Sodwana Bay is located within the iSimangaliso Wetland Park in South Africa and is one of the top 10 dive sites in the world; but there are many activities that can be done here, both for water sports enthusiasts and nature lovers.
The term "Sodwana Bay" is the name of the bay that overlooks the Indian Ocean but also indicates the protected area of the hinterland; this is a remote and little frequented place, that has managed to keep intact its primordial splendor, the Zulu have always lived here, a predominant ethnic group in the Province of KwaZulu-Natal, who has always lived in harmony with the nature of these wonderful places.
This area, a narrow tongue of land where vegetated dunes lie parallel to the coast, was proclaimed a protected area in the 50s; since then Sodwana Bay is frequented by fishermen, diving enthusiasts and other water sports and by nature lovers.
For those who prefer the ocean it is possible, in addition to diving, to practice kitesurfing, fishing, going out by boat to spot sharksthat live in these waters and, in the months from October to March, to do whale watching while, in the months from June to November, to observe leatherback turtles and common turtles that nest on these beaches.
While those who prefer the mainland can do walks or excursions by quads, or do birdwatching, this being one of the best destinations within the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, or do game drive, to go in search of herbivores and predators, that can be found in the nearby uMkhuze Game Reserve.
Sodwana Bay is located in the Southernmost part of the Indo-Pacific marine ecoregion, its warm waters mean that corals can proliferate and the complex of 50 km of corals is the perfect habitat for many resident and migratory marine species; on the Indian Ocean seabed there are several canyons that cut the continental shelf, in 2000, in Jesser Canyon, a species was discovered, resident in these waters, that was believed to have been extinct for some time; this species belongs to the order of the Coelacanth.
Sodwana Bay is the best place, within the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, where you can go diving and snorkeling; these activities can be practiced throughout the year.
Here lies the Southernmost coral reef of the African continent, this barrier is made up of Indo-Pacific reefs that have proliferated on sandy outcrops of the seabed; the fact that there are no rivers, that transport silt into the sea, is good for the survival of the corals.
Here there are 95 species of corals, as well as sponges and other invertebrates; there are over 1200 species of fish, including the bull shark or ragged tooth shark, the whale, the tiger shark, the manta ray, the rock cod, the potato bass.
The best spots for diving at Sodwana Bay are: 2 Mile Reef, 5 Mile Reef, 7 Mile Reef and 9 Mile Reef, each of these spots has unique characteristics; there are excellent diving spots also at Rocktail Bay and Mabibi.