• sign in
  • |
  • sign up
  • |
  • my miniguide
  • |
  • write a review
Kosi Bay Nature Reserve, South Africa
Fast Facts
Kid-Friendly Hotels
Family Travel Tips

Kosi Bay


Photo by Maputaland.net

Kosi Bay Nature Reserve is the crown jewel of iSimangaliso Wetland Park. Not only is this pristine lake system a great place to fish, it is a great place to snorkel, hike and watch wildlife. Shore fish, fly fish and ski boat fish. Snorkel the brackish waters of Kosi Bay mouth. Hike the 4-day Kosi Bay Trail. Observe sea turtles on a guided night walk. Watch humpback whales from shore. Spot hippos and crocs and more than 250 species of birds. And do it all in solitude. Kosi Bay Nature Reserve is a true ecotourism hideaway.
Getting There
Kosi Bay Nature Reserve is situated in northern KwaZulu Natal, near the Mozambique border, and is the northernmost reserve in iSimangaliso Wetland Park. The nature reserve is an 8-hour drive from Johannesburg and 5-hour drive from Durban. There is no public transport to Kosi Bay. The only way to reach the park is to drive. A 4x4 is required for travel beyond Manguzi / KwaNgwanase. Several lodges arrange pick-up from this point. From Johannesburg, take the N2 to Jozini. From the south, exit the N2 at Hluhluwe.
Getting Around
All trails at Kosi Bay are guided. It is a 12 km (7 mile) trek from camp to beach. The 4-day Kosi Bay Trail, also known as Nhlange Trail, skirts the lake system and can be tailored to fit your needs.
When to Travel
The climate in Kosi Bay Nature Reserve is subtropical. Summers are hot and humid. Winters are mild and dry. Kosi Bay boasts 300 days of sun but rain is possible from November to March. Humpback whales can be seen off the coast from June to December. November to March is turtle the nesting season and best time of year for waders. The peak season (December, January, April, and July) coincides with South African school holidays.
Health & Safety
Kosi Bay Nature Reserve is a malaria risk area. Precaution is warranted. Swimming in the Kosi lake system is prohibited. Snorkeling is recommended at low tide only. Crocs and hippos inhabit the lakes and estuary; there are no shark nets on this stretch of the coastline. Beware of stonefish when snorkeling in Kosi Bay mouth.
  • Malaria & Travelers
Hours & Seasons
Reserve gates are open daily 6:00 - 18:00. The camp office is open daily 7:00 - 16:00. Check-in is at 14:00; checkout at 10:00.
Admission & Fees
A park permit fee is charged to all visitors. Children under 3 years of age are free of charge. A reduced rate is available for seniors and children aged 12 and under. A separate fee is charged for accommodation and guided walks. A permit is required for snorkeling.
Contact Details
For additional information on Kosi Bay Nature Reserve and iSimangaliso Wetland Park dial +27 (0)33 845 1002 or send an email to info@kznwildlife.com. For camp reservations dial +27 (0)33 845 1000 or send an email to webmail@kznwildlife.com.
Things to Keep in Mind
Roadside stalls sell a variety of local crafts. Kwangwanase is the nearest full service town. Pets are not allowed in the reserve.
Free Travel Journal
Get a free kids travel journal to document your family vacation.
Download PDF
Travel Trivia
Orcas are: