There are various ways to get to Bulembu.  We suggest that you source & book flight tickets as soon as possible, and let us know of your travel dates and plans as soon as you have finalised them.  The Coordinator can assist you with arranging transfers & possibly overnight accommodation, and you will be responsible for all costs in this regard.  Groups can also rent vehicles from Jhb and drive to Bulembu.  Below are some other options:

Travel mode:

Simple:

Budget: $$

Option 1 - Johannesburg -> fly to Nelspruit -> drive to Bulembu

Fly 1 hour from OR Tambo (Johannesburg) to Nelspruit
Drive 2 hours from Nelspruit to Bulembu

A transfer can be arranged for you from Nelspruit to Bulembu, which will include a stop for you to buy groceries (if needed).  If your flight to Nelspruit arrives too late to buy groceries and transfer to Bulembu before the border closes (it closes at 16:00), we will arrange for a transfer from Nelspruit airport, and you will stay overnight at 35 Kelkiewyn Bed & Breakfast – owned by friends of Bulembu, Dirk & Riana Joubert.  They are familiar with Bulembu, and will help you feel at home.  This will allow you to rest and recover from a very long journey, before heading to Bulembu.  You will then go grocery shopping the next day, and then travel to Bulembu.

Flying to Nelspruit would mean that you will not have to spend any time at Johannesburg, apart from being inside the airport to get a transfer flight to Nelspruit.

Travel mode:

Simple:

Budget: $

Option 2 - Johannesburg -> shuttle to Nelspruit -> Bulembu

Drive 3-4 hours from OR Tambo to Nelspruit
Drive 2 hours from Nelspruit to Bulembu

More affordable option to travel to Nelspruit.  You will likely need to stay overnight at 35 Kelkiewyn B&B, as most shuttles come in too late for you to still get groceries (if needed) and transfer to Bulembu.  You will need to book the “CityBug” or “Lime Time” shuttle services, which offer a safe way to get to Nelspruit.  The Coordinator will arrange your transfers from the pickup in Nelspruit, overnight accommodation at 35 Kelkiewyn and transfer to Bulembu.

Travel mode:

Simple:

Budget: $$

Option 3 - Johannesburg -> transfer straight to Bulembu

Drive 4-5 hours from OR Tambo to Bulembu

A group transfer directly from OR Tambo to Bulembu is possible.  This would again depend on your arrival time at OR Tambo airport, but you could theoretically fly into OR Tambo and get to Bulembu in one go.  Ask your Coordinator for details about this option.

Travel mode:

Simple:

Budget: $$

Option 4 - Johannesburg -> fly to Swaziland -> transfer to Bulembu

Fly 1 hour from OR Tambo to King Mswati III Airport (Swaziland)
Drive 4-5 hours from airport to Bulembu

Your Coordinator will arrange a transfer for you, who will meet you at the airport and can also make a grocery stop (if needed), before transporting you safely to Bulembu.  This option does NOT allow for overnight stay before travelling to Bulembu.

Travelling to Bulembu

Swaziland is a very safe country, and you should be able to find your way around without concern.  However, we do encourage you to still be wise when you travel, and to keep your travel documents and cash/valuables on you in a backpack/similar when travelling – regardless of which method you choose to travel to Bulembu.

All self-drive teams should be aware that the nearest border to Bulembu – Josefsdal – is ONLY open between 08h00-16h00.  The nearest accommodation on the South African side is in Barberton – approximately 1 hour drive away.  If you will not be able to make these border times, please research other border options or ask the Coordinator if you don’t know that you’ll make the border in time.

  • Please note that entering Swaziland through another border post will include driving on a 18km dirt road from Piggs Peak to Bulembu, that is not great for smaller vehicles, and in summer is not great for most vehicles (due to the rain).
  • We advise teams to drive during the day only, as driving in Swaziland at night involves the possibility of encountering cattle and other animals on the roads.