This small group safari offers an optimal mix of private game reserves and Kruger National Park, with private lodge accommodation.
Enjoy an interesting variety of activities on this exclusive lodge safari, including Big Five game drives, guided wildlife walks, a visit a wildlife rehabilitation centre and a unique bush dining experience. Embark on an exhilarating sunset game drive in Balule Nature Reserve and explore the Motlala and Tshukudu Game Reserves on game drives in open 4x4 safari vehicles. Spend a full day exploring Kruger National Park, home to an incredible diversity of African wildlife, birds, reptiles, plants and more. Experience the thrill of walking in the Big Five Balule and get close to nature on foot in Motlala Reserve with experienced guides, before taking in the sights of Blyde River Canyon.
Spend the first night at an exclusive lodge in Balule and then stay at a small, secluded lodge bordering on Kapama. Accommodation at the intimate lodge next to Kapama is in luxurious, tented chalets with private splash pools.
At the beginning of this diverse lodge tour you are fetched from your pre-safari accommodation in and around the city of Johannesburg, or from the O.R. Tambo International Airport. Departing from Johannesburg, the largest city in South Africa, we travel northeast to the famous Greater Kruger Park area. Our air-conditioned transfer takes us to a private lodge set in lush gardens within Balule Reserve, forming part of Greater Kruger Park.
This afternoon we arrive at the pleasant lodge, take a swim if time allows and settle in. Then at about 17:00 we embark on our first game viewing adventure in an open safari vehicle. Heading into Balule on our sunset game drive we look out for the Big Five (lion, leopard, buffalo, rhino and elephant) and plenty of other animals and birds. Late afternoons and evenings are a great time to be in the bush as the animals move about more and the light is often a beautiful golden hue.
We are out in the wilderness for our first sunset and then we stop at a remote boma for dinner in the peaceful bush. Dinner is a South African-style barbecue, known locally as a braai, prepared outdoors over an open fire! Tuck into the tasty meal with nature around you and star-studded skies above.
Then we return to the lodge for a restful sleep, before our first full day in action.
We are up early for coffee and tea with a snack, before heading into Balule Nature Reserve.
As the sun rises our safari vehicle takes us deeper into Balule, where we explore further on foot. Walking through the reserve in the Olifants River area is a thrilling adventure, as we may come across the Big Five at any moment. The expert guide leads us through Greater Kruger, sharing his or her knowledge of the bush, and pointing out signs of wildlife activity. The guide is armed to ensure the safety of the group, given the presence of predators and other big mammals.
This exhilarating morning game walk is followed by brunch back at the private lodge. Then we drive south to our next lodge - a secluded tented camp located in the wilderness next to Kapama Private Game Reserve. Settle in and have lunch then relax, dip in your own splash pool and rest up, before our afternoon game drive.
The three-hour afternoon drive takes us into the beautiful Motlala Game Reserve in search of the plethora of wildlife found here. The reserve hosts three of the famous Big Five, namely leopard, rhino (black and white) and buffalo, all of which are regularly sighted on game drives. Motlala covers a range of vegetation types, from riverine forests of big, old trees to open plains, providing rich habitats for the healthy animal and bird populations. The animals tend to be relaxed around safari vehicles, which makes for excellent wildlife sightings and photographic opportunities in this pretty and uncrowded reserve.
Back at the newly established tented lodge it is time for dinner in the lapa and a laid-back evening in mother nature.
Our second full day on safari, we get an early start and head off to Kruger National Park after breakfast. We spend the day exploring the game reserve in an open vehicle, designed to maximize views and immerse you in the bush.
This is one of Africa's finest game parks, famous for its diversity and abundance of wild animals roaming freely across 19 485 km² of untamed African wilderness. Kruger Park covers numerous vegetation zones, incorporating an array of healthy, natural ecosystems. Wildlife sightings are plentiful, with mammals including the Big Five and African wild dogs, cheetahs, zebras, giraffes, jackals and many more. Birding enthusiasts will also be enthralled by the rich birdlife of Kruger, which hosts over 500 bird species.
At the end of a magical day in the bush we return to the lodge near Kapama Reserve and have a delicious dinner. Sit back and relax listening to the sounds of the bushveld and stargazing from your splash pool.
On day four we make our way towards Hoedspruit and the nearby Moholoholo Rehabilitation Centre.
This wildlife centre is dedicated to rescuing and caring for distressed wildlife and birds from across South Africa. Serval cats and endangered black eagles have been bred at Moholoholo with great success, and the centre helps to create awareness about wildlife conservation. We learn more about the rehabilitation work being done here and see the resident animals and birds up close. After touring Moholoholo we return to camp for a light lunch. Then we make our way into the private Tshukudu Game Reserve, embarking on an afternoon game drive in this 5000-hectare wilderness area, neighbouring Kruger National Park proper.
The Big Five are often spotted on the three-hour game drives in Tshukudu, along with a host of predators, herbivores and other creatures. After our rewarding afternoon of game viewing we head back to the tented lodge for our last dinner together and some well-deserved leisure time.
Day five begins with a short nature walk in the compact Motlala Game Reserve (weather permitting). Enjoy being in the bush and seeing the small miracles of nature up close, before we return to the lodge for breakfast.
After breakfast we pack up and set off for the Blyde River Canyon, along the scenic Panorama Route. Along the way we stop to marvel at the beautiful scenery and view the Three Rondawels rock formations.
Then we drive back to Johannesburg where this Kruger & Private Game Reserves Lodge Safari comes to a close. We transfer you to your post-tour lodge or home, otherwise airport transport can be arranged.
This intimate camp consists of eight charming chalets tucked away in the wild bushveld, neighbouring Kapama Private Game Reserve.
The lodge offers semi-luxury accommodation in a secluded natural setting, providing a comfortable and original safari experience. The bush surrounding the lodge is home to wildlife and birds that can be seen and heard as you relax in between game viewing activities.
The canvas and thatched-roof chalets are raised on decks looking out over the bush. Each chalet has its own splash pool for a refreshing dip and the units are also air-conditioned for comfort. Natural materials have been used to create a back-to-nature feel in the chalets, which have canvas window panels and glass sliding doors. There are en-suite bathrooms with indoor and outdoor showers and the chalets have been decorated tastefully.
A lapa and bar area complete the picture, creating a relaxing space to relax and socialize. The dining lapa is next to an open-air barbecue area so you can enjoy being outside. The staff at the lodge provide skillful and friendly service of standards comparable to four and five star establishments.
This safari is only suitable for children over 12 years of age.
Our team has the destination knowledge to help you plan an unforgettable African adventure. We're based in Cape Town and ready to help.
We can also plan you an affordable private group or tailor-made tour. We built our business on turning luxury travel into affordable travel.