Many hides are situated overlooking waterholes, however on the most part, we have been disappointed with the game viewing at hides. More often than not, the only animals to be seen are terrapins and crocs. Also, if you go in the dry season (autumn / winter) there is very little rain so the water holes are dry.
Riverbeds are my favourite places for spotting beasts of all sizes. If you are prepared to stop a while and scan the far banks with your binos, you may just be rewarded. We've seen everything from lions, to elephants to rhino to bucks of all kinds on river banks. You may even get super lucky and spot a hippo wallowing!
There are a few places (marked on your map) where you can get out and stretch your legs, and take in the views...All at your own risk of course! One such place was where we took this picture - if you squint really hard, you can see an elephant on the far shore!
One of the most exciting sections of the park...for some reason this section of the park is where we have seem most of the game throughout our visits!
At both Mpila and Hilltop camp, they have a sightings board at reception where visitors can note where they saw what, a great place to stop by en route to get an idea where you may be lucky enough to spot the animals in question! Also, if you have been fortunate to spot something exciting, make sure you mark the map so others can share the experience.
The vegetation along this route is very different to that in the northern sections of the park, and the animals seem to prefer it! I find it easier to spot the animals in this time of veld...go figure!
The name is taken from an early chief name ZULU, meaning Heaven, who came from a segment of the Nguni migration. This group settled in the region during the 17th century. The descendants of ZULU were known as the abakwaZulu - people of ZULU. The Zulus rose to a position of supremacy under their great king, Shaka who reigned from 1816 to 1828.
The accompanying photo is of Zulu Huts we passed along the road to Hluhluwe. We got as close as we could, without being a nuisance to the inhabitants.
On the way to Bonamanzi Game Park, we passed a Fruitstand, loaded with pineapples. Wim bought 3 juicy, ripe pineapples to have when we got to our accomodations at Bonamanzi. There was also a nice selection of local crafts, like carved masks, for a decent price.
Thanks to our guide, Charl Koen of Extreme Nature Tours, we watched these lions from close up and completely alone early one morning in Hluhluwe. Unforgettable!