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from £3195
An intrepid journey in Swaziland, the oldest mountain kingdom in the Southern African region and ruled by King Mswati III.
  • Product Code 48020
  • Holiday Type Sightseeing And Walking Holidays, Rich In Wildlife Holidays, New Holidays
  • Grade

    Grades 1, 2 & 3 - Leisurely grades

    Grades 4, 5 & 6 - Moderate grades

    Grades 7, 8 & 9 - Challenging grades

    Grade 4
  • Holiday Duration 12 Nights

Swaziland, recently renamed eSwantini (Land of the Swazis), encapsulates the best of Sub-saharan Africa. It is the oldest Mountain Kingdom in Southern Africa, with breathtaking landscapes, welcoming locals and unique wildlife sightings. Heritage is extremely important to the Swazis so local traditions such as dancing and singing are still celebrated. Wildlife is also a big feature and we’re likely to come close to zebra, rhino, elephant, kudu, impala and warthog.

Our adventure sees us visit Mlilwane’s conservation area where walking safaris will allow us to meander through the reserve. We will visit the Swazi village, Mantenga, to immerse you in local traditions with the back drop of the famous granite peak, Nyonyana, the Execution Rock.

We venture up the world’s second largest freestanding rock, Sibebe Rock, for panoramic views. Rhino Game Drives and a network of walking trails in Hlane Royal National Park will create memorable experiences. We'll explore the impressive mountain landscape of the Malolotja Nature Reserve and enjoy walking through its dramatic valleys. We'll also visit the 40,000 year old Nywenya mine, the oldest mine in the world. Swaziland is small, but with vast rugged mountains, volcanic hills, waterfalls, and wild gorges; the country will reward us with the most awe-inspiring panoramic views.

Your Local Guide

Jenny Bowen Swaziland Local Guide

Jenny Bowen is our certified Swaziland tour guide. Professionally she is an ecologist having studied at Leeds University, a qualified Summer Mountain Leader and remote first aider. She has been guiding trips in Africa since 1992. After graduating, she was the permanent ecologist for Raleigh International in Zimbabwe where she set up numerous conservation projects, managed volunteers and collated scientific data. It was here that she promptly fell in love with the continent and spent two years living there. Since Zimbabwe, she has spent many years working in Africa, has led expeditions to Africa, worked for a game capture unit in South Africa and set up conservation and community projects in Swaziland.

Jenny has a passion for conservation, an in-depth knowledge about African wildlife and an obsession with giraffe having spent countless hours tracking these animals. She wrote a book named ‘Sense Africa Five Ways’, a collection of anecdotal stories about Africa. 


Holiday Highlights

  • Enjoy spectacular walking with some of the world’s most beautiful scenery.
  • Discover local villages to enjoy traditional dancing, singing and sample local food.
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Return flights from Heathrow to Johannesburg (British Airways)
      Internal flights and transfers
      Breakfasts and dinners.Mainly taken at the hotels
      English speaking local guide throughout
      All local transport and activities are included.
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised program, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 4/SS

  1. Day 1

    Overnight flight from London Heathrow to Johannesburg Airport.

  2. Day 2

    We arrive in Johannesburg airport and transfer to Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary (4 ½ hours). On arrival, there is a chance for us to stretch our legs and walk amongst the game, a gentle starter to an exciting holiday!

  3. Day 3

    We will start the day with a guided walking safari through Mlilwane following the Hippo Trail around the Hippo pool and central plains (4 miles, 2 ½ - 3 hours). We may be lucky enough to see Hippo, Antelope, Wildebeeste, Zebra and Impala! In the afternoon we will visit Mantenga where we will see a stunning waterfall, impressive mountains and visit a traditional local village. Here we will learn about the Swazi culture. We will be welcomed by traditional singing and dancing and learn the roles of the chief, his wives, their sons, daughters and the traditional healer! The backdrop of the village is the famous Execution rock, a great opportunity to capture a fantastic photo! To finish the day we will go on a game drive finishing with sundowners in the reserve.

  4. Day 4

    Today we will follow a trail up to the summit of the famous Sibebe Rock, the largest exposed granite pluton in the world and second largest freestanding rock in the world, second to Ayres Rock in Australia! The summit stands at 800m so there are incredible views of the surrounding landscape at the top. The ascent will take approximately 2 ½ hours whereas the descent will be around 1 ½ hours in length. There is also time to explore various caves and waterfalls. We will enjoy lunch on Sibebe – a perfect day!

