Tala Private Game reserve Archives - Tim Brown Tours
  • 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.

     

     

  • 6th May 2014

    Durban Day Safari Tour off the Ocean Princess Cruise ship to Tala private game reserve, Durban City and Valley of 1000 hills craft shops 3rd May 2014

    We are very lucky to be based in Durban as the harbour brings in these huge ships like the Ocean Princess 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 Tours to the Valley of 1000 Hills, Phezulu, Zulu Cultural village and reptile park, Tala Private game reserve and of course the City of Durban.

    Ocean Princess Cruise ship docks in Durban Harbour for our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    Ocean Princess Cruise ship docks in Durban Harbour for our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    After this Ocean Princess 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, Durban City and Valley of 1000 Hills craft shops. The clients were all Spanish speaking but came from Mexico, Venezuela and America.

    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. We were meant to spend a full day at Tala private game reserve but once you’ve seen everything twice there is not much else to do there. Fortunately the curio shop kept the clients happy for an hour as they haggled the prices down eventually all parties were happy and we continued on.

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

    Female White Rhino on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    Female White Rhino on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    We edged on and kept seeing loads of animals on our Durban Day Safari Tour. Next was this dazzle of Plains Zebra!

    Zebra mother and foal on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    Again edging on we found more animals including this interesting situation where a Male Blessbok was sniffing a female to test to see if she was in season. It is now basically our mating season. Most animals have what is called a vermosal glad on the upper pallet of there mouths. When they sniff a female this will usually stimulate her to urinate. The male then tastes the urine and the Vermosal gland translates to him whether see is ready for mating or not! You see Durban Day Tours are not so boring after all!

    Blessbok Male test a female to see if she is in Season on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    Blessbok Male test a female to see if she is in Season on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    We continued on from her for a rest room break and the curio shop got attacked buy my clients. Im sure they were very pleased for the business. After we had done here an our later we went off to find the Giraffe which I had spotted from the reception near the picnic site. When we arrived there there was a lovely male giraffe in the picnic site. This was an idea opportunity to walk on foot to a large animal. We got within 15 meters and got some great photos before some idiot wandered closer chasing the giraffe away! I was mad but with clients you cant really show it. lol. Durban Day Safaris Tours always keep you on your toes.

    Male Giraffe on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve
    Male Giraffe on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    After this giraffe we visited the Hippo Hide a hut which overlooks the dam where you can enjoy the birdlife and the Hippos playing in the water. This is a great place to be on a Durban Day Tour!

    Hippos play in the water on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve
    Hippos play in the water on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    We left the Hippos to play in the water and drove around to the other side of the dam were we came across a very unusual sighting of female Ostriches cooling off in the water. Ive seen this before but it was like a ladies tea party where all the ladies no male made there way down to dam at that moment! It was really cool to see on our Durban day Safari.

    Ostriches cool off in the Water on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve
    Ostriches cool off in the Water on our Durban Day Safari Tour to Tala private game reserve

    We decided to depart from Tala private game reserve and make our way into the valley of 1000 hills to a couple of craft markets. We stopped by HillBilly’s and Pot and Kettle to look there and 30 min later we went to Phezulu to look at there shop as well. There was still time before the clients needed to be back on the ship so we did a bit of a Durban City Tour aswell which the clients commented “You have a beautiful City” That is another big thumbs up for Durban City and the Tourism guys! Well done!

    The end was coming on the Durban Day Tour and we made our way to the dock to get the clients back on the Ocean Princess cruise ship.

    It was a great Durban Day Safari.

  • 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