Fun things to do in Swaziland

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Swaziland

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    The Cultural Village

    by MikeAtSea Written Oct 5, 2005

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    The Cultural Village is a living museum of all things traditional and represents classical Swazi Lifestyle during the 1850’s. The objective of the village is to enable Swazi’s from all corners of the country to reach out to it and maintain a positive interest on their cultural heritage including; language; customs; practices; rituals; dance; music; folklore; arts and crafts as well as show (tourists) our cultural achievements to other people.

    The Cultural Village
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    The Ezulwini Valley

    by MikeAtSea Written Oct 5, 2005

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    The "Heavenly Place", in the Middleveld, turn to the Timbali Caravan Park, the "Cuddle puddle", the Royal Swazi Sun Hotel and Casino Complex, Mantenga Craft, the Mantenga Lodge and the Mlilwane Game Sanctuary are all to the right of the road.
    The Lobamba has been the spiritual capital of the Swazi Nation for around 150 years and is the site of the impressive House of Parliament which may be photographed from the outside. Nearby is King Sobhuza II monument, the National Museum, the Somhlolo National Stadium, venue for soccer matches and major public events, and the Emboss State Palace which visitors may not approach, nor photograph, without proper authority.

    The Lobamba - the Swazi Parliament
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    Eastern Swaziland

    by MikeAtSea Written Oct 5, 2005

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    The eastern half of Swaziland, comprising the Lowveld and Lubombo geographical regions, is largely devoted to cattle ranching and the production of sugar.
    The area is also home to three of Swaziland's nature reserves; Hlane, straddling the main road between Tshaneni and Siteki; nearby Mlawula, on the Mocambique border; and Mkhaya, close to Siphofaneni.
    Yet again, Eastern Swaziland is the region where the country's rivers' fed by Highveld streams, reach full maturity. The Mlumati, Komati, Mbuluzi, Usushwana, Nqwempisi, Mkhondo, Ngwavuma and, the greatest of all, the Usutu, cross the area in their journey to Mocambique and the Indian Ocean

    Rush Hour in Swaziland
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    Nhlangano and the South

    by MikeAtSea Written Oct 5, 2005

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    From the junction on the main route between Manzini and Matsapha, a good tar road leads to the South. After Sidvokodvo the journey is through the Grand Valley, with rural scenes of traditional Swazi Homesteads. Truly splendid mountain vista's may be seen, especially as the road climbs out of the valley near Hlatikhulu.
    Nhlangano, meaning "Meeting Place" is the agricultural centre of southern Swaziland. Here, for the rest and recreation at the end of the journey, is Nhlangano Sun and Casino. An added bonus, for travellers touring by road, is the proximity of Mahamba border post if they are leaving Swaziland for South Africa.
    Also south of Mbabane, as a pleasant excursion by road, is a circular drive through the vast Usutu forest project. This takes the visitor through the towns of Mhlambanyatsi, meaning "Buffalo Crossing", Bhunya and Malkerns.

    The Nhlangano Sun
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    Piggs Peak and the Northern Region

    by MikeAtSea Updated Oct 5, 2005

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    Turning to the north, from the main road between Mbabane and the Ngwenya border post, is a tarred and cleverly engineered road which leads to some of the finest scenery in Swaziland.
    To the left of the road and extending along the border is the Malalotja Nature Reserve. The entrance is close to the Forbes Reef, the remains of an early gold mining endeavor. The journey on to Piggs Peak is spectacular as the road soars to rocky heights and dips through river valleys. each twist and turn opens new vistas of timbered hillsides. Piggs Peak itself lives on forestry, today but was founded on the discovery of gold reed by William Pig in 1884.
    Nearby is the asbestos mining town of Havelock, situated in what could be a "lost valley" below Swaziland's highest mountain, Mount Emlembe, meaning "Spider". An interesting feature of Havelock is the cableway which carries the ore 20 kilometers over mountains and valleys to Barberton in South Africa.
    This entire North Western corner of the Kingdom is unique and together with Malalotja this vast area is an ideal venue for activities such as walking and horseriding.

    Piggs Peak Golf Course
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    Mkhaya Game Reserve

    by MikeAtSea Written Oct 5, 2005

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    In the southeast of Swaziland, the heart of the lowveld lies an unspoilt wilderness, haven to endangered species who roam the magnificent African bush.
    Mkhaya was established in 1979 to save the pure Nguni breed of cattle from extinction and is a proclaimed Nature Reserve. Its focus has expanded over the years to include other endangered species such as black rhino, roan & sable antelope, tsessebe, white rhino, elephant and other locally endangered species.
    Mkhaya Game Reserve, named after the Acacia nigrescens tree, comprises of acacia-dominated thornveld in the south and broadleaf sandveld in the north. Unique, intimate encounters with Mkhaya’s wildlife are almost guaranteed as all travel within the reserve is solely by Big Game Parks’ open Land Rovers or on foot (all guided). The reserve is criss-crossed with dry riverbeds, dotted with waterholes and has a network of intertwined game-viewing roads.

    Rhino in Mkhaya
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    Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary

    by MikeAtSea Written Oct 5, 2005

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    Mlilwane, Swaziland’s pioneer conservation area, is a beautiful, secluded sanctuary situated in Swaziland’s “Valley of Heaven”, the Ezulwini Valley, in between Mbabane and Manzini. With 24-hour access to the Sanctuary, guests are free to enjoy the neighbouring tourist hubs of Ezulwini and Malkerns, with their many unique attractions and craft shops. From the western boundary, the huge Usutu Forest provides a dramatic backdrop stretching into the distant hills.
    The Sanctuary covers 4,560 hectares and comprises of a southern and northern section. The southern section is predominately open grassland plains with middleveld vegetation, stretching up onto the striking Nyonyane Mountain with its exposed granite peak known as the "Rock of Execution".

