Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 Game reserve Archives - Tim Brown Tours
  • 16th September 2015

    Durban day tour 15th September 2015

     

     

    We began our Durban day tour to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve in Durban city where I collected my clients. It would be a day to remember with great sightings.

    I covered the usual history of Durban and KwaZulu Natal on route to the Hluhluwe Imfolozi big 5 game reserve and answered any questions my clients had.

     

    We arrived before 10 am and had immediate luck as we spotted Zebra and Giraffe together!

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day tour; Zebra

    Durban day tour; Zebra

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We then continued with our Durban day tour and our safari lead us to some Rhino, 3 of them! It was great to see a mother, calf and big male. At this point we also spotted Baboons and Nyala in the distance but continued to the Hluhluwe river which is mostly dry at this time of the year.

    It was here that we spotted some male Nyala doing what is referred to as philo – erection where the 2 male pounce around on another with the hair on the back of their necks and backs standing up as well as head down and tail up, This is basically to make themselves look bigger so that they can challenge another male for the rights to mate etc.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day tour; Nyala bull

    Durban day tour; Nyala bull

     

     

     

     

     

    We then made our way around the river after spotting some Buffalo far off the road and after enjoying one of the lovely view points we tried another to see if we could find Elephants. We were in luck as we found a bull Elephant down at a section of water in the river and we must have spend 30 minutes with him at this view point. We watched him mud wallow, rest his trunk on his tusk, feed and shake a sycamore fig tree to try get some fruits to fall down. He then went to sleep. It was amazing!

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day tour; Elephant

    Durban day tour; Elephant

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Video: Durban day safari; Elephant shakes figs off Sycamore Fig

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    This had been an amazing experience and is always better with a guide who is qualified and understand nature and the animals behaviour to ensure you have the best experience possible.

    I know my clients were very happy with this amazing sighting!

     

     

     

    We then moved on and tried to see if we could find Buffalo again but before we could I spotted a Rhino walking in the distance. It was the territorial male of the area so I let him walk on the path he usually uses and we gave him space to cross in front of us, It was amazing! Wow this had been an amazing Durban day tour so far!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day tour; Rhino

    Durban day tour; Rhino

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was now time to find those Buffalo before we stopped for lunch. It was great that this Durban day tour was working like clock work and my plans were working out for us all.

    We found our Buffalo and they were right next to the road and resting in the shade. The one female had a Red billed Ox Pecker on her face and she stuck her tongue out at us. This was really funny!

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day tour; Buffalo cow

    Durban day tour; Buffalo cow

     

     

     

     

     

     

    I think I have forgotten to mention the Giraffe we spotted in the distance and then some closer to the road! We found some Giraffe and one male was chasing the girls(some things never change) and he was testing the females urine to see if they were ready for mating! At least human don’t have to do this.

    He obviously did not find one that was ready as he moved off.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day tour; Giraffe

    Durban day tour; Giraffe

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After this great sighting on our Durban day tour we were all super happy and made our way to Hilltop camp for some lunch. It was a great lunch and we spend longer than usual there but we had good reason we had done so well in the morning so we enjoyed a cup of coffee after lunch.

     

    When we finished we left Hilltop and made our way to where I knew of a Giraffe that had been killed by Lions a few days before. The Lions had long since moved off due to the activity of vehicle and the moving of the carcass off the bridge where they killed it. So we only had vultures when we were there. It was still an amazing sighting and very smelly!

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day tour; Vultures feeding on Giraffe

    Durban day tour; Vultures feeding on Giraffe

     

     

     

     

     

    We left the scene of the crime and we began to make our way south towards another gate. On route we spotted some more Rhino near the road and Giraffe which just capped the day off for us all.

     

    It was now time to depart Hluhluwe Imfolozi big 5 game reserve where we had spent a very successful Durban day tour. We were all happy and we began the long drive back to Durban.

    We stopped along the way for a rest and to refuel and arrived back in Durban after 6pm.

     

    It had been an a great Durban day tour and if you would like to do one of these tour please click on the link below:

     

     

    Durban Big 5 day safari tour to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve. 

