Rocktail Bay Beach Camp - KwaZulu Natal - Coast - South Africa
Rocktail Beach Camp is located on the Natal north coast, set back in and shaded by the sanctuary of the lush coastal forest that covers the ancient dunes that make up this edge of South Africa’s coast.
The camp consists of seventeen rooms all of which with en-suite bathrooms, open-feel indoor shower and overhead fans. Seven of these are family units with a shared bathroom and two bedrooms for two adults and two children. A honeymoon unit has wonderful views over the ocean and dune forest.
Rocktail Beach Camp also has a central dining room, bar and lounge with large wrap-around veranda. A raised viewing deck just off the veranda has wide views that extend out to the ocean. The camp's main area has a wine cellar, large pool, curio shop and children's playroom, complete with board games and other fun activities for families.
From a scuba diving perspective, Rocktail Bay is unique. Not only is the diving conducted within a reserve and World Heritage Site along unspoiled reefs, but divers have the luxury of knowing that they alone have access to these sites and are the only underwater visitors along this stretch of the coastline.
This is not a traditional 'big game' area, but the camp is situated within a pristine coastal forest reserve which is interspersed with rolling grasslands and waterberry/palm savannah. This lush area abounds with a variety of animals, birds and plant life that provide a natural counterpoint to the bushveld. Common reedbuck frequent the marshes and grasslands and the red duiker lives in the forest areas. Hippos are sometimes found in freshwater lakes, while whales and dolphins are often seen offshore. The birding is outstanding with a wide variety of species often being spotted.
The reef systems here are amongst the most pristine in the world, boasting healthy soft and hard corals. Sharks are sighted at intervals, including great hammerheads, tiger sharks, blacktip reef sharks and the enormous whale shark.
Large numbers of pregnant spotted ragged-tooth sharks (also known as grey nurse sharks) appear in the area from late November until March and Rocktail Beach Camp assists the Natal Sharks Board in monitoring and understanding what drives the arrival of this species in the area. The dive site most often frequented by these sharks is only in ten metres of water and as such can be enjoyed by both divers and snorkellers.
The advent of winter heralds the arrival of whales in the seas off Rocktail. Both humpback and southern right whales are recorded, with humpbacks the more commonly seen species. Finally, green and loggerhead turtles are regularly seen, while leatherback and hawksbill turtles are occasionally encountered. October to March sees the loggerhead and leatherback turtles come ashore at night to lay their eggs.
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