The Kosi Bay Nature Reserve lies on the coast in the northern part of KwaZulu-Natal and surrounds the unique and beautiful Kosi Bay lake system.

This system consists of four lakes and a series of inter connecting channels which eventually drain via a sandy estuary into the Indian ocean. It is home to a large variety of birds and animals including hippos and crocs.

The 11 000-hectare, 30-km-long reserve is a tropical paradise of limpid blue water and marshland, raffia, wild date and lala palm, mangrove swamp and sycamore fig forest that combine to provide a home for around 250 kinds of bird, among them fish eagle and palmnut vulture, whitebacked and night heron, and purple and reed kingfisher.

Hippo and crocodile bask in and around the lakes; fish teem beneath their surfaces; and bush-buck, duiker and monkey inhabit the forested parts.

Humpback whales can be seen off the beaches on their northerly migration to calve in Mozambique and in December and January loggerhead and leatherback turtles come onto the beaches to lay their eggs in carefully prepared nests.

This is the most pristine lake system on the South African Coast.


Kosi Forest Lodge
Luxury 16 bed lodge with thatched bush suites are hidden in the sand forest. The rooms are raised on a wooden deck with a beautifully appointed bedroom, balcony, dressing room and separate bath and shower. The romantic en-suite bathroom is open-air in a reed-enclosed boma.

Thembe Elephant Park
Tembe Elephant Lodge offers you luxurious en-suite safari-style units, a swimming pool, guided 4 x 4 game drives and a beautiful hide. Tembe Elephant Lodge is privately managed and offer guided tours in open safari vehicles. The camp comprises semi-luxury safari tents that blend unobtrusively with their natural surrounds and are tucked away in secluded areas around the camp. 

Thonga Beach Lodge
This 24-bed luxury lodge, situated at Mabibi near Lake Sibaya south of Kosi Bay, offers you one of the most unspoilt wilderness beaches left on the African continent with coastal forests, grasslands, bush, shimmering lakes and exquisite sandy beaches.

Chinderera Eco Lodge
An Eco lodge situated in the coastal forest of Kosi Bay. Thatch and timber frame lodge, constructed in among the trees. All our decor and furniture is hand crafted to reflect the continent of Africa.


Fishing - The reserve is extremely popular among the angling fraternity. Fishing takes place from boats as shore angling is permitted from within the campsite only. It is essential that fisherman provide their own boats. Fly fishing is becoming more popular among the anglers and "Tag and release" is encouraged.
Licences to catch or obtain bait are available from:
Marine Permit Office Tel. (031) 255 278 Fax. (031) 255 672
Licences are not available at Kosi Bay.

Guided Walks - The services of trained trail guides may be obtained to conduct groups of visitors around the Lake system and other places of interest. These walks enable the visitor to explore this fascinating system and learn more about the local fishing methods. Visitors are not permitted to walk through the reserve without a guide.

Snorkelling - The reserve offers a unique snorkelling experience with a reef situated inside the mouth of the Kosi system. One needs to drive to the mouth, (4X4 vehicles only,) or walk with a trail guide 12 km.
At low tide one can walk across the estuary mouth to this wonderful snorkelling site which is demarcated as a sanctuary and fishing and spear-fishing are not allowed. The best time to snorkel is at the start of the incoming tide which brings clean sea water. Shore fishing is popular off the beach or in the estuary.


Travel on the N2 to Jozini. Drive through the town and over the dam wall and follow this road to Kwangwanse. Kosi is 13 km from this town but is not well sign posted.
A 4 x 4 is recommended to be able to reach Kosi Mouth.

Health and Climate

Kosi Bay is in a malaria area and special precautions are necessary.
Kosi Bay Nature Reserve Kosi Bay Nature Reserve Kosi Bay Nature Reserve Kosi Bay Nature Reserve
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