Durban Safaris Archives - Tim Brown Tours
Tim Brown Tours, live Radio interview on Ubuntu radio

Tim Brown Tours, live Radio interview

This past couple of weeks have been very busy for Tim Brown Tours, with a featured live Radio interview with Ubuntu Radio(South Africa’s only government owned radio station) and winning airtime on Hot 91.9 Fm at the Holiday Expo 2017.
Things to Do In Durban

Best Things to do in Durban

Durban is an amazing city with more things to do than you would believe if you were not familiar with the area. Watch highlights of Zulu Dancing, the famous Sani Pass in the Drakensberg and Safari footage. Learn about different traditions and expand your horizons.

African safari tours

African safari tours are always amazing but this African safari tour would be extra special as we would see so many amazing animals in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve. I had met my client in Umhlanga near Durban for their Durban day safari and we began what turned out to be a very short 2.5 hours drive to Hluhluwe game reserve. It would be the boarder between the two sections that we would enter and first head briefly into the Hluhluwe game reserve section. It was in this section we located a massive male Warthog very early on in our African safari tour.

South African holidays – Kruger park vs Hluhluwe game reserve

South Africa has a wide range of wilderness safaris to choose from and it always boils down to what South African holiday or South African safari tours are best advertised! I hope that this post will be able to clear up some of the many questions potential travelers to South Africa have when looking at wilderness safaris or African tours. If you join us on your South African holiday you can expect an amazing experience from culture, culture to historical.

Hluhluwe Big 5 game reserve

Our Hluhluwe “Big 5” game reserve safari from Durban began in the city where I collected my clients. It was to be a Hluhluwe game reserve safari to remember! Our day began at 06:30 and we made our way to the world famous Hluhluwe game reserve and the Umfolozi game reserve in the south. After covering the major history of Durban, KwaZulu Natal and South Africa we arrived at Hluhluwe game reserve and it was only 09:30. As it was a cool day I was really hoping we would find cats but as nature has it, you have to be at the right place at the right time.

Durban Safari Tour

I was blessed with a repeat client who brought a friend out from Australia to experience a Durban 3 day safari tour. We departed from Umhlanga and we were able to cover the history and new things that I hadn’t said the last time. It wasn’t long before we stopped and got some coffee and the continued on to the Cat rehabilitation center which was a real experience. My clients loved it and after interacting with the Cheetah hands on the day was set up to be legendary!

Durban day safaris

Our Durban day safari began in Durban city where I met my clients and we headed off to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve. It was going to be a hot day and not only with the weather but with the game viewing as well. It was a bit of a Ferrari safari as I had some racing to do to get around Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve to maximize our safari time. On route I covered some of the history of the area and the country of South Africa before we arrived at the gate just before 10 am.

Durban safari

We began our Durban safari in the city of Durban where I collected my four clients for what was to be a very successful 2 days of safari in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve. On route we chatted about the interesting history of the area as well as the crops and population groups. Before you knew it we were at the Cat rehabilitation centre for the 10:30 tour for interaction with Cheetah. We would also see Caracal, Serval and African wild cat. The Cheetah was great fun and the one male was stalking Wildebeest up the fence line. Sadly for the Cheetah the Wildebeest was safe on the other side of the fence.

