Leatherbacks and other Specials – June, July, August 2015

SOME GREAT SAVINGS –June,July, August 2015

(Terms and Conditions Apply)


  • RHINO CLUB benefits to note:
    If your main destination is iSimangaliso, please remember that the expiry date for the current Rhino Card iSimangaliso benefits is 31 May 2016.
  • You can purchase or renew your Rhino Gold card for a period of one year at a cost of R250 per person / R 230 per person over 60 yrs of age (valid from the date of payment)
  • To renew your Rhino Club membership CONTACT OUR HELPDESK ON 033 8451008/1009 or rhinoclub@kznwildlife.com or via http://www.rhinoclub.wordpress.com

IMPORTANT: All Terms and Conditions apply to LEATHERBACKS AND SPECIAL OFFERS, so make sure you ask the booking consultant about these when you make a reservation. NEW BOOKINGS ONLY. Dependent on AVAILABILITY. All offers EXCLUDE LONG WEEKENDS, PUBLIC HOLIDAYS and SCHOOL HOLIDAYS, EVENTS and COMPETITIONS, unless otherwise stated:-


NEW BOOKINGS ONLY – 40% DISCOUNT. The Leatherback Discounts will apply only to the ACCOMMODATION ie Breakfast will not be discounted. Leatherback Offers EXCLUDE Events AND Competitions. CONTACT OUR RESERVATIONS on 033 8451000 or bookings@kznwildlife.com:-

1. MAY and JUNE: 2015 – Valid from the 04 May until the 30 June 2015, THEN

2. JULY AND AUGUST: 2015 – Valid from the 21 July until the 30 August 2015

Midmar Dam (Chalets, cabins, camping), Wagendrift, Weenen, Ithala Bushcamps (Thalu, Mbizo, Mhlangeni), Kamberg, Injesuthi, Lotheni, Monks Cowl, Highmoor, Sodwana Bay, Kosi bay, Amatikulu, Maphelane (very rustic), St Lucia Campsites, Umlalazi cabins and camping, Oribi Gorge, Vernon Crookes, Mkhuze (Mantuma, Safari Camp, Nhlonhlela Bushcamp), and Ndumo. 

3. JUNE AND AUGUST 2015: Valid from 01 June to 26 June and then from 21 July to 31 August 2015 – Cape Vidal – Chalets and camping (Leatherback terms and conditions above, apply)


Please note: Dependent on AVAILABILITY. Gate times: strictly 06hoo to 18h00
Packages which include meals are discounted on accommodation only.

1. Ntshondwe Resort at Ithala Game Reserve

All chalets – 30% discount including BED and BREAKFAST – Valid from the 04 May until the 30 June 2015, THEN 20 July to 30 August 2015

Plus ALL Rhino Club members can enjoy a Game Drive for R100 per adult and R50 per child under 13 years – regret no children 3 years and under.

  • WOW!!! FANTASTIC NEW DBB/Game Drive Package: (dinner, bed, breakfast, one game drive per day) for only R725.00 per person sharing accommodation, or R 895.00 for single accommodation …what a bargain. This package is available from now until 31 October 2015

PLEASE NOTE: Minimum two night stay: This package is only offered in the Twin bedded Non-self-catering (Hotel rooms) chalets.

    Sunday Lunch Buffet continues to be a bargain at R125.00 per person, after special discount is applied.
  • 10% discount to all Gold Rhino Club Members on standard priced meals, including all bar beverages – (Discounts not applicable on any other Special packages which may be advertised from time to time).

2. DIDIMA RESORT at Cathedral peak

All chalets – 30% discount including BED and BREAKFAST – Valid from the 04 May until the 30 June 2015, THEN 20 July to 30 August 2015

3. GIANTS CASTLEAll chalets – 30% discount including BED and BREAKFAST – VALID from 13th of April till the 23rd of April 2015, then Valid from the 04 May until the 30 June 2015, THEN 20 July to 30 August 2015

4. HILLTOP RESORT (Hluhluwe Game Reserve) All chalets – 30% discount including BED and BREAKFAST- Valid from the 04 May until the 30 June 2015, THEN 20 July to 30 August 2015

5. WILDERNESS TRAILS –Ask Lwazi and Mlu about their discounts. Note: Giants Cup Trail hut Mzimkulu has no mattresses.

For Last-minute PLACES on Trail, contact: Bookings: Trails Desk – tel 033 8451067 or fax 086 505 8884 or email trails@kznwildlife.com.

