Big 5 Safari from Durban to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve

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Big 5 Safari from Durban to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve 2nd April 2015

 

We began our Big 5 safari from Durban in Ballito one of the lovely suburbs of Durban. After meeting my clients we began the 2.5 hour drive to Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve covering the history of Durban, KwaZulu Natal and surrounding areas.

This was meant to be a 2.5 hour drive but as it was the Easter weekend we usually find lots more monkeys driving cars and this means lots more accidents. Unfortunately we came across one of these and has to turn back and enter the game reserve at another gate costing us 40 minutes. This was no major problem though and we arrived at Nyalazi gate in the Umfolozi section of the game reserve and began our Big 5 safari from Durban.

Our first sighting was of a Buffalo bull but he was pretty far away so the pictures didn’t really warrant being posted here. We enjoyed some of the scenery before spotting Rhinos in the distance and the some Zebra. Waterbuck and Rhebuck on a ridge a lot closer to the road.

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Zebra

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Zebra

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Zebra

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These two Zebra were having a little scratch against one another and resting their head on each others back. After spending some time with them we moved on to cross the Black Umfolozi river and just before here we spotted our first Impalas and Rhinos. One of the baby Rhinos was Suckling but again it was hard to get a clear picture.

 

At the Umfolozi river itself on our big 5 safari from Durban we spotted a Bull Elephant again he was far away! I was now a little frustrated but knew we had all day and the animals would eventually show up and so they did.

The next sighting was of a Rhino male mud wallowing with the Red Billed Oxpeckers on his back. This was amazing to see as he was in the open about 15 meters for the road. Our safari was hotting up!

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Rhino in mud wallow

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Rhino in mud wallow

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Rhino in mud wallow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After spending time with him we spotted another 3 Rhinos in the area and lots more Impala. Moving further South stopped at a lovely view point over the White Umfolozi river and one we continued on we found a Wildebeest with some Impalas.

It is always interesting as the Male Wildebeest if they have not acquired females for themselves will hang around other species like the Impala to have that added safety of number around them. The more eyes and ears I always say the better!

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Wildebeest and Impala

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Wildebeest and Impala

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Wildebeest and Impala

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next was the Zebras turn with the Impala! We spotted 3 male Zebra so a small bachelor herd relaxing with the Impala for the same reason! Safety! Zebra are always interesting creatures as they are the only animal in the world known to kick and bite at each other and at predators.

They are also beautiful to look at with stripes which are all individual, like our thumb prints!

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Zebra and Impala

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Zebra and Impala

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Zebra and Impala

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We made our way around the river as I had seen tracks of a herd of Elephant moving through this big loop but sadly they did not come out the other side this was bad luck for us for the moment but still we had had a great big 5 safari from Durban.

 

We stopped at one of the view sights again and were luck as down in this stretch of river was a big herd of Buffalo which were just resting the day away. Always lovely to see so many animals together on any of our big 5 safaris.

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Buffalo in Umfolozi river

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Buffalo in Umfolozi river

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Buffalo in Umfolozi river

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were all getting hungry now so it was time to complete the loop and get back up to the lunch stop at the Centenary center built for the Centenary of the game reserve in 1995. Yes that mean that Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve was established in 1895! Making it the oldest game reserve in Africa.

 

Before we could get back to lunch we found some Baboon playing on the road, I was to slow with the camera and could only get this one male in the bush looking sadly into the sky perhaps wishing for rain!

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Baboon

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Baboon

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Baboon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally lunch came and we had seen so much to this point but still wished for more closer sightings of Elephant and some Giraffe!

We enjoyed the lunch and looked at the museum before heading back out on our big 5 Safari from Durban. We had a great start with Elephants crossing the road in front of us and a couple kilometers later 2 bull elephants came together to share a mud wallow but only for drinking! It was an amazing spectacle.

We watched these Elephant for about 15 minutes as they were on the road and we couldn’t got anywhere but mostly because it was a special sighting. It was so special I made a 5 minuted video to share with you all!

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Elephants

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Elephants

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Elephants

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I could not have wished for a better Elephant sighting on this enjoyable day on Safari from Durban!

It was really special and here is the video!

 

Video of Elephants drinking on the road during our big 5 Safari from Durban.

 

 

 

After this we move on to try find Giraffe but time was running out and we only saw more Buffalo and Elephants!

It was not a major problem and we headed for the gate and exited onto the main national road which heads out of the game reserve.

It was at this point we had 2 kilometers to find Giraffe and that is exactly what I did! I spotted them far away that even with a powerful zoom on my camera it was not clear in the picture but we had seen them and now everyone was happy about our big 5 safari from Durban.

 

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Giraffe

Big 5 Safari from Durban - Giraffe

Big 5 Safari from Durban – Giraffe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With all the satisfaction in the world we began the 2.5 hour drive back to Ballito where I would be returning my clients, of course we had to stop for coffee and a refuel alone the way but it had been an amazing big 5 safari from Durban and we all had smiles on our faces.

If you wish to enjoy a big 5 safari from Durban join me Tim Brown Tours and we will show you what KwaZulu Natal has to offer!