When you ask people about things to do in Ballito, Salt Rock, uMhlali and Shaka's Rock, you generally think gorgeous beaches, white sand, warm sun, you know what comes next, lazy days on Ballito's beaches.
We know the drill, you're in Ballito and the North Coast on Holiday (or planning it), you've packed your bags and ready to go to the beach. Towel, check, good book, check, sunblock, check ….and off you go for a leisurely day in the sun. Sound like you? What if we told you that you might just be missing half the magic of Ballito & Salt Rock? There are so many great things to do in Ballito and the North Coast that most tourists miss. You like experiencing magic, and you like it when the magic is FREE, great, then read on.
Here is our list of five absolutely free things to do in Ballito and Salt Rock area that you really should do to experience the full magic of the Ballito and the Salt Rock area …..go see for yourself what folks who live on the North Coast constantly wax lyrical about….in no particular order
Number 1: Sunrise coffee on the beach.
Coffee, It may sound simple, and a logical thing to do in Ballito (or anywhere for that matter) but the experience is far from simple. If you have not enjoyed a cup of coffee on the beach while watching the sunrise, well then, best you get the flask out. This is elementary level north coast living. Plan ahead, get your flask out, buy a box of ouma’s rusks and be sure to wake up at first light. There is something quite special about a sunrise on the beach. Perhaps it’s the misty mysterious look the ocean takes on, or perhaps the silence and changing colours. The Indian Ocean at sunrise is one of the simplest but most magical pleasures of living around the Ballito / North Coast area. Beach picnics 101 - ten essential tips for that beach picnic
Number 2: Go Dolphin Spotting in Ballito.
If you don't love dolphins, let us know and we will send you contact details for the nearest exorcist. Everyone loves Dolphins. And there is nothing quite as memorable as watching these friendly mammals riding the waves and playing in the surf. But you have to look. Ninety percent of the time, when we see dolphins, no one else on the beach even notices them. So make a point of being the ten percent and go on a dolphin-spotting mission. Our suggestion for a successful Dolphin spotting mission is get out there in the early morning, before the breeze starts blowing, perch yourself on a rock and just watch, they’ll be there. Our favourite spots for this are the rocks at Sheffield Beach
; they offer a great vantage point and a popular hangout for a couple of big pods of Bottle-nosed Dolphins. Simply put, this is one of those things to do in Ballito that requires a bit of luck, sitting, watching waiting, but you won't forget it.
Number 3: Go Whale Watching in Ballito
One the subject of marine mammals, Whale watching is one of those things to do in Ballito that requires the right time of year and a spot of luck. The North Coast sees an annual migration of Hump-backed Whales past our shores (and the occasional Southern Right Whales) – Whale season peaks around June / July as these giants of the ocean head north and again around September / October as they head back south. During whale season, they can be seen anywhere along the north coast but most often relatively far of shore. Keep an eye open for their spray on the horizon as they come to the surface to “take another breath” – this is the easiest way to spot them. If you’re lucky, you will even see them breaching out the water, seeing 30 tons of meat flying through the air is definitely an experience that will make you go “ooooooh.” It’s quite humbling to look out at the ocean and consider that out there somewhere are some of the biggest creatures on our planet, just gently swimming by, the same way they have done for millennia.
Number 4: Get under the water and go snorkelling
The underwater life on the north coast is best described as INSANE. And a snorkeling trip is one of those things to do in Ballito and Salt Rock that you just can not miss. The variety of fish, nudibranchs (sea slugs on LSD)
and other marine life is staggering. In fact, the north coast is home to what is probably the southern most shallow water coral on the entire planet. No less than three species of Moray Eel, over seven species of damselfish, four species of butterfly fish, nudibranchs that have yet to be described by science, parrotfish, and the list goes on. In fact some people even go as far as saying that snorkeling on the North Coast is better than diving in some areas! You want to know why snorkelling is one of the best things to do on the north coast? And especially one of the best activities for kids in Ballito and the North Coast and contact Tidal Tao, they will set you up with all your gear, show you the best spots and even teach you how to snorkel if you've never done it before. If you have more of an adventurous temperament, snorkeling at night shouldn't be missed as an opportunity to see Octopus feeding and even occasional phosphoresce, a microscopic plankton that glows when disturbed, just wave your hands in the water in front of you and amazing glowing green sparkles occur…just like magic!
Number 5: Take a long walk on the rocky shores
Or perhaps you prefer something to do in Ballito and Salt rock that is a spot more relaxing? Pick a time when the tide is low and walk fifteen minutes in any direction from virtually any of the busy Ballito beaches and you’ll probably find yourself somewhere quite special, especially if you’re on a rocky part of the shoreline. The rocky shores are considered one of the most dynamic ecosystems on the planet, exposed to the hot sun for hours on end at low tide and then battered by waves for the rest of the day at high tide. It takes some special creatures to survive this endless daily change of habitat. At low tide, incredible life forms are exposed, look closely in the cracks between rocks to spot brilliantly coloured anemones with their tentacles waving, just waiting for some unsuspecting prey to pass by, or the bright colours on various sea urchins, which are actually members of the starfish family. Look even closer and you will start noticing Blue-eyed hermit crabs dragging their little shell homes along with them or the Cushion Starfish, you may even be lucky enough to spot an Octopus trying to blend in with the rocks and sponges…and the best part is, you’ll probably have this treasure chest of life to explore all to yourself. Thompson’s Bay, Shaka’s Rock, Sheffield Beach, all excellent spots for rocky shore life.
We love Ballito, Ballito & Salt Rock Beaches and the entire North Coast and we hope you now understand why, from Ballito to Sheffield Bay is simply gorgeous, great people and always something on. Once you're done with all the "Free" things to do in Ballito, perhaps you want to head out and find some Things to do in Ballito And Salt Rock the more you look, the more you find.