Trails offer to Gold Members: WOW!!! Wonderful new discounts for 

1. 30% discount – Base Camp, Explorer Trail, Extended Short Trail and Weekend Short Trail (Sunday).

2. 20% discount – The Primitive Trail and the Weekend Short Trail (Friday).

3. 30% discount – The Giant’s Cup Trail.

1. FIVE LODGE GOLD SPECIAL: 15% discount
 all year round
(except Easter, Christmas and New Year and major events) at Thendele Lodge, Rock Lodge (Giants), Ithala Lodge, Mtwazi and Masinda Lodges

2. Santa Lucia launch tour 25% Gold discountenquire at St Lucia Estuary Office tel 035 590 1340

3. Karkloof Canopy Tour 

Rhino Club Gold Members (excludes Easter) – The Karkloof Canopy Tour Team have offered a generous discount of R100 per person, if you wish to participate on the Karkloof Canopy Tour. It is widely regarded as one of the best eco-adventure activities in the world and is something for people of all ages with the youngest being 3 and the oldest 90 so far to do the tour. Bookings can be made directly with them on: Office: (+27) 33 3303415 or Mobile: (+27) 836474595 or www.karkloofcanopytour.co.za 

4. Pentravel Gold Special – Call into Pentravel PMB office and produce your valid Rhino Gold Card and claim R250 per booking discount on all International travel packages.(T’s and C’s apply). Contact Pentravel PMB on tel +27 033 3927910, fax +27 033 342 7835 or check out www.pentravel.co.za for their special packages on offer!!!

5. GROUNDCOVER FOOTWEAR is giving our Rhino Club Gold members, including Kids Club, a 10% discount on footwear! View the footwear on their website at www.groundcover.co.za . NB email them directly on info@groundcover.co.za (DO NOT ORDER ONLINE). Simply give your Rhino Card Number or a scan a copy of your card to info@groundcover.co.za. OR YOU CAN VISIT THEM on the Midlands Meander (Curries Post Road) and make your purchase in person!

6. African Bird of Prey Sanctuary. Show your member card and get 20% Discount on your Entry ticket – Cell 0829253023. See the Aerial display and enjoy lunch at their Coffee Shop.

7. Kids Club Members – Free entry to Midmar for you, if you produce your valid Kids Club card! ASK about the KIDDIES Menus at Hilltop, Giant’s, Didima and Ntshondwe Resorts We give them what they like!!!

FOR Information speak to your Rhino Club Consultants, Kay or Nomfundo on 033 8451008/1009/1011/1013

Plan your arrival at the Reserve – try to avoid travelling after 4pm (16h00) and give yourself time for unexpected delays en route. Check Gate closing times.
To renew your Rhino Club membership CONTACT OUR HELPDESK ON 033 8451008/1009 or rhinoclub@kznwildlife.com

Visitors to All Parks are also reminded that while wildlife is often seen amongst the chalets and campsites in the protected areas, these animals are not tame and members of the public should not try to touch them or feed them.

Simangaliso’s slithering specials

Of the 36 recorded snake species known to occur in iSimangaliso Wetland Park, the beautiful Gaboon adder (Bitis gabonica) (also referred to as a Gaboon viper) is surely the most iconic one associated with the world heritage site, with iSimangaliso the largest protected refuge for Gaboon adders in southern Africa.


The Gaboon adder is one of Africa’s most recognisable snakes. It’s a sedentary species renowned for its striking geometric patterning and is the world’s heaviest Adder, nonetheless notoriously cryptic in its natural environment. Stocky and often obese in appearance, the species can attain lengths up to 2 metres, although in iSimangaliso individuals rarely exceed 1.3 metres. The disproportionately large head resembles a dead leaf, complete with a dark dorsal stripe that mimics a midvein. Among snakes, Gaboon adders have the longest fangs (max. 40 mm) and highest venom yields. Bites from Gaboon adders are medical emergencies, but the species is of docile disposition and the majority of bites occur from handling of captive individuals by snake enthusiasts. Envenomation incurs mostly cytotoxic symptoms, although toxic effects to humans are not well known, and only one human death is described in the literature.


Another of South Africa’s well-known venomous snakes, the Puff adder, is seen here on the left in comparison to the Gaboon adder on the right.

This extremely rare inhabitant recently had its numbers boosted by 26 following the release of neonates at three locations on the Eastern Shores of iSimangaliso. Born in captivity at the iSimangaliso St Lucia Crocodile and Education Centre, their release into the wild was in line with the release protocol suggested from a three year study (2005-2007) by registered researcher Jon Warner who recently completed his Master of Science thesis on the conservation biology of the species in South Africa.