Durban day safari

Durban day safari   I met my clients at the Sibaya lodge in Durban for their Durban day safari with me to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve which is home to the Big 5.   We had some very funny weather on the drive up as it rain intermittently but through all of this I chatted to my clients about the history of Durban, South Africa and of course the world famous Hluhluwe Imfolozi national park.    I always try and cover as much as possible with the 2.5 hours I have on the drive up as it is very interesting on these Durban safaris to learn more about how each population group came to be apart of our wonderful country, South Africa. On a Durban day safari we have limited time so I tend to really get as much out as possible. Everyone seemed to enjoy the interaction through the day and we were very luck with amazing sightings.   We arrived at Hluhluwe Imfolozi around 09:30 for our Durban day safari and we spotted some Buffalo on a hill near the gate. We also spotted Black Rhino with in about 10 minuted of driving and Impala. The Black Rhino is such a rare sighting and we also caught glimpse of a Anti-poacher watching them from a distance!             Durban day safari; Black Rhino Durban day safari; Black Rhino                                 We now had to deal with some road work as Hluhluwe Imfolozi is having the roads maintained which is a good thing and then we spotted some Rhino as well as some Baboons.             Durban day safari; Baboon Durban day safari; Baboon                                   We continued with our safari from Durban and before we could cross the Umfolozi river we spotted some Impala as well as some Zebra. The Zebra are one of few animals which are known to bite and kick each other as well as predators. This Zebra was biting at the other.             Durban day safari; Zebra love bite Durban day safari; Zebra love bite                                   We crossed the Umfolozi river and found no animals but it was beautiful, we made our way up to Mpila camp and continued through after looking at the lovely array of horns they have on display there. Our next sighting was Rhino but I didn’t get a great photo so I left it out as I got some great ones later.   After this Rhino our Safari was about to hot up! We spotted a few vehicles all reversing and in panic! We stopped to assess the situation and it was a huge bull Elephant in Musth which was walking up the road. Someone said to us “a car was off the road because of the Elephant”.    It is very important that you come to game reserves with a guide who is experienced with animal behavior and can tell the signs of a stressed animal.              Durban day safari; Elephant bull Durban day safari; Elephant bull                                   This Elephant just had 6 x the normal level of testosterone running through his body as he was ready to mate with females, this does mean that he can be a lot more frustrated and aggressive.   We turned off the engine as this stresses animals further and the Elephant move 10 meters off the road to feed. We rolled up to him and enjoyed him for about 10 minutes before leaving. We then spotted the first casualty of the day!             Durban day safari; Car scared off the road by an Elephant Durban day safari; Car scared off the road by Elephant                                   This rental cars driver could not handle the stress and was obviously to close to the Elephant and reversed his car of the road… Next time keep your distance or come with a guide.   I later hear that the same Elephant has pierced a cars with his tusks and shoved it off the road… he had also pushed over a Knob Thorn over the road.     Anyway I think those people involved will come with a guide next time or will never come again. As we continued we had more sightings of Baboons and great sightings of Warthogs.             Durban day safari; Warthog wars Durban day safari; Warthog wars                                 These two male Warthogs were having a little fight over a lady and she decided after a few minutes to run off and leave them to it! Wow at this point all had gone so well and we had been having an amazing Durban day safari.     Next was the Male Impala with a Warthog in the same picture as they share habitat.           Durban day safari; Impala and Warthog Durban day safari; Impala and Warthog                                   I have forgotten that we actually saw a big male Giraffe just after the Elephant which was amazing as he was right next to the road feeding and every so often would lift his head up to look at us.             Durban day safari; Giraffe Durban day safari; Giraffe                                 We continued our Durban day safari and found a Crash of Rhino near to the road the best part was it was a Male and a mother and her calf. What made it even better was that a Warthog was with them.               Durban day safari; Rhino and Warthog Durban day safari; Rhino and Warthog                                 Sometime on our safaris when we see Warthogs from a distance with Rhino I think it looks like a baby Rhino… This is all again that they share habitat and eat similar things like Grass.             Durban day safari; Rhino mother and calf Durban day safari; Rhino mother and calf                                   It was time to look at a view point over the river and in the reeds we spotted a good sized herd of Buffalo which then left the rivers edge and moved up into the grassy plains. It was here we got a good photo of them.             Durban day safari; Herd of Buffalo Durban day safari; Herd of Buffalo                                 We now had to make our way back up to the Centenary center where we would have some lunch and a look at the museum and craft market. On route we had to drive around a tree the Elephant had pushed over and then we came across the big Rhino we had seen earlier laying at a pan.             Durban day safari; Rhino bull Durban day safari; Rhino bull                                   This Rhino we saw on our Durban day safari looked so cute! We then got back to the centenary center later than we had expected with all the amazing sightings and enjoyed some lunch before a final look around to see what we could see before departing at 4pm.   We managed to find another bull Elephant which was super relaxed feeding next to the road.           Durban day safari; Elephant feeding Durban day safari; Elephant feeding                                     We left the Elephant and found a big herd of Buffalo right near the road and they just stared at us it was a great sighting. We maneuvered around took a few pictures before we realized we would have to leave for Durban.               Durban day safari; Buffalo face Durban day safari; Buffalo face                                   We turn around and made our way back to the gate on route spotting the same Elephant walking down the road! Wow, what a great Durban day safari!   We departed Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve with smiles on our faces on route for Durban. We had enjoyed nature at its best and all have great memories from the day to take home with us. We stopped once on the way back and they the rain came down a fitting way for our safari to end with a blessing of water for the animals. We arrived in Durban and said our farewells before I headed home.    

