ROAD TRIP – SODWANA BAY (7)

Sodwana Bay to Ballito (Dolphin Coast)

Welcome to our road trip of December 2021. We are travelling by car across South Africa (from the west coast → north coast → KZN south coast → back to the west coast). The distance we will cover, will be around 5,000km (3,106 miles).

Our main purpose for this trip, besides seeing places we have not seen before, is for Berto to scuba dive in Sodwana Bay and then to be a little more adventurous … diving with sharks in the ocean in Umkomaas on the south coast of KwaZulu-Natal. We hope to share lots of pictures to show you our beautiful country.

Accommodation – Day 11:

Ballito Backpackers

It is time to say goodbye to Sodwana Bay. We had such an awesome time here – the facilities were great, the staff friendly and the diving superb (as always).

It is a mere 300km (186 miles) to our next destination, namely Ballito. We took an easy drive on the N2, following the road to the small serene resort town of Ballito. Dolphins are common on this stretch of the North Coast shoreline, hence the nickname Dolphin Coast … but if you do remember, Berto already saw these beautiful sea mammals on his last dive in Sodwana Bay.

Ballito:

We arrived around 14:00 in Ballito – a perfect time to book into our accommodation and then searching for a restaurant to chill away during the hot afternoon.

We will only spend one night in Ballito and therefore, our choice of accommodation fell on Backpackers Ballito. Since we are not young backpackers anymore, we opted for a double bedroom (and not one of the many dormitories)!

One of the many relaxing areas in Backpackers Ballito

With a comfortable bed, on-suite bathroom and small kitchen, it was the perfect place to spend one evening. We found a secure parking spot for our car and only brought a few things to our room … then we heard music just around the corner and found a wonderful restaurant to relax for a while.

Mozambik Ballito Restaurant:

What a great restaurant – just the spot for a hot summers’ afternoon! We could relax with our feet in cold water – almost like a big swimming pool with tables – while the waiters were quick with the beers!

Berto was not disappointed with his big beer!

After we had a few ice-cold beers and something light to eat – very delicious prego rolls – we decided it was time to take a walk along the beach.

The beachfront-properties and resorts are very popular under tourists
The perfect December holiday for many South Africans
Although it was already early evening, people were still enjoying the water of the Indian Ocean

Hole in the Wall:

The “Hole in the Wall” is located at Thomson’s Bay – a true hidden gem of the KwaZulu-Natal North Coast. There is a great tidal pool and then the amazing view of the “Hole in the Wall” – it is also one of Ballito’s best beaches.

A view of the tidal pool

The “Hole in the Wall” is not visible from the entrance at the beach and we took off in the opposite direction to see this phenomenon. It was only after we walked through thick sand and over sharp rocks, that we look back and saw the “Hole in the Wall” on the other side … oh well, at least we had a nice walk on the beach (and a good workout)!

The “Hole in the Wall” is visible on the other side of the beach – we walked in the wrong direction!

At least, we had beautiful views of the beach and the ocean and took a few pictures before we retraced our steps to get to the “Hole in the Wall”.

We saw these interesting rocks on the beach

We were hot and sweating after the walk through thick beach sand, but the lovely view of the “Hole in the Wall” (and the cool wind through the cracks) were a welcome site!

The Hole in the Wall
Posing at the Hole in the Wall

Next to the Hole in the Wall, is the tidal pool. We saw a couple of people enjoying the pool – either swimming or snorkeling in the water.

A wave breaks over the rocks at the tidal pool
Swimmers enjoying the tidal pool

Our visit to Ballito was short and sweet. It is a beautiful coastal town, but just a tiny bit too busy for us!

Tomorrow, we are going to Umkomaas … our next destination for another week. Big adventures awaiting us there (more for Berto than me) and we can’t wait to share this with you!

33 comments

    • It’s hot-hot here (above 30 degrees/86 Fahrenheit) … typically December weather in South Africa! We were quite surprised to find this hole in the wall at Ballito (there’s another more well-known one further south at Coffee Bay). Thanks for reading Maggie, much appreciated.

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    • That IS a big beer, hey … and it certainly helped to cool off! Yes, Ballito’s beach is definitely one of the most beautiful on this side of the coast. The Hole in the Wall is such a nice (natural) feature and we enjoyed our quick visit here!

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  1. Those beaches look wonderful and the hotel nice too. It’s so long since I walked on a beach picking up rocks and shells and listening to the ocean. I think the last time was probably on the Indian Ocean, in fact. I love seeing your photos.

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    • I love walking on the beach – whether it’s here in Ballito on the north coast at the Indian Ocean or at our home on the west coast at the much colder Atlantic Ocean 😉. I’m really glad you enjoyed our photo’s … happy to bring the ocean to you!

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  2. Looking at those beautiful beaches and the tidal pool makes me very happy. Wish I could be there right now. It’s super chilly here right now. I’m looking at your posts in the wrong order and will go back and reorient myself. We were in St. Lucia and iSimangaliso Wetlands ten years ago…loved it!

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    • I LOVE summer time here in South Africa! The beaches are the best place to spent any free time 😁. We have visited St Lucia a couple of years ago – had a lovely river cruise then. The iSimangaliso Wetlands are beautiful – you probably read that we stayed at Sodwana Bay for a week for some diving. I’m so glad you could also enjoy some of the beauty of KwaZulu-Natal on your previous visit.

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  3. Ballito is ‘n plekkie waar ons baie gekuier het. Die Mozambik is die beste restuarant om te gaan eet! Lekker om die plekkie weer te sien! Soos jy se ,dit kan verskriklik warm daar word! Die humiditeit is te erg vir my! Sien uit na die volgende deel van julle trip!

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  4. Your stay in Balito was short but really interesting and fun. I agree with your choice of accommodation. The room looks perfect. The restaurant with a foot pool is a first for me. I can see how it would be ideal for a hot summer day. The same for the beach and hole in the wall. The tidal pool reminded me of beaches in Australia that have swimming pools for people who didn’t want to get in the water (sharks). Happy Holidays! John

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    • Sometimes all you need for one night, is a great bed and bathroom … and in this case, it was perfect! That restaurant with the foot pool was definitely a first for us – but oh boy, it was good in the hot weather 😁. Oh yes, the tidal pools are indeed for those scary of the “finned fish” … if only they knew where we were heading next … 🦈🦈.
      Thanks for popping in John, happy holidays to you too!

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    • Thanks Henrietta for your continues support of reading about our wonderful road trip! Ballito was a great stopover (but oh, the humidity was something else)! That pool was an absolute bonus at Mozambik Restaurant – it saved us from overheating!!

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