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Rich, vibrant and utterly picturesque, the Kingdom of Swaziland is a most diverse destination. As you travel throughout this African land, you 'll discover its mountains, its savannahs, its populace - a people so warm and welcoming, you may feel you've been here a lifetime. You are invited to explore the traditions and discover the culture of which Swaziland is so proud. And you are encouraged to travers the landscape, and experience a beauty that is incomparable to any other in the world.


We are thrilled to welcome you to the Kingdom, a gem ensconced between sub-Saharan lands. Here, you'll discover four different geographies and countless ways to experience them.


Top Swaziland Activities for every travel desire 

Hiking: Swaziland is one of the most beautiful destinations in Africa, and its diverse landscape is best viewed from the top. Hit one of the country’s renowned hiking trails to get a birds-eye view of the country – from its verdant hills and savannahs and its mountain ranges and bustling villages.

White water rafting: White water rafting is one of the leading Swaziland Activities on offer, and you’re invited to take to the rapids to experience it for yourself. You don’t need any experience – in fact, you don’t even need to be a swimmer – but you will get wet! For any traveller seeking a true Swazi adventure experience, white water rafting on the Great Usutu River is not to be missed.

Horse-riding: Many Swaziland attractions have been designed to take full advantage of the country’s breathtaking beauty, and horse-riding in Swaziland is no exception. Via horseback is the ideal way to experience the peace and tranquillity of the country, as well as the lush beauty that defines the land.

Mountain climbing: From the slopes and mountain tops of Swaziland’s sweeping ranges, you’ll experience the panoramic views for which the country is famed. From this vantage point, take in the rural villages, diverse vegetation and rustic charm of the kingdom. Superb walking and hiking trails are to be found in the Malolotia Nature Reserve, situated in the Swazi highlands. Browse Swaziland Hiking sites.

Safaris and Game Parks: In Swaziland, there’s a notable concentration of Big Five animals, which are best viewed in the region’s game parks and reserves. Some of the most popular wildlife reserves are the Mkhaya Game Reserve, Hlane Royal National Park, Malolotia Nature Reserve and the Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary. These parks enable visitors to explore indigenous fauna and flora at close range, providing fantastic viewing and photographic opportunities. Browse Swaziland Safaris and Game parks.

Bird-watching: One of the premier Swaziland attractions is bird-watching, as the country is known for its vast assortment of feathered species. More than 500 species have been identified in the small country, making it a paradise for bird-watching enthusiasts. The Hlane Royal National Reserve is home to Africa’s largest concentration of whitebacked vultures, while the Mlawula Nature Reserve and Mbuluzi Game Reserve feature 350 and 400 bird-types respectively.Browse bird watching sites here .

Eating out: A variety of restaurants and foods are available in Swaziland, and fare caters for every taste. From delicious local fare to more common western offerings.

White-water rafting

Is the most popular activity in Swaziland.Excitement on the Great Usuthu River ( the largest river flowing through Swaziland) is a definite " must-do" activity in Swaziland. 2-man inflatable croc-crafts are safely guided down the river. This challenge is suitable for absolute beginners as well as seasoned adventurers. During the low season a combination of abseiling, kloof jumping and rafting keeps adrenaline on a high. A picnic style lunch and refreshments are enjoyed on the side of the river.

Half or full day options available. Contact Swazi Trails for bookings on: (+268) 24162180 or after hours on: (+268) 7602061. on email: info@swazitrails.co.sz

Swazi Trails - detailed info: http://www.swazitrails.co.sz
Swazi Trails - online booking: http://www.swazi.travel

The Incwala, or first fruits ceremony, in which the King plays a dominant role, is the most sacred of all the Swazi rituals. It is held in December or January on a date chosen by astrologers in conjunction with the phases of the moon and sun. The ritual begins with a journey by the “Bemanti” (people of the water) to the Indian Ocean to collect water and on their return to the royal kraal, the little Incwala begins, on the new moon.
At the full moon, youths from all parts of the kingdom travel to collect the sacred branches of the “lusekwane” shrub, a species of acacia. On the third day a bull is ritually slaughtered by the youths, instilling solidarity among them and a spirit of valour. The fourth day is the culmination of the Incwala when the King, in full ceremonial dress, joins his warriors in the traditional dance. He then enters a special sanctuary and after further rituals, eats the first fruits of the season. On the appearance of the King to his people, they may also eat these fruits with the blessing of the ancestors.Certain parts of the Incwala may not be witnessed by outside people and it is vital to have a permit to take photographs within the proximity of the royal cattle byre.

