Location Ideas for Your Next Photoshoot in Newcastle KZN
Blog Post Dates
June 2021

Location Ideas for Your Next Photoshoot in Newcastle KZN

Thanks to Newcastle KZN’s geographical location, we are not short of beautiful locations to choose from for a photoshoot. Locations can be found within Newcastle and also in the surrounding areas. Newcastle forms part of the Battlefields Route, this is made up of battlefield sites, museums, old forts and places of remembrance. Newcastle turns 150 years old this year.

The first thing to consider when choosing a location, is what genre do you want to shoot in. Then, consider what you want the end result to look like. Based on you decisions here, you can narrow down the kind of location that will be the most suitable. You might personally have access to a beautiful location that nobody else knows about, and you would like to be photographed in. Perhaps it has sentimental value, or something you found really beautiful. Locations can range from your own home, to parks, historical buildings, farms, the countryside, waterfalls, maybe someone you know has a beautiful home that you can use, BnB’s, boutique hotels, etc. Even some rather grungy, dilapidated buildings and structures can make rather beautiful backdrops for photoshoots.

My reason for this article, is to show people considering being photographed in Newcastle KZN, the possibilities that exist in this area. While this is by no means a complete list of locations, it should give you some ideas. In fact, if you have any that you would like to share, please feel free to either comment to this article or email me. I’ll gladly include it in the list.

Please note that some of the locations listed here might not be open to being used for photography, or might require a fee and/or written permission. These are places that I personally feel would be good locations for photography.

Historical Locations

Newcastle Town Hall

Newcastle Town Hall

Location: Scott Street, Newcastle CBD

The building of the town hall commenced in 1897, in honour of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee. It was completed in 1899, with the clock tower erected at later stage, thanks to the towns people making a collection for it’s erection. The town hall is still in use today.

Carnegie Art Gallery

Carnegie Art Gallery

Location: Newcastle CBD, adjacent to the Newcastle Municipal Gardens

This was built in 1915 as a library with funds from the Carnegie Corporation. it is built in the classical Edwardian/Georgian style and all it’s original features have been retained.

Website: http://newcastle.gov.za/venues/art-gallery/

Fort Amiel

Fort Amiel

Location: Amiel Park

Fort Amiel was built in 1876 by Major Charles Frederick Amiel and some 200 men of the 80th Staffordshire Volunteers in the prelude to the annexation of the Transvaal and the Zulu War.

The Fort was to serve as a commissariat depot, transit camp, and hospital during the Zulu War and the Transvaal War of Independence. Constructed on a knoll overlooking the original wagon drift across the Ncandu River, the Fort had a good view over the original town of Newcastle.

Restoration only started in 1979 after the site had been declared a National Monument. The discovery of the original plans in a London Museum, gave impetus to the restoration work.

O’Neils Cottage

O'Neils Cottage

Location: Amajuba Mountain

O’Neils Cottage in Newcastle is the sight of negotiations undertaken between the British and the Boers, after the Battle of Majuba. The old stone building belonged to R.C O’Neil, and the treaty which was signed there brought an end to the First War of Independence which took place between 1880 and 1881. The cottage itself was built in 1870.

The peace treaty ending the war was negotiated here and over a period of some 21 days in March 1881 it had seated in its parlour Paul Kruger, President Brand, Marthinus Pretorius, Commandant Gen. Piet Joubert, Gen. Sir Evelyn Wood, Col. R. Buller, Major Clarke and Capt Roberts as well as several others. The entrance to the cottage is directly off the N11.

St. Dominics Academy

St. Dominics Academy

Location: 148 Murchison Str. Newcastle

St Dominic’s Academy Newcastle, situated on 26 acres of wooded parklands in the foothills of the Drakensberg, is a private, Christian, co-educational school founded by the Dominican Sister Mother Rose Niland in 1891.

Much of the building took place between 1908 and 1918 under the auspices of Brother Nivard Streicher from Mariannhill. The Pavilion, which is located in the grounds of the school, was designed and built in 1912, and declared a National Monument by Dr Piet Koornhof in 1977. The building of the graceful Bell Tower, with its clocks and bells imported from Germany, was started in 1912, but because of the First World War, was only completed in 1919.

Website:St. Dominics

Hilldrop House

Haggard's Hilldrop House

Location: 15 Hilldrop Road, Newcastle

In 1981 “Hilldrop House” was declared a National Monument. This Original Homestead of Sir Rider Haggard (Author of King Solomon’s Mines) built in 1875, it stands as a focal point in a 3 Hectare Indigenous forest overlooking the Bed and Breakfast now called “Haggards Hilldrop B & B”. Haggard lived here during 1881 on the farm Rooipoint. Re-named Mooifontein, it is described in his book, Jess.

