Attraction Type: Landscape/Scenic
Located around 10km outside of Mbabane, Sibebe is the largest exposed granite pluton in the world. Although different in their geology, Sibebe is second only to Ayers Rock in Australia as the largest freestanding rock in the world.
The best view of Sibebe is experienced walking up it! There are several guided walking trails to take you to the summit. These range from the gruelling ‘steepest walk in the world’ to much more gentle, slower ascents. Be aware that a walk to the top will take you to 800m and will average 2.5hrs for ascent and 1.5hrs for descent. On the way up or down you’ll be able to enjoy Sibebe’s incredible views and explore various caves, swimming holes and waterfalls.
At some 3 billion years old, Sibebe is more than three times as old as it's Australian counterpart, but unlike Uluru attracting 500,000 visitors every year, it offers peace and solitude. Enjoy the unique plant and animal like, especially the birds and flowers, many of which are endemic to this region of Swaziland. Sibebe Rock is fast becoming a great destination for bird enthusiasts with species such as the globally threatened Blue Swallow, breeding pairs of which have been observed, and the Ground Woodpecker, among others.
Walking tours start from the visitor centre at Mbuluzi Gate which opens at 8:00 and cost around E25 per person. The tours are run by local community members as part of Swaziland’s Community Tourism Programme. Sibebe Rock trails is a community tourism initiative where tours and treks around and up Sibebe are run and led by members of local community.
Sibebe Rock is just one of the community tourism projects in Swaziland. Click here to find out about other similar tourism in the community initiatives.