Phezulu safari Park Archives - Tim Brown Tours
  • 22nd November 2015

    Durban safari

     

     

    I met my clients for their Durban safari off the Ocean Nautica ship that docked in Durban. We were to visit Tala game reserve and Phezulu safari park. At Phezulu we would be entertained by the Zulu dancers and singers at the Zulu Cultural village and then enter their huts to learn more about the Zulus culture! I also took my clients for a tour around the reptile park before the Zulu cultural village tour.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban safari; Zulu hut

    Durban safari; Zulu hut

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After enjoying the great Zulu dancers and the Zulu culture we made our way onward through the valley of 1000 hills to look at the spectacular views. The valley of 1000 hills is a beautiful area!

    Once we made our way through and back to the main road we headed off to Tala game reserve for our safari part of the tour.

    We entered at the gate and some of the client decided they wanted an open vehicle game drive so we tried to make a last minute plan with out success. 

    This turned out to be a good thing at the weather clouded over and it got very cold 15 degrees and later it rained.

     

    We were very luck as later we also spotted a Black backed Jackal which is a rare sighting at Tala game reserve!

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban safari; Black backed Jackal

    Durban safari; Black backed Jackal

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We continued with our Durban safari tour and spotted a lot of animals including; Ostrich, Blessbok, Kudu, Warthogs and many more.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban safari; Ostrich

    Durban safari; Ostrich

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Our Durban safari tour continued and it was not long before we found the Rhino that we had been looking for! These days at Tala game reserve after incidents of poaching the Rhinos have guards which monitor them through the day and with radio transmitter collars.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban safari; Rhino

    Durban safari; Rhino

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Our Durban safari continued on and we found some great looking Zebra which were close to the road and later even some that crossed the road in front of us. A real Zebra crossing! 

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban safari; Zebra

    Durban safari; Zebra

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was not long before we made our way down to the dam and found some Hippos resting in the water. The best part of this was that the big male was mating! You don’t see this every day on a Durban safari tour.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban safari; Hippo mating

    Durban safari; Hippo mating

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Moving along with our Durban safari we eventually spotted some Giraffe and first it was a couple of males and then later a Journey of Giraffe with some youngsters.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban safari; Giraffe

    Durban safari; Giraffe

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    So this was now the end of another great African safari tour and we were caught in a torrential down pour of rain so we made our way out of the Tala game reserve carefully and in just under an hour were back at the ship to drop the clients off.

     

    If you would like to join one of these Durban safari tours click the link below:

     

     

    Durban safari tours

  • 30th June 2015

    Durban private tour to Tala game reserve and valley of 1000 Hills

     

     

    I met my client from Scotland at his hotel in Durban for his Durban private tour to Tala game reserve and the Valley of 1000 Hills.

     

    On route we chatted about some of the History of Durban and KwaZulu Natal but mostly chatted about general things that we are going through as a country as we would be spending 4 days together.

     

    We began at Tala game reserve one of the most highly populated smaller private game reserves I know of. It was animals galore as usual and our first sighting was of 3 Rhinos which were being watched very closely by the Anti-poaching team.

     

    Later we would return there and see the 3 of them resting.

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; Rhino resting

    Durban private tour; Rhino resting

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    You may see the Red Billed Oxpecker near the eye of the Rhino removing ticks of the Rhinos body, this is a lovely symbiotic relationship where the animal get his health back and the bird gets a meal!

    We also waited patiently for some Zebras to cross the road and the did but in the same area was Wildebeest, Ostrich and a range of other animals.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; Zebra

    Durban private tour; Zebra

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As we continued with our Durban private tour we managed to find some Impala and Nyala but the weirdest thing happened as we spotted this female Impala with horns. This is a genetic abnormality and is probably caused by inbreeding in these smaller game reserves.

     

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; Impala female with Horns

    Durban private tour; Impala female with Horns

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Above you will see 2 pictures the top one being the female with the thin horns and below the male with what the horns should normally look like. Nature is always amazing as this male Impala kept chasing the female away as if he felt it was another male.

