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About Mbabane

Mbabane is the capital of Swaziland. Mbabane budget travel offers a wealth of experiences, ranging from markets to hikes.

Airports

Mbabane airports include the following:
•Matsapha (Manzini) Airport

Birdlife

Mbabane bird life includes mountain habitats and wetlands with a large number of birds to be found. The residential areas with cultivated gardens have attracted species not originally found in the area. Some of the species you may encounter in the city and surrounds include narina trogan, purple-crested lourie, wood owl and a variety of robin-chats and sunbirds.

Conservation

Mbabane's closest conservation areas are the Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary and Mantenga Nature Reserve, situated just outside the city. Mlilwane is a haven for large groups of hippo, as well as crocodile and monkey, and a large number of bird species.

Malaria

Generally speaking, malaria risk in Swaziland is contained in the lowveld (Manzini eastwards) so Mbabane is not likely. However, due to travelling through malaria areas to reach Mbabane, it is advised to keep mosquito repellent when traveling in the summer months and wear long sleeved tops to avoid getting bitten. Speak to your doctor about the best options for medication.

Money

Mbabane money and banking information is as follows: • Credit cards are accepted at most outlets with debit cards are accepted at some outlets • There are a few facilities available to exchange currency, including airport and banks and major hotels • There are a few banks and ATMs in the city • Travellers cheques can be exchanged - it is easier to exchange from US Dollars or Pounds however

Plants

Traditionally the area is open montane grassland with few trees and the capital city of Swaziland itself is fairly sparse, with cultivated gardens in the residential areas. Just outside the city beautiful rolling hills can be found, with characteristic wild flowers and trees restricted to rocky outcrops and waterways, while mature tree ferns are a feature of small rivers.

Safety Tips

• Mbabane is generally safe to visit with a low crime rate • Petty crimes can occur as they do in any city however, so be vigilant when you are in crowded areas • Keep valuables out of sight and safe in a moneybag under your shirt • The steep and windy Malakwane Hill south of Mbabane en-route to Ezulwini and Manzini is notorious for accidents, however the highway has improved conditions. It is advised to “drive for other drivers” in Swaziland! • Take basic precautions when viewing wildlife and don't ever attempt to feed or touch any wildlife you see

Travel Books

Mbabane recommended travel books include:
•Swaziland: Enchantment of the World by Ettagale Blauer and Jason Laure
•Lonely Planet South Africa, Lesotho & Swaziland by Mary Fitzpatrick
•Swaziland Map by ITMB Publishing
•The Rough Guide to South Africa, Lesotho & Swaziland by Tony Pinchuck, Barbara McCrea, and Donald Reid
•All the King's Animals: The Return of Endangered Wildlife to Swaziland by Cristina Kessler and King of Swaziland Mswati III

When To Go

• Winters are cooler with temperatures reaching 15°C in July • Summers are warmer, typically averaging 22°C in January with rain (afternoon thunderstorms a norm) • Spring runs from September to November • Autumn runs from March to May

Wildlife

As the capital of Swaziland, Mbanane wildlife is limited to reserves situated just outside the city. One of the best places for game viewing is the beautiful Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, which is home to a number of species including crocodiles, hippos and monkeys.

 

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