The Matobo National Park forms the core of the Matobo or Matopos Hills, an area of granite kopjes and wooded valleys commencing some 35 kilometres south of Bulawayo, southern Zimbabwe. The hills were formed over 2 billion years ago with granite being forced to the surface, this has eroded to produce smooth "whaleback dwalas" and broken kopjes, strewn with boulders and interspersed with thickets of vegetation. Mzilikazi, founder of the Ndebele nation, gave the area its name, meaning 'Bald Heads'.
The Hills cover an area of about 3100 km2, of which 424 km2 is National Park, the remainder being largely communal land and a small proportion of commercial farmland. The highest point in the hills is the promontory named Gulati (1549 m) just outside the north-eastern corner of the park. The national park is the oldest in Zimbabwe, established in 1926 as Rhodes Matopos National Park, a bequest from Cecil Rhodes. The original park borders extended well to the south and east of the current park. These areas were redesignated for settlement as part of a compromise between the colonial authorities and the local people, creating the Khumalo and Matobo Communal Lands. The park area then increased with the acquisition of World's View and Hazelside farms to the north. Matobo National Park has a wide diversity of fauna: 175 bird, 88 mammal, 39 snake and 16 fish species. Matobo National Park contains the highest concentration of black eagles, and breeding pairs of these birds, worldwide.