Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

The Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve was established in 1976 by the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa. To this day it remains one of our country’s foremost environmental education centres and thousands of learners participate in a variety of courses presented here annually.

Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

The reserve lies on the outskirts of the town of Howick in the Natal Midlands and is easily accessible from the main N3-highway. It covers an area of just 759 hectares stretching along the course of the Umgeni River below the Howick Falls (in itself worth a visit). Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve protects a variety of habitats including dense riverine thickets, open woodland, thorn-veld, grasslands and towering cliffs. Giraffe, monkeys, zebras and numerous antelope have found a home in the Umgeni Valley, and among the 270 bird species that have been recorded in the reserve are to be found raptors like the Crowned, Fish and Verreaux’s Eagles.

Reedbuck

Reedbuck

Zebra and Blesbok in Umgeni Valley

Zebra and Blesbok in Umgeni Valley

Zebra in Umgeni Valley

Zebra in Umgeni Valley

Zebra in Umgeni Valley

Zebra in Umgeni Valley

Visitors can enjoy a picnic or tackle one of the seven different walking trails of varying difficulty, fly-fishing (strictly on a catch-and-release basis), mountain biking or rock-climbing. Guided game-viewing drives are available while a gravel road (negotiable, slowly and carefully, in a standard sedan vehicle), five kilometres in length, stretches from the reserve entrance along the edge of the gorge, offering scenic views of the valley and the river below. Accommodation in the reserve ranges from the dormitories used by visiting school groups to rustic bush camps, cottages and self-catering chalets.

Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

Howick Falls

Howick Falls

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15 thoughts on “Umgeni Valley Nature Reserve

  1. Karin Saks

    Magnificent photographs of an exquisite environment. I moved to Dargle recently after working with monkey/baboon rescue for many years in the Cape and would love to see some baboons in this area. Does Umgeni Valley have baboons?

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. de Wets Wild Post author

      Pleased to meet you, Karin, and welcome here at de Wets Wild! Your work with the primates must’ve been so rewarding!

      Unfortunately we’ve only ever seen vervet monkeys at Umgeni Valley, and not baboons, though we’ve also only visited there a few times. Baboons are however frequently mentioned on the blog of the Midlands Conservancies Forum, and may well come and welcome you to your new home one day soon. Have a look at their site: https://midlandsconservanciesforum.wordpress.com/

      Hope you’ll visit us again soon!

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  2. Pingback: Kamberg Nature Reserve | de Wets Wild

  3. Pingback: Midmar Dam Nature Reserve | de Wets Wild

    1. de Wets Wild Post author

      Thank you for the very generous compliment Melissa :-). We haven’t really given much though to selling our photographs before to be honest – I suppose to us it’s more about what the photograph showcases than the picture itself. But just to thank you for your kind comment and in appreciation of you joining us here at de Wets Wild we will dedicate a special post to zebras in the near future 😉

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