Everything you need to know about your stay at ilanda Guest House
Kruger National Park
Kruger National Park, the Lowveld’s premier attraction, is a must see for any visitor to Mpumalanga. The Kruger National Park section of WikiTravel offers a great guide of the park, here are some favorites.
Self-drives in the Kruger
In a way self-driving is a quintessential Kurger National Park experience, enabling you to explore the park independently.
Books such as Beat About the Bush, the fantastic Game Ranger in your Backpack and mammal and / or bird reference books for identification can overcome the absence of a field guide and are highly recommended for visits to any Mpumalanga Nature Reserve.
Backpacking in the Kruger NP
The Kruger NP has a number of walking, hiking and backpacking possibilities in areas otherwise inaccessible to the public. Walking in the bush truly a sensual experience allowing you to feel and smell the bush, but also approach animals on foot - a very different experience compared to motorised safaris.
Short interpretative walks are an excellent choice for those short on time - these can be booked and depart from the Phabeni Gate and the rest camps in the Kruger NP.
For those with more time multi-day trails are offered, either Wilderness Trails based from basic camps or the Backpack Trails which are self-sufficient guided thru-hikes.
The Panorama Route
As it’s name suggests the Panorama Route provides beautiful views of the Northern Drakensberg and the spectacular Blyde River Canyon, this 33km long and 800m high gorge is the third largest in the world.
Your own car is the best option to explore the landmarks such as God’s Window, Bourke’s Luck Potholes, Three Rondavels, Graskop and Pilgrim’s Rest at your own pace. God's Window and Blyde River Canyon are undoubtedly the most awe inspiring sights in Mpumalanga.
The 60km, 5-day, Blyde River Canyon Hiking is the best way to explore the canyon for those with the time and fitness, though shorter 2 or 3 day trails are available. In addition several hiking trails, ranging from 1 to 5 hours, start at the Blyde Canyon Forever Resort offering a perspective from within the Canyon.
The Waterfalls Tour of 100km in an old gold mining region along the panorama route offer wonderful picnic spots along the Panorama Route. The main waterfalls include Lisbon Falls, Mac Mac Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, Maria Shires Falls, Berlin Falls, Horseshoe Falls and the 70m high Lone Creek Falls (with its abundant ferns and mosses).
Horseshoe falls offer an opportunity for a picnic, a quick refreshing dip in the water and a short nature walk.
Ohrigstad offers more off-the-beaten path attractions such as the 40km long Echo caves. This less visited limestone cave system (you might even be alone) has hour long guided tours covering 2km to see 60m high chambers, stalactites and stalagmites, and experience the echo when striking stalactites - which was used by locals as a advance warning of arriving Swazis. The more adventurous, and non-claustrophobic, can opt for the special caving tour.
Choosing ilanda as your Mpumalanga accommodation, day trips are easily organised independently or using White River tour operators.
Hiking trails in Mpumalanga
It is hard to best walking in the Kruger National Park. The park offers anything between morning / afternoon walks to multi-day Backpacking Trails. Nevertheless Mpumalanga offers other hiking opportunities.
The Blyde River Canyon is also a good destination for hiking. Trails of various durations depart from the Blyde River Canyon Forever Resort (where accommodation can be found) and are a good options to discover a variety of biomes in a short period such as riparian forest.
The Kaapsehoop Hiking Trail and the Magoebaskloof Hiking Trail are both on private forestry estates but are worthwhile endeavours. In particular the Magoebaskloof Trail is laid out mostly through rare and magnificent subtropical indigenous forest, passing through ravines cascading waterfalls and pristine mountain streams.
We are ideally placed to explore the Mpumalanga Birding Route. The Route which includes Kaapsehoop, the Blyde River Canyon, God’s Window, Mount Sheba Nature Reserve, Misty Mountain, Lone Creek Falls, Wakkerstrom and The Gustav Klingbiel Nature Reserve, not only afford great bird watching but lovely accommodation options.
Using ilanda Guest House as your accommodation, these birding sites are easily accessible: Lowveld National Botanical Garden and Nelspruit Nature Reserve, and Peddlar's Bush near Barbeton.
With its garden, veld and dam, ilanda guest house offers an interesting range of easily accessible habitats. We've spotted close to 150 bird species at ilanda Guest House.
You'll find below local service providers which can assist in organising your transfer and activities during your stay at ilanda Guest House.