Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve Travel Guide

The oldest game reserve in South Africa, Hluhluwe-Imfolozi is a Big Five safari park recognised as the game reserve that saved the White Rhino.

A Travel Guide to Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve


Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve is located just 280 kilometres (173.9 miles) from KwaZulu Natal's capital city Durban and 25 kilometres (5.5 miles) from Hluhluwe town. Visitors can access the reserve between 5am and 7pm in summer and 6am and 6pm in winter from either the Memorial Gate or the Nyalazi Gate.

Internal Road structure

Over 200 kilometres (124.2 miles) of well-maintained road network criss-crosses the park offering many game viewing opportunities.


The closest airport is Durban's King Shaka International Airport.


The main highlight of a visit to the Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve is the excellent game viewing opportunities of the Big Five and many other wild animals. There are a number of viewing hides overlooking the watering holes and pans where visitors can spend time watching Buffalo wallow in the mud and Elephant play in the water at close range.

Enjoy a guided-game drive in the early hours of the morning or in the late afternoon and evening. During these drives visitors will be able to learn more about the African bush while spotting wildlife. Guided game walks are particularly rewarding as they allow visitors to experience the landscape on foot, standing near to a herd of Zebra or watching Impala skit away is an unforgettable experience.


There are a number of Hluhluwe Game Reserve options available for those wanting to spend a night or three in the safari park. The Hilltop Camp is a luxury lodge with a number of self-catering units while the thatched Mtwazi Lodge is a beautiful home once occupied by the warden of the reserve. There is also a tented camp at Mpila. There are no camping facilities in the reserve. A number of private safari lodges outside of the game reserve also offer a wide range of accommodation with rates usually including guided game drives into the game park.

The Experience

With comfortable accommodation to suit a range of budgets, visitors will enjoy a true African bush experience while staying at Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Park. The Hilltop Camp offers exceptional views out across the bush where one can enjoy watching birds soaring towards heaven or Buffalo grazing in the grass below. Spend time relaxing and soaking in the essence of Africa as you breathe in the fresh air and feel the warmth of the sun's rays on your skin.

Heading out,wrapped up warmly, on a game drive early in the morning with a flask of coffee and some rusks is a wonderful experience with the sense of anticipation heightened as you turn around a corner and stumble upon a family of Giraffe's grazing on the leaves of an acacia bush. Star gazing in the cool evenings from the comfort of your accommodation gives one time to stop and reflect back on the miraculous sightings of the day.


The wildlife park is situated in a summer rainfall region with most of the rain falling between October and January. Summer time temperatures are hot and can often be humid. Daily temperatures can soar to between 30°C - 38°C (86 - 100 degrees Fahrenheit) and guests are advised to wear high factor sunscreen and to drink lots of water.

Winters are drier and cooler with temperatures dropping to 7 - 10°C (44 - 50 degrees Fahrenheit). Mist is common in the hill areas and in the valleys in the northern regions of the nature reserve. At all times of the year visitors are advised to pack warm clothing as the evenings can become cool especially when out on a guided game drive.

What You Need to Know

Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve is in a Malaria-risk and visitors are advised to take precautions prior to visiting the safari park. Visitors to the park are also reminded that Hluhluwe-Imfolozi is home to large and dangerous animals and alighting from ones vehicle even in designated areas should be done with caution.


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South Africa Nature Reserves : Game Reserves and National Parks