A selected expert guide to luxury hiking in Swaziland
“Tall misty mountains to the west, and plains teeming with wildlife in the lowveld to the east — a true nature lovers paradise.” ~ Dust and Boots
Africa’s smallest country is perhaps one of the most beautiful. The Kingdom of Swaziland prides itself with magnificent scenery from rivers, waterfalls and gorges, to unique rock formations. These are among the world’s most ancient, lush and fertile valleys.
Made up of the highveld, middleveld and lowveld, Swaziland’s terrain changes dramatically. The highveld is comprised of hills, waterfalls and great buttresses of ancient rock, giving the country a dramatic and impressive landscape. The middleveld is made up of the bush and the savannah. The lowveld is bush country sitting as low as 21m above sea level. Although much drier than the other areas, it is home to vast, heavily irrigated sugar estates.
Luxury hiking Swaziland scenery:
There is so much scenery to discover and enjoy in Swaziland. For example the striking Nyonyane Mountain is where ancient bushmen once lived. This is also where the Swazi royal graves are situated, which have an exposed granite peak known as the Execution Rock.
Along the eastern border, forming a natural barrier between Swaziland and Mozambique, is a line of rugged volcanic hills known as the Lubombos. These rise abruptly from the lowveld to about 600m. These hills are made up of a number of ridges broken by deep gorges where the Usutu, Ngwavuma and Mbuluzi rivers carve through to the Indian Ocean.
The Mahamba Gorge, which lies west of Nhlangano, offers excellent photographic opportunities, and no wonder. Giant hamerkop nests are found in the forest on the short, easy trail to the “beach” on the river banks.
Another beauty is the Ngwempisi River which has sliced its way through the sandstone and shale of the Ntfungulu Hills to create the Ngwempisi Gorge. Here flatlands and undulating hills range from a mere 50m to 800m above sea level.
One of Swaziland’s most amazing natural phenomenons is Sibebe Rock, the largest exposed granite pluton in the world. Although different in their geology, Sibebe Rock is second only to Ayers Rock in Australia as the largest freestanding rock in the world.
Swaziland is a strikingly beautiful country and visitors to this African gem will always have a memorable and satisfying experience. The stunning landscapes of mountains and valleys, forests and plains, plus wildlife reserves across the country that are home to The Big Five. This nation is all that’s best about Africa in one small but perfectly formed and welcoming country.
+ Landscape Itinerary
- Day 1
- Arrive at Ngwenya Border Post. From the border, drive to Malolotja Nature Reserve. Enjoy a once in a lifetime experience at the Malolotja Tree Top Canopy Tour. Experience mountain scenery like never before. Have lunch at the restaurant. Do a site inspection at Hawane Resort. Drive to Phophonyane Falls and Eco lodge. Check in and have dinner.
- Day 2
- Have Breakfast at Phophonyane Falls Eco lodge and enjoy a walk which includes a trail along the river. Drive to Maguga Lodge, relax and enjoy a boat ride with drinks in hand. Pick up a lunch basket at Pigg’s Peak Hotel, and then go to the gap to see the amazing pot holes. Drive to Mbabane through Pigg’s Peak – Jubukweni scenic route. Go to Ramblas restaurant for an early dinner. Check in at Mountain Inn; a room with a view
- Day 3
- Have breakfast and check out. Drive to Ezulwini Valley. Visit Yebo Art Gallery, it offers a diverse selection of work by various artists in Swaziland such as sculptures, photography, ceramics, paintings and prints. Drive to Mantenga Cultural Village where you will learn more about the typical Swazi way of life and watch traditional dances. Drive to Shewula Mountain Camp and check in. Have dinner and spend the night
- Day 4
- An early breakfast starts your day. Go hiking on their scenic route trails. Check out and drive to Hlane Royal National Park for a game drive, where you will come face to face with big five. Drive to Mananga Country Club where you will have lunch on board the booze cruise. Afterwards drive to Summerfield Botanical Gardens. Go for a tour of the grounds. Have dinner and spend the night
- Day 5
- A late morning starts your day. After breakfast check out and prepare for your departure. Hambani Kahle!
Book luxury hiking in Swaziland
Dust and Boots provide exclusive hiking tours focussed on enjoying nature and exploring wild places in Southern Africa. Based in Swaziland most of the companies tours and hikes explore the beauty of this small country, its stunning trails, exclusive flowers and birds, and of course wildlife.
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Tracy Burrows160 Posts
If there is one thing that I have learnt, it is the more I see, the more there is to see! My name is Tracy Burrows and I am the managing editor of Out There Global, a community driven travel platform for both cost effective and luxury travel ideas around the world. From Jan 2014 - Dec 2016 I managed the LatestSightings.com blog (a United Nations World Summit Award Winner: Culture & Tourism 2016 & National Geographic partner). I was also consulting editor at MOZambique Magazine, and contributor at Sawubona. Prior to my career I obtained a tourism marketing degree, and graduated from a 2 year 'Hospitality Management in Development Program' in California. Following this I acquired a journalism diploma and since it's been all about travel and writing! And my nourishment from all those who have impacted me: family; friends; and strangers alike. Thank you for joining our journey!