As Royal Jozini is a private reserve, there are no facilities for day trippers and no picnic spots. Access to the reserve is by booking accommodation in one of the lodges or at the tented camp.
You can get to all the bush lodge homes in a saloon car, but to go on game drives (they are currently self-drive only) you will need an SUV, bakkie or 4×4 – in order to have reasonable clearance on the roads.
Royal Jozini’s main roads are well maintained sand roads – and those cut through on the mountain slopes are rocky. In the flatter, low lying areas, grass is cut back to demarcate roadways but some tracks are fine black dust. In the rainy season, this turns into cloying clay that sucks down even the best of 4×4’s! So guests are encouraged to avoid wet black areas of mud or puddles across the road in these low areas. Turn back, find another route!
All guests are sent a map of the reserve so that they can work out where they want to go.
Royal Jozini is split into three distinct areas
The eastern shore against the Lebombo Mountains where the majority of the lodge homes are (and will be) – where there is a high wire fence to keep elephants away from the lodges. (Caution, this is not always successful in keeping a determined bull elephant or two out!) Warthog, water buck, nyala, impala, zebra and wildebeest abound here.
Then the West Shore area of Royal Jozini – a flatter area with some natural water seepage areas, is where you will find fever tree forests, maybe sight an elephant, wildebeest, zebra, buffalo, reed buck, bush buck, water buck, giraffe, warthog and all the small antelope like duiker and steenbok.
The northern area of Royal Jozini has breath-taking scenery, open grasslands and tall trees like maroela and knob thorn amongst other acacias – and where we often compete to take photographs of the most beautiful, interesting or iconic trees! Here you will find Kudu and Nyala, Wildebeest and the indomitable warthog.
And at night time, throughout the reserve, it’s wonderful if you catch sight of any of these nocturnal animals, like Leopard, African Civet, Genet, Serval, the brave Honeybadger, Bush pigs and Bat eared foxes, side striped and black backed Jackal (you can see these in the day time too) and Porcupine – but you may only hear the cry of the Bush Baby.
The nearest petrol station is in the village of Lavumisa, which is 9kms south from our gate, at the border. They sell petrol and 50 diesel.