  5. Day 5

    We start the morning with another walk around the reserve before we transfer to Hlane. En route, there is an opportunity to stop off at a local children’s centre for vulnerable children where we can spend time with them and give them a helping hand to increase their social skills by playing and talking with them. In the afternoon, we will go on a sundowner safari to see Elephant, Rhino and even Lion! This will take 2 ½ hours so plenty of time for picture perfect opportunities – have your cameras ready!

  6. Day 6

    Our morning will start with a walk through the bush to discover Hlane with a local guide. We will learn about the traditional use of the local plants and many interesting facts about the wildlife. We will also learn about the tasks taken to prevent poaching of game in the areas as the local guides here are also rangers who take part in foot patrols for the anti-poaching team. On one of our afternoons during our stay in Hlane, we will enjoy a Rhino drive so we can have the unique and exciting opportunity to see Rhino up close and even on foot!

  7. Day 7

    Today we will head to Mbuluzi Game Reserve for some hiking. We will explore the area and its variety of trees and ecosystems. We will take a path along the river where we have the opportunity of possibly seeing Zebra, Kudu, Impala, Warthog and Giraffe!

  8. Day 8

    We have the great opportunity of spending a day at Shewula Mountain Camp, the first community eco-tourism project in Swaziland and one of the most successful ones in the whole of Southern Africa. The local community run the camp so the profits are used to continuously develop and improve the impoverished area. We will be welcomed into homesteads where we can chat with the locals and truly immerse ourselves into Swazi life. A traditional lunch will be provided for us whilst we enjoy the beautiful scene below of thatched and stone houses, fields of maize cotton, fields of vegetables and the Lumbombo conservancy.

  9. Day 9

    Today we will transfer to Foresters where we will visit the incredible production of Swazi Candles. We will watch the candles sculpted into colourful animal shapes such as Lion, Elephant and other Swazi wildlife. Once we arrive at Foresters, we will walk in the plantations and climb the viewpoint in the area for an unforgettable sight!

  10. Day 10

    We will visit one of the most extraordinary mountain parks in South Africa, Malolotja Nature Reserve. This is the largest protected area in the Kingdom. The spectacular scenery and variety of fauna and flora makes it a prime conservation area. The views here are unforgettable! We will take a 3-4 hour hike where we meander through valleys and mountains. There are areas of relatively steep descents and inclines on rugged footpaths (150m descent). The circular route will start from Logwaja View point to Siloftwane view point. After lunch at Malolotja, we will travel to Ngwenya mine to learn about the history and walk to the incredible view point to see the open cast mine from above. This is the oldest mine in the world and dates back 40,000 years! We finish the day with a visit to Ngwenya Glass factory to watch glass be sculpted into spectacular animal figures!

  11. Day 11

    We will take a morning walk in the mountains surrounding the hotel. We will take the old Gin Trail and learn about the local history. This afternoon can be spent at leisure. You can enjoy the tranquillity of the grounds, watch the incredible bird life, explore some more on a self guided walking track or simply sit back, relax and smile at your Swaziland experience.

  12. Day 12

    We say goodbye to Swaziland. We transfer back to Johannesburg Airport for our evening flight.

  13. Day 13

    Arrive in the UK.

Travel Details

  • Return flights from Heathrow to Johannesburg (British Airways)
  • Internal flights and transfers - arrival transfer by road c.5hrs
  • Upgrades are available on most flights. For scheduled flights this may be Premium Economy, Business or First Class. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.
  • If direct regional flights are not available, we can often offer add-on flights to a London airport at a competitive rate. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.

Trip Map

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Our Accommodation on this holiday

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday. If you are on a multi-centre holiday, these are highlights of the places where we stay. Please refer to your Holiday Information sheet (which can be found under View Departures & Book), for your departure date and for all your accommodation details.

Hlane Ndlovu Camp, Hlane Royal National Park

Ndlovu Camp is located immediately inside Hlane National Park, our accommodation is in traditional rondavels which have en-suite facilities. Each cluster of rondavels are named after different villages and we stay in the ‘Wisteria Village’. Within Wisteria is a stunning open-air restaurant with views of a waterhole often frequented by rhino and elephants. At night sounds of lions can be heard in the distance. Please note Ndlovu Camp does not have electricity. The rooms are lit up by paraffin lanterns and candles in the evening. Hot water is available in all of the accommodation.

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