  • 1st September 2015

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari

     

     

    I met my clients for their Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari 2 days safari in Umhlanga(Durban) and we made our way to the world famous Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve. On route we would stop at the cat rehabilitation centre to interact with Cheetah hands on as well as a couple of other endangered wild cats.

     

    We had a great start as we chatted about the history of the area and then stopped for some coffee and a rest before we would arrive at our first destination for this 2 day Durban safari.

     

    The cat rehabilitation centre was amazing and my clients really enjoyed the interaction with the big and small cats.

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; two of my clients interacting with the Cheetah

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; two of my clients interacting with the Cheetah

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We then departed the Cat rehabilitation center for Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 game reserve. It was hear our safari would really begin. It was a hot day at 30 degrees and a little humid. This added to the atmosphere and we had some amazing sightings in the first hour and a half before we got to the Hilltop camp for lunch.

     

    In this time we spotted 3 of the Big 5, Rhino, Buffalo and Elephants as well as other smaller species of animal.

     

    The Big 5 is what most people want to come and see so we were lucky with the start we had.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Warthogs

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Warthogs

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After enjoyed the Warthogs next to the road we quickly found Rhino in the distance as well as Impala.

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Rhino and Impala

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Rhino and Impala

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As we continued a herd of Buffalo were in the distance and we watched then and a Rhino mother with calf.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Buffalo

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Buffalo

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As we continued we managed to find some Elephants in the thickets near the road and this with patients became a really good sighting.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Elephant

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Elephant

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We departed to the lodge and settled in to some lunch before checking in and taking a 20 minute rest before heading back out on safari.

     

    It wasn’t long before we spotted some Rhino near to the road and we got a great few photos to add to the collection.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Rhino

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Rhino

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We then had an amazing sighting of Baboons and a Bush buck as well as Rhino mother and calf. The Baboons always seem to intrigue humans and we watched them for some time before continuing our Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Baboon

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Baboon

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As we continued we spotted Nyala, Rhino, Wildebeest and Zebra in a short space of time it had been an amazing day!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Zebra

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Zebra

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was not time to get back to the lodge for the clients open vehicle game drive and it was here that I got some time to write this. I would meet my clients again at 8pm for dinner and as it was only a 2 day safari we planned to head out very early at 6 am the next day to see what we could find.

     

    After a good night sleep we met at 6am and began day 2 of our Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari.

     

     

     

    Day 2: Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari

     

     

    It was a 6am start and and we were all a little tired after a long day before but all very happy at the prospect of seeing more animals and experiencing another great day on safari in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve.

     

    Our first major sighting was of these amazing Giraffe on and next to the road. The big male was testing all the female urine to see if they were ready to be mated.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Giraffe

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Giraffe

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Video: Durban overnight safari; Giraffe tests female for mating readiness

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After this amazing sighting and the first Giraffe we has seen we continued further south in the quest to find more Lions.

    We found some Leopard tracks and scat but no cat but it was fine and we continued spotting Zebra, Rhino and Nyala before finding a lovely herd of Elephant after the Umfolozi river crossing the road in front of us.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Elephant baby

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Elephant baby

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We continued on and had some lovely sightings of Rhino the best probably being this one of a mother and small calf. Wow, we had been having a great Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Rhino mother and calf

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Rhino mother and calf

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We were running out of time now and the day was getting hot so we headed back to the Umfolozi river and were very lucky to spot four bull Elephants that went to have a drink at the river as well as a sand bath.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Elephants

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Elephants

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After another amazing sighting of Elephants we made our way towards the gate and it was now time to head off to St Lucia – Isimangaliso wetland park.

    We took a breather and then we were there at South Africa’s first world heritage site. It is one of the only places you can find Hippos, Crocodiles and Sharks in the same waters.

     

     

    We first had lunch and then we head to the St Lucia estuary for our 2 hour boat cruise.

     

    Our Cruise was awesome and we saw lots on Hippos and crocodile.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Hippos at St Lucia

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; Hippos at St Lucia

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We had my best sighting of an African fish eagle that I actually captured on photo! I was really stoked.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; African Fish eagle in flight

     

    Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari; African Fish eagle in flight

     

     

     

     

     

    After an amazing 2 days of safari from Durban in the World famous Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve and World heritage site of Isimangaliso wetland park – St Lucia we headed back to Durban.