Big 5 safari Durban

Big 5 safari from Durban for 2 days   I met my clients in Durban for their Big 5 safari just outside Durban to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve which is world famous for its Rhino breeding success through the 1950’s. We are truly blessed to have such an amazing Big 5 game reserve near Durban which in my opinion is just as good if not better than Kruger national park.   Kruger National park may be bigger but it is not as scenic as Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve one of the main features all my clients point out!   As usual I covered the History of KwaZulu Natal, South Africa on route to the Hluhluwe Imfolozi national park as well as anything we saw through Zululand.   As we got further into Zululand we stopped at a Cat rehabilitation center to enjoy some interaction with 4 species of endangered cats, the most exciting being Cheetah! My client of course loved it being big cat fans.             Big 5 safari Durban; Serval Big 5 safari Durban; Serval                                 The Servals are very relaxed and also great to interact with so the above picture if of one of the Serval we interacted with. All this cats are here for either breeding or interaction due to some issue which prevents them from being released into the wild. The idea is to try and get as many of them back to the wild where they belong if not they are used as an educational tool to highlight there situation.     We then left and arrived in Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 game reserve not 3 hours from Durban and began our 2 day safari tour. Our first sighting was of Nyala and Warthogs.             Big 5 safari Durban; Warthog Big 5 safari Durban; Warthog                                 I was a little concerned as it had been a bit quiet in the national park in the past few days but that would not stop us having good sightings! We spotted Giraffe and Zebra in the distance so I made our way closer and we had the most amazing sighting where we had a troop of Baboons, Zebra, Giraffe and Rhino cross the road in front of us! It was amazing so at this point we had see the first of the Big 5 animals the Rhino but it seemed like we had seem so much more which we had!             Big 5 safari Durban; Rhino Big 5 safari Durban; Rhino                                   Video: Rhino crossing road on our African safari       I made a good video of the Rhino crossing and then later got a great photo of a male Giraffe near to the road. It had been a great start and it was time to head to Hilltop camp for some lunch, check in and head back out for more animals.             Big 5 safari Durban; Giraffe Big 5 safari Durban; Giraffe                                   We enjoyed the Giraffe for a while and moved on to Hilltop camp for some lunch. We were as quick as we could be as my clients also wanted to do the open vehicle safari at 5pm-8pm with the lodge which meant for me I needed to find as many animals as possible in the afternoon.   Our first sighting in the afternoon as some Nyala and then some Baboons all over the road grooming themselves.             Big 5 safari Durban; Baboon Big 5 safari Durban; Baboon                                   We tried to check all the view points over the Hluhluwe river to see if we could add to our Big 5 list with Elephant but we had no luck. We did find a few Red Duiker and one new born which was very cute, sadly I missed the photo so got the adult instead.           Big 5 safari Durban; Red Duiker Big 5 safari Durban; Red Duiker                                   It was time to begin our way back to Hilltop camp but before we could get there we managed to add lots more Rhino and a herd of Buffalo to our Big 5 safari list.             Big 5 safari Durban; Buffalo Big 5 safari Durban; Buffalo                                   We had now seen 2 of the Big 5 on our safari from Durban and the clients got on to the evening game drive before we met again at 8pm for dinner. I was surprised as when they returned they had not been too luck so had not added any more of the Big 5 to the list which meant I had huge stress to find Cats and Elephants the other 2 major ones of the Big 5 were were missing. The Leopard which would be the 5th of the Big 5 we try and think of it as a bonus as we see it so rarely.   