Lake St Lucia is a bit of a hidden gem. The water glistens invitingly in the sunlight while the tall dunes provide the perfect amount of shade and shelter. Together they create the perfect backdrop for any holiday.
However, when you look a little deeper and explore the history and geology behind this lake, you’ll truly discover what makes Lake St Lucia so special. Over 25,000 years ago, the ocean drifted from this part of South Africa, leaving only Lake St Lucia as a reminder of its presence. It’s still there today, standing 360 square kilometres wide, and is South Africa’s largest inland body of water.
On every side of the lake are towering sand dunes covered in moss-green forest and grassland or new habitats to discover. Some of the dunes reach an impressive 200 metres tall and separate the lake from the ocean and the rest of the world.
Lake St Lucia is surrounded by a wonderful range of ecosystems. Every day you can explore a different one, so your trip certainly won’t be dull. Relax in the marine zone, full of sandy beaches and tropical seas full of coral reefs. Then wade through the papyrus and reed wetland of the Mkhuze swamps on the north side of the lake.
Brave the dry savannah to the west then explore the southern tip of Lake St Lucia, where you’ll find iSimangaliso Wetland Park. This is an astounding area of natural beauty, both on and off land. Look out for turtles, whales, dolphins, hippos, zebras and even antelope. This park can get busy during the tourist season, but if you explore deep into the wetland you’ll find a quiet spot or two to get away from it all.
Be sure to visit Cape Vidal while you’re there. Find shelter on the beaches and explore the rock pools and craggy ledges. Try the activities on offer during your stay, including swimming, snorkelling and self-drive routes. This will help you discover new things on your own, away from the tourist hubs.
Lake St Lucia is an ancient and peaceful spot that has barely been touched by humans. There’s so much to enjoy and see here, you’ll need more than just one day to visit it all.
Plan your trip to Lake St Lucia today.