Monkeyland-KZN is part of the South African Animal Sanctuary Alliance (SAASA) who opened their first sanctuary near Plettenberg Bay over 20 years ago. All of their award-winning sanctuaries are strictly hands-off facilities providing the animals in their care with as natural an environment as possible. In April this year, SAASA opened their first sanctuary in KZN, right here on the Dolphin Coast.
If you can drag the kids off the jungle gym, your visit starts with a drive, in a safari-type vehicle, from the reception site to Monkeyland-KZN’s Hidden Forest where a guide will be waiting to meet you. From there, you’ll be taken on a guided walk of this stunning indigenous forest where eight species of exotic primate roam freely. Much like a game walk, there’s no guarantee of what you will see as the 120+ individual primates have 23 hectares of forest to play in. Every walk in the forest is, therefore, a different experience and you can join as many tours during the day as you wish. The knowledgeable guides will help you find the different species and teach you all about them, they’ll also point out flora and fauna of interest, you’ll learn the traditional uses for some of the plants and trees in Zulu culture. If you’re lucky, you may spot a rare bird or one of the many indigenous animals that the forest is home to, such as mongoose, natal duiker, blue duiker, bushbuck and, of course, vervets. This is Monkeyland-KZN’s first summer being open to the public, so to mark this, they are running a fantastic special – guided tours are half price! Until 31st January 2020, adult tickets are R150 and child tickets (for children aged 3 to 12) are R75. Under 3s are always free of charge. Tickets last the whole day so why not head down there, enjoy a tour of the forest, see how many different species you can spot and then enjoy a delicious pizza in their on-site pizza restaurant – The Feeding Station Café. You can always go for a second walk in the forest after lunch.
If you haven’t already visited, you don’t know what you’re missing, and right now ‘monkey safaris’ are half price. Monkeyland-KZN also has membership tickets, great value for locals or those of you that visit the area often. Membership tickets are R600 per adult and R300 per child and give you unlimited visits to Monkeyland-KZN for 12 months!