friendliest guides you will ever meet....and as dilly about birds and birding. We have known Junior for many years and he assists in many of Tidal Tao's environmental education projects.....so we can assure you, you are in good hands!
You can enjoy a guided canoe trip to take in the beautiful serene scenery of the Amatikulu River. Canoes are also available for hire to anyone who might want to take on the experience on their own and spend the day just drifting along. The Amatikulu Estuary leads down to a deserted beach (we have never seen another soul on this particular spot) where you can moor your canoe and enjoy the Indian Ocean all to yourself, explore the various waterways, take long strolls or just enjoy the birds and sounds of nature as you drift by....this is definitely something you want to do!
You can also take guided walks through the beautiful dune forests and coastal grasslands ....great for spotting Girrafe, Reedbuck, Zebra and many other mammal species. Reputable, qualified bird guides can take you to various spots inside and outside the reserve to find some of KZN's most wanted bird species (including Narina Trogon, Green Waxbill, African Finfoot, Swamp Nightjar....the birding really is incredible)
- Bird watching trails
- Game viewing
- Beach Games
- Fly Fishing (catch and release)
- Environmental Education Programs
- Beach Hikes
Contact Info - for bookings and more information