Lower Drakensburg Foothills – Marutswa Forest complex
About the Birding
Located immediately on the outskirts of the quaint country village of Bulwer, between the Bulwer Biosphere and Sappi WWF TreeRoutes Partnership, lies the Marutswa Forest Complex. Marutswa Forest has been described as one of the most active and attractive mistbelt forests anywhere in KwaZulu-Natal. The site comprises a network of trails and a boardwalk through the forest including several jetties, decks and viewpoints – though subsequent to its construction in 2004, the site has fallen into disrepair and most of this infrastructure has fallen away.
About the Birding Site
The Lower Drakensberg Foothills Birding Route lies inland and to the south-west of the Southern KwaZulu-Natal Birding Route and is easily accessible from both Durban and Pietermaritzburg, the two nearest points of entry. The source of this route is found in the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg World Heritage Site at the majestic Sani Pass where birders get the unique opportunity to view birds in a rugged and stunningly beautiful environment, consisting of five different habitats and ranging in height from 1600m to 3200m.
Other Related Information
From Howick, take the R617 in the direction of Underburg. Travel through the village of Bulwer and, just pass the Police Station, turn to the left in the direction of Marutswa Forest. Travel down this road for a few hundred metres, then turn right towards the parking area and the abandoned educational centre.
From Underburg, take the R617 in the direction of Hilton. As you approach the town of Bulwer, just pass the Engen Garage, turn to the right and follow this road for a few hundred metres in the direction of the forest…