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Bird Watching


Activity Description

Bird watching, the latest addition to the Durban Green Corridor ecotourism quiver gives tourists just that, an astonishing birding experience right here along the uMngeni River Valley in Durban. Our main bird watching service in Durban is the Finfoot Loop, a self-drive loop (with an experienced local nature guide) that takes birders along the uMngeni River, from the shores of the Indian Ocean, deep into the rural river gorges and cliffs of the eNanda Dam.

As the loop’s name implies, this is one of the best spots around KwaZulu-Natal to be searching for the rare and elusive African Finfoot. This enigmatic species is highly sought after by birders to add to their “life lists” due to its fussy habitat requirements and highly secretive habits.

The Finfoot Loop can take anything from a few hours to a full day, depending on your birding enthusiasm. For enthusiastic birders looking for the full experience and wanting to spend time searching for unusual species such as African Finfoot, we recommend at least a half day (6 hour) experience.


Duration3 hours
WhenAll year round
WhereStarts at Green Hub,Blue Lagoon and ends at eNanda Adventures, Inanda Dam
WeatherNot recommended in rainy weather
What to WearComfortable Clothes and Shoes
Things to BringSnacks and Drinks Sunscreen Binoculars Cameras Hats/Caps
Guests or SpectatorsGuests can enjoy picnicking while bird watchers venture out.


Minimum Age0 years
Minimum Height0.0 m
Maximum Height0.0 m
Fitness LevelNo Fitness Requirement
QualificationsNot Applicable
Maximum Weight0.0 kg
CertificationNone Required
Experience LevelNo Experience Requirement

Inclusions and Exclusions

InclusionsNature Guide
ExclusionsFood and Beverages


Times of the tours are determined by the individual groups, but Bird Watching in Durban is normally best in the mornings. The noted Finfoot loop should take about 6 hours.

This is a self drive tour with a guide, please note, the guide for this tour is a “Hop On Hop Off Guide”

Other opportunities for Bird watching in Durban exist at all the Durban Green Corridor sites for day visitors, these include dry thornveld and mountainous habitats at iSithumba Adventures or wader spotting at the Green Hub / Umngeni River

Customer Reviews

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to advise you regarding the level of service we received at our birding experience. I had phoned and booked a week before the event which was a birthday present to my daughter and her husband.. Letitia took my booking and on the phone asked what time we wished to commence. I replied 7.30. No indication was given that the office does not open until 8am. I should not have been asked what time I wanted if there was no option in the timing. I later received a confirmation of our booking on email. On reading this fully AFTER our experience I did notice the time given as 8am. We arrived at 7.15 in good time for our expected start and were told by the security guards that it only opened at 8am!! I did not want to start the day by being annoyed so we spent some enjoyable time birding at the river mouth. At 7.50am I saw some people in the office so went in to register and pay. This is where I really got annoyed. The men in the office had not been given any indication that we were coming. After a lengthy search on the computer they found the booking but admitted that the main birder, Joe was not at work that day. I felt there had been no communication between the electronic booking staff and the front office who have to deal with the visitors. Are they suitably trained? A phone call to Joe was fruitless as he said it was his day off. Thankfully we were not requiring your transport as we have an Isuzu bakkie which could cope with the bad roads. I could see by the concern on their faces when asked if transport was needed that this would obviously have been a big problem. By this time I was extremely annoyed and felt justified in refusing to pay the full price. Thami (I think this is his name, but he is easily identified by his silver front tooth) saw our frustration and annoyance and he agreed to take us, but admitted he was not an expert on birds. He was a charming man and really tried extremely hard to find the Finfoot (which I do know is a very difficult bird to find) and all other birds but he was not an experienced birder. You can be grateful you have such a dedicated man who tried his best (and succeeded) to satisfy irate customers. My husband had given up in frustration dealing with the front office and went to sit in his car. At 8.10 a.m. Jenny arrives and hoots at him to close the car front door because she wanted to get into the first spot nearest the office. There were probably at least 200 other vacant parking spots for her to use and his irritation at the incompetence at that time did not need this added incident. Maybe if she had been on time the incompetence at the front desk would have been avoided. This all said, we had a very pleasant day thanks to Thami, but I dread to think what kind of goodwill this would have generated if we had been overseas or out of town visitors. I would not be keen to recommend this trip to others. Regards Jane Jenvey - Jane

We had a great time birdwatching. Joe is a knowledgable and interesting bird guide and he has a passion for what he does. Joe would be a great credit to any organisation. I gather that as he is having to focus on developing cycle routes he will be passing over guiding to someone else. This is a great shame as he has a passion.for birding which shines through. - Kaye Foskett

I spent the day with Joe along the river looking at birds & seeking the finfoot. Joe was a credit to your organisation & to his country. His knowledge of the river and its birds was excellent. His enthusiasm was contagious. He brought the day alive and we found the finfoot at the end of the day. He was more than a birding guide. He was a guide to the culture of Durban and to his nation. It was a privilege to spend the day with him. The highlight of my stay in South Africa ( except for seeing my new grandson!!! ) Rom Rubycz - Roman Rubycz

The booking service did not have as down as having booked a guide. We arrived on the Sunday and there was no-one there. We did some bird watching ourselves along the river. When the Green Hub opened I went in and complained. Joe apologised, said nothing was on the system and arranged to meet us at 6.00 the next day. Joe was an excellent guide and a wonderful young man, I recommend him highly. Wreally enjoyed our tour and will do it again sometime. - Kaye Foskett

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