Activities Around Hippo Hideaway
Our Hippo Hideaway staff are very knowledgeable about the area and what it has to offer so please feel free to ask them for advice and suggestions. They can also book any of these activities on your behalf.
Email: [email protected]
Phone: +27 35 590 1025
Phone: +27 82 455 0450
Monday – Saturday: 8am – 8pm
Sundays and Public Holidays: 8am – 6pm
Hippo & Crocodile Estuary Boat Cruise
Experience the beauty of the iSimangaliso / Greater St Lucia Wetland Park on a relaxing, two hour boat cruise (three different daily departure times) along the St Lucia Estuary. Learn about the abundant birdlife, hippos and crocodiles that are found here, as an expert guide shows you the sights. The boats offer ample space to walk around and comfortable seats from which to study the beautiful scenery. With over 1300 hippos, more than 1000 crocodiles, many Zambezi Sharks and over 500 species of bird, outstanding photographic opportunities are a given! (The hippos calve here around June and July, so a visit then to see the new babies would be one in a million!)
Horse Riding Safari
Explore the wetlands or the beaches on horseback with a choice of guided horse trails. There’s nothing quite like the wind in your hair as you gallop down a deserted beach, the waves crashing at your side! However if you prefer just a gentle stroll on horseback, these beautiful animals will walk quietly as you snap photos to last a lifetime!
There are ample opportunities to catch one of the big ones! Whether you like deep sea fishing, spear fishing, kite fishing, estuary fishing, or simply throwing a line from shore, there’s something for you! Please ask Reception to book whatever you’re in the mood for.
- Deep sea charters to catch game fish and reef fish
- Specialised fishing charters for marlin, sailfish and sharks and the “Big Five”
- Boat-based spear fishing
- Shore angling to catch shad, grunter, rock cod and a variety of sharks (Mapelane section, St. Lucia mouth to First Rocks, Mission Rocks and Cape Vidal)
- Salt water fly fishing
- Kite fishing (July / August)
- Estuary fishing, with or without boat hire (Honeymoon Bend and on the main Lake around Charter’s Creek, Fanies Island and False Bay)
- Guided fishing charters
Game Reserve Tours
Eastern Shores has a number of excellent game viewing opportunities. Try the Pan Loop or the Vlei Loop to see hippo – sometimes even out of the water during the day! The Cataline Bay lookout point is particularly rewarding for birders and the Mission Rocks Lookout point provides a unique view of both Lake St Lucia and the Indian Ocean. You’ll enjoy magnificent, sweeping vistas on the Coastal Dune loop, while the Grassland Loop skirts the southern shore of Lake Bhangazi before crossing over rolling grasslands and a small section of swamp forest along the Nkazana Stream. Shakabarker and Leisure Ecotours offer night drives into the Eastern Shores. These start at 20h30 and last about 2 hours. Sightings often include hippo, buffalo and chameleons.
uMkhuze is renowned for excellent birding, and you could also spot buffalo, wild dog, black and white rhino, as well as general game like impala, nyala and zebra. Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife offers night drives.
Set in the heart of Zululand, Hluhluwe / iMfolozi Game Reserve is the oldest game reserve in Africa where Zulu kings such as Dingiswayo and Shaka hunted and put in place the first conservation laws. Here you can see the “big five” of African legend stalk the verdant savannah, and viewing hides that overlook waterholes mean you can see the animals at close range.
Midnight Turtle Tours (November – January)
Once a year you can see one of nature’s many wonders unleashed when about 500 loggerhead and 150 leatherback turtles come ashore to lay their eggs. It has been perhaps 15 or 20 years since the turtle has felt solid ground beneath her half-tonne body. Her stay will be short but by the time she leaves, 120 eggs will be nestled beneath the sand for two months to recommence this fragile and miraculous cycle. Witnessing these enormous, extremely endangered animals perform a feat as old as time is a profoundly moving experience, and one that will stay with you for a lifetime.
Whale Watching (June – November)
No experience could be more satisfying than seeing the Humpback whale playfully and acrobatically thrusting its giant body clear out of the ocean – from as close as 50 metres – during a well planned tour by Danie of Advantage Charter. Danie is the SOLE PERMIT HOLDER and ONLY LEGAL boat-based whale watching tour operator in St Lucia. The whale watching tour is a unique, unforgettable experience and not to be missed.
Birding & Bird Parks
Umfolozi River Lodge & Bird Park
Cape Vidal Tour
Snorkelling, game viewing and a short hike.
Crocodile & Snake Park
Cultural Tours and Zulu Crafts
Within St Lucia there are several markets and curio shops which sell a great variety of curios. These include baskets, mats, carvings, walking sticks, clay pots and locally produced fruit and vegetables, while the world-renowned Ilala Weavers is only a short distance away from town. Or why not venture out to Khula Village and learn about the Zulu heritage of KwaZulu-Natal and surrounds.
Test your handicap on Monzi Golf Course or Umfolozi Golf Course.
Heritage Night Drive
Explore the nightlife with a drive into the iSimangaliso / Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park – see chameleon, hippo, leopard, nightjars, porcupine, aardvark, elephant and plenty antelope on this two hour excursion.
Guided excursions are available on the Lake, the Estuary and the rivers.
Wet ‘n Wild Marine Mammal Tour (December – May)
Experience the thrill of a SURF LAUNCH before setting out to sightings of the Jolly Rubino, the second highest vegetated sand dunes in the world and possible sightings of dolphin, turtle, shark and much, much more with Advantage Charter!
Trails include the Emoyeni, Mfazana Pans, Umvubu, Igwalagwala, Mpophomeni, Dugandluvu trail and the Fig Forest Walk.