Things To Do in St LuciaMziki Trail
Where? Start and finish at Mount Tabor hut in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park
How much? Price on request
Start: Mount Tabor hut, iSimangaliso Wetland Park
Finish: Mount Tabor hut
Duration: 40 km
Fitness: moderate to difficult
Our tip: head to the Mission Rocks (the sea lies on the eastern flanks of the reserve) at low tide for the rock pools
A guided, three-day trail, Mziki is set on the eastern shores of Lake St Lucia in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. It is actually a series of three day trails all leaving Mount Tabor hut, just 2 km from the Mission Rocks parking.
The hike is accompanied by an armed ranger as not only crocodiles, but four of the big five are in evidence in the reserve – white and black rhino, leopard, buffalo and elephant.
The trail links the St Lucia estuary with Cape Vidal, covering one of the most scenic parts not only of the park but of the coastline of South Africa. The trail's exposure to vastly different landscapes makes it particularly unique. From walking through open grasslands to making your way through dense forests on the sand dunes with the Indian Ocean in the background – the variety makes it a popular hike.
The order in which you do the trails is not particular:
Trail one: is 10 km long, heads west through an indigenous forest and the Mfazana freshwater pan, worth stopping at for the sightings of hippo, crocodile and bird life. From the pan the trail heads over grassland to the shore of Lake St Lucia.
Trail two: is 20 km because it heads to the more remote areas of the reserve. Starting north along the Mount Tabor ridge, it then descends into Bokkie Valley (reedbuck, zebra, elephants) and then into forested dunes, before a return along the desolate coastline.
Trail three: is 10 km and heads south over hillsides, through dune forest and pine plantation. But it is the return part of the journey that is worth it, along the coastline via tidal pools.