A 250 metre stretch of beach that falls under the Mpenjati Nature Reserve at Trafalgar on the south coast, was given nude-beach status by the local municipality in late 2014, officially opening the following Easter. Mpenjati beach is a small strip of the Trafalgar beach roughly 140 kms south of Durban on the Hibiscus Coast. This is KwaZulu-Natal’s first nudist beach and the only official nudist beach in the country (The likes of Sandy Bay are unofficial nude beaches). The opening of the beach did not come without complications. Months of applications, appeals and public backlashes were the result of the municipality’s decision, resulting in a near crisis as a Concerned Citizens Group argued against the go-ahead. There are certain rules that accompany the beach’s status as a nudist beach. These include: the prohibition of photographs, unless everyone in the picture agrees to its being taken; no staring at anyone; no suggestive behaviour (one news article put it this way: “swaying of hips is allowed, but pole dancing wouldn’t be, if you get our point.”; you must always take a towel with you to the beach (probably in order to cover any unpredictable ‘reactions’, which are also not allowed); and rude comments, offensive language, racism, sexism, and homophobia are forbidden. The code of conduct comes straight from the International Naturist Federation. Alongside Mpenjati beach is the 66 hectare Mpenjati Nature Reserve on the Mpenjati River lagoon.
Mpenjati Beach, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Palm Beach, South Coast, KwaZulu Natal
Legal Status: Permitted