According to Park CEO Andrew Zaloumis, “Jon’s Gaboon research was one of the 185 current registered research projects ongoing in the world heritage site. iSimangaliso encourages research in numerous fields in order to inform and improve our management strategies and contribute towards the creation of scientific knowledge. Jon’s finding points to the importance of maintaining the continuity and integrity of the entire iSimangaliso dune forest corridor for the protection and conservation of the Gaboon adder. A good example of how iSimangaliso is conserving high conservation value species through protecting their habitats.”


Gaboon3 Gaboon4

The young Gaboon adders were collected at the iSimangaliso St Lucia Crocodile and Education Centre, seen above in a container, before being released gently into thickly forested habitat on the Eastern Shores.

Although primarily a tropical species extending into equatorial Africa, their distribution is very restricted in South Africa and it is mainly confined to iSimangaliso, highlighting the importance of the Park for the future conservation of the South African population.


Researcher Jon Warner recording habitat variables and marking the exact location of the snake. The Gaboon adder, previously captured and fitted with radio-tracking device, is in the white circle.

Following the insertion of tracking devices in the belly of selected Gaboon adders, Jon was able to track and monitor their movements as part of his research.

The core area of activity averaged 6.7 hectares, with the mean male core activity centre almost five times greater than that of females. Snakes tracked (using VHF telemetry) were highly sedentary, especially during winter when individuals remained at single localities for extended periods (max. 87 days). Activity peaked for both sexes at the onset of the breeding season during March, with individuals averaging a movement distance of 598 metres.

The Gaboon adder is a terrestrial forest Adderid and its habitat preferences in iSimangaliso are strongly influenced by season, with individuals selecting open-canopied areas during cooler months. This behaviour is presumably because the forested habitat individuals utilise the rest of the year is not adequate for the species’ thermoregulatory requirements during winter. Females used slightly less shrubby microhabitats than males and “thicket” microhabitat is important for the protection, thermoregulation and food acquisition requirements of Gaboon adders in iSimangaliso.

Feeding activity of Gaboon adders varied between seasons, with individuals spending long periods of time at single localities in an ambush position, especially during summer. Snakes exhibited strong ambush site fidelity, often remaining immobile for weeks at a time. Sites where ambush behaviour was observed were frequently in close proximity (less than 1 metre) to game trails created by antelope and Gaboon adders may feed on prey as large as Red duiker (Cephalophus natalensis).

Ecological research from Jon’s study, coupled with new molecular data that shows South African and central African Gaboon adders are genetically similar, suggests the South African Gaboon adder population’s conservation status is better than what was previously assumed. However, long-term protection and management of the coastal dune forest corridor (found primarily inside iSimangaliso) is needed for a viable, local Gaboon adder population.



St Lucia residents Charne von Plaster & Leon Steyn were cycling through the Igwalagwala Trail recently when they spotted this well-fed Gaboon lying in their pathway. Visitors walking the self-guided trails in the Igwalagwala Trail and St Lucia Nature Park areas of iSimangaliso should keep a careful eye open for these snakes as they are fond of lying in a sunny patch of path or amongst fallen leaves. Several visitors have reported spotting Gaboons, wisely choosing to leave a wide berth between themselves and the snoozing snake. A sighting should be considered a rare and special privilege, and just another example of the miracles awaiting discovery in iSimangaliso.

For more information on the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Youtube, or visit our website at www.isimangaliso.com. Media enquiries should be directed to Media Officer Siyabonga Mhlongo at siyabonga@isimangaliso.com or on 084 382 0884.


Newsflash No.: 2015.04.27

Fun-Filled & Informative day at Beachwood Mangrove Nature Reserve – 1 May 2015

Join us for a Fun-Filled & Informative day at Beachwood Mangrove Nature Reserve

On Friday 1 May 2015 – 9 am to 4pm

Interactive & static displays showcase our conservation efforts:

A rare opportunity to view the “behind the scenes” activities at Beachwood: Marine, Projects, Research, Education, Terrestrial and biodiversity.

