The Magic of Swaziland

I am feeling so guilty about not paying enough attention to my blog.  The reality is that, personal issues aside, I have been extremely busy and life has not been routine just lately.  I am hoping this will start settling and I will have more time to blog.

Anyway, I am telling you all about my trip to Swaziland today so hope you will all give me 10 minutes to tell you about what a magical place this is.

A friend of mine lives in Swaziland and he keeps telling me how absolutely awesome it is.  He owns a farm in a little town called Malkerns.  After much persuasion, I finally agreed to pop in on my way to Mozambique for a few days to see this magical kingdom for myself.

I love travelling and as I have never been to Swaziland, I was thrilled at the prospect of going to a new country -Yippee!  Another stamp in my passport.

After travelling for about 4 hours from Johannesburg, we arrived in Malkerns and briefly stopped off at my friends farm to meet / greet his father.  We then made our way to Malandela’s pub. This is the local hangout.  We joined some friends of his for a quick drink and ended up staying until late in the evening chatting to all and sundry (and of course having a lot more than 1 drink).  I could instantly tell I was going to enjoy a few days here.  Everyone was very friendly and I instantly felt like I belonged.

Then it was off to a little B and B down the road – The Willows.  It was around 10.30pm so reception was closed already.  Luckily keys to my room were left with the guard at the gate.  My room was more than adequate and very comfortable.

The Breakfast Room at The Willows

The outdoor area at The Willows

More of the outdoor area

The following 2 days were pretty much dedicated to sight seeing and we spent a lot of time in the car driving around seeing the sights.  Swaziland is indeed very beautiful.  I am posting some pics below. I’m not going to bore you with the details of where they were taken as it probably won’t mean anything to you and it is really something you have to experience for yourself.

Sibebe Monolith – Second largest monolith in the world

There are a lot of forests in the region so this pic very typical

I’ve never seen Pineapples being grown before so was intrigued at this

View from the fence line of my friends farm

Nothing more beautiful than a sunset

On my last day there, I arrived at my friends farm around mid morning.  He was busy getting ready to host a braai for a whole bunch of his friends and their families that afternoon.  He asked if I wanted to learn to drive a tractor as his dad had to slash some grass on the farm.  Of course I am always up for a challenge so was very eager.

His dad instructed me to hop into the drivers seat of the tractor and he patiently explained the various controls.  I then drove down the road with him standing over my shoulder.  Once we were in open farmland, he showed me how to use the various levers to make the slasher machine lower and operate.

I then spent the next 2 hours slashing, much to my friends disgust as I was not suitably dressed to spend this sort of time out in the sun – and it is seriously hot out there.  I had loads of fun slashing and am very grateful to my friends dad for taking the time to teach me and being so patient with me.  He is such a kind and caring man.

Once the tractor was put away, people started arriving for the braai.  I got to meet a whole load of new people.  I was amazed at the friendliness of everyone.  I felt right at home and felt like I had known everyone for many years.

Unfortunately the weather turned a little nasty and it poured with rain for a few hours that afternoon.  This meant everyone had to spend the time cooped up inside instead of enjoying themselves out at the fire and in the sun.  It also meant that children were quickly bored and tired easily and everyone ended up going home early.

I was sorry I had to leave the following day.  I would love to have spent another week there at least and felt like I needed this time to really get to know everyone better and totally wind down from a busy life.

I thoroughly enjoyed Swaziland and hope to be going back there often (If I’m invited again of course).   Next time I will try to do a few more of the tourist attractions.   I managed to totally relax there (not something I do very often) and there is nothing better than spending time on a farm – something I have not done since my childhood and it brought back many fond memories.

Lanthie Ransom

10 thoughts on “The Magic of Swaziland

  1. I'm drooling over your photos! What a lovely trip. This is so timely for me cuz a large chunk of my novel takes place in Bronkhortspruit. This is a great way for me to supplement my descriptions!

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