Self Drive Areas
The Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park is 96000 hectares in size and can be divided into two sides one being the Hluhluwe and the Imfolozi. Hluhluwe is situated in the northern section and the Imfolozi is situated in the southern section.
Access too the Hluhluwe side is from the Memorial gate 13 km from the town of Hluhluwe. Access to the Imfolozi is done through the Nyalazi gate approx 28 km from the town of Mtubatuba.
Prior to ones Self Drive one has to establish how much time one has to do a self drive and also what wildlife one is seeking. The two sides of the park do vary in fauna and flora and therefore the wildlife do migrate to various parts of the reserve during different times of the year.
Self Drive Hluhluwe
As in any park or reserve always try and be as early as possible as this is when all predators are more active.
Once at the gate purchase a Map of the reserve as this will undoubtedly prove invaluable don't be fooled the reserve is large. Prior to a self drive always make sure that you have adequate water, notified someone as to the time that you will be back (eg accommodation) and also left your reg no of the vehicle as well as the intended area in which you will be doing a self drive in.
This is instrumental as more than often have clients gotten stuck or lost without notifying anyone as to their location or intended area of self drive.
For the best possible self drive sightings keep to the speed limits these limits do not only ensure that the wildlife remain safe but also are intended for some incredible sightings. As numerous rangers have always mentioned look through the bush not at the bush for best results. It is also always a good bet to get to some vantage points from where one can get a better idea as to where you need to travel to. Also always stop as many other vehicles in the park and ask them what it is that they have seen.
A self drive can be incredibly rewarding not only can one enjoy the drive at ones own pace but also spending time with ones kids is so very special.
Try to attain some wildlife books prior to the drive so that identification and additional information is on hand.
The Hluhluwe side offers one more hilly landscapes with incredible views, picnic areas and of course the Hilltop Camp with Restaurant.
As in any reserve or park water sources will always prove to be invaluable.
Self Drive Imfolozi
Once again should you be doing a self drive into the Imfolozi then try and get into the park as early as possible.
The Imfolozi is larger in size and we would definitely suggest that do a self drive into this side of the reserve. With more open grassland and open areas in which to travel and witness wildlife this is a better choice for a self drive.
Areas to which one can enjoy a self drive includes Sontuli Loop, no 21 and no 17 are always some incredible areas. These areas offer good sightings of Lion, Wild Dog and Cheetah.
Sontuli lies along the Umfolozi River and is also a great place where one can enjoy a picnic or braai. Please do note that their are no shops their and therefore one has to pack all foods and drinks prior.
As at any picnic areas please do take care when exiting from ones car as this is a reserve and wild animals may be nearby.
The Imfolozi as mentioned before is the larger of the two sides and also offers more access points to water sources. With numerous Loop roads, Hides and Picnic areas we feel that you would have a wonderful self drive in the Imfolozi as well.
Vehicles and Self Drive
Both Hluhluwe and the Imfolozi Park are suited to self drive's as one has tarred surfaces, at present the park's roads are being resurfaced to ensure more comfort. Gravel roads do make up the majority of the network however these are being graded and kept in a relative good state.
Normal 4x2 vehicles can access the majority of the road networks however it is only in the rainy season that caution should be taken in certain areas. Please do note that these areas do have sign boards and that they are also noted on maps. Please do not cross cause ways during heavy down pours. For the 4x4 self drive enthusiast their is also a very nice 4x4 route in the Imfolozi section.
Times & Rules
Should you be late to depart out of the reserve after closing times a penalty will be applicable. Please also keep your receipt as this will be needed to exit the reserve gate and with out it yet another fine will be imposed.
Please do not exit your vehicle except in areas that indicate that you are allowed to do so.
Please do refrain from speeding in the reserve the speed limit is 40 km/h.
Please do not make use of the any management roads these are all clearly marked as No Entry.
Do not feed any animals.
Please do not hog a sighting everyone wants to see the wildlife.
Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park is an absolute marvel, we hope and trust that you will have a splendid self drive while in the park. Should you require any assistance then please do not hesitate and contact us at +27 35 5901555.