Five Of The Best Things To Do In Mtunzini

When given this topic to write about I was very happy to have the opportunity to write about the little coastal paradise I am blessed to live in called Mtunzini.  The name of the village is taken from the Zulu word emthunzini which means “a place in the shade”.  In the history of the town it is referred to as the place under the Milkwood trees near to the Mlalazi River where the White Zulu chief named John Dunn would meet with the tribal elders of the area.

Mtunzini is truly a nature lover’s paradise that offers a variety of activities that can be enjoyed outdoors.

Walking & Running

Through the Umlalazi Reserve runs the Umlalazi river and there are several walking trails which take one through mangrove swamps, coastal forest and on a long sandy beach.  One can enjoy taking early morning walks or runs on the beach and experience magnificent sunrises and enjoy watching the whales when they pass by.  You can choose to walk or run on your own or join a group of locals.  It’s a great place to take your dogs for walks around the peaceful neighbourhood or on the beach if you have a permit.


There is the Raphia Palm monument which has a lovely wooden walkway through an avenue of palms.  You can read more about the Raphia palms here:

Wildlife and bird watching

The Umlalazi reserve have zebras and red forest duiker that can be seen frequently and there are also bush buck and grey duiker, although not seen as often because they are shy.


There is an abundance of birdlife bringing people from all over the world to see the rare Palmnut Vulture that feeds from the Raphia Palm.  We are also very fortunate to have many African Fish Eagles that soar the sky above the village and their distinctive call can be heard daily.  Just a few other birds to mention are the Trumpeter Hornbills, Purple Crested Louries, Oyster Catchers, Natal Robins, Violet Back Starlings and Giant Kingfishers.


Many people enjoy cycling in the area and many mountain bike events are run in Mtunzini. There are many trails through the forests, sugar cane fields and the reserve.  There are even organised moonlight bike rides from time to time.


Mtunzini has a large lagoon which attracts many boating enthusiasts that enjoy fishing, skiing, sailing and kayacking as well as sunset cruises up the river.  One can even moor their boat and enjoy a picnic on the river bank.

Horse Riding

The perfect place for lovely outrides, walking through the bush and sugar cane fields or having an exhilerating gallop up a hill.  It’s such a lovely way to start or finish the day.


Next time you are heading north on the N2 freeway, keep your eyes open for Mtunzini, you will be surprised to find what is on the other side of the hill.