This remote region, lying right on the Zimbabwe/Mozambique border is well known to many visitors to Zimbabwe hoping to find rare and unusual species, and at one stage was one of the most exciting destinations in this country. Unfortunately in the last few years most of the forest has been chopped out and planted under bananas despite attempts by local NGO’s and the Department of National Parks & Wildlife Management to save the designated reserves. It is still possible to see some of the eastern Highland specials in the area, but with some difficulty, and visitors must be prepared to travel along an appalling road for approximately 40 km and a continuous stream of locals chattering gaily as they pass through the remaining patch of forest. Many birders have camped in the Rusitu forest but visitors now do so at their own risk and must ensure that there is always someone on guard at the campsite and around the vehicles because of theft.
Almost nothing remains of the Haroni Reserve as most of it is now under bananas and much of the stream-bank is also under cultivation. There is still a very small patch of riverine vegetation at the junction of the Haroni & Rusitu Rivers, and the forest across the Haroni river remains relatively undisturbed. These days it is probably better to go birding in the Honde Valley where all of the Haroni specials plus a few more can be seen in comfort (and along a tar road!).