     

     

    We stopped for a rest and then went on with our Durban private tour to find some Giraffe! We eventually did and they were very beautiful and right next to the road.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; Giraffe up with the Aloes

    Durban private tour; Giraffe up with the Aloes

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The Giraffe we especially beautiful as they were walking among the Aloes and this picture just looked really amazing!

    There was one more major animal we need to go see and that was the Hippo. We really had it made today as we spotted them standing the the shallow dam and the one mother had her little baby with her.

     

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; Hippo mother and baby

    Durban private tour; Hippo mother and baby

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The mother Hippo gave a great big yawn and the baby was just behind her bum hiding away it made for a great picture on our Durban day tour.

     

    It was now time to depart Tala game reserve and head the scenic route to the Valley of 1000 Hills. We enjoyed the drive with the rolling hills and the townships all over this amazing place. We reached our destination in the valley of 1000 Hills, Phezulu safari park and it was here we had a great lunch with a view!

     

    We then went to the reptile park and learned more about these amazing Crocodiles and snakes before our meeting with the Zulu village at 2pm.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; Crocodile at Phezulu

    Durban private tour; Crocodile at Phezulu

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The Zulu Cultural village was amazing and we enjoyed the great dancing and singing of the Zulu people on this Durban private tour.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; Zulu dancing at Phezulu

    Durban private tour; Zulu dancing at Phezulu

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    I figured you would not know what I was talking about unless I shared a video with you so you can watch it below!

     

     

     

    Video: Durban day tour; Traditional Zulu dancing

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Finally it was time for entering of the Zulu meeting hut and the cooking hut before making our way back to Durban. I also had to explain to James my client about the 3 different clicks in the Zulu Language and why they are in existence.

     

    It had been a beautiful Durban day tour and the clouds were now beginning to blow over the Valley of 1000 Hills. I will leave you with this great photo of my client with the Zulus.

     

     

     

     

    Durban private tour; James with the Zulus

     

    Durban private tour; James with the Zulus
  • 16th June 2014

    Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala game reserve, Phezulu Cultural village and Reptile park 12 June 2014

    We began this Durban Day Tour from Umhlanga where I collected my repeat clients after we had spend 3 Days in Hluhluwe Umfolozi Game reserve. Today would be quite different with a visit to a smaller Safari Park/Game reserve outside of Durban called Three Cities Tala Private game lodge. We would also visit the Valley of 1000 hills where Phezulu Safari Park is situated and watch some traditional Zulu Dancing and Singing with the bonus of the reptile park on the side!

    I was fortunate to have clients that were happy to enjoy what ever came there way on our Durban Day Safari.

    After a short hour drive from Umhlanga(Durban) to Tala private game reserve we began the search for the animals. We first spotted the Hippos and made our way around after our to to St Lucia – Isimangeliso Wetland parks boat cruise had been cancelled we wanted to see move of these great animals. I was fortunate to catch a Hippo with its mouth open on this Durban Day Safari.

    Yawning Hippo on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    Yawning Hippo on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    As we enjoyed the Hippos we also watched a colony of Egyptian Geese cackling away on the banks of the pond.

    Our Durban Day Safari at Tala continued on and found a Wildebeest mother and Calf and later larger herds of Wildebeest one of which a dominant male was scratching his head!

    Wildebeest scratches his nose on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    Wildebeest scratches his nose on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    Durban Day Tours to Tala game reserve are very different to Hluhluwe Umfolozi Safari Tours. Tala has much higher densities of animals so after about 3 hours most people are ready to leave.

    We spotted a male and female Ostrich notice the male which is the black one is ready for mating he has pink on his shins and beak. The shins you wont see but the beak you should!

    Ostrich male and female on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    Ostrich male and female on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    As we continued our Durban Day Tour we came across some Zebras, Actually load in total through the day…

    Zebra on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014
    Zebra on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    The best sighting of the day in Tala private game lodge was the Giraffe we just had loads of them about 15 in total walking across the road, standing by the watering hole and even drinking. This was my clients interest the Giraffe so we spend a least half an hour with these lovely animals and enjoyed there movements on our Durban Day Tour.