     

    On route we stopped for some coffee and to stretch the legs before we covered our final questions and arrived back in Umhlanga near Durban.

     

    What a great 2 day Durban safari.

     

     

    If you would like to share in this experience please click on the link below to see the rates:

     

    Durban 2 day safari tour 

  • 11th July 2015

    Durban day safari – 10th July 2015

     

     

    Our Durban day safari began in Durban where I collected some of my clients for this African safari near Durban. We continued to Umhlanga to collect Nick and then headed up to Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 game reserve.

     

    I was a little concerned as I had been up a few days in the week already and it had been a little quiet on the Cat front so decided to play it safe and enter a gate I knew we would have more chance at finding animals.

     

    After covering some of the interesting History of Durban, KwaZulu Natal we arrived at the gate and entered into the Hluhluwe Section of the game reserve.

     

    We were in luck as the African Wild dogs the most endangered carnivore in Africa were in the area the only problem was they were hunting in the thickets so we couldn’t see them. We waited a bit then went to look at some Zebra before returning. Upon returning we got one African wild dog running down the road towards the den site so he could regurgitate meat for either the puppies or the mother.

    It was great as we had the dog to ourselves. Once he disappeared we found the others and followed them as they ran straight past two old Buffalo bulls who just watched them run by!

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; African Wild dogs

    Durban day safari; African Wild dogs

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Video – Durban day safari; African Wild dogs run past Buffalo

     

     

     

     

     

    This had been an amazing sighting and I tried to explain this to my clients about how special and endangered the African Wild dogs are which is never easy as they are dogs.

     

    We stopped back at the Buffalo to enjoy them and one old male gave me the stare which says “You owe me money!”

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; Buffalo

    Durban day safari; Buffalo

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    On our way round to a dirt road loop we found a dazzle of Zebra near the road and they we closer that the others we had seen earlier. Wow, what a great start to our Durban day safari in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve.

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; Zebra

    Durban day safari; Zebra

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    On the loop we managed to find Baboons and a red Duiker feeding off the fruits that the Vervet Monkeys were dropping from the Sycamore fig tree.

    I got a great shot of one female with the baby Baboon on her back! Baboons are always interesting to see on our Durban safaris as they are so much like humans.

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; Baboons

    Durban day safari; Baboons

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As we continued our Durban day safari we found some Warthogs which were so red which is obviously from the soil that they sleep in when they are in their burrows and the colour of the mud the wallow in.

     

    One actually rubbed her bum on a little bank of an old dry mud wallow.

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; Warthog scratching

    Durban day safari; Warthog scratching

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We made our way toward the Hluhluwe river and spotted a herd of Buffalo and a Crocodile in the river as well as some Nyala which were far away. As we continued we got some Elephants but the pictures were not good so I omitted them from this post as we saw more later in the day.

    We finally spotted a Rhino but he was very far away so we decided to continue on with our Durban day safari.

    It was time to stop for lunch and enjoy the view from Hilltop camp.

    Lunch with a view is always amazing although it is busier at the lodge so lunch takes a little longer.

     

    Once lunch was done we headed South and found a Black Rhino on a hill which was amazing as there numbers are so low. It was very exciting for me.

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; Black Rhino browsing

    Durban day safari; Black Rhino browsing

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    One of the interesting things is the susceptibility the Black Rhinos have to parasitic issues on their sides of the body and in the soft areas of tissue. They spend a lot of time in thick areas like riverine forest as they eat leaves and twigs not grass. You will see the wounds on this Rhinos side.

     

     

     

     

     

    Video – African safari; Black Rhino browsing on a hill

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We continued on very hopeful for the rest of the day and it wasn’t that long before we found a White Rhino male nearer to the road. He was very relaxed and feeding away so we could enjoy him for a while.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; White Rhino

    Durban day safari; White Rhino

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Moving on with our day safari from Durban we came across not much else so we stopped to check the hills and enjoy the views.

    Then we managed to finally find Giraffe which was a huge relief for me…. a bit later on near the exit we would also find Elephants and more Giraffe.

