Game Drive activity at zulu rock lodge
Game Drive activity at zulu rock lodge

Activities And Relaxation At Zulu Rock Lodge

Relaxing at Zulu Rock Lodge is easy, with its range of wonderful facilities from our beautiful sparkling swimming pool and informal lounge and bar area to the amazing deck and shady thatched lapa with views over the expanse of the river valley…

However, it’s out in the incredible African wilderness of Babanango Game Reserve and beyond that Zulu Rock Lodge offers guests the opportunity to immerse themselves in nature and discover the rich history and fascinating culture of this beautiful corner of KwaZulu-Natal.

Game Drives

Your Zulu Rock Lodge safari adventure includes morning and afternoon/evening game drives in open but covered safari vehicles.

Led by our experienced, professional safari guides, you’ll explore the hills and valleys of the reserve looking for animals big and small and enjoying the amazing landscapes that make this area so unique as a safari destination.

Dissected by the White Umfolozi River and its various tributaries, the reserve features a diverse range of wildlife species, many of which are endemic to this area. Expect to see a variety of antelope, including kudu, steenbok, nyala, waterbuck and impala. Leopard occur naturally on the reserve, as do hyena and hippo, and buffalo and rhino have been recently reintroduced as part of an ongoing conservation programme that will see the remaining members of the Big Five – elephant and lion – make Babanango their home over the next two years.


Guided bush walks are the perfect way to discover the small things you often miss on a game drive. Find out about grasses, flowers and a range of shrubs that are used in traditional medicine and for survival out in the bush. Learn about lizards and other small reptiles, insects and arachnids and ground-dwelling birds, and how to identify and follow spoor and other interesting signs left by creatures big and small!

Your guide will explain the countless symbiotic relationships between plants and animals and help you to better understand how eco-systems work in perfect harmony and why it is so important to protect and conserve them for future generations.

You also have the option to visit our historic old, disused copper mine, as well as arrange an all-day walking safari should you wish.


The birdwatching on Babanango Game Reserve is excellent, with more than 250 species recorded in the area, thanks to its diverse habitat that includes thick riparian woodland, rivers, grasslands, dense scrub and montane thicket.

Local specials include the southern bald ibis, buff-streaked chat, mountain wagtail and African finfoot, and a diverse number of raptors can also be seen, including the Lanner falcon and African hawk eagle. If you’re really lucky you may get a sighting of the endangered southern ground hornbill!

Don’t forget to bring your binoculars and let your guide know that you are interested in birding.

Mountain Biking

There are some wonderful mountain bike trails on Babanango Game Reserve and you are more than welcome to bring your bikes with you or use our own, which are available for guest use.

Our trails are varied and suit riders of all ages and experience from beginners to hardcore enthusiasts and every stage in between! They include flat sections as well as more technical ascents and descents.

Horse riding

Experience the beauty of the African bush on a one-hour, half day or full day outride on horseback. Babanango’s horse trails explore some of the deepest recesses of the reserve, and our Boerperd horses are renowned for their strength and gentle nature. Being on horseback allows you to get close to wild animals, as they don’t see you as a threat – this makes for truly extraordinary game viewing! Horse riding is offered from Matane Lodge, and guests are required to self-drive to Matatane for this activity.

Helicopter trips

A ride like no other, Babanango offers you a 20-minute flip with our professionally trained security team. These flights are key to the reserve’s conservation efforts, and you will assist in observing the fence line for any damage that the animals could have caused. Though the scenery is gorgeous, this is not primarily a scenic flight, and so the flight pattern may be erratic should the pilot spot something of interest. Helicopter flips are offered from Valley Lodge; internal transfers may be arranged from other lodges, and charges may apply. Please enquire on arrival.

Culture And History Tours

When it comes to culture and history, Zulu Rock Lodge is truly blessed.

The Zulu people – or amaZulu – are known as the “people of heaven” and this area of Zululand is steeped in history. From the amalgamation of small chieftancies into what came to be known as the Zulu Kingdom, to the sites of famous battles from Boer-Zulu clashes, the Anglo-Zulu war of 1879, and the Anglo-Boer War of 1899 to 1902, there is much to see and learn about the area’s rich history.

During your stay at Zulu Rock Lodge we’d be happy to arrange a tour to Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift for you, as well as a visit to eMakhosini Valley – “The Valley of the Kings” – which is the birthplace of the Zulu people and where King Shaka spent much of his youth.

If you would also like to visit one of our local communities and townships, please feel free to ask and we will make arrangements for you.

All tours are led by knowledgeable local guides who excel in bringing the past to life, presenting you with meaningful, culturally rich experiences.

Group bookings can be accommodated in advance. Contact us to find out more.

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