Bayethe at Shamwari Private Game Reserve

Bayethe at Shamwari Private Game Reserve

 

General

Shamwari Private Game Reserve is a premier safari and holiday destination in South Africa’s ecologically and culturally significant Eastern Cape Province.

Shamwari, meaning “my friend” in Shona, is the pinnacle of private game reserves and home to the coveted Big 5. It’s a place where guests can exist in harmony with nature, however fleeting the moment, where wildlife roam the landscape under the relentless African sun.

Shamwari has 7 lodges and 1 explorer camp; each providing distinct experiences. From exclusive tranquillity, effortless family enjoyment or the back-to-nature appeal of a luxury tented camp.

The name for this Shamwari lodge comes from the African greeting, pronounced “By-ye-ti”. The English translation for this word is “I salute you” and is one of the warmest welcomes in the African culture in this area of the country.

For a luxurious, malaria-free experience, look no further than Bayethe Tented Lodge.  This tented paradise offers guests the opportunity to immerse themselves in utter tranquillity, surrounded by the rich vegetation of this unique location that provides privacy and a feeling of seclusion with spectacular views of the African bush.

Bayethe Superior Tents

The 12 Superior Tents are camouflaged under trees allowing for ample privacy & unsurpassed comforts. 12 twin or king bedded superior tents each sleeping a maximum of 2 adults.

  • Private plunge pool
  • Private deck
  • Indoor fireplace
  • Private minibar
  • Air conditioning
  • Tea & coffee facilities
  • Electronic safe
  • Fitted international adapters
  • International dial telephone
  • Electric blankets
  • En-suite bathrooms
  • 9 tents have an indoor bath and outdoor shower and 3 tents have an indoor bath and indoor shower

 Game Drives

At Shamwari Private Game Reserve, we not only offer our guests 5-star luxury accommodation, but pride ourselves on presenting wildlife interaction that is sure to be the highlight of your stay. Coupled with the African horizon and spectacular skies, we offer game drives through the reserve for an experience of a lifetime.

 Our game viewing drives are available for morning and afternoon trips, as this is when the animals are most active. Our vehicles are open and comfortable, and give you a panoramic view of the area. You’ll be guided by one of our trained game rangers who’ll take you and your party through the reserve, encountering many animals along the way.

If you have a particular area of interest, you’re welcome to inform your guide who will include it along the journey, if possible.

The game drives themselves last for approximately three to four hours and take you through the reserve. Included on the game drive is a coffee stop for the morning drive and a sun-downer stop in the evening.

Guided Walking Safaris

In addition to spectacular game drives, Shamwari Game Reserve also offers professionally guided walking tours. Here, you can gain a true perspective of the flora and fauna indigenous to the region. Your guide can point out animal tracks, dung, hiding spots, rare birds and educate you on the area and its history.

Unfortunately, no children under the age of 16 or adults over the age of 65 (unless provided with a doctor’s certificate of fitness) are permitted on these walks.

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Kwandwe Ecca Lodge – Eastern Cape

Kwandwe Ecca Lodge  – Eastern Cape

 

General

Set in thick vegetation overlooking a dense valley, Ecca Lodge offers breath taking views onto an escarpment of steep shale cliffs Featuring six suites, of which three are dedicated to families. The double suites can accommodate 2 adults each and the family suites accommodate 2 adults and 2 children (under 16yrs on day beds in the lounge).

The family suites also include a private vehicle and ranger. Private vehicle is available at an additional cost for guests staying in a double suite.

The lodge is intimate, relaxed and trendy with décor inspired by the vibrant colours and textures of our nearby villages.

The suites of Ecca Lodge are airy and open with flowing interiors that extend outwards to the wilderness. Wraparound decks, complete with private plunge pools and outdoor showers, offer sweeping views and complete relaxation. All ages are welcome. 

Kwandwe Ecca Lodge Couple Suite(s)

Set in thick vegetation overlooking a dense valley, Ecca Lodge offers breathtaking views onto an escarpment of steep shale cliffs.

Six spacious and private suites are located a short distance away from the main lodge area, each in its own position away from the other suites. Each suite features a bedroom with en-suite bathroom, indoor and outdoor shower, separate w.c, twin hand basin and a private deck with plunge pool.

Interior design reflects the vibrant colours and textures of Africa. Main guest areas feature a spacious sitting room with fireplace, dining room and bar area as well as a deep veranda with expansive wooden viewing deck overlooking rolling spekboom valleys.

Kwandwe Ecca Lodge Family Suite(s)

Family Suites accommodate 2 adults and 2 children and includes a private vehicle and ranger. Each suite features a bedroom with en-suite bathroom,a lounge with two day beds which are turned into beds for the kids, indoor and outdoor shower, separate w.c, twin hand basin and a private deck with plunge pool.

Interior design reflects the vibrant colours and textures of Africa. Main guest areas feature a spacious sitting room with fireplace, dining room and bar area as well as a deep veranda with expansive wooden viewing deck overlooking rolling spekboom valleys.

Game Drives: Twice Daily (Included)

Explore the natural splendour of Kwandwe on early morning and late afternoon / evening game drives in an open 4×4 safari vehicle. An armed ranger and tracker team share their extensive knowledge of the bush with you as you track the Big Five, as well as a variety of other wildlife.

Morning drives begin as dawn breaks over the Great Fish River, providing the opportunity to see predators winding up their nocturnal hunts and settling in for the day. Many animals take advantage of the cool morning hours to graze before the heat of the day. In the late afternoon wildlife can often be spotted coming down to the river to drink. Night drives produces some unusual sightings, including aardvark, aardwolf, bat-eared fox and porcupine.

Big Game Walking Safari (Included)

Experience the thrill of tracking big game (white rhino, black rhino, elephant and buffalo) on foot, accompanied by an armed specialist ranger and tracker team. The walk lasts 3 to 4 hours and ends with a picnic lunch on the banks of the Great Fish River or at a scenic spot in the bush. Not suitable for children under 16 years of age.

Fishing Safari (Included)

Kwandwe offers a variety of fishing options, either in still water or in the Great Fish River. Try your hand at catching Large Mouth Bass on artificial lures or fly rod in the reserve’s largest