Posted by: RasmaSandra | October 2, 2017

Spectacular Swaziland


Our armchair travels have taken us to Swaziland, a small, landlocked monarchy in southern Africa.

swazi lebombo

It shares a northeastern border with Mozambique then stretches down to South Africa with a background of the Lebombo Mountains.

 Seat of Monarchy and Parliament

 swazi lobamba

Lobamba is the seat of Swaziland’s monarchy and parliament located southeast of the capital city Mbabane.

swazi national

Visit the National Museum with interesting displays of Swazi culture including a traditional beehive village and cattle enclosure. You can also see several of King Sobhuza II’s cars dating from the 1940s.

swazi memorial 2

King Sobhuza II Memorial Park is adjacent to the Parliament. This memorial was established as a tribute to King Sobhuza II, who led Swaziland to independence from British rule in 1968.

swazi memorial

The main highlight here is the 3m tall bronze statue of the king. A small museum displays photos and documents about his life. The king’s mausoleum is also in the park.

swazi parliament 2

Parliament opened in 1969 as a post-independence gift from the British. This hexagonal building is topped with a brass dome and a major landmark. At times it is open to visitors.

swazi somhlolo-national-stadium

Somhlolo National Stadium was built for Swaziland’s independence in 1968. This is a 20,000 capacity national stadium, hosting soccer matches and used for important state occasions like coronations. It was named after King Sobhuza I, also known as Somhlolo, the founding father of the Swazi nation.

Traveling in Swaziland

swazi mbabane

Mbabane is Swaziland’s cool-climate capital.

swazi mbabane market

It’s home to the Swazi Market. A lively place where you can purchase most anything.

swazi mbabane craft market

Visitors can enjoy the crafts at Tintsaba Crafts, just past the Piggs Peak Hotel.

swazi mbabane umbeluzi

You can take a wonderful excursion from Mbabane to lovely Pine Valley and follow along the Umbeluzi River with waterfalls.

 swazi hlane game 2

The Hlane (Wilderness) Game Sanctuary is home to the largest herds of game in the country. It is the one place in Swaziland where visitors can see lions, elephants and rhinos. It is a great place for bird watchers having the highest density of breeding white backed vultures on the continent.

swazi hlane game 3

Visitors have to have a guided game drive to see the lions which make their home in a separate enclosure. Other self-guided drives are allowed in other areas. You can choose mountain biking, cultural visits to a nearby Swazi village, bird walks and overnight fully-catered bush treks.

swazi mbuluzi-game-reserve

Mbuluzi Game Reserve is privately owned. This is a peaceful retreat sitting on the banks of the croc-filled Mlawula River.

swazi mbul

Visitors can enjoy self-guided wildlife safaris and see animals like giraffe, zebra, kudu, jackal, wildebeest and nyala during the day and hyenas, genets, servals and honey badgers during the night.

swazi mbulu narina trogon

There are over 300 bird species among them the beautiful Narina trogon. Visitors can hike along the well-marked nature trails, mountain bike and fish in the two rivers. Accommodation can be along the riverfront campsites and safari tents or several family lodges.

swazi mla 2


Mililwane Wildlife Sanctuary is in the beautiful Ezulwini Valley. This is one of Swaziland’s first conservation areas and its most popular game reserve. It was established by Ted and Elizabeth Reilly, who turned their farm into a game reserve.

swazi mla mountain.jpg

It is surrounded by the Nyonyane Mountains. It is home to over 400 species of birds and animals among them zebras, vervet monkeys, crocodiles, warthogs, caracals, hippos and antelopes.

swazi mliliwane

Activities here include game drives, nature walks, mountain biking, horseback riding, a village cultural experience and swimming in the rest camp’s pool. For accommodation you can choose self-contained cottages, traditional Swazi-style beehive huts and a luxury hilltop lodge.

swazi malo 4

Malolotja  Nature Reserve is the largest protected area in the country. Its name means “river with many rapids and waterfalls”.

swazi malo falls

It is divided by the Malolotja River which forms a series of waterfalls including the country’s highest cascades, the Malolotja Falls.

 swazi BlueCraneMlilwanePdeWaal

One of the best features of the reserve is its hiking trails. The fauna is notable for the abundance of reptiles and birds like breeding groups of endangered species such as blue cranes and bald ibis. Among the mammals are rock hyraxes, eland and zebra.

swazi malo 2

A great way to experience the reserve is taking the Treetop Canopy Tour.

 swazi mliliwanse 2

The Mlawula Nature Reserve extends from the lowlands up into the Lebombo Mountains. The landscape here ranges from dry savannah to rolling green valleys and dense riverine forests with mountains rising along the Mozambique border. Among the wildlife here are wildebeest, kudu, impala and tortoises. There are 350 species of birds.

Roads allow for self-guided game drives and for hiking on the walking trails. Fishing is popular here. Accommodations consists of campsite, luxury, ensuite tents and a cottage.


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