|2008||Name change||From "Greater St Lucia Wetland Park" to "iSimangaliso Wetland Park"|
|1999||Inscribed||Reasons for inscription|Anita (South Africa):
I visited the Sodwana area, that is linked to the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, for the first time this past December as a diving vacation.
Although the diving was great I have to admit that the experience was tainted by reports of racism and hard-handed treatment of guests to the park by park official - specifically on New Year's day. There are apparently some video evidence of the teargassing of a family trying to leave the park on the 1st of January and I hope that the owner will also publish that.
The mess that greeted us on the 2nd of January, when we wanted to dive again, was also not becoming of a World Heritage site. Despite a "No Alcohol" rule on the beach, the road to the park, as well as the beach was littered with empty bottles and other rubbish. This only finally cleared after about 2 days.
This is such a sad state of affairs, since the area is really great and the reef is great for diving! Hopefully enough people will make their voices heard to force some kind of action on this.
Date posted: January 2010 Andr? Dique (United Kingdom):
The St. Lucia estuary is one of the unique biosystems on this planet, with the subtle interplay between marine and terrestrial aquatic life. This is the only place where I've seen sharks swimming in the lagoon next to hippopotamuses, and crocodiles swimming in the sea!
There are many beautiful woodland paths to explore and the warm Indian Ocean is great for swimming. This is also the only place where I've seen a barracuda jumping over the surf, from the shore! There is an abundance of fauna and flora to admire in the protected areas as well.
The cheapest way to stay is on one of the camping grounds, although there is luxury accommodation as well. Public transport is poor so it is recommended that you make your own arrangements to get around.
Have you been to iSimangaliso Wetland Park? Share your experiences!