The Kruger National Park is the largest game reserve in South Africa and one of the world’s biggest wildlife sanctuaries. It covers 19’633 square kilometers and extends 360km from north to south and 65km from east to west. There is something intensely magical about spending a night under the African sky around bush TV (also known as a fire) with nothing but the sounds of friends, family and the bush for entertainment. This is a place that will live in your heart and memory for ever and will find that it draws you back not once, but many more times.
The Greater Kruger National Park encompasses the Kruger National Park, Timbavati, Manyeleti, Timbavati and Kapama Game Reserves as no fences are erected between the areas. This means that all the animals can traverse the land freely and recreate their migrational behaviour from centuries ago.
This is a high risk malaria area so should be avoided by those who don’t wish to take malaria medication, children and pregnant/breastfeeding women. The risk certainly reduces in the winter season (i.e. May – October) but is never eliminated completely. Most lodges do spray regularly to keep the mosquitoes at bay but please bear this in mind when deciding on this as your safari destination.
There are far too many properties to mention but these are just a few to get your going.
Chitwa Chitwa, Sabi Sands
Unbridled luxury and environmental harmony in the Sabi Sands; a great opening statement! Located on a waterhole this beautiful lodge offers families and couples the perfect base from which to explore the Big Five.
The watering hole often attracts many of the Big Five throughout the day so should you prefer not to join the twice daily game drives, you could almost be guaranteed of catching a glimpse of a few majestic animals at the water hole.
Bedroom furnishings are stylish and unique. With a definite African theme, the rooms exude a great harmony between African bush and chic.
This is a family friendly lodge and kids are certainly included in many activities to learn about the African bush.
Arathusa, Sabi Sands
Situated in the northern part of the reserve, Arathusa is a luxury safari lodge offering guests careful attention and great game & bird viewing opportunities.
With 9 thatched standard rooms offering beautiful bush views plus 4 luxury rooms with private plunge pools, this lodge caters for all travelers.
Each room & suite is complete with standard amenities plus an outdoor shower which is an absolute must when visiting the lodge. There is something very refreshing and liberating about showering under the African sky.
The camp has an onsite spa as well as an infinity pool and an outdoor boma where evening meals are regularly served.
Savanna Private Game Reserve, Sabi Sands
Savanna lies in an area where ‘Big 5’ sightings are so frequent; it is not unusual to see all of them in a single game drive.
Your highly trained guide & tracker with vast knowledge of the African bushveld take you on a close & intimate encounter with a large variety of the parks’ inhabitants. Numerous nearby dams and a series of waterholes in front of the lodge attract many species, especially in the dry winter months when elephants are daily visitors.
The lodge has 4 luxury suites, an opulent Savanna suite and 3 large executive suites, all under canvas to give you that tented feeling that is synonymous with the bush. Each of the suites offers something unique to its occupants; whether it’s the private plunge pools in the executive suites or the chef & butler in the Savanna suite, you might struggle to pull yourself away from this private sanctuary you will call home.
An evening around the camp fire is often enhanced by Paddy’s wonderful stories and amazing knowledge of the bush.
Ulusaba Private Game Reserve, Sabi Sands
Sir Richard Branson’s privately owned lodge offers 3 different lodges on 1 property; safari, rock & cliff lodge.
Cliff Lodge, as the name suggests, is built on the cliffs giving guests a bird’s eye view of the riverbed & plains below. It was originally built as Sir Richard’s private residence when he visited the lodge but can now be used on an exclusive basis for families travelling together or those wanting more privacy. This lodge offers its guests a private pool & Jacuzzi along with a chef & butler to take care of your every need. You also have a dedicated ranger & tracker at your disposal.
Rock Lodge is also located on higher ground giving guests the same view as Cliff but at a different angle meaning Cliff keeps their privacy intact. The 10 rooms & suites are individually designed with decor that incorporates modern and traditional aspects.
Last, but certainly not least is Safari Lodge. Located at the base of the cliffs and on the riverbed this lodge is not family friendly so more focused on couples & honeymooners. With the Treehouse Suite, with magnificent views of the waterhole, being set slightly further away from the other suites and connected by a swing bridge the feeling of tranquility and luxury is awe-inspiring.
Tanda Tula, Timbavati
Tanda Tula Safari Camp is an owner-run tented game lodge situated in the heart of the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, forming part of the Greater Kruger National Park.
As one of South Africa’s most luxurious tented bushveld lodges, guests walk away with an unforgettable experience in game viewing, warm hospitality and award-winning cuisine.
Consisting of 12 luxurious tents, Tanda Tula exudes elegance and combines comfort and style with African roots. The open plan lodge, which is completely unfenced, merges luxury with the natural environment.
Kings Camp, Timbavati
Situated in the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, Kings Camp faces an open savanna plain with a waterhole, which is frequented by a wide variety of wildlife by day and night.
Nine generously spacious colonial suites and two exquisite honeymoon suites are luxuriously equipped with air-conditioning, Victorian ball-and-claw bath, indoor and outdoor double shower, fully stocked mini-bar and private verandah. The honeymoon suites enjoy the privacy of their own pools overlooking the bush.
And for the ultimate in safari privacy, Waterbuck Private Camp, boasting a four-bedroomed private villa, has its own game viewing vehicle, game ranger, personal butler and chef.
The Outpost, Makuleka Region
The Makuleka Contractual Park measures 26’500 hectares and is well known for its abundant wildlife including less common species not evident in the southern and central regions of the park.
Apart from large herds of elephant and buffalo, guests will be able to see Nyala, an antelope which is not easily found in the more southern regions of the park, and over 350 recorded bird species. The diverse terrain of the region includes Mopane Woodlands, Fever Tree forests, Acacia thickets as well as some of the largest and oldest Baobab specimens.
Accommodation consists of 12 unique and modern stand-alone open plan en-suite luxury Suites offering spectacular panoramic views of the river and bush below.
The open plan bathroom with stone bath offer magical views as far as Mozambique! The outdoor terrace with daybed offers full views of the surrounding bush, and is the perfect spot to while away the time soaking in this natural wonder.