Inside the St. Lucia Game Reserve you can take several nice walks from Mission Rocks located 13 km north of the Croc Center and park gate. The Emoyeni trail and Mziki trail heads are here. Now it would seem from the literature that you need to book these trails. The whole Mziki trail is a self guided trail that costs around R40 per day and takes 3 days walking 40 km. The Emoyeni trail requires a guide and costs R30 per day takes 5 days walking 65 km.
I don't see what is keeping one from make day walks of these trails. The Mziki trail goes out to Mfazana Pan and to several lakes. These lakes are great places to see a variety of water birds including these that I spotted:
great white egret
black smith plover
You may also see hippos in the pools as well as red duiker, kudu, impala, waterbuck, wildebeest, steenbok. We were also very fortunate to see a savanah monitor lizard and a leopard.
Along the trail we saw leopard prints and hippo tracks everywhere and sure enough at one of the pools the leopard came out to check things out and jumped back into the jungle. Fantastic!
The Emoyeni trail goes to the catalina wreck in the St. Lucia lake. Those catalinas were very active during WWII to hunt German subs.
I really recommend taking one of these walks.
Take care and look out for dangerous animals. Buffalo, elephant, black rhino, leopard, hippo, and croc live here.
From Mission Rocks you can continue east and check out great views of the Indian Ocean. The views are really nice. It is rarely visited by tourist and is a great place to see sunset or sunrise. The Cape Vidal Dunes are also facinating as you must go through dense dune forest to reach the beach which is full vines.
From the parking lot there are bathroom facilities and braiis. Look out for all the vervet monkey that may try to steel your food.
Make sure you take the 2 hour boat tour. You will see lots of crocodile and hippos as well as many birds including goliath heron, grey herons, and african fish eagles. You may have excellent opportunties to get up close to the hippos and crocs.
There are several boats that leave from St. Lucia Resort from the pier on the west side of the village near BiB's International Backpackers. The tours leave in the morning at 8am, 10:30am and in the afternoon at 3pm. I recommend the afternoon tour so you can be on the water during sunset.
The cost is R100 and can be booked at the backpackers or the many travel agents in town.
Make sure you get to the pier 20 minutes early.
There are an estimated 1000 hippopotamus in the Greater St. Lucia Wetland area. Hippopotamus is the heaviest land mammal in world behind the elephant. It is also the most dangerous animal to humans causing more deaths each year, with exception to the mosquito. Hippos have enormous heads with long lower canines that can grow up to 18” (45 cm) long. They also have a pair of lower incisors that grow up to 10” (25 cm) long. An adult male can weigh up to 7000 lb (3200 kg). Although they are vegetarian they are fiercely territorial, which is what makes them dangerous. The males maintain their female herds by guarding the stretch of water from other males. They scent mark their territory by spraying urine with a propeller like action from their tail.
Hippos feed mostly at night out of water covering up to 6 miles (10 km) and eating about 40 kg of vegetation. They social and relax in the water during they day giving them a very lazy appearance. Although hippos are enormous they are not fat. They are extremely muscular and thick skins, up to 2 inches (5 cm). They can out run a human out of the water for very short distances.
Turtles weighing just shy of 400kg, and in some cases more than a ton, glide effortlessly through the warm Indian Ocean. They are on their way to a place they know only from a few hours spent there after their birth. They drag their gravity-stricken bodies from the waves and haul themselves towards some of the highest forested dunes in Africa. Their smaller, mollusk-crushing cousins follow...
This could be a description of a scene from a science fiction movie, but it's not.
This turtle season (November to March) you have the unique opportunity to view the gigantic Leatherback- and smaller Loggerhead Turtles at their ancestral nesting ground - bringing forth a new generation. Our search will take us into the Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park Marine Sanctuary, North of Cape Vidal - even as far as Kosi Bay.
Late at night the mystery unfolds as female turtles make their way up the beach to a chosen location. Once the area has been prepared for nesting, the eggs are deposited into an egg pot (burrow), covered and concealed. Most females nest an average of 10 times in a season, and this, of course, improves our chances of seeing them.
The young hatch approximately two months later, and begin their own battle for survival. Watching these little creatures scurry towards the relative safety of the ocean has been described as a spiritual experience.
Departure times vary according to the tides. Rates vary from season to season, and include a delicious dinner and drinks on the beach.
A fantastic trip from Lake St Lucia, is a Whale Watching Trip.
You get up close and face to face with the 5th largest animal that has ever lived on Earth!!!
The Humped Back Whale, consired one of the most playful of the whales as well as one of the most acrobatic.
You can get as close as 50 m away from these huge guys!!!
A once in a life time experience!!!
There's a tour that takes you down the river at Saint Lucia's too look at Hippos and Gators. It's relaxful and it's great to see animals in their natural habitat. Now, hippos can go up to 30 or 60 mph, and they are as heavy as a steamboat. When I went our boat went in between a hippo and her child so she started to charge us. It was awesome.
A Cruise up the St,Lucia Estuary &, there are two trained guides on board . The boat tour takes approximately 1 1/2 , and it was a great tour , it would have been better yet if it did not rain that day.We saw many Hippos whole Herds of them. The Santa Lucia tour boat is comfortable and seats 80 passengers, it has two decks (top deck best view) and it has bathroom facility and you can buy a cup of Tea or some other refreshments.
Three daily Trips 8.30 ,10.30 , 14.30 pm. Fridays and Saterdays a Sundown trip will leave at 16.00 pm.
You should not miss the sundown on the beautiful waterways of St. Lucia.
A self drive around the greater St Lucia Wetland Park can give you all the freedom and pleasure to track and spot the animals around. Few nice images here of Zebra’s, Kudu, Nyala, Waterbuck & Buspig
We had the chance to visit also Cape Vidal, part of the SL Lucia marine reserve, there you can enjoy more of the sea and the beautiful beaches around.
There are boats who has guided cruises tours over the lake where you can see from the inside the incredible wild life on this area.
Walk around the very beautiful long beaches here. Depends on the season the beach can be spent for swimming, sun tanning, bird watching and relaxing time.
In our first day here, before even trying to explore further we just took a walk around the St Lucia trails, around and by the sea you can walk and see lots of animals and birds.