After a great dinner it was time for bed and we were all exhausted after a long day.           Day 2: Big 5 safari from Durban     We met before 7am and got all luggage in the vehicle before having a quick breakfast and making our way as far down south in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve as the 3.5-4 hours we had would allow us.   This would be a pure crazy day as we just had such luck! As we had our way down south we ignored Rhino, Buffalo in the distance and most other things it the quest to find Elephant and Cats. We did have to stop for this sighting of Giraffe and Zebra though!             Big 5 safari Durban; Zebra and Giraffe Big 5 safari Durban; Zebra and Giraffe                               We didn’t have to continue much further before we spotted our Elephants but they were far away and it did not make for the best picture. Minutes after we spotted another 2 Elephant and then another 2! Again pretty far away but we now had 3 of the Big 5 on our Durban safari.           Big 5 safari Durban; Elephants Big 5 safari Durban; Elephants                                 As we continued on we headed over the Umfolozi river and saw nothing but on the other side I bumped into a friend of mine Marumo who is involved in research. She said that 10 minutes before there was Lions in the river bed. I though we may as well turn back and check from a view point and there they all were all 14 of these amazing Lions! We were all so excited.           Big 5 safari Durban; Lion mom and cubs Big 5 safari Durban; Lion mom and cubs                                   Video: Lions in Imfolozi game reserve       We now had 4 of the Big 5 on our Durban safari and were very happy with that. I had to put up another picture with a couple of big males in it to share with you all.             Big 5 safari Durban; Lions Big 5 safari Durban; Lions                                 We must have spent 15-20 minuted watching them and knew we still needed to try find Elephants closer but I think in our hearts we were all content having seen 4 of the Big 5 during our Safari from Durban.     We battled and only found everything else except the Elephants close. We got one good sighting of Zebra though!             Big 5 safari Durban; Zebra Big 5 safari Durban; Zebra                                 We made our way to the gate to head to St Lucia estuary for our 2 hour boat cruise to see Hippos and Crocodiles as well as some Bird Life. It was an hour drive and we said farewell to Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 game reserve and hello to Isimangaliso Wetland park.   We stopped for some lunch in St Lucia town which was lovely before the boat cruise on the St Lucia estuary.   Our cruise went very well we saw Hippos galore, Crocodiles, Birds and even a baby Hippo new born and its mother out the water.             Big 5 safari Durban; Hippo mom and baby Big 5 safari Durban; Hippo mom and baby                                   I was really fortunate to have filmed this and it was amazing watching the young Hippo head into the water with its mother and have her display by opening her mouth.             Video: Hippo mother and baby on the shore run to the water               We had a great look at couple of Crocodiles which was great and after seeing 4 of the Big 5 on our Durban safari to see Hippos and Crocodiles is always a treat!             Big 5 safari Durban; Crocodile Big 5 safari Durban; Crocodile                                 One of my favorite pictures from the St Lucia boat cruise was the this one below where I managed to have the good fortune of lining up 2 or 4 Hippos heads in a row.   We had a great 2 hours at St Lucia on the boat and it was not time to head back to Durban and say goodbye after sharing some great memories.   If you wish to do the same tour as described above please click on this link below:     Durban 2 day Big 5 safari tour