  • Displays and stalls by various animal and conservation groups.
  • Children’s activities.
  • Items for sale.
  • Food stalls.
  • Guided walks.
  • Interactive demonstrations


For more information call 084 6100012

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2015 Open Day Flyer - generic

iSimangaliso Half-Marathon 10 May 2015


Save our Frogs


GPS co-ordinates to our Reserves

CAMP_NAME longitude latitude
Amatikulu 31d35’58.76″E 29d06’41.17″S
Cape Vidal Beach Camp 32d33’27.84″E 28d07’42.38″S
Cape Vidal Camp Site 32d33’21.22″E 28d07’20.48″S
Bhangazi Bush Lodge 32d32’05.24″E 28d06’58.93″S
Didima 29d13’54.17″E 28d56’35.68″S
Chelmsford 29d54’35.07″E 27d59’17.02″S
Mabibi 32d44’59.89″E 27d19’44.61″S
Kosi Bay 32d49’32.99″E 26d57’36.96″S
Cobham 29d24’51.65″E 29d42’09.11″S
False Bay 32d22’52.51″E 27d58’06.8″S
False Bay Dugandlovu 32d21’51.88″E 28d02’11.13″S
Fanie’s Island 32d25’51.67″E 28d06’41.27″S
Garden Castle 29d12’25.47″E 29d44’45.64″S
Giant’s Castle 29d31’11.87″E 29d16’12.29″S
Harold Johnson 31d25’18.76″E 29d12’23.11″S
Highmoor 29d37’30.55″E 29d19’21.97″S
Hilltop Camp 32d02’37.58″E 28d05’05.72″S
Hilltop Mtwazi Lodge 32d02’39.44″E 28d04’54.71″S
Munywaneni Bush Lodge 32d02’04.58″E 28d09’00.45″S
Muntulu Bush Lodge 32d03’07.85″E 28d07’38.42″S
Gqoyeni Bush Lodge 31d50’44.65″E 28d15’45.24″S
Hlatikulu Bush Lodge 31d52’51.32″E 28d16’09.83″S
Nselweni Bush Lodge 31d55’02.78″E 28d17’22.37″S
iMfolozi Masinda Lodge 31d56’37.03″E 28d16’41.13″S
iMfolozi Mpila Camp 31d51’44.62″E 28d18’36.36″S
Injesuthi 29d26’24.05″E 29d07’06.43″S
Ithala Ntshondwe 31d16’49.14″E 27d32’40.88″S
IthalaThalu 31d12’22.65″E 27d30’10.11″S
Ithala Mbizo 31d12’18.25″E 27d31’11.28″S
Ithala Mhlangeni 31d22’21.91″E 27d31’22.59″S
Ithala Campsite 31d12’13.74″E 27d30’44.77″S
Kamberg 29d40’04.82″E 29d23’13.54″S
Kamberg Stillerus 29d42’32.4″E 29d23’29.36″S
Lotheni 29d31’30.32″E 29d26’59.55″S
Lotheni Simes 29d30’54.1″E 29d26’15.56″S
Maphelane 32d25’21.62″E 28d24’22.36″S
Midmar 30d11’37.85″E 29d29’27.86″S
Midmar Munro Bay 30d11’23.48″E 29d29’24.37″S
Midmar Morgenzon 30d10’32.76″E 29d30’11.81″S
Midmar Dukuduku 30d09’42.96″E 29d29’59.77″S
Mkhomazi 29d42’12.26″E 29d29’28.17″S
Mkhuze Mantuma 32d13’09.89″E 27d35’43.58″S
Mkhuze Nhlonhlela Bushcamp 32d11’52.86″E 27d35’52.7″S
Mkhuze Umkumbi Bushcamp 32d18’03.13″E 27d46’43.42″S
Mkhuze Emshopi Campsite 32d09’30.27″E 27d38’24.34″S
Monk’s Cowl 29d24’12.27″E 29d02’49.18″S
Mount Currie 29d23’20.68″E 30d29’14.16″S
Ndumo 32d18’48.85″E 26d54’32.48″S
Oribi Gorge 30d16’24.35″E 30d43’54.92″S
Phongolo 31d54’21.99″E 27d20’30.1″S
RNNP Rugged Glen 28d59’38.15″E 28d40’07.65″S
RNNP Mahai 28d56’55.16″E 28d41’24.44″S
RNNP Thendele 28d56’04.04″E 28d42’37.06″S
Sodwana Bay Gwala-Gwala 32d40’19.03″E 27d32’45.03″S
Spioenkop 29d30’34.58″E 28d42’43.49″S
St Lucia Estuary 32d25’23.34″E 28d22’51.09″S
Umlalazi 31d46’19″E 28d57’24.74″S
Vergelegen 29d27’09.29″E 29d31’40.29″S
Vernon Crookes 30d36’33.45″E 30d16’27.41″S
Wagendrift 29d50’36.47″E 29d02’41.98″S
Weenen 29d59’47.02″E 28d50’06.23″S
Charter’s Creek 32d24’59.95″E 28d12’17.25″S