Ezulwini Valley is the Kingdom’s main tourist area offering a wealth of attractions. Ezulwini means ‘place of heaven’, and the picturesque valley that bears this name certainly provides its share of hedonistic delights. This is where tourism in Swaziland began, and today its attractions include hotels, restaurants, hot springs, casinos, craft markets, art galleries, riding stables, a nature reserve, a golf course and a cultural village. Most visitors pass this way, and those who spend just one night in the kingdom will probably spend it here. Ezulwini Valley lies directly south-east of Mbabane, extending from the bottom of the Malagwane Hill to Lobamba, and runs parallel with the MR3 highway from Mbabane to Manzini. It is flanked to the west by the craggy Luphohlo/Lugogo mountains and the east by the sacred Mdzimba mountains.
Its development as a tourist centre dates back to the 1960s when the Royal Swazi Spa Hotel opened beside some natural hot springs known as the Cuddle Puddle, bringing with it southern Africa’s first casino. By 1983, Ezulwini had become Swaziland’s Golden Mile, with a proliferation of hotels, casinos, golf courses, restaurants and other tourist honeypots.