Guests per Safari Vehicle
Mthembu Lodge is located on the lower embankment of the White iMfolozi River allowing safari-goers to get up close and personal with the bush. On your private deck, you can witness different bird species fluttering through the thickets just a few feet from you. Due to the river, you can also spot larger animals coming by to fulfil their thirst.
Each hand-built private villa has been perfectly created by members of the Mthembu Clan. From the floors and all the tiny details, these villas are just perfection. The building of Mthembu Lodge was the first phase of skills upliftment brought to the community. Mthembu Lodge is one of two lodges in the uMfulaWozi Wilderness Reserve, the other being, Biyela Lodge.
As you walk into the luxury villa you are immediately met with stunning décor that perfectly emulates the uuMfulaWozi Wilderness Reserve. With floor to ceiling glass doors, you can enjoy fantastic views. Each villa is spacious featuring a lounge, bathroom, bedroom and expansive private decks.
Mthembu Lodge is intimate with only 7 private villas that sleep two, and 2 x two-bedroom family villas that sleep up to two adults and 3 children sharing.
The 11,000 hectare uMfulaWozi Wilderness Reserve area is where five descendants of King Shaka’s Chiefs have given tribal land to increase the capacity of Hluhluwe-iMfolozi (total size 102,000 ha), the oldest proclaimed reserve in Africa. It is in these valleys where King Shaka of the Zulus, unbeknown to the world, pioneered a culture of conservation long before the concept was coined by European settlers. It is here, amidst these timeless, undulating hills, where visitors will be able to walk in the footsteps of giants, past and present.
“mFulaWozi and surrounds are home to a rich diversity of wildlife including the Big 5” – Black & Southern White Rhinoceros, African Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Lion and Leopard. Other intriguing species you can encounter, include skilled hunting packs of African Wild Dog, curious Honey Badgers, cheeky and daring Spotted Hyena, graceful Giraffe, Nile Crocodiles faking somnambulance in the sun, and scurrying mongooses.
As one of the last havens of large numbers of ungulates and the predators they support, this Big 5 game reserve is one of the most important conservation areas in South Africa.
The region is famous for its White Rhino and now has one of the largest populations in the world. In 1895 there were only 100 White Rhino left in the world. In 1960 once the reserve had been established and the tsetse fly eradicated the rhino population had grown to 2 300 due primarily to the Save The Rhino campaign. This operation has helped introduce 4 500 White Rhino across South Africa and the rhino in this area is now rated as the 6th Global Key Population by IUCN African Rhino Specialist Group.
Elephants were introduced after the mass slaughtering after an absence of 80 years. The elephant population is now about 700 elephants and contraception is being used to maintain sustainable levels. Lions were introduced in the early 1990s but early signs showed high cub mortality rates due to inbreeding which has now been corrected through new genes been introduced. The area now contains some 120 lions.
The mFulaWozi area has a wealth of wildlife. Years of degradation has impacted on this area forever creating enormous stress on the wildlife but it has managed to survive and continue its struggle to exist and grow, despite the odds.
Many have now described this area as being ‘as close to a state of naturalness as you can get’.
7 Private Villas
2 Two-bedroom Family Villas*
One of the Family Rooms features a Private Plunge Pool
12+ welcome on game drives
Richards Bay Airport
1 hour 15 mins from Richards Bay
2.5 hours from King Shaka International Airport
6.5 hours from Johannesburg
Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve, Hluhluwe, South Africa