Swaziland is Africa's second smallest country and its last remaining absolute monarchy. Dwarfed by neighbouring South Africa, this tiny, landlocked nation punches well above its weight in terms of both nature and culture. Author Mike Unwin explores the excellent wildlife reserves and wild hiking trails offering waterfalls, rock art and prolific flora and birdlife, and introduces travellers to the country's rich and varied landscapes. His personal insights, together with colourful anecdotes provide entertaining insights, give an insider's perspective. He divides Swaziland into four distinct regions, with detailed maps and itineraries for timescales from one weekend to one month. It includes a practical guide to neighbouring attractions easily accessed from Swaziland, including Maputo (Mozambique) and the Kruger Park (South Africa), both less than one hour's drive away. The natural history section offers far greater detail and more accurate information than found elsewhere, drawing on the author's extensive insider knowledge and experience.
'Well-researched and highly readable guide' Travel Africa magazine '...a new guide by Bradt details big game, wild hiking and adventure sports... Small is beautiful' Evening Standard
Mike Unwin is a freelance travel writer, specialising in ecotourism and Africa, and has lived and worked in Swaziland.
Introduction PART ONE GENERAL INFORMATION Chapter 1 Background Information Geography, Climate, Habitats, Wildlife, History, Government and politics, Economy and infrastructure, People, Language, Culture Chapter 2 Practical Information When to visit, Highlights, Suggested itineraries, Tourist information and services, Tour operators, Red tape, Getting there and away, Health, Safety and security, Women travellers, Travelling with children, Gay/lesbian travellers 123, Disabled travellers 123, What to take 123, Money, banking and budgeting 124, Getting around 125, Accommodation 127, Food and drink 129, Public holidays, festivals and events 130, Shopping 131, Arts and entertainment 132, Going out 133, Sport and activities 134, Media 136, Communications 137, Cultural etiquette and greetings 138, Photography 138, Travelling positively 140 PART TWO THE GUIDE 145 Chapter 3 Mbabane and the Ezulwini Valley 147 Mbabane 147, Ezulwini Valley 160 Chapter 4 The Heartland 173 Lobamba 174, Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary 177, Mahlanya and the Malkerns Valley 182, Matsapha 188, Manzini 193 Chapter 5 The Northwest 199 Ngwenya 199, Hawane 205, Malolotja Nature Reserve 207, The Nkomati Valley 216, Piggs Peak 220, Matsamo 228, Bulembu 228 Chapter 6 The Southwest 233 South to Nhlangano 233, Grand Valley 235, Nhlangano 236, Nhlangano to Luyengo, via Mankayane and Bhunya 240, Ngwempisi Wilderness Area 241, Rosecraft Farm 243 Chapter 7 The Northeast 247 Manzini to Siteki 247, Siteki 250, Mhlumeni border 254, The Lubombo Conservancy 255, Lomahasha border 268, Mananga and the Top End 268 Chapter 8 The Southeast 273 Manzini to Siphofaneni 273, Big Bend 279, South of Big Bend 283, South to Lavumisa 285 Chapter 9 Over the Border 289 North: the Kruger Park and Drakensburg Escarpment 289, South: KwaZulu-Natal 294, East: Mozambique 296 Appendix 1 Language 299 Appendix 2 Further Information 302 Index 305