Focus on Richards Bay - KwaZulu Natal, South Africa

Richards Bay in KwaZulu Natal is South Africa 's premier bulk port and the most modern. Built in 1976 for the export of coal, it has since expanded into other bulk and breakbulk cargoes. A curio shop down at the main beach front served as the local information office for visitors to Richards Bay. The Tuzi Gazi Coast is the marketing name for the Richards Bay area ranging from Mtunzini to St Lucia. The Tuzi Gazi waterfront has also a prime tourism destination of Richards Bay. The words Tuzi Gazi is derived from the Umhlatuze and Mzingazi rivers, which flow into the sea at Richards Bay.

Richards Bay Game Reserve

The Richards Bay lagoon is famous for being the site where the longest crocodile ever recorded in South Africa was shot by hunter John Dunn in 1891. Another of the lagoon’s claim to fame is for being the starting point of Huberta the hippo’s trek. She made her way down the east coast in 1928, only to finish up on display in the Kaffrian Museum in King William’s Town. In 1935 work started to transform the lagoon into a harbour, much to the dismay of conservationists. Therefore the harbour was designed in an attempt to accommodate the needs of both industry and the natural environment. It was decided to divide the lagoon by means of a wall built across the bay. The waters to the north of the wall became the industrial harbour and the area to the south remained a sanctuary for waterfowl and wildlife. A new estuary was cut through the dunes and coastal bush to allow lagoon floodwaters to flow directly into the sea. Numbers of wildlife and birds in the reserve are ever-increasing and the rare pink-backed pelican has been seen in the area. Flamingos, cormorants and various species of waders attract birdwatchers from far and near. This area is also an important nursery ground for marine fish such as grunter, salmon, perch and yellowfin. It is a natural, living example of how both commerce and nature are able to exist side by side in harmony