Mpumalanga DestinationsMarloth Park, Wild Frontier
Marloth Park is, for many, the very definition of the South African bushveld. It explores it, showcases it and lays it bare for the small local community and the tourists that come here for utter peace and tranquillity. It is both a town and a nature conservancy, which means that it is close to perfect for nature lovers or those that really want to experience the wild beauty of this continent unhindered by development, urbanisation, or even fences.
Marloth Park is situated on the border of the world-renowned Kruger National Park. However, the town and its people are particularly committed to the fauna and flora that makes this part of Mpumalanga so special. Therefore, they adhere to strict regulations regarding the hindering of the animals’ natural movement, and allow many of these species to cross this border freely and with no threat. In so doing, Marloth Park retains its biodiversity and is loyal to the variety and natural prosperity of South Africa. So, animals can be seen grazing, wondering the veld gracefully, or drinking from the mighty Crocodile River; just metres away from the homes of Marloth Park. In fact, almost half of the town’s land area is parkland, which caters to the plants and animals of the southern part of Kruger, which have chosen this as their natural habitat.
Visitors to Marloth Park can look forward to seeing four of the Big Five; namely lion, leopard, buffalo and rhino. Elephants are only seen within Kruger itself, though, and can often be spotted quenching their thirst on the banks of the Crocodile River. Enjoy a glass of South African wine next to the river to reap the full benefit of your close proximity to some of Africa’s most spectacular species.
This is also a hotspot for bird-watchers. There are more than 350 recorded avian species here. These include the fish eagle, bat hawk, sanderling, grey-headed gull, Damara tern, hawk eagle, plum-coloured starling, brown-headed parrot, black-headed oriole, lilac-breasted roller, black stork, Bateleur eagle, crested barbet, Marabou stork, Scops owl (or white-faced owl), colourful kingfisher species, spoonbill, eagle owl and martial eagle. The woodlands kingfisher, Wahlberg's eagle, European roller and Diderick cuckoo are migratory birds. So, to ensure that you see these, it is best to visit Marloth Park between September and March.
Other wildlife to keep an eye out for includes various antelope species, giraffe, zebra and ostrich.
To get the real Marloth experience, visitors are encouraged to be adventurous. Explore the 4x4 trails, go on a guided game drive, venture out on a bush walk, ride an elephant, go quad biking, or experience the splendour of the Crocodile River and its surrounds from the heights of a microlight. There are also a number of trails for mountain biking, horse riding and hiking.
The town itself is equipped with very basic facilities. These include a restaurant, petrol station, liquor store, bakery, curio shop, and laundry.
For in depth reviews of Marloth Park see our articles at:
• Visit Marloth Park - a unique conservation area brimming with wildlife
• Explore Marloth Park.