It’s been two weeks since I was last able to take visitors to the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve for a safari tour, so I was pretty excited when the day arrived to collect two visitors from Germany for an overnight tour of the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve.
After picking Eveline and Michael up from the “Quarters on Avondale” hotel, we headed straight for the game park, arriving at around 11am. We entered through Memorial Gate and within 20 minutes had spotted 2 of the “Big-5“; Elephant and Buffalo! Too be fair though the Elephant was a fair distance away and we needed the binoculars, but it still counts!
We spent the rest of the morning exploring the northern section of the park, spotting Baboon, Buffalo, Nyala and quite a variety of birdlife. At one point we stopped at a picnic site to stretch our legs and spotted some Nyala on the edge of the site, Michael had his camera ready and managed to get a few pictures.
The rest of the morning turned out to be a little on the quiet side, it was an extremely hot day so we decided to head straight for Hilltop camp. Along the way we came across two Giraffe making their way up the hill as well, they patiently posed for us, allowing their pictures to be taken.
At the top of the hill I spotted some tracks in the softer sand, it appeared to be Rhino and I was pretty sure they were headed for a nearby waterhole, so we decided to take a chance and see if the Rhino had arrived… and luck it seemed was still on our side!
Four White Rhino (or more correctly, “Square-Lipped Rhino“) were slowly but surely making their way up to the waterhole. We pulled over and just enjoyed the sight of these magnificent animals as they wondered past the car (at one point they were just meters from the car!).
Interestingly, later on during the day, two female Rhino’s were resting in the waterhole when a big male Rhino arrived, the ladies weren’t pleased with the interloper and as one they stood up and faced the big male, absolutely refusing to give ground.
The male snorted quite a bit, even charging the ladies at one point but breaking off before he got close to them. I think the heat of the day finally got to him as he gave a final “snort” and turned and waddled back in to the bush. The ladies then resumed their late afternoon dip in the mud pool!
The following day saw us up early for a game drive before breakfast. We headed out the gate and headed towards a section of park we hadn’t seen the day before. And we’re lucky we did so, not 10 minutes later we spotted the “King” himself! Two males lions were resting in the shade just 2 meter from the road side! We watched for a few minutes before the Lions decided to move off.
We spent the rest of the morning enjoying the sights and sounds of the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve bush-veld, before it was unanimously decided to head back for breakfast. On the way back we came across a troop of Baboons that were enjoying the excellent weather as much as we were (one or two were even sunbathing on the road!).
After a really hearty breakfast it was time to leave the park and head towards St.Lucia for the estuary boat cruise.
It turned out to be the perfect day for the river cruise, beautiful blue skies, a cooling breeze off the water, I wasn’t surprised when both Eveline and Michael got back pleased with the cruise!
We offer a number of tours to the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve, from day-tours to overnight and extended tours. We also offer tours to other parks in the KwaZulu-Natal region, as well as tour to the Kruger National Park. For more information on this or other tours, please drop us a line.