Bayhead Natural Heritage Site

The Bayhead Natural Heritage Site is located in Durban’s bay and extensive harbour. The protected natural heritage site is also known as the Bayhead Mangrove Swamps. The mangroves were formerly extensive, stretching right around the edges of the bay over a vast area of 438 hectares. Today the mangroves have reduced significantly in size and only a 15 hectare stand of mangroves remains.

The Mangrove Swamps are only 2.7km from The Boshoff, making it a definite site to add onto your Durban to-do list.

Bayhead Natural Heritage Site


Variety of Crabs, Fish and Birds

Known as the Bayhead Mangrove Swamps it is home to the mud-skipper fish, various crabs, including the one talon bigger than the other fiddler crab, red mangrove crab, and the mangrove kingfisher – more than likely attracted by the amazingly high number of crabs that make the mangrove swamp their home. 

bayhead natural heritage site

It may lie in the middle of the city but the area attracts a surprisingly high number of waterbirds and Durban’s bay has recorded 120 species of aquatic birds. Put aside at least an hour and you can almost guarantee sightings of at least 30 different birds.

The adjacent tidal flats also attract an amazing number of birds – pelicans, gulls, terns – and a waterbird hide overlooking the flats makes viewing, particularly between low tide and the high tide when birds end up concentrated right in front of the hide as they lose ground.

There is a lovely boardwalk that winds its way through the mangroves in similar fashion to Durban’s Beachwood mangroves.

Directions from Durban

To reach Bayhead mangroves drive along Victoria Embankment (now called Margaret Mncadi Avenue) south.  Follow Maydon Wharf signs until you bear left into Maydon Road. From here get into Bayhead Road and then follow the signs to the heritage site.  Turn left into Langeberg Road and you follow across the railway bridge to the heritage site.