Welcome to Vernon Crookes

This 2,189 ha nature reserve is definitely the jewel in the KwaZulu-Natal south coast protected areas crown. The reserve conserves a representative and well managed example of the coastal grasslands and coastal forest habitats of the southern KwaZulu-Natal, and the biodiversity that these habitat types support.

The reserve boasts a wide variety of different habitats, including scarp forest, extensive grasslands, rivers, wetlands, cliff faces, and dams which provide a haven and shelter for a wide variety of wildlife which exist in the reserve.

Game animals that occur in the reserve include: zebra, blue wildebeest, bushbuck, blesbuck, impala, blue duiker, black backed jackal, dassies, mountain and common reedbuck and many more.

Due to its wide variety of habitats over 300 bird species have been recorded in the reserve, and it is especially renowned for its wide variety of grass land species. Some of the birds seen on a regular basis are grey crowned cranes, crowned eagles, martial eagles, ground hornbills, trumpeter hornbills, secretary bird and black duck.

Vernon Crookes Accommodation

  • 6 bed rest hut

    The resort consists of 6 x 2-bedded rondavels, each equipped with a refrigerator, bedding, cutlery and crockery. The resort is served by a communal kitchen and ablution block with hot and cold water.

  • 7 bed tree house

    The 7 bed Tree house has its own kitchen and ablution, with hot and cold water, quipped with refrigerator, bedding, towels, cutlery and crockery.


  • Kitchenette
  • Ironing board
  • Catering services
  • DSTV (limited)
  • Hotspots
  • Exhibition/convention floor
  • Restaurant
  • Room service - full menu
  • Courtyard
  • Lounges/bars
  • firewood
  • Airport Shuttle Service
  • Complimentary breakfast
  • Valet cleaning
  • Car hire


Free! WiFi is available in all areas and is free of charge.


Private parking is possible at a location nearby (reservation is not needed) and costs USD 28.80 per day.

Activities in Vernon Crookes

The reserve is home to 56 mammal species which includes the following: zebra, blue wildebeest, bushbuck, blesbok, impala, oribi, reedbuck, blue and grey duiker, black-backed jackal, vervet monkey, rock hyrax, tree hyrax, caracal, slender mongoose, white-tailed mongoose, Egyptian mongoose, banded mongoose and porcupine.

There are 7 fish species, 23 amphibian species and 33 reptile species.

Birdlife is abundant with a total of over 300 confirmed species. The reserve has an interesting variety of indigenous flora.

There are 12.5 km of tourist roads in the reserve and a pleasant picnic site is available. Visitors are welcome to walk in the reserve, but are advised to bring insect repellents as ticks can be troublesome.

Vernon Crookes Useful Information

Entrance gates to the reserve open and close at the following times:

  • Summer (1 October - 31 March) 05:00 - 19:00

  • Winter (1 April - 30 September) 06:00 - 18:00

  • No pets are permitted into the reserve

  • Keep to the speed limit of 40 km/h within the reserve.

  • Fires may only be lit in demarcated picnic areas.

  • No loud music is permitted within the reserve

  • Vernon Crookes Contacts

    Vernon Crookes: + 27 (0)31 001 7018
    Central Reservations: + 27 (0)33 845 1000
    Book online: https://bookings.kznwildlife.com/MakeABooking.aspx
    E-mail: bookings@kznwildlife.com

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