The park includes a complex eco-system with outstanding landscapes. The five inter-linked ecosystems in the park are: a marine system characterized by the warm Indian Ocean, containing the southernmost coral reefs in Africa, as well as sub-marine canyons and long sandy beaches; a coastal dune system consisting of high linear dunes and sub-tropical forests, grassy plains and wetlands; lake systems including two estuary-linked lakes of St Lucia and Kosi, plus the four large freshwater lakes of Sibaya, Ngobezeleni, Bhangazi north and Bhangazi south; the Mkhuze and Umfolozi swamps, with swamp forests and extensive reeds and papyrus marshes; an inland system which includes ancient shoreline terraces and dry savanna woodlands.
ANIMALS & BIRDS
As this is such an extensive area with a considerable number of different habitats that animals of all sorts may be seen including hippos and crocodiles in good numbers particularly on the St Lucia estuary.
A substantial game reintroduction program is in progress bringing in black rhino, buffalo, waterbuck, kudu, nyala and other antelopes.
There are a number of endemic fish species in the lakes and the Indian Ocean is a water wonderland with whales and dolphins, turtles and colourful tropical fish on the coral reefs
iSimangoliso or as it was formerly called Greater St Lucia area, is renowned for its prolific birdlife including flamingoes, pelicans, herons, ducks, geese, storks and numerous resident and migrant birds.
Rainy Season: In this sub-tropical area the climate gets hot and humid in the rainy summer months of October to March and you may witness some extravagant thunderstorms.
Dry Season: The dry season lasts over winter from April to September and the temperatures are very pleasant with warm days and cool nights.
GREATER ISIMANGALISO SPECIALITIES
· Astounding scenery
· Prolific birdlife
· Hippos and crocs on the estuary
· Coral reefs
· Turtles laying their eggs on the beaches
· Black rhino
· Variety of lodge accommodation
This is a malarial area
KZN Wildlife administers this and all the other parks in the province which are accessible to the public on payment of entry fees.