A view with a room: Swaziland & Phinda

To fully appreciate South Africa's incredible diversity a visit to Swaziland and KwaZulu Natal is not be missed when on a luxury South Africa holiday. Haven't had enough of South African nature and safaris? This luxury travel module takes you from Kruger National Park via Swaziland to Phinda Private Game Reserve in KwaZulu Natal for the ultimate bush expience. There are many differences between the bushveld typical of Kruger National Park and the game reserves of KwaZulu Natal. You'll notice this quickly when travelling south: the air gets moist and the vegetation denser and greener. It is as if you are travelling in a whole other country. During this travel module you'll sleep for one night in the Kingdom of Swaziland, followed bu a three night stay in the Phinda Big 5 game reserve. This is a private game reserve with a story to tell: it is famous for its very successful collabaration between nature conservation and the local communities. De local population is reaping the rewards of touristic development in the area.

Tour duration: 5 days, 4 nights

Price: From £ 1454 per person (high), from £ 1069 per person (low) for two adults sharing

Best time to visit: All year round

Day 1: Kruger Park Private Reserve - Swaziland


After your Kruger safari your South Africa luxury journey continues to Swaziland. With a driving distance of about 190 miles it is a considerable stretch. Take the road south by rental car to the border with Swaziland. Crossing the border normally doesn't take too much time, and from there simply follow the road to Mbabane. The accommodation for your overnight stop is located near Mlilwane National Park, the biggest national park in Swaziland. Surrounded by mountains and a colourful garden this lodge provides accommodation with a country feeling. The rooms are not particularly luxurious, but good enough for one night. They are equipped with bathroom, telephone and television. From the room and patio you can ejoy wonderful views over the moubtains. To recover from the long drive you can make use of the swimming pool or visit one of the nearby waterfalls. In the evening an excellent dinner awaits you close to the cosy fireplaceand the terrace offers a nice view of the surrounding mountains. In order to get the car you an afternoon swim in the pool or one of the nearby waterfalls. In the evening enjoy dinner by candlelight or cozy fireplace in the adjacent restaurant. (Driving distance 190 miles, depending on location near Kruger NP)

Hotel name: Foresters Arms Hotel Hotel style: highland simplicity

Day 2: Swaziland - Phinda Private Game Reserve

phinda glass forest lodge

The second part of this travel module takes you back to South Africa. You leave the Kingdom of Swaziland through the Golela border post in the south. During the drive the landscape gradually changes, the vegetation becomes denser and you'll see more and more forests. Just north of the village of St. Lucia is the next destination: Phinda private game reserve. The roads to the park are in excellent condition and from the border the travel time is short. The lodge you stay in for the next few days is truly unique. The luxury suite is built on stilts in the middle of an enchanting sand forest. The lodge was designed to blend with the invironment so that environmental impact would be kept at a minimum. The result is a type of suite that stands out of the ordinary, mostly due the usage of lots of glass. The view from inside out is amazing, allowing an almost 360 degree view. Although all this glass, rooms are still very private as they lie hidden in the forest. Once arrived in the lodge you can immediately join a game drive in the Phinda Game Reserve. A Phinda safari means good chances of seeing many different game species, including the Big 5. But above all Phinda is known in particular for its staggering amount of bird species: more than 400. (Driving distance 205 miles)

Hotel name: Phinda Forest Lodge Hotel style: pristine forest glasshouse

Day 3: Phinda Private Game Reserve

gamedrive Phinda

Being on safari means that you have to get up early in the morning. After some coffee it is time to go explore Phinda in on open Landrover and accompanied by a professional ranger/guide. Phinda is well known for its great chances of seeing leopards, lions and nyala (an antelope species common in forest like environments). We ourselves saw the elusive black rhino wil on safari in Phinda. The very well trained rangers know Phinda by heart and are capable of showing you the most beautiful places rich in game. After returning to the lodge breakfast is ready after which you have some time to relax. You can choose to make use of the swimming pool, pick a book from the small lodge library, or have a afternoon nap in the privacy of your room. One of the nice things about Phinda is, that besides the regular game drives, the reserve offers a whole range of other activities. Examples are making a cruise on the Mzinene River or canoeing on a nearby lake. It is almost surreal being on the water close to hippos and crocodiles while the sun slowly sets over beautiful KwaZulu Natal. Upon return at the lodge, a delicious dinner awaits you in the traditional boma.

Hotel name: Phinda Forest Lodge Hotel style: pristine forest glasshouse

Day 4: Phinda Private Game Reserve

phinda forest safari south africa

Another full day for you to enjoy in Phinda Game Reserve. After a good night's sleep another game drive allows you to explore Phinda further. This is your chance to go searchting for animals that you haven't seen before. The ranger will also give more attention to smaller things in the bush like insects, birds and plants. If you didn't make use of the opportunity to go canoeing there's another chance this afternoon. Optional excursions (payable on the spot) are scenic flights over the KwaZulu Natal coastline, snorkelling, horseback riding, diving, fishing or visiting a local Zulu community. Tonight is your last dinner in Phinda Forest Lodge that takes place at as many different locations as possible. Maybe tonight is the night ot have dinner under the stars in the bush or at the edge of swimming pool.

Hotel name: Phinda Forest Lodge Hotel style: pristine forest glasshouse

Day 5: Phinda Private Game Reserve - Durban / Drakensberg

bird watching south africa

After one more gamedrive and breakfast it is time again to travel further. The entry road to Phinda takes you back to the Durban - Johannesburg motorway quickly. From Phinda there are two connecting luxury travel modules. Feel like getting active? Then travel to the Drakensberg Mountain making use of our module "A view from the top: Drakensberg mountains". You can also drive to Durban and catch a plane to either George or Port Elizabeth. From here you can start with or much appreciated module "Garden Route essentials". (Driving distance Durban 171 miles, Drakensberg 285 miles)

You can request a quote for this luxury South Africa holiday module by completing a quote request form. For more special travel options see our luxury South Africa holiday modules overview.

Phinda safari South Africa image gallery


This holiday offered to you by:

Request a quote

Create your South Africa holiday

More information


Rental car (not included), read more >>.

Departure days



Included: Swaziland: bed & breakfast, Phinda: all meals; local drinks; two gamedrives daily

Excluded: car hire (more information); other mails; all items of personal nature and tips; optional excursions

Share this page: