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Things to See on a Visit to Swaziland

Just to the east of Mozambique sits the small landlocked country of Swaziland, named after King Mswati II who ruled during the 19th century. To the west, north and south is the border of South Africa, a nation with which Swaziland has an amicable relationship. There is actually plenty of foot traffic between the two countries. Many Swazis actually produce products to sell within South Africa, one of which being marijuana. It is not uncommon to see Swazis purchasing goods within their own country with the South African rand, though the official currency of Swaziland is the Lilangeni.

 

Lachlan cycling towards a herd of wildebeest and the sun. Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland.

Lachlan cycling towards a herd of wildebeest and the sun.

 

As one of the safest countries in Africa, Swaziland has so much to offer you during your stay. To get into Swaziland, you take flights into Matsapha Airport directly from Johannesburg, likely on Airlink Swaziland or arrange a package holiday or tour from respected travel companies like Thomson. You can also get into the country by bus or car, but crossing into the border can take hours upon hours.

The capital of Mbabane holds many of the popular Swaziland attractions, including golf courses, the Mkhaya Endangered Species reserve, the Royal Swazi Spa and the Mlilwane Hogs & Hippo Trail.

 

Sunbaking hippopotamus family on Mlilwane's mirror lake. Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland.

Sunbaking hippopotamus family on Mlilwane's mirror lake.

 

Visit the Mkhaya Endangered Species to spend the day driving around in your 4×4 or Landrover observing the teeming wildlife Swaziland has to offer. The park is home to the rare and endangered black rhino, elephant, buffalo, giraffe, tsesebe and much more. Visitors to the park are also very welcome to come and enjoy a fresh lunch prepared at the bush camp.

 

You can tell that this is a male giraffe by the hernia like protrusion on his tummy… Mkhaya Game Reserve, Swaziland.

You can tell that this is a male giraffe by the hernia like protrusion on his tummy…

 

The Mdzimba Trail is a tour of Swaziland’s most important historical attractions – but don’t think that means you’re going to be in museums all day. This half-day tour against the backdrop of mountain scenery will take you to caves, craft markets, and the mysterious sangoma – traditional Southern African healers.

For a bit more of a wild time, go white water rafting on the Great Usutu River. The inclusive rates include your guide, necessary equipment, transportation and a packed lunch for your day of rafting, hiking and abseiling. The best time to go is during the months of July and October, where rates are a bit lower.

Swaziland is quite small, so there aren’t hundreds of luxury hotels to choose from. At the same time, there are game lodges as well as newer hotels that have sprung up to accommodate the country’s guests in recent years. The Shewula Mountain Camp has become quite popular among eco-conscious travellers, for its use of traditional rondavels (round huts).

 

Lucie and the naughty nyala. Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland.

Lucie and the naughty nyala.

 

Roan Antelope 'Back to Africa'! Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland.

Roan Antelope 'Back to Africa'!

 

That's me, Beatrice the White-Fronted Bee-Eater. Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland.

That's me, Beatrice the White-Fronted Bee-Eater.

 

Watch out for the crocodiles, Lucie! Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland.

Watch out for the crocodiles, Lucie!

 

“This article post is sponsored by Thomson.co.uk made possible by Joey Ferrer.”

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