For Immediate Attention
15 September 2022


The KZN South Coast wins bid to host The Conservation Symposium in 2022


Home to rich biodiversity across land and sea, the KZN South Coast has been chosen for The Conservation Symposium which welcomes environmentally focused delegates from 31 October to 5 November. This is the first time the KZN South Coast has hosted the event, entrenching the region as a top MICE and events destination.


“We’re thrilled to announce the venues for this year’s Conservation Symposium; Premier Resort Cutty Sark and Dream Hotel Blue Marlin in Scottburgh. Located just 1.4km from each other, these venues will be the centre of our Conservation Symposium, allowing our attendees to enjoy a slice of beautiful KZN South Coast before, during or after the symposium,” commented event organiser, Freyni du Toit.


The Conservation Symposium is hosted by Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife in partnership with the University of KwaZulu-Natal, WildOceans, WildTrust, Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT), CapeNature, Nature Environment and Wildlife Filmmakers (NEWF) and the Environmental Law Association (ELA).


“We are so excited to be welcoming some 250 delegates to The Conservation Symposium which will be held at The Premier Resort Cutty Sark and Blue Marlin Hotel,” commented Phelisa Mangcu, CEO of South Coast Tourism and Investment Enterprise (SCTIE). “This serves the dual purpose of highlighting the KZN South Coast as a key events destination, while celebrating the amazing conservation efforts and environmental significance of the region.”


Some of the KZN South Coast’s ecologically significant sites and events include:


  • Three Marine Protected Areas at Aliwal Shoal, Protea Banks and Trafalgar supporting a variety of marine species with Aliwal Shoal home to a number of the highly-endangered shortfin devil rays;
  • Six Blue Flag beaches – the highest number in the province – with two honoured for 20 and 10 years of care;
  • Several nature reserves and game reserves home to diverse wildlife and birdlife;
  • Two gorges – Oribi Gorge and Umtamvuna Gorge – that create an expansive biome supporting sensitive natural life;
  • The Red Desert, the world’s smallest desert;
  • The Mzamba Fossils and Petrified Forest – trees which were washed downriver and deposited in the area millions of years ago with marine fossil beds exposed along reefs near the Mzamba River;
  • The annual Sardine Run which is the planet’s greatest biomass migration; and
  • The annual migration of Humpback whales.


SCTIE, which is the tourism and investment arm of Ugu District Municipality in the KZN South Coast, is dedicated to promoting economic growth through innovation, investments and tourism. By hosting such high-profile events, SCTIE is welcoming new visitors to the area while also attracting new investment.


To facilitate MICE events, SCTIE launched the innovative Meeting Planner Guide at the Meetings Africa exhibition in Johannesburg earlier this year. This comprehensive guide is a one-stop directory for all business conferences, meetings, team building and accommodation requirements. It consists of a detailed list of existing MICE venues, teambuilding activities on offer, and relevant contact information.


The Conservation Symposium, which is a platform to facilitate the sharing of ideas and solutions to contemporary conservation issues in Africa, will open with a welcome ceremony at the Blue Marlin Hotel on Sunday, 30 October. In between networking and talks, delegates will also be hosted on various tours that showcase the KZN South Coast’s many eco-friendly and sustainable initiatives.


This will include a frogging tour of the wetlands from Crocworld Conservation Centre and guided walks in nature reserves including TC Robertson Nature Reserve and Vernon Crookes; snorkelling in a Marine Protected Area; a hike along part of the Umzumbe River Trail, a Green Flag Trail and viewing wild Cape Vultures at the Oribi Vulture Viewing Hide as well as a visit to Ntelezi Msani Heritage Centre.


To find out more about The Conservation Symposium, visit Tickets are available at To book, visit


For more on other upcoming events, download the free ‘Explore KZN South Coast’ app from Google Play and Apple stores; visit the ‘South Coast Tourism’ on Facebook or YouTube; @infosouthcoast on Twitter or Instagram; ‘Info Ugu South Coast Tourism’ on LinkedIn; to check out the Events Calendar, the KZN South Coast Meeting Planner Guide and more!


To access previous SCTIE press releases, visit:




All images are complimentary for media use, provided the correct image credit is included and the images are published in conjunction with the content supplied.

High resolution images are available upon request.
(Images: Supplied by SCTIE)

Blue Marlin Hotel.

The Premier Resort Cutty Sark.

Marine Protected Area, Aliwal Shoal. (Image credit: John Miller)

Marine Protected Area, Trafalgar.

Blue Flag beaches. (Pictured: Marina Beach)

Nature reserves and game reserves home to diverse wildlife and birdlife. (Pictured: Lake Eland Game Reserve)

Oribi Gorge.

The Red Desert, the world’s smallest desert.

The Mzamba Fossils and Petrified Forest.

The annual Sardine Run which is the planet’s greatest biomass migration.

TC Robertson Nature Reserve.

Vernon Crookes.

Umzumbe River Trail.

Cape Vultures at the Oribi Vulture Viewing Hide.

Ntelezi Msani Heritage Centre.

About KZN South Coast

Known as the ‘Paradise of the Zulu Kingdom’, the KZN South Coast stretches 120 kilometres from Scottburgh to Port Edward and inland to Harding. Here, the spirit of adventure can be discovered among the many cultural experiences, as well as the 35 nature trails and 58 beaches, ideal for activities like river rafting, abseiling, suspension bridges, paintball, surfing, SUP, canoeing, beach horse rides, shark cage diving and free diving. Nicknamed ‘The Golf Coast’, there are 11 golf courses on the KZN South Coast ranging in difficulty, with endless hiking, mountain biking and 4×4 trails for more rugged excursions. Promoting sustainability, the KZN South Coast has a growing agri-tourism sector that offers world-class produce and hosts tours and excursions. The region boasts a number of permanently managed Blue Flag beaches, and is home to some of the world’s top diving sites, Aliwal Shoal and Protea Banks. The originality continues with the annual Sardine Run, coined the #GreatestShoalonEarth, which is the largest biomass migration on earth and a marvel to witness. The region’s many nature reserves are inhabited by indigenous bird and wildlife, and it holds the title for ‘smallest desert on earth’, The Red Desert in Port Edward. The KZN South Coast is a fast-emerging MICE destination which also plays host to a number of high-profile events including the The Bike Fest, Uvukile Gospel Festival, Ugu Jazz, Ugu Film Festival and the South Coast Fever MTB & Trail Run Series.

Issued on behalf of:

South Coast Tourism and Investment Enterprise (SCTIE)

Disseminated by:
Olivia Jones Communications

For more information please contact:
Olivia Jones Communications
Cell: 083 653 1720

Author: admin

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