Piggs Peak & Around
Close to the ground.

GPS: S 25 05.366 E 030 27.228 | pop. 20,000 | elevation 1,403 m/4,603 ft Piggs Peak gained its moniker from Frenchman William Pigg, who discovered gold in the area and founded a mining town in 1884. After the ore mines began to run dry, this small mountain town switched its focus to forestry, and built up sawmills to process pine trees from the surrounding area. Today, the focus of Piggs Peak has turned back to bringing in the gold – this time through the town’s main attraction, the Orion Piggs Peak Casino.

Maguga Dam

Maguga Dam is a massive work of engineering completed in 2001 through a South African-Swaziland partnership in which the two countries agreed to share the construction costs and water resources. The 115-meter-high dam includes a 20 mega-watt hydroelectric power station. It is located 12 km south of Piggs Peak on the Komati River and can be reached from the Maguga Dam Loop Rd, which forms a crescent off the MR1 between Piggs Peak and Mbabane.


Phophonyane Falls and Nature Reserve

Phophonyane Falls and Nature Reserve is a 600 hectare reserve with a network of walking trails, the 80 m cascading Phophonyane Falls, natural rock swimming pools, and open top vehicles for mountain drives and visits to San Rock Paintings. To get to the nature reserve from Piggs Peak head north on the Main Rd/King Mswati II Hwy for about 8 km, until you find a signed turnoff to the nature reserve. Follow the signs on the dirt road 4.4 km to the lodge. If you are coming from the north, there is a signed turnoff next to the Orion Hotel.


Boxer Supermarket Shopping Center

Boxer Supermarket Shopping Center is the only commercial center within the town, and has a collection of retail shops and a local fruit and vegetable market.


Peak Craft Center

Peak Craft Center is located 100 m north of the Orion Piggs Peak Hotel and has a number of craft shops selling paintings, woodcarvings, clothes, musical instruments, jewelry, handbags and wicker products. The center has a small restaurant and coffee shop. There are also a number of small craft stalls located on the main road around the Piggs Peak area.


Mid-range

Jubla Guest House

Jubla Guest House is a longstanding three-room B&B with areas to sit outside in the sun or relax beside the swimming pool.


Top-end

Phophonyane Ecolodge

Phophonyane Ecolodge is located within the nature reserve among streams that flow through the tropical grounds to a nearby river and waterfall. Stay in a two-bedroom cottage with a kitchenette, two fireplaces and a balcony, or a permanent elevated safari tent with proper beds and a separated private bathroom and shower.

There are also two traditional and luxurious heated en suite beehive huts that are located on the side of the hill below the main lodge, which offer a bit more privacy. To get to the lodge from Piggs Peak head north on the Main Rd/King Mswati II Hwy for about 8 km, until you find a signed turnoff to the nature reserve. Follow the signs on the dirt road 4.4 km to the lodge. If you are coming from the north, there is a signed turnoff next to the Orion Hotel.


Orion Piggs Peak Hotel & Casino

Orion Piggs Peak Hotel & Casino is an upmarket hotel with a casino (both slots and tables), 24hr restaurant & bar (see below), health and beauty center, tennis courts, mini golf and an onsite Rolls Royce Limo available to chauffeur you around town if you hit the jackpot.

There are just over 100 spacious standard rooms and suites, all with TV, AC and balconies overlooking the mountains and valley. There are frequent specials on room rates, so call in advance to check.


Maguga View Point Restaurant

One of the best views of the dam is from the Maguga View Point Restaurant where you can enjoy drinks, snacks or full meals on a covered deck overlooking the dam. While there, you can also watch a short DVD that describes the planning, engineering and construction of the dam.


Kudla Kwemvelo Restaurant

Kudla Kwemvelo Restaurant is one of the few restaurants in town. It serves simple local pap or samp (curried maize) meals with meat or vegetables.


Phophonyane Ecolodge Restaurant

Phophonyane Ecolodge Restaurant is situated in a tropical garden with indoor and outdoor seating and scenic views overlooking the nature reserve and surrounding forestry plantations. The restaurant serves home-cooked meals, burgers, pizza, vegetarian dishes and traditional Swazi meals.


Egumeni Restaurant

Egumeni Restaurant serves up a plentitude of African cuisine, from Moroccan tagine and Congo black mushrooms to traditional Swazi meals.


Orion Piggs Peak Casino

Orion Piggs Peak Casino is open 24hr a day.