mindyourmind, a member also posting here, is also South African, as I am, and so we sympathize.
there also used to be a Vajrayana presence associated with Marianhill monastery in Durban, under the auspices of the Lam Rim centre founded by Geshe Damcho, in Johannesburg. my suggestion to you is to contact the Lam Rim folks themselves and see what they suggest for you. the contact details that i have are as follows:
Good Heart Dharma Group
Address: Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
Tradition: Vajrayana, Gelugpa
Contact: Elizabeth Gaywood
Spiritual Director: Geshe Damcho Yonten
also, if Dharmagiri is still running then it would be helpful for you, too. Thanissaro and Khitissaro opened it a while back, after leaving their posts as resident teachers at Ixopo, if I remember right. while they were formally (initially) Shravakayana practitioners, their practice now is quite expansive and meditation instruction and/or retreats with them would be a wonderful experience.
they can be found here: http://www.dharmagiri.org/index.html
in general, since the Vajrayana is a type of Mahayana, it's perfectly ok for you to see yourself as a Mahayana practitioner. in many lineages, getting a good grounding in the sutra material - that is, the non-tantric material - is considered critical and so you are definitely doing the right thing, and should not see it in any way as a settling for less than you want - merely as a doorway to what you want.
on a personal note, i'd suggest researching the New Kadamapa tradition at least a little before joining in there, simply because there may be issues later on for you - for example, if one were to become a serious practitioner in an NKT school, it would make it impossible to take teachings from His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, whom they regard as a false Buddhist.
because of the contentious nature of NKT discussions, which can get heated and divisive, the Terms of Service of this forum prevent discussion about them. for that reason, people will hesitate to provide you with (at least) some of the answers you ask for. fortunately there is a wealth of information readily available online that will be sufficient to help you make a good decision.
good luck and feel free to drop me a note anytime if you feel like it.
hope it helps.