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Located in the southern part of the African continent, Eswatini is a landlocked country that has quite a variety of wetlands and rivers that flow from the different parts of the country giving it a good enough drainage system that offers some of the best fishing grounds in the country. The indigenous fish species in Eswatini include the Barbel and Bream fish species and these can at least be got form the different fishing grounds within the country. Other fish species in the Eswatini waters include the Tiger fish which is mostly got when winter is coming to an end, the Mozambique tilapia, silver fish and many more others. Most if not all the fishing grounds in Eswatini are littered with crocodiles and therefore you will need to be careful so as not to be attacked by one.

Fishing in Eswatini is done mainly using two methods that is the fly fishing method and the bait fishing method and in order not to let the fish species get depleted from the rivers, the government encourages all tourists to carry out the catch and release method irrelevant of where the fishing takes place.  There are mainly three fishing grounds in Eswatini and these include the Maguga Dam, Mbuluzi Game Reserve and the sand river Dam.

Fishing in Mbuluzi nature reserve

The Mbuluzi nature reserve is located in the Northern part of the country and is one of the few places that you can visit for fishing while in Eswatini. The reserve is crossed by two major Rivers that is the Mbuluzi River and the Mlawula River and this is where most of the fishing takes place. The two Rivers have a healthy population of fish species that can be got by either bait fishing or fly fishing. The fish species that you should look out for include:

  • The river Goby
  • The Mozambique Tilapia
  • The Imberi
  • The Red breasted Tilapia
  • The Threespot Barb
  • The silver robber
  • The Sharptooth catfish
  • The largescale yellowfish
  • The silver catfish

Fishing in Maguga Dam

Considered to be the best fishing destination in Eswatini, the Maguga Dam’s strategic location a few kilometers away from the South African border has made it the perfect place for tourists to go fishing. The dam which is served by the Komati river was constructed to help provide water to the highlands of Eswatini and to create enough power. It has the largest and longest dam wall in the southern part of Africa with a height of about 115 meters high. With the many boat rides that are offered at the Maguga Dam, you can easily hire out one where you can do fishing from. The fish species that are caught around Maguga dam include:

  • Small scale yellowfish
  • The mosquito fish
  • Catfish
  • The blue kurper fish
  • The Dwarf tiger fish
  • Minnows fish

Fishing in the sand River Dam

The sand River Dam is found in the Tshaneni region at the border of Eswatini. It is right next to the Mananga lodge making it a good spot for tourists who would love to go fishing. Just like in any other part of the country, catch and release is encouraged so that the different fish species in the county are not depleted.

The fish species that you can expect to find in the Sand River Dam include:

  • The Silver Robber
  • The large Mouth Brownspot
  • The Barbel
  • The Ghielie fish species
  • The Rose Vin Bard
  • Blue kurper
  • Markriel fish

The Maguga Dam, Mbuluzi game reserve and Sand River Dam are the main fishing spots in Eswatini but there are other places where you can go and enjoy fishing while on a safari to the country and some of these include:

Fishing in Mlawula Nature Reserve

The Mlawula nature Reserve is located in the North Eastern part of the country next to the Mbuluzi Game reserve. And just like its neighbor, it I is crossed by the two main Rivers of Mlawula and Mbuluzi.  Fishing is allowed especially for the visitors in the reserve but you will need a fishing permit before you are allowed to access the fishing grounds but once there, you should be careful about the crocodiles lurking around. Some of the fish species that you should expect to find in the Mlawula Resreve include:

  • The Mozambique Tilapia
  • The Threespot Barb
  • The silver robber
  • The Sharptooth catfish
  • The largescale yellowfish
  • The silver catfish and many more others.

Fishing in Eswatini does not really have a lot of rules but when it comes to the fishing methods used, all tourists are encouraged to catch and release so that the different fish species in the country are well preserved.

Fishing in Malolotja

Fishing in Malolotja is done along the Malolotja River and it is a home to some of the best and most endangers fresh water fish species in the country. Some of the fish species that can be got in the Malolotja game reserve include:

  • The orange fringed largemouth (critically endangered)
  • The shortfin barb (endangered)
  • The small scale yellowfish
  • The Incomati Chiselmouth (near extinction)
  • The barbs fish

Fishing in Lake Jozini

Lake Jozini is found in the Roya Jozini private Game reserve and it is the right place for tourists who want to get to see the Tiger fish. The Lake has the largest number of tiger fish in the whole country most of them weighing more than 6 kilograms and besides the tiger fish, Lake Jozini has 27 more other species. You will need to however to first to find out whether the water levels in Lake Jozini are favorable for fishing because during the dry season the water levels reduce drastically. And since it is a private area, you will have to also come with your own boat and just like any other fishing ground around the Eswatini country, the catch and release method is strongly encourages.

Where to stay while fishing in Eswatini

There is no specific place for you to stay while fishing in Eswatini. You can stay in your pre-booked hotels and just travel out to the fishing destination during the day but if you want to stay a little bit closer to the fishing grounds, then you can rent out a house boa. House boats are available for a small fee or if not you camp around the areas where you want to do fishing from for easy access.

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