- Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Game Reserve
Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Game Reserve, KwaZulu-Natal
The sheer beauty of the landscape alone would justify conservation of the area of the Hluhluwe Game Reserve and its companion, Umfolozi.
Added to this is a wealth of plant life and animals and an atmosphere so pervaded by romance that it seems to be distilled from the ancient past of Zululand.
Hluhluwe, 25 000 hectares in area, contains white and black rhino, buffalo, nyala, zebra, blue wildebeest, kudu, impala, bushbuck, waterbuck, giraffe, warthog, bush pig, leopard, baboon and cheetah.
The Hluhluwe River, named from the thorny monkey ropes, Dalbergia armata, which grow in the riverine forests, flows through high hills. The river here is about 85m above sea level and the hill summits approach 600m. Dense bush chokes up the valleys of the river and its tributaries while patches of high forest and thick, open grass grow on the hill slopes.
The Mfolozi (zig-zag) River is so named because of its complex course through the hills of central Zululand. In its middle reaches the river divides into two; the Mfolozi emnyama (Black Mfolozi) to the north and the Mfolozi emphlophe (White Mfolozi) to the south. The colour differences are due to the soils through which the two rivers flow before they unite.
The grazing is rich, the climate warm to hot with ample water, exactly suited to most African mammals. Rhinos in particular like the area.
There is a substantial number of black rhino, Bushbuck, zebra, blue wildebeest, waterbuck, red and grey duiker, steenbuck, mountain reedbuck, klipspringer, impala, kudu, nyala, buffalo, giraffe, baboon, warthog, spotted hyena, black-backed jackal, cheetah, leopard and lion have also been re-established in the iMfolozi Reserve.
The Reserve is open throughout the year. There are huts in a camp, a game-viewing hide at one of the main drinking waterholes, a network of roads and 24 000 ha of wilderness area where parties are escorted on 3-day walks, camping at night in the bush.
The entire region has long been a haunt of game.
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