Umlazi is the biggest township in KwaZulu-Natal and the second biggest in South Africa after Soweto. In 1967 it was established as a black township under the apartheid government and was one of the places where many of those removed from Cato Manor (uMkhumbane). Now free of the oppression that defined life under apartheid, Umlazi is a buzzing example of township life in South Africa. With massive infrastructural development since 1994. According to legends, the name Umlazi comes from “umlaza” (Zulu for the sour acid produced from fermented milk or sour milk). It is believed that when King Shaka was passing through the area, he refused to drink from a local river claiming it had the taste of “umlaza”, from that incident, the area has been called Umlazi. Umlazi is divided into section using alphabets from A to Z with additions of AA, BB, CC. It consists of Umlazi Coastal College and Mangosuthu University of Technology. Mangosuthu Highway being the most popular road in Umlazi. It has two shopping malls recenlty built, the Philani Mega mall and the Mega city mall which is at the entrance of Umlazi. Almost each section Umlazi consists of its own clinic and police station and a school. The Zwelithini Stadium has recently been revamped for the FIFA World Cup 2010 and is based also in the Mangosuthu Highway in D Section. Crime is a big factor for Umlazi. There are schools who do very well and get 100% pass rate in Grade 12 i.e. Umlazi Comtech High School (T section), Menzi High School, Zwelibanzi High School. About 30% of the houses are shacks but most have been taken down due to the construction of RDP houses.
Ilokishi laseMlazi lingelikhulukazi KwaZulu Natal, bese liba sendaweni yesibili ukulandela iSoweto ngobukhulu eNingizimu Afrika. Lasungulwa ngonyaka ka1967 nguhulumeni wobandlululo ngokususa abantu ababehlala eMkhumbane abanye bayiswa eMlazi. Igama Umlazi kuthiwa laqanjwa ngemuva kokuthi iNkosi uShaka wayedlula endaweni yakhona waphuza amanzi omfula wathi afana nomlaza. Umlazi uhlakaniswe ngezigceme kusukela ku A kuya kuZ kanye no AA, BB, CC. Kunenxanxathela yezitolo ekungeneni kwalelilokishi ebizwa ngokuthi yiMega City Mall. Kukhona nenkundla kanobhutshuzwayo iKing Zwelithini Stadium etholakala esigcemeni sakwaD. Kulelilokishi kukhona neMangosuthu University of Technology kanye namanye amakolishi okuthuthukisa amakhono. Cishe zonke izigceme zinezikole zakhona. Kukhona nalezo ezaziwa ngemiphumela emihle ebangeni lika 12. Kunemijondolo eminingi kodwa njengamanje iningi layo liyasuswa ngenxa yokwakhiwa kwezindlu zemixhaso kahulumeni.