    Hippo
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    Hlane Royal National Park

    by MikeAtSea Written Oct 5, 2005

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    In the vast bushveld expanse of eastern Swaziland where the hot, still sun of Africa beats on the dry but life-giving soils as it has for thousands of years, and the rumbling roars of the lions are heard in the cool dusky evenings, lies Swaziland’s largest protected area, Hlane Royal National Park, home to the largest herds of game in the Kingdom.
    Hlane, named by King Sobhuza II, with its adjacent dispersal areas covers
    30 000 hectares of Swazi bushveld, dominated by ancient hardwood vegetation. Hlane is home to lion, elephant and white rhino, with an abundant and diverse bird life, including the highest density of nesting white backed vultures in Africa.

    Elephant in Hlane
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    Big Game Parks

    by ashley05p Written Jul 28, 2005

    Game drives in your own car or guided tours in landrovers. Mlilwane - smaller game (antelope, zebras, warthogs, birds, etc.) - you can drive through in your own car, there is a large rest camp with accommodation, food, souvenir shop, swimming pool. Hlane - Royal game park of the king with big game (lions, elephant, cheetah, etc.) - rest camp. Mkhaya - more secluded park with large game (rhinos, elephants, buffalo) - beautiful rest camp tucked away in the forest - you can do a guided tour by landrover or foot. I recommend going to all 3 parks but Mkhaya is my personal favorite. Mlilwane is the most relaxing and mild of the 3.

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    Visiting Swazi village

    by Sininen Written Jun 25, 2005

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    The dance is called umhlanga (reed) dance. Its original meaning was to draw the nation together and remind people of their relationship to the king. Young Swazi women came to Lobamba to help and repair queen mother’s home. The reed dance is also a showcase of potential wives for the king. A Swazi man can have more than one wife you see. At the time of our stay there were articles in the local newspapers about a young Swazi woman of 18 years old, who was taken to the custody of the king against her will and now the mother of the girl is trying to save her daughter. She had attended the reed dance earlier this year. Swazi dancers wore red, black and white and the dances were fast and loud. Swazi women were bit plump while the men were slim and fit and both managed to throw their leg up to the air without any difficulty.

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    Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary

    by wadekorzan Updated Feb 10, 2005

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    This was the very first such sanctuary in all of Swaziland. It's a very small place so is easy to cover in a short amount of time. Within the game reserve there are zebra, antelope, giraffe, hippopotomus, crocodiles, and many different types of birds. You won't find any predatory type animals like lions or leopards. There are a lot of different ways to enjoy the game reserve, as there are guided walks, night safaris, horse riding, and bicycle rentals.

    There is an entrance fee that you have to pay to get in the park, which is payable at the entrance. They will provide you with a little map. This is a great place to stay for a couple of days. We stayed at the wonderful Reilly's Rock Hilltop Lodge, but there is also the Beehive Village, Shonalanga Cottage, Nyonyane Camp, and Sondzela Backpackers Lodge.

    Entrance to Mlilwane
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    See Hippos at the Milwane Game Sanctuary

    by Waxbag Written Dec 3, 2004

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    There is a small family of about 5 hippopotamus here in the Milwane Game Sanctuary. There is one baby and one hurt hippo that has a bad leg. There are very easily seen here in Milwane hanging out in lake at the camp ground. They get fed every day around 2 to 3 pm by the rangers.
    Hippos are 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.

    Hippo in Milwane
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    Swaziland - Mountains (Malolotja National Park)

    by Beefy_SAFC Written Oct 24, 2004

    Like Lesotho, landlocked, and bordered on the north, west and south by South Africa - Mozambique sits on the eastern border.

    Very, very mountainous due to a volcanic past, this national park area is serious ankle twist territory for any walkers or trekkers and would give many Everest trekking veterans a run for their money.

    Malolotja National Park is an area of bleak yet fantastic scenery with it's own share of wildlife roaming in the park. It's not big five territory, though there's a fair number of antelope and some of the literature says there's a couple of bull elephants there as well.

    Note to Swaziland Government and King - I know that mining companies want to get into the area and I know you're dithering about whether or not you should allow mining in the park. Don't let them in for the sake of a bit of quick money - controlled tourism to the area could be just as lucrative.

    Swaziland - Mountains (Malolotja National Park)
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    Game reserves

    by africaking Written Aug 20, 2004

    There are quite a few game reserves or wild life santuaries in Swaziland, all offer great services and there is plenty to see, of course they won't be huge, because the country is so small but still enough to satisfy you.

    taking your car is recommended, but you can hire a guide to take you out and about, sometimes you might even see more that way.

    zebra near town
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    The Ezulwini Valley

    by wadekorzan Updated Jun 18, 2004

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    This is the valley which starts just near Mbabane, and as there are not many sights in Mbabane itself, it's worth stoppng there just at the tourist office and then moving on to this valley. One of the top things to see in the valley is the Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary where you can stay at Reilly's Rock (which is incredible!). On your way to Mlilwane, you can stop in the town called Lobamba to see the Royal Palace. Swaziland is the only kingdom in Africa and the royal palace is quite nice. It's not open to the public and you cannot take pictures, but it's still worth seeing. Also in Lobamba there is the National Museum which is very neat because there is a traditional beehive village there which I can highly recommend.

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