iSimangaliso Wetland Park – Eastern Shores Featured Hot
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iSimangaliso Wetland Park is deservably a World Heritage Site and the Eastern Shores extend from St Lucia through to Misson Rocks, Lake Bhangazi and Cape Vidal.

The area holds an incredibly rich diversity of game species, birdlife, reptiles and marine species. Tropical reefs lie offshore and with Loggerhead and Leatherback Turtles breeding on the beaches on warm summer nights and the Humpbacked Whale holds annual migrations between June and October. Lake St Lucia holds dense populations of Hippo and crocodile as well as having mangroves along its shores. The area also forms part of the Zululand Birding Route.


Best Time to Photograph
Birds and game species are most active during the early morning, while insects and reptiles become more active from mid-morning. Turtles can only be photographed at night and the Humpbacked Whales and other marine mammals pass through the area throughout the day.
Type of Photography
  • Birds
  • Landscapes
  • Game
  • Insects
  • Reptiles
  • Underwater
Best Time of Year
Throughout the year
Photographic Tips
Turtle tours can be booked in Saint Lucia as can boat trips to sea to photograph various marine mammals including the Humpbacked Whales. It is also well worth booking a sunset cruise on the Santa Lucia cruise boat as this takes one up through the lake past pods of Hippo and basking crocodiles and is an excellent platform for water bird photography
Recommended Gear
A full range of lenses and camera gear is needed for this incredibly rich and diverse area. Zoom lenses are best for marine boat trips and weatherproof covers are advisable to protect cameras against salt spray and dust. When out at sea, be sure to carry all-weather protective clothing and carry plenty of water.


Site Highlights
Sunset cruise on the Santa Lucia boat
Nesting turtles
Migrating Humpbacked Whales
Scuba Diving on tropical reefs


Season and Weather
Summer months are extremely hot and humid and afternoon thundershowers can be expected. Note that this is a malaria area. Winter weather is more pleasant with cool temperatures and more stable weather patterns.
Other Activities
  • Birding
  • Boat trips
  • Fishing
  • Game Viewing
  • Snorkeling
  • Scuba Diving
  • Turtle tours


Closest Town
Getting There
The entrance to the Eastern Shores section of iSimangaliso Wetland Park lies just on the outskirts of St Lucia town and is well signposted.
iSimangaliso Wetland Park


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Peter Chadwick
Author: Peter ChadwickWebsite: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
As a dedicated conservationist, Peter Chadwick has 30 years strategic and operational conservation experience in terrestrial and marine protected area management. He has worked within all of the major biomes in southern Africa as well as having provided expert conservation advice at a global level. His conservation and wildlife photography is a natural extension to his conservation work where he has numerous opportunities to capture photographs that showcase the beauty and complexity of the outdoors. Peter’s photography is internationally recognized, with this work appearing globally in a wide range of print and electronic media.