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; Elephants

    Durban day safari; Elephants

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The Elephants were moving on a ridge not that far from the road and parallel to us. This really did complete our safari from Durban! The best was as we were about to exit Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve we spotted a number of Giraffe very close to the road which was the Cherry on the top!

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban day safari; Giraffe

    Durban day safari; Giraffe

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was time to head on back to Durban and remember what a great Durban day safari we had had.

     

    On route we just had general chats and any questions were floored before we reached Durban and Umhlanga to return the clients.

  • 13th March 2015

    Durban 2 day safari to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve 10-11th March 2015

     

    I met a couple of my clients in Durban city and the other in Durban north for their Durban 2 day safari to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve home of the Big 5 and many other species of animals.

    It was a lovely hot day and we drove first to the cat rehabilitation center near Hluhluwe to interact with Cheetah, Serval, Caracal and African Wild cat.

    It was pretty good as this time we got to interact with the adult cheetah and the new cubs of 6 months old.

    The Serval were the most playful and I was lucky to have one take a liking to my boot.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Serval took a liking to my boot

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Serval took a liking to my boot

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Another one of these amazing cats poses so beautifully for me so I snapped away. It is always interesting and amazing to see how these creatures have special adaptations to live and hunt in different areas.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Serval

    Durban 2 day safari; Serval

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After spending some time with these cats our Durban 2 day safari moved on to the world famous Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve home to the Big 5 just not a well advertised as Kruger National park.

    We began Giraffe and with a little patients we managed to get one to cross the road in front of us.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Giraffe

    Durban 2 day safari; Giraffe

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was one of those hot days and they had just adjusted the gate times to 6am opening to 6pm closing which meant we needed to work really hard in the afternoon after lunch to find as many animals as possible.

    We arrived at Hilltop camp after seeing Zebra, Giraffe, Buffalo and Rhino far away. It was time to enjoy some lunch and check in before a short rest and then at 15:30 head back out to see what we could find.

    We had some amazing luck as their was Elephants every where! We saw them on hills, down at the river and even crossing the road right in front of us on 3 occasions! Of course we had to set this up and be patient but we were rewarded with great Elephant sightings.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; huge herd of Elephant

    Durban 2 day safari; huge herd of Elephant

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    With all of this amazing Elephant action in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve I thought I better make a short video so you can experience a taste of what my clients got to see!

     

    Video of Elephants crossing the road in front of us at Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve.

     

     

    You would think that after seeing all these Elephants on our Durban 2 day safari that we would not have seen much else but this afternoon as a real cracker and we did very well.

     

    We got a Zebra crossing which is the real deal not those silly one painted in the cities!

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Zebra crossing

    Durban 2 day safari; Zebra crossing

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We continued on to see what else we could find and to our surprise the amazing sightings kept coming! We were very close to seeing a Leopard as we spotted a Leopard Tortoise crossing the road. We watched him and waited till he crossed so we knew he was safe from the cars.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Leopard Tortoise

    Durban 2 day safari; Leopard Tortoise

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After this sighting we were heading out towards the gate so we could get better sightings of Rhino, We did but had a much better one later on which I will share the picture of. Near the gate we spotted Baboons grooming themselves near some Buffalo. It was really funny to watch them all.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Baboons grooming

    Durban 2 day safari; Baboons grooming

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Just in case you were wondering the red ugly bum of the baboon is because she is in season and ready to be mated with. It was very funny because after telling my clients about Baboon mating for fun one quickly hopped up and tried his luck with a female. It was a feeble attempted and she kept walking!

    The Buffalo we saw were perfect in the sunlight and our Hluhluwe Imfolozi safari was beginning to take some shape!

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Buffalo

    Durban 2 day safari; Buffalo

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The Buffalo picture I chose was lovely as he was peeping at us and munching on some leaves, wow what a great Durban safari!

    Next for us was to check for Lions which I had found a couple days before but notices the female was lactating meaning she must have cubs hidden. We have seen her there for 2 weeks now with here sub adult children. We had no luck but got a great sighting of Rhino.

     

    I usually never use picture like this one but it was just so interesting and different with the dust and sun setting behind them that I thought I would use it this time. Hope you like it.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Rhinos in the sun

    Durban 2 day safari; Rhinos in the sun

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We began the journey or shall I say safari back to the lodge of Hilltop camp where we would have a 30 min rest and have some dinner. It turned out to be a lovely evening and the stars were bright, dinner wasn’t half bad either!