Website: http://www.haggards.co.za/

Buffalo River Bridge

Buffalo River Bridge

Location: Situated on the District Road 671 between Newcastle and Utrecht. Farm Milton 1007 And Kromellenboog 170

The old Buffalo Bridge spans the Buffalo River east of Newcastle and was erected by contract under the supervision of the Public Works Department of Natal at the joint expense of the South African Republic and the Colony of Natal at a cost of 12,600 Pounds. The bridge was opened for public traffic on 01 October 1858 and remains in regular use.

Old Magazine Armoury

Old Magazine Armoury

Location: Scott Street Another military installation at Newcastle is the Old Magazine (Armoury) thought to have been built in the 1860′s by the local contingent, the Natal Mounted Rifles to protect the easterly approaches to the town. No less a person than Winston Churchill was imprisoned in this structure by the Boers after his capture as a War Correspondent.

Laing’s Nek Tunnel

Laings Nek Tunnel

Location: a pass through the Drakensberg, South Africa, immediately north of Majuba

When the Boers rose in revolt in December 1880 they occupied Laing’s Nek to oppose the entry of British reinforcements into the Transvaal. On 28 January 1881 a small British force endeavoured to drive the Boers from the pass, but was forced to retire after the Battle of Laing’s Nek.

The Hindu Temple

Hindu Temple

Location: Kirkland Street

Built in 1903 this rather unique temple looks almost miniature, yet it is reputed to have the largest cella dome of its kind in the southern hemisphere. The cella being the chief apartment of the temple where the statues of the God and Goddess are placed. One of the famous visitors of times gone by was none other than Mahatma Ghandi who is even reputed to have slept in a little house that used to stand behind the temple. It’s still in use today and should be used with care and respect. Permission needs to be obtained to make use of this location.

Natural Locations

The Ncandu State Forest Nature Reserve

Location: N11 – 26km outside Newcastle turn left at signage for Ntshingwayo Dam 9km. Situated on the Northern Drakensberg escarpment, and although it is relatively unknown, it is the second largest indigenous forest in Kwa-Zulu Natal. Located roughly 32km form Newcastle, the reserve is a typical high-altitude forest, and comprises mainly of steep yellowwood gorges and grassland plateau habitats. There are a number of scenic walking and horse trails in the reserve, which lead from the grassy plateaus past majestic sandstone cliffs, to a number of beautiful waterfalls on the Ncandu River.

Ncandu Falls

Ncandu Falls

Location: 20km outside Newcastle, going towards Ntshingwayo Dam.

Ntshingwayo Dam

Ntshingwayo DamImage Courtesy of Jacques Steinman

Location: Approximately 30km outside Newcastle, off the N11 Ntshingwayo is the third largest dam in Kwa-Zulu Natal and offers a tranquil stretch of water suitable for all water sports especially water skiing.


Trim Park

Location: Close to Newcastle CBD Large open area with trees and access to the Ncandu River. Use with caution though, a number of incidents have been reported in this area.


Locations: All around Newcastle There are a number of playgrounds around Newcastle the can be used successfully.

Hospital Street Park

Location: Hospital Street A favourite amongst wedding photographers, could be a possibility.


There are also various farms, small holdings and places of accommodation around Newcastle that may be suitable for photography. Don’t forget to consider places in Normandien and Ingogo.

Hotels, Lodges, BnB’s & Estates

Tramonto Boutique Hotel

Location: 40 Uranus Str, Newcastle Website: http://www.tramonto.co.za/

Vulintaba Country Estate

Location: D96 District Rd, Newcastle Website: http://www.vulintaba.co.za/

Grey Goose Farm Lodge

Location: 1 Memel Rd, Newcastle Website: http://www.greygoose.co.za

The Farmhouse Lodge

Location: 1 Hilldrop Rd Website: http://www.farmhouselodge.co.za

Camelot Guesthouse

Location: 121 Impala Drive, Newcastle Website: http://www.camelothotel.co.za/

Engogo Riverside Lodge

Location: 25km before Memel on the D401 Website: http://riverslodge.co.za/

2 the End Guesthouse

Location: 2 End Lane, Newcastle

De Witte Loft

Location: 20 Uranus Street, Newcastle

Zamambongi Guest House

Location: 2 Lukas Meyer Str, Newcastle Website: http://www.zamambongi.co.za

Avalon Guest Manor

Location: Cnr. of Albatros & Loerie Str, Newcastle

Newbali BnB

Location: 44 Northward Drive, Hutten Heights, Newcastle Website: http://www.newbali.co.za

Surrounding Areas

Small Kloof Guesthouse

Location: R23, Standerton Rd, Near Volksrust

The Royal Country Inn

Location: 61 Victoria Str, Dundee Website: Royal Country Inn

Isandlwana Lodge

Location: R68, Isandlwana Website: http://www.isandlwana.co.za/

Fugitives Drift

Location: Rorke’s Drift Website: http://www.fugitivesdrift.com

Ajay Lalbeharie Up