    Giraffe at a water hole on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014
    Giraffe at a water hole on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    It was time to depart Tala Private game reserve after having a look around there curio shop and walking within 10 meters of a giraffe, we had to continue to the Valley of 1000 Hills and Phezulu Safari Park.

    It was a 30 minute drive over the rolling hills of the valley of 1000 hills where we stopped for lunch at the Boma restaurant at Phezulu Safari park. We had some great food with a view and then made our way to the Crocodile and reptile park so get educated on these amazing prehistoric animals.

    We went around with Mdu who did a good job and Trudy who was keen on the snakes got to hold a Brown House snake and a Python (both being Non-Venomous)! – So now you know what we get up to on our Durban Day Safari Tours!

    Crocodiles on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    Crocodiles on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    After all this excitement on our Durban Day Tour we still had more as we moved across to the Traditional Zulu Village run by Chief Gaza whos family still live there. This was great as Zulu Dancing and singing is so powerful as well as entering the huts and drinking traditional Zulu beer made this an awesome Durban Day Tour experience.

    Animated Zulu Dancers on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    Animated Zulu Dancers on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    The whole point of these Zulu Cultural experiences is to learn about there amazing culture and that the clients did. The entering of the Huts is a special touch which makes this Durban Day Tour a must.

    Zulu Dancing on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014
    Zulu Dancing on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala and Phezulu in the Valley of 1000 Hills 12th June 2014

    When we had taken in this amazing experience we departed to visit the Leather shop down the road before our Durban Day Safari Tour was coming to an end. We made our way back to Umhlanga(Durban) where I dropped my clients off.

    What a great day with Tim Brown Tours on a Durban Day Safari Tour.

     

     

  • 16th April 2014

    Tala Private game reserve and Phezulu Safari park – Zulu Cultural village and Reptile park 15 April 2014

    This was one of the Durban Day Safari Tour off the cruise ships the “Astor” which had come from Australia and was 40 days long makings its way up the western coast of Africa to England. With these large ships you never know who you will be collecting off the ship and it was good to collect a fit young family of the Astor.

    The Astor cruise ship.

    The Astor Cruise ship arrives in Durban 15th April 2014

    We are very lucky to be based in Durban as the harbour brings in these huge ships like the Astor for a few months each year. This always give us a chance to show off our beautiful province of KwaZulu-Natal and Durban to our clients. The main Safari Tours you can do from Durban harbour in a Day are a Durban Day Safari Tour to the Valley of 1000 Hills, Phezulu; Zulu Cultural village and reptile park, Tala Private game reserve and of course the City of Durban.

    After this Astor Ship got settled into the Durban harbour the slow process of port control took place and then eventually I met my clients and we began our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve and Phezulu Safari Park for the Zulu Cultural experience and Reptile park.

    On Route I tried to cover bits of the History of the area of Durban but really it is very rushed but I hope the clients felt like they got enough to return again for a longer Durban Safari Tour.

    After about 45 Minutes we were in Tala private game reserve and we had a very easy time of it as the density of animals is so high that it makes my job very easy. This I actually told the clients! It later back fired for a bit as I battled to find the Giraffe but eventually we got them before we had to leave Tala.

    Our first sighting in Tala Private game reserve on this Durban Day Safari Tour was Rhino, Blessbok, Impala, Wildebeest and Zebra all together…

    White Rhinos of Tala Game reserve with Zebra in the back ground on our Durban Day Safari Tour

    White Rhinos of Tala Game reserve with Zebra in the back ground on our Durban Day Safari Tour

    As you can see by the above picture there is a high density of animals which makes for great chances of good photos like this one on a Durban Day Safari Tour.

    These were the female white Rhinos with there calves, the females have longer thinner horns than the males as the males have concentrated growth around the base of the horn to keep it strong when they fight for dominance or for mating rights. Males horns tend to be shorter and thicker.

    As we crawled forward a few meters we came across these beautiful Blessbok. 

