The intriguing Kingdom of eSwatini (formerly Swaziland) is diminutive but boasts a huge checklist for any visitor. Everything there remains personable and the atmosphere is remarkably relaxed.
A plethora of wildlife is found at its five National Parks, all of which are within 3 – 4 hours of each other. They are: Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Hlane Royal National Park, Mkhaya Game Reserve, Mbuluzi Game Reserve and Malolotja Nature Reserve. Each one is unique and special for its wildlife, flora, rivers, mountains and landscapes. Accommodation inside the parks are comfortable and reasonably priced.
Adrenaline-boosting activities such as rafting, mountain biking, hiking and visits to ancient bushman paintings are worthwhile. The Sibebe Rock, just north of Mbabane is the world’s largest granite dome, it’s an awesome hike to the top with stunning panoramic views. Visit Ngwenya Mine, it is located near the north western border of Swaziland. This mine is considered to be the world’s oldest. Swaziland even has its own private botanical garden situated around the charming and welcoming Summerfield Boutique Hotel.
Swaziland proudly preserves its enthralling culture, customs, and festivals. Here you are welcome to witness the festivities of Incwala, an impressive month long Royal ritual which takes place in December and January, and, Umhlanga, the vibrant Reed Dance ceremony, which takes place in August. Alternatively visit a traditional Swazi settlement at Mantenga Cultural Village, an open-air museum depicting a typical village from the 1860s. Get to watch vibrant performances of traditional dance and song. Visit the House on Fire, lauded as one of the most eclectic entertainment venues in the world, they have a wonderful restaurant and interesting curios. Craft markets in Swaziland offer excellent, high-quality handicrafts. I recommend you visit the Ngwenya Glass factory and Swazi Candles Centre.
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