     

    After we had eaten I quickly did some star gazing with the clients. We looked at the Southern cross, Milky way, Orion and Taurus.

    It was not time for bed we were all very tired but very happy with how day one of our 2 day Durban safari had gone.

     

    Day 2: Durban 2 day safari to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve

     

    We began day 2 with luggage collection and breakfast before checking out and making the most of our last 3 hour in Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 game reserve.

    One of our first sighting was of a mother Giraffe and her calf.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Giraffe mother and calf

    Durban 2 day safari; Giraffe mother and calf

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Once we had finished watching them we continued on to see if we could find Lions we still had no luck on the cat front. We spotted another huge herd of Buffalo on our Durban 2 day safari.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Cape Buffalo

    Durban 2 day safari; Cape Buffalo

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Video of Buffalo crossing in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve

     

     

    As we continued we spotted some Zebra and Rhino in the distance but really we only had one thing left on our minds and that was those Lions! We did not give up on them and after 1,5 hours of the 3 hours gone we made a bold move and drove very fast down south to see if we could get lucky.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Zebra

    Durban 2 day safari; Zebra

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We actually found so many obstacles in our way like other vehicle and animals but we just had to keep our heads down to find these lions.

    As we got into the Umfolozi section of the game reserve we came across an Elephant bull so we though 2 minuted with him would be fine before continuing on with our Safari.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Bull Elephant

    Durban 2 day safari; Bull Elephant

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Moving along we got stuck in traffic and I was trying my best to get around this car, as I over took it I looked over to the left probably to give the drive the beady eye and spotted 2 Black Rhinos not more than 30 meters from the road. I had no choice but to stop at this is a rare sighting the car behind must have been a bit upset with me until they too saw what we were looking at.

    My clients later also looked onto the hills and spotted another 3 Black Rhinos, wow this was amazing stuff!

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Black Rhino

    Durban 2 day safari; Black Rhino

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Notice on the Black Rhinos side the blood this is actually very common with Black Rhino and is a Parasitic infection. In Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve their are only 200 Black Rhino and in 10 minuted we had seen 5 of them.

    Just up the road was what we had all been waiting for a pride of at least 9 Lions, 8 of which were visible in a Marula tree. I could not believe our luck, it was my Hluhluwe Tree climbing Lions in Umfolozi!

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Tree climbing Lions of Hluhluwe

    Durban 2 day safari; Tree climbing Lions of Hluhluwe

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     Video of the Hluhluwe Tree climbing Lions in Umfolozi game reserve.

     

     

    We spent 20 odd minutes with these amazing cats and then had to depart for St Lucia – Isimangeliso wetland park for our 2 hour boat cruise.

     

    It was an hours drive which felt like 20 minutes after seeing so many amazing animals in the Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve. We really had been so lucky we were all so happy about our 2 day Durban safari.

     

    We boarded our boat the Santa Lucia and enjoyed an almost private tour of the St Lucia estuary and wetlands. He we saw loads of Hippos and and couple of Crocodiles before we returned at the end of a very enjoyable 2 hour cruise.

    My favorite was Hippos feeding off the reeds and which I also made a video of.

     

    Durban 2 day safari; Hippos

    Durban 2 day safari; Hippos

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Video of Hippos feeding on the reeds at Lake St Lucia in the Estuary.

     

     

    We made our way into St Lucia town for some lunch at the Ocean sizzler and then began the 2.5 hour drive back to Durban North and Durban respectively. We were all very happy with the way the 2 day Durban safari went and seemed to all have smiles for what nature put on show for us in the short time! 

    Kumtoti!

  • 17th November 2014

    Holland America Cruise ship stops in Durban for a Durban 2 Day Safari Tour 9th-10th November

     

     

    Day 1 : Holland America group – Durban 2 Day Safari Tour

     

    We began our Durban Safari at our famous harbour where the Holland America ship docked and our 13 clients got off for a guided Safari.

     

    We ended up going to St Lucia first where we got on board the boat for the estuary cruise to view Hippos and Crocodiles.

