Rhino notching in KwaZulu Natal


Day 1 - Arrive in KwaZulu Natal

Arrive at Phinda Forest Lodge situated in the heart of a beautiful dry sand forest in Phinda Game Reserve.  Forest Lodge is a stunning fusion of Zulu Zen: crimson Zulu artifacts alongside contemporary minimalist design in glass and wood sensitively created on stilts amidst the forest. Unwind after your journey in the rim flow swimming pool or on one of the sitting areas to take in the views of the plains. The Lodge provides a rare chance to glimpse behind the forest canopy into a beautiful wildlife world including duikers, dwarf forest antelope, red tonga squirrel, tiny suni and nyala.

Overnight: Phinda Forest Lodge.

Day 2 -  Phinda Forest
Take a morning game drive as dawn breaks. Phinda is especially notable for its sightings of cheetah and the rare black rhino. Your guide will point out the flora and fauna of the reserve. After breakfast you may like to relax at the Lodge or take a bush walk with your ranger who will share his knowledge on the smaller animals in the area.

This evening, take another game drive, with sundowners at sunset and an after-dark drive to see and hear the nocturnal wildlife. Return to the Lodge and spend the evening beside the fire at the Lodge's boma where bush babies watch from the forest canopy.

Overnight: Phinda Forest Lodge.

Day 3 - Zululand Bushveld
Transfer to Phinda Mountain Lodge, set amidst the dramatic scenery of the Zululand bushveld with views of the Ubombo Mountain range. Each of the 25 suites offers a romantic en-suite bathroom, outdoor shower, sitting area and private veranda with plunge pool.  The Lodge is poised to take full advantage of the majestic unspoilt views.

Take a canoe ride along the Mzinene River to observe the birdlife and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the area. You may even spot wildlife as they come to drink at the river.

Overnight: Phinda Mountain Lodge.

Day 4 - Rhino notching
Optional: Today enjoy a once in a lifetime opportunity to get up close and personal with rhino while assisting in the conservation of this endangered species. This adventure allows guests to witness the capture and darting of a rhino and assist the veterinary team in notching the sleeping animal's ear for research and security monitoring. Ear notches, as well as microchips placed in the horn, enable researchers to correctly identify different rhino on the reserve. Groups of up to eight guests can participate in the entire process, from locating and darting the rhino to the never to be repeated opportunity to get close to the anaesthetised giant during the notching procedure. This activity is subject to availability of the wildlife veterinarian. All funds raised go directly towards the costs of running Phinda's rhino conservation and management project.

This evening, enjoy sundowners on the plains and a game drive for one last nocturnal sighting with the noises of the African bush as your soundtrack.

Overnight: Phinda Mountain Lodge.

Day 5 -Depart
Depart Phinda for your onward journey. We highly recommend continuing to Mozambique to some R&R on the fine, white sandy beaches.





All of our itineraries are tailor-made according to the interests of our clients and the above itinerary is an example only. Please contact our Africa specialist, Chris Evans, for your own tailor-made holiday to South Africa on +44 (0)1242 787806.

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