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Surfing on the Kwazulu-Natal North Coast

Surfing on the North Coast, Kwazulu-NatalThere are plenty of secret surf spots on the North Coast of Kwazulu-Natal, and generally, it is easy to find a friendly face to surf with in this area. The North Coast is generally quite up-market and developed, so don’t expect to be alone in the water, and don’t expect to find parking in a second either.

Richard’s Bay

A fairly uncrowded spot with a small surfing population. Even when the surf is good there are seldom any crowds. The local surfers are mellow and are happy to share their waves.

Thompson’s Bay

This is the first spot on the northern stretch of Ballito. It is quite a popular beach. Generally, the swell closes out, but with a moderate south swell, land breeze and low tide, you can catch some sick barrels.


This spot boasts some ridiculous barrels in winter. This makes it the ideal set up for surfing photographers. The best thing about this spot is that it doesn’t need too much swell to be ripping and on it’s day, it has the potential to be world class.

Salmon Bay

Beaches in BallitoOne of the few waves on the North Coast that loves an easterly swell. This is primarily a left-break, and the long, running left-hand walls are great for setting up big turns off the top.

Umhlanga Rocks

The two waves here are at Main Beach and Bronze Beach. Main Beach can produce some shallow-pits, and Bronze Beach has the potential to produce some great barrels on a broken swell. There are plenty of good surfers that come from the ‘Rocks’ and it was once home to the Wave Wizards surf club, one of the longest standing and most active surf clubs in South Africa.

Tips for surfers:

  • Water temperature is 20-25 degrees celcius year round.
  • Surf with small wave-shooter boards
  • Powerful waves with the odd rock pile. Be cautious and not wild to avoid getting hurt.
  • Not as many sharks as the South Coast

Getting there: The North Coast is the stretch of coastline north of Durban on the N2. It includes places such as Umhlanga Rocks, Ballito, Richard’s Bay, Umhlali and Tugela Mouth.

More info on the town of Ballito More info on the Dolphin Coast area

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