Hotels in Margate, South Africa
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Duplicated Margate has monster-type appeal
Margate is a fun-loving seaside resort; both in the UK and here on the South African coast of KwaZulu-Natal. The SA version was formed in the early 1900s by English surveyor, Henry Richardson. Without doubt, he saw it as an affectionate re-creation of the English Kent-based resort of the same name. As if to emphasise his roots; Ramsgate, too, is a near-neighbour … in both countries. In the South African Margate, though, they still famously talk about Trunko; a huge and unidentifiable monster that was washed up on the beach in the 1920s. Today, reminders of Trunko are restricted to views of a few overweight sun-seekers.
The resort of Margate is swimming with the big boys
Margate is on the south coast of KwaZulu-Natal, often abbreviated to kzn. The town is approximately 13 miles southwest of Port Shepstone and Durban International Airport is almost 70 miles away. The local domestic airport, though, is eight miles out of town and provides shuttle flights to and from Durban and Johannesburg. Margate’s Blue Flag beaches are a hot spot for holidaying visitors who come here for swimming, snorkelling and just plain, old-fashioned sun worshipping. You’ll see that the resort is a hit with South Africans as well as foreign visitors and of course, Margate has all the pubs, restaurants and bars needed to augment the natural appeal of the beach and sea. Also in the resort, there is a public, Olympic – size pool; the largest pool south of Durban. As with all holiday places; public holidays such as Easter and Christmas can be extremely busy. At these and many other times throughout the year, Margate’s apartments, guest houses, hostels and hotels can be pushed to the limit with bookings.
In the popularity stakes, Margate is never a last resort
KwaZulu-Natal is known as South Africa’s Garden Province and Margate, itself, is one of its prime resorts. Sitting in a subtropical climate and with shores lapped by the warm Indian Ocean, produce harvested along this coastal strip includes oranges, bananas, mangoes and sugar cane. Climatically, Margate certainly has little in common with its UK counterpart. Between the mountains and this coastal region lie the savannah grasslands. The year-round climate ranges from warm to very hot and humid during the summer months. Rain is a feature with June being the driest month. In March, though, it can come down in bucket-loads. The coastal temperatures remain great during the winter months. Inland, though, the mountain areas are prone to more bucket-loads; this time of snow. This beautiful province of KwaZulu-Natal is quite vast and similar in area to Portugal.
Dining out and in Margate’s hotels and restaurants
In the areas around Margate’s very busy main street, there are restaurants catering for the same variety of tastes as those in most other countries. So, from Italian cuisine to steaks, burgers and fine dining; there’s plenty of choice in Margate. If you want to eat as the locals do, you are looking at three meals a day, starting with Putupap ; a sort of cornmeal porridge. The main dish of Bobotie is as near as you are likely to get to a national South African dish. This consists of spiced minced meat with an egg topping. They love their meats in this part of the world and given the climate, BBQs are understandably, highly favoured and flavoured. If you are considering staying in one of Margate’s up market hotels; possibly beachfront with gardens, rooftop pool and restaurant; then you’ll probably think about dining in occasionally. The hotel menu tries to appeal to all tastes with a middle of the road approach. There is usually a good vegetarian choice too.
A snap-shot of attractions near Margate, kzn
It’s well worth looking beyond Margate to experience all that the region has to offer. A brief flutter to neighbouring Ramsgate brings you to Butterfly Valley and a swarm of regional butterfly species. There’s another jaw-dropping experience at Croc World Conservation Centre. Naturists are well-catered for at Mpenjati Naturist Beach. Good advice, though, is to make a snap-decision and avoid combining these latter two activities. Shelly Beach is always a good day out and just along that Hibiscus Coast; you’ll need to drag the kids away from Pure Venom Reptile Park. At Port Edward, there are the colour-coded Clearwater MTB Trails. You can bike a choice of five nature trails where, for many, the really big attraction is the café at the end. Back in Margate; take a few minutes to visit the Art Museum. Then, candle-end burners will quickly note quite a vibrant nightclub scene in the town. What a great way to end yet another exciting day in Margate.