Camperdown, a small town located one third of the way from Pietermaritzburg to Durban, is named after the British naval battle and victory over the Dutch in 1797. The town achieved infamy because of the deeds of one John Vanderplank, who acquired farmlands including Camperdown around 1840. His brother Charles, living in Australia, sent him the seeds of the black wattle, which he planted as hedges, and was surprised when they grew into trees instead of remaining as shrubs. In 1887 the bark of the black wattle began to be used as a source of tannic acid in the tannery industry. Today this tree has been declared an enemy to local vegetation with government support to get rid of them. Camperdown is the village where black wattle was first seeded.
The amazing view over natural bush and the peace and tranquillity in the Camperdown area makes it difficult to believe that the business centres of Durban, Pinetown and Pietermaritzburg are so close. For the adventurous, activities such as microlighting, quad biking, paragliding, skydiving, horse riding and team building are available. Camperdown's Emoyeni Music Festival is held here annually.