    Blessbok on our Durban Day Safari Tour of Tala game reserve

    They were real posers which always helps on the Durban Day Safari Tours as they are so short. The weather at this point was so beautiful and almost clear blue skys buts slowly the clouds closed in and the day Safari Tour became darker with a little drizzle of rain before we left Tala private game reserve for Phezulu Safari park.

    Next on the agenda was the beautiful Plains Zebra which eventually stuck a pose for us!
    Plains Zebra in Tala private game reserve on our Durban Day Safari Tour

    At this point our Durban Day Safari Tour was looking very good we even spotted a couple of lovely male Kudu with one having big curly horns being a full grown adult male. The weather Gods we playing ball and so were the animals. We had see Ostrich as well as Warthogs which you will see below. Our Safari Day Tour from Durban was turning out great!

    Warthogs grazing on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala game reserve
    Warthogs grazing on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala game reserve

    These Warthogs were down on there knees thanking God for there food and enjoying what was left of the green grass as our winter had crept in. The females have just one set of warts by the eyes where the males have 2 sets one which is lower down by the jaw line. This picture was a mother with her 2 piglets.

    As we continued on our Durban Day Safari Tour we came across a better photo opportunity with a Blue Wildebeest and we snapped away!

    Blue Wildebeest resting on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala game reserve

    After heading down to the Dam where the Hippos were resting in the water the rain arrived but it was a soft rain and stopped after a few minutes. We then had one major mission to achieve and that was to find the Giraffe. Now I know Tala game reserve roads like the back of my hand and geez did these giraffe give me a small headache, but eventually we found the just before we were about to leave for Phezulu safari Park.

    Male giraffe eating off a Scented thorn acacia at Tala Private game reserve on our Durban day Safari Tour.

    Giraffe on our Durban day Safari tour to Tala game reserve

    This lovely male giraffe was feeding off one of my favourite trees the Acacia Nilotica –  Scented thorn. This time of the year the seed pods are fresh and sweet. Finally we had found them an the mission had been successful. We now could depart from Tala game reserve for Phezulu Safari Park for the Zulu Cultural village Tour and the Reptile park Tour. Our Durban safari tour had just begun.

    The 45 minute scenic drive through the valley of 1000 hills home originally to the Debe people a cannibalistic black African tribe was beautiful. The rain had lifted and the view over the valley of 1000 hills was amazing.

    As we neared Phezulu Safari Park the view of the valley of 1000 hills was gone, but not for long.

    We first began at the reptile park after a look over the valley of 1000 hills behind the restaurant.  The rain began to fall again lightly and slowly got heavier by the time we had finished with Big Nile crocodiles and moved onto the Snake the heavens opened and we were lucky to find shelter next to the snake enclosures.  The rain abated and we continued looking at some of the most deadly snakes in the world like the Black Mamba/Green Mamba, Cape cobra, Boomslang and Puff Adder.

    After finishing up here we headed across to the curio shop before beginning the Zulu Cultural village experience and Zulu Traditional dancing. They dancers were brilliant as usual and Im sure they clients took some great memories of the Zulu Nation back with them.

    Phezulu Safari Park at the Zulu Cultural village overlooking the valley of 1000 hills on our durban day safari tour

    Phezulu Safari Park at the Zulu Cultural village overlooking the valley of 1000 hills on our Durban day safari tour

    Our Zulu Cultural village experience ended with the beats of drums and some great dancing before a quick look into the Zulu traditional huts to see how the Zulus live.

    Our Durban Day Safari Tour was fast approaching its end and we headed back to the Astor Cruise ship stopping to get some water from the shops.

    Final questions were answered on the drive back to the Astor cruise ship and we then arrived at the dock said our farewells and that was the end of our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve and Phezulu Safari park via the valley of 1000 hills.

    For more information on this great Durban Safari Tour click the links on “Durban Safari Tours”

     

  • 7th April 2014

    Tala Private game reserve and Phezulu Safari park – Zulu Cultural village and Reptile park 4/4/2014

    After collecting my clients from Zimbali estate where they were staying after winning an Oakley competition after purchasing Sunglasses thanks to True Collection group, we headed to Tala Private game reserve for our Day Safari Tour from Durban.

