Attractions
Lodges in or near Mbuluzi Game Reserve
Activities available in Mbuluzi Game Reserve

Region: Lubombo
Attraction Type: Landscape/Scenic, Wildlife

 

Mbuluzi Game Reserve

This private Game Reserve is set on a stunning 3,000 hectares of bushveld, bordering the Lubombo mountains, the Mlawula Nature Reserve, Hlane Royal Park, and the north-eastern part of Swaziland’s sugar belt. The Reserve has plenty to offer visitors, and it is easy to spend several days relaxing in the Reserve itself, or using the Reserve as a base for nearby attractions. Visitors can drive, walk, or cycle around the Reserve at their leisure and in their own time; no guides are necessary. Mbuluzi is a beautiful stretch of bushveld and definitely worth a visit.

For game viewing, there is an excellent network of roads, which are well-marked for easy navigation and which meander through the most scenic and game-dense areas of the Reserve. Roads climb over steep mountain passes, run along cliff edges, overlook enormous bends in the river, and wind through thick timbouti forests and open plains. Game is plentiful, and it is common to see herds of giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, nyala, impala, kudu and many others. Hyena and leopard occur, and the river systems are home to crocodile and hippo.

Two rivers flow through the Reserve - the Mbuluzi and the Mlawula - and there are three river crossings, which make for beautiful driving; high clearance vehicles are therefore recommended. Fishing is a great activity at Mbuluzi, and catch and release is strongly recommended. A variety of fish species occur, including bream (tilapia), yellowfish and barbel (catfish).

The Reserve also has a fantastic network of clearly-marked walking trails, which provide an excellent opportunity to get close to nature. The trails are inter-linked, and visitors can walk for 30 minutes or for the whole day. Curious giraffe will often approach pedestrians to get a better look, themselves, at nature on foot! Good stopping points include cleared areas, viewpoints along the rivers, and bird hides. Swaziland is abundant with different species of birds and Mbuluzi Reserve is no exception. Click here to download a full list of bird species found in the reserve.  The Reserve is split between the Northern sector, with the winding Mbuluzi River, campsite, and outstanding mountainous views, and the Southern sector, with more dense game populations and all of the Reserve’s lodges.

Birding at Mbuluzi is a special attraction, and more than 300 species have been recorded in the Reserve, including several rare species. Bird lists can be obtained at the reception.

Accommodation varies greatly in the Reserve, as each of the lodges is unique in character. All of the lodges are up-market, self-catering, and well-designed, and they range from luxury tents with en-suite bathrooms to air-conditioned home-style lodges, many with swimming pools. Each of the lodges is located on the banks of the perennial Mlawula River and are private and secluded. The Reserve also has a campsite on the banks of the amazing, bubbling rapids of the Mbuluzi River, which is a very comfortable spot for those with tents. The campsite has hot showers, and firewood is supplied; there is no electricity. Visitors will not be disappointed by the accommodation options at Mbuluzi.

Mbuluzi Game Reserve is in an ideal location for regional travelers as well, as the borders to South Africa [Mananga] and Mozambique [Lomahasha and Goba] are within a 20 minute drive, each. Mbuluzi is less than an hour’s drive from Kruger National Park in South Africa (Crocodile Bridge Gate), and less than a three hour’s drive from Maputo, with its excellent seafood, nightlife and close by beaches.

For local touring, Mbuluzi is under a 1 hour drive from Manzini (which hosts a very interesting traditional local crafts/food market called Manzini Market) and 1.5 hours drive from Ezulwini/Mbabane (restaurants, crafts shops, big grocery stores, etc). Within a 20 minute drive, there are several restaurants at the various neighboring clubs and at Hlane Royal Park and the Magadzavane Lodge in Mlawula Nature Reserve. There are several golf courses and other sporting facilities in the area, and tours of the 2 local sugar mills can also be arranged in advance.

Mbuluzi Game Reserve is well-managed, and reception staff are ready to assist visitors in planning their best trip. Make sure to mark Mbuluzi on the map, as it is well worth a visit!