The Umhlanga (or Reed Dance) takes place in  late August or early September each year. It is a dance which attracts young maidens from every area of the Kingdom and provides the occasion for them to honour and pay homage to the Queen Mother (iNdlovukazi). Most of the participants are teenagers, although some of the girls are younger. Over 20 000 maidens gather reeds from selected areas which they present to the King and the Queen Mother.


This ceremony is a centuries old tradition where the Kingdom’s unmarried and childless females present their newly cut reed to the Queen Mother to protect her residence.

Dates of the event are set only a few weeks in advance. When the right day arrives, young women from all over Swaziland and beyond her borders converge on the royal residence in Ludzidzini for this momentous occasion.

Maidens gather in groups and head out along riverbanks to cut and collect tall reeds, bind them and return to Ludzidzini, the Royal Homestead in Lobamba.  

Tens of thousands of maidens, led by Swazi princesses, provide a sea of colour as they dance and sing, proudly carrying their cut reeds. Traditionally, virginity is a pre-requisite for participation as it is considered taboo for an ‘impure’ woman to cut the reed.

Residents of this tiny mountainous Kingdom are intensely proud of their deep culture and taking part in the Festival is a proud and privileged moment for all the family.

The highlight of the event is the reed-giving ceremony - one of Africa’s largest and most colourful cultural spectacles. The maidens gather at Ludzidzini dressed in traditional attire; bright short beaded skirts with colourful sashes revealing their bare breasts to dance and sing and celebrate the unification of the Kingdom’s women. His Majesty King Mswati lll joins the celebrations to pay tribute to the maidens.

At the end of the day, the maidens present their cut reeds to the Queen Mother, Ndlovukazi, and the protective Guma (reed fence) around her homestead will be rebuilt.

The Umhlanga Festival is a visual spectacle that bonds this small but perfectly formed nation. Its ever- increasing popularity defies the apparent decline of traditional cultures elsewhere in Africa. Witnessing this festival is a truly unique experience. Visitors are welcome, but are vastly outnumbered by the participants!  This is a traditional event that allows spectators, not one that exists for spectators.

See it for yourself and experience Swaziland’s unique blend of ancient culture, pristine wilderness, year round wildlife and spirit of adventure.


His Majesty King Mswati III and Her Majesty Indlovukazi provided their Royal approval for the opening of the Magadzavane Tourism Complex in Mlawula this week along with members of the Swaziland National Trust Commission board.
Newly-appointed Tourism Minister Mduduzi ‘Small Joe’ Dlamini helped the King to present a gift to Taiwanese Ambassador, Peter Tsai. Representatives of the different companies which were involved in the construction of the complex also got an opportunity to pose with Their Majesties.
Nestled within Mlawula Nature Reserve, Magadzavane is situated 16km from Siteki, near the Goba/Mhlumeni border, offering spectacular views and tranquil, relaxing environment.
The resort comprises forty en-suite units, restaurant, bar, conference centre and swimming pool with a breathtaking views over the Lubombo mountains.


It is also an ideal stop-over point for visitors travelling to and from Mozambique. Activities within Mlawula Nature Reserve can be enjoyed by visitors staying at the lodge, which include game viewing including sightings of elephants, buffalo, hippo and cheetah as well as more elusive leopard, pangolin and honey badgers.
Guests can also enjoy hiking trails, picnics, mountain biking, bird watching and fishing, there is also a spacious main camp for tents and caravans.
The reserve lies within the transitional zone between Swaziland’s two bio geographic regions, the dry thorn savannas of the west, and the lush coastal thickets of the east. The reserve consists of three distinct ecological zones, the Ndzindza plateau, the Siphiso Valley and the rhyolite ridges of the western boundary.
Although small, the reserve is contiguous with other protected areas (Mbuluzi and Simunye Nature Reserves, Hlane Wildlife Sanctuary), and other areas of natural vegetation (north bank of the Mbuluzi River, Mhlumeni area, adjacent area in Mozambique).
For further information on Swaziland contact us on + 44 (0)115 9727250 or email: swaziland@geo-group.co.uk