    Having just moved home I realised I forgot my camera which was really stupid as when ever that happens great things are scene in on the Day Safari Tour at Tala.

    It was true to form as  we saw a male Ostrich going to the Toilet which sound crazy but it is amazing as being a Bird they have a Cloaca which is basically one hole for everything. This means his male organ needs to come out before he can defecate. I of course had no camera so missed the moment but the clients from Cape Town got it.

    Later we also saw South africas national bird the Blue Crane which is endangered!

    We had amazing Rhino sightings on this Safari Tour from Durban as well as great giraffe, Zebra, Blesbok, Wildebeest, Impala, Kudu, Warthog and even a Brown chested snake eagle and long crested eagle.

    We were really blessed as even the Hippos were in the Dam on this Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve.

    Ive added a picture but it wasnt from this Durban Day Safari Tour but does show what we saw.

    Tala and Valley 1000 Hills Tour

     Phezulu Safari Park and reptile park.

    In the afternoon after a great Lunch at the Boma restaurant with great views we headed into the Zulu Cultural Village overlooking the Valley of 1000 Hills. We entered into the Zulu Huts to learn a bit more about Zulu Culture and customs before the 2pm Zulu Dancing. This was amazing as always and even more so that it  was just us there!

    They Reptile park was great too and we enjoyed the crocodiles and Snakes as a distance on this Durban Day Safari Tour.

    After this it was time to get the clients back to Zimbali for a Braai with Greg and the Team.

    They really enjoyed this little taste of Durban in the Day that we had to take this Safari Tour.

    Tim Brown Tours

  • 14th March 2014

    Durban half day Safari Tour to the Valley of 1000 Hills – Phezulu Cultural Village 11 March 2014

    I collected my clients from Durban at 9am on the 11th March 2014 for there Valley of 1000 hills, Durban half day safari Tour to experience the Zulu Culture and the scenery of of the beautiful valley of 1000 hills originally home to the Debe people a cannibalistic Tribe.

    Since the Zulu Nation took over the area from the Debe people it became a strong hold for King Shakas People.

    The rain was a concern on the Durban half day Tour but it just seemed to hold off for us to complete the half day Tour and experience the great views of the valley of 1000 hills.

    We began at Phezulu Safari Park in the valley of 1000 hills overlooking where the Debe people used to rule. The Zulu cultural village experience was the first things we got to see after leaving Durban city. We first entered the Zulu traditional huts, learning about there customs and culture before tasting there tradition Zulu Beer Umqomboti.

    After this Zulu cultural experience we moved onto the Zulu Dancing where we were lucky to witness the Zulu nations great traditions and power in there dance as well as watching these Sangomas(Fortune Tellers) throw the bones to show how a young Zulu mans life will fair.

    Valley 1000 Hills half day Tours – phezulu safari Park – Sangoma

    We had a great time and took some pictures with the Zulu men and women before moving onto the crocodile center and reptile park. Here we Tour’d the enclosures of the crocodile which is becoming endangered and learned more about the prehistoric animals. After the crocodile tour it was time for the Snakes which was great as you have the chance to hold a non venomous species of snake like the Brown House snake or the African Rock Python. This is always a huge additive to a Durban Half day tour/safari.

    We then had some tea and coffee at Phezulu safari parks tea garden before driving to my old home area in Monteseel to look at the stunning views over the valley of 1000 hills, We also came across this crazy sign the the neighbourhood Watch put up to try and prevent hookers. I was to embarrassed to show the clients as they had children.

    Valley 1000 Hills Monteseel No Hooking Picture – Durban Tours

    The valley of 1000 hills is a stunning area to visit steeped in history and beauty. Phezulu safari park is my place of choice for a Zulu Cultural experience from Durban.

     Valley of 1000 Hills Safari Tour, Durban half day Tours, Zulu Cultural experience Durban, Views of the valley of 1000 hills, Phezulu safari Park, Zulu Beer, King Shaka, Zulu Nation, Zulu Culture