Malolotja for the intrepid

By | Category: Travel destinations

Malalotja If you think of safaris or maybe the famed reed dance as being the attractions of the African kingdom of Swaziland, then think again.

You can safari of a different kind and see the animals from above by going on a tree top canopy tour in Malolotaja Nature Reserve. Or go under the animals and not even know they are there by exploring the only major granite cave system known in Southern Africa.

The Malolotja zip wire is not only long with eleven elevated forest platforms but takes you over landscaoes and sceneries that you can’t do elsewhere. Situated in a gorge deep in the Malolotja Nature Reserve in northern Swaziland, the lines begin slow and short to provide a slight taste of what is to come then gradually become more intense, ranging from fast to high (almost 80m off the ground!) to a shaky suspension bridge over the Majolamba River. It can take up to 3 hours to complete, with exceptional views of scenery and fascinating wildlife. Baboon Rock is a favourite for tourists to see the baboons that frequently use it as their sunning spot.

But don’t think that this is just for adrenaline seeking, agile adults, its family friendly as well meaning that most ages can safely enjoy the thrill. Whilst this tree top canopy tour provides an opportunity to combine adrenaline with appreciation of the natural environment. The lines go through the trees, rather than cutting them down, proving to have a minimal impact on the surroundings. The bases between each zip blend into the surroundings, offering a wonderful bird’s eye view of Malolotja gorge.

From high up in the sky to deep underground, an 800m course of subterranean passages 90m below ground provide a unique cave system formed by the Kophola River that flows underground between Msunduza and Kophola mountains. This is the only major granite cave system known in Southern Africa, and comprises of a series of water-eroded chambers with names such as ‘Key Hole’, ‘French Connection’ and even ‘Platform Nine and Three Quarters’. Progress through the caves is slow and strenuous and you can expect to crawl on your belly in places!

These are just two of the features that you might be surprised to find a country traditionally associated with African wildlife trips.   But it also offers river tubing down the Ngwempisi River, climbing and abseiling on Swaziland’s mountains and gorges, white water rafting on the Usutu river, quad biking the ‘Devils Cauldron’, mountain biking with wildlife at the Milwane Wildlife Sanctuary or trekking at the largest exposed granite pluton in the world.

Or you could just have a cooling drink and watch the views whilst others strain. That’s what the animals will be doing.

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