     

    Hippo seen on our boat cruise at St Lucia estuary

     

    Hippo seen on our boat cruise at St Lucia estuary

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was a great 2 hours on the St Lucia estuary and after we had docked we got back on the vehicle to head to Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 Game reserve. Before we left though, we took a picture of a sign in St Lucia.

     

    Hippo warning sign at St Lucia estuary om our 2 Day Durban Safari Tour

    Hippo warning sign at St Lucia estuary om our 2 Day Durban Safari Tour

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    When we arrived at Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve we spotted a mother Rhino and her calf. We were in a rush to get to the lodge to check in and get the clients onto there evening open vehicle game drive.

     

    Mother and baby Rhino see on our 2 Day Durban Safari Tour off the Holland America Cruise Ship

    Mother and baby Rhino see on our 2 Day Durban Safari Tour off the Holland America Cruise Ship

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Our next sighting was Warthog with her piglets and some Buffalo. All of these lovely sighting were going to make us late so we just stopped for a quick photo before moving on.

     

    Warthog and piglets in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve on our Durban Safari

    Warthog and piglets in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve on our Durban Safari

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After we arrived at camp we quickly checked in and got the clients off the Holland America ship, onto the open vehicles for there night drive. As this was happening a storm was brewing and I was thinking “here we go..”

     

    The rain eventually came and one of the vehicles came back early so we began dinner early while waiting for the others who came back drenched.

     

    We got some entertainment as the staff came out and did some dancing and singing for us. It was great and then it was time for bed.

     

    I was on wake up call duty and was up at 4am for 04:15 wake up calls. We got the clients down in time for there 5am open vehicle game drive before I headed to the conference centre to catch up on work.

     

    They client got back just before 08:30 and we all had breakfast before checking out and heading to Emdoneni Cat rehabilitation center.

     

    There was some drama to follow:

     

    We first spotted some Zebra near the road as we made our Safari out.

     

     

    Elephant that touched our vehicle on our Durban Safari Tour for Holland America cruises

    Elephant that touched our vehicle on our Durban Safari Tour for Holland America cruises

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As we continued our Safari from Durban we spotted a huge herd of Buffalo on the hill which we stopped to photograph.

     

    Herd of Buffalo seen During our Durban 2 Day Safari for Holland America cruise ship clients

    Herd of Buffalo seen During our Durban 2 Day Safari for Holland America cruise ship clients

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was at this point that we ended up with a Musth Bull Elephant on the road with a little are in front of us and a mini bus behind us. This Elephant was a little bit disturbed by all the noises of the vehicles and he came onto the road. Our driver tried to reverse his bus with the trailer at the back not very well.

     

    At this point the little car in front decided to rev his engine and make a dart for it he only encouraged the Bull Elephant onto the road and frustrated him further.

     

    It was at this point I instructed our diver to turn the engine off as we had no where to go and the diesel engine was just going to stress the Elephant out even more.

     

    Unfortunately it was too late and the Elephant decided to touch our vehicle with his trunk and tusk. At least he did minimal damage…

     

    Elephant that touched our vehicle on our Durban Safari Tour for Holland America cruises

    Elephant that touched our vehicle on our Durban Safari Tour for Holland America cruises

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We had lots to talk about on the drive to emdoneni.

     

    When we got to Emdoneni cat rehab centre we enjoyed some interaction with the big cats and at the end the new cheetah cubs that have been brought in for breeding came out to play.

     

    This was there first major interaction with a large group of humans so no touching was aloud. They were so beautiful and this really made our Durban Safari extra special, oh and the Elephant!

     

    Cheetah cubs at emdoneni cat rehab center during our Durban Safari tour

    Cheetah cubs at emdoneni cat rehab center during our Durban Safari tour

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We then had to head back to Durban so it was back to the final questions on the few hours back to the Holland America Ship.

    Our clients were great as they were so interested in the History that it made it easy for me to cover it in a structured manor.

     

    We arrived back just before dark and that evening the Holland America Ship Sailed down to Port Elizabeth.

     

     

    Our Group of clients off the Holland America cruise ship during our Durban Safari Tour

    Our Group of clients off the Holland America cruise ship during our Durban Safari Tour