The 36 000-ha Mkuze Game Reserve
is situated in northern Zululand, off the N2 and about 335 km from Durban.
It comprises a variety of bushveld habitats that support black and white rhino, giraffe, nyala, blue wildebeest, warthog, eland, hippo, impala, kudu and other smaller antelope, as well as rare species like cheetah, hyaena, suni and leopard.
The four game-viewing hides at Kubube, Kumasinga, Kwamalibala and Kumahlala offer visitors a wonderful opportunity to observe large concentrations of game at waterholes, especially in the dry winter months from June to October.
Animals may arrive to drink at the waterholes at any time, however, the largest concentrations of game are usually seen between 9 am and 12 noon. Guided game walks can be booked at the camp office and these take place twice daily starting at 06h00 in summer, and 15h00 in winter.
The two birdwatching hides that have been erected next to the Nsumo Pan - Bube and Masinga - are perfect for observing waterfowl in the summer, and for spotting some of the over 420 species of birds found in the reserve. Guided birding walks may be booked at the camp office, and these take place twice daily starting at 06h00 in summer, and 15h00 in winter. Checklists are available from the curio shop.
The Fig Forest Trail is a 3-km walk that starts at the car park at Nsumo Pan and is marked by antelope spoor as trail indicators. A short walk through open woodland takes you to the Mkuze River.
In winter the river is usually dry enough to walk across, but in summer, when the river may be quite full, there is a suspension bridge that leads you across into the forest of sycamore fig trees.
This tree, Ficus sycomorus, grows well on the flood plains of the Mkuze River, and the larger trees at Mkuzi have a girth of 12 m and a height of 25 m. Birdwatchers have the opportunity of spotting fruit-eaters like the green pigeon, purplecrested lourie and trumpeter hombill, as well as Pel's fishing owl, southem banded snake eagle, narina trogon, and insect-eaters like the goldentailed woodpecker and squaretailed drongo.
Monkeys and baboons also make their home in the forest and can be seen or heard above in the forest canopy. The trail follows a circular route through the forest and then retums across the Mkuze River flood plain to the car park.
Game-viewing drives at night can also be arranged one day in advance with the Camp Office. These drives give visitors an excellent opportunity too see nocturnal animals and birdlife
Accommodation in Mkuze Game Reserve is available at the Mantuma Camp
Mkuze Game Reserve Day Walks Map:
For visitors from the south, the turn off to Mkhuze is signposted 35 kms north of Hluhluwe. From this point, the road is gravel. Approximately 15 kms further is another signposted road through the Lebombo mountains. The entrance to the reserve is 10 kms along this road which is clearly signposted.
Visitors from the north must travel to Mkuze village which is 18 kms from the entrance gate and 28 kms from Mantuma camp.
The nearest town which has a full range of services is Mkuze.
Summer ( October to March ) - 05h00 to 19h00
Winter (April to September ) - 06h00 to 18h00
The office is open from 08h00 to 12h30 and from 14h00 to 16h30
Clothing & Accessories:
Anti-malaria precautions are advisable.
Health & Climate:
Summers are hot and humid with rain; winters are pleasantly mild.