In honour of Swaziland celebrating 50 years since its independence, we’re bringing you our top five experiences to have in what’s considered to be ‘Africa in a nutshell’. Stretching just 200 kilometres from north to south and being one of the few remaining monarchies in Africa, this tiny country is not only easy to get around, but is considered much safer than that of South Africa and a true reflection of African culture.
1. Go wildlife Spotting
The kingdom of Swaziland is arguably Africa’s best kept secret. Filled with unspoiled nature and some of the friendliest locals you’ll ever come across, this is a country that was built for adventure. Coming face-to-face with exotic wildlife on a picturesque forest trail or on a visit to a game reserve is just one of the many adventurous experiences you can have on your trip.
2. Experience Marula Season
Every year between February and mid-May Swazi people celebrate the harvest of their most popular fruit, the Marula. Women and children gather the fallen fruits which are stored until ripened and mixed in water and sugar to ferment into beer. With culture and tradition being of great importance to the Swazi people, the ceremonies and festivities that take place throughout the season are not to be missed!
3. Visit Hlane Royal National Park
Hlane Royal National Park is home to all of the major wildlife including lions and elephants, making it a perfect day trip to take those all-important wildlife snaps, go camping or take off on a nature-filled bush trail. The park also has a range of facilities available to enjoy, includiing an open-air restaurant and game-viewing deck.
4. Go on a village tour of Lobamba
The village of Lobamba is the oldest in the country and is located in the Ezulwini valley. Visitors can opt to take off on a village tour that usually starts at the Swaziland National Museum where local guides can fill you in on the rich history, culture and traditions of this fascinating kingdom.
5. White water rafting in the Usutu River
What many don’t know about Swaziland is that is really is an outdoor lover’s paradise. This is a kingdom filled with adventure around every corner, with one of the many adventure-filled activities being white water rafting on the Usutu River. White water rafting is best experienced between the months of January-March where the river is at is most lively and gets your adrenaline pumping.
Why not join the quarter of a million tourists that visit every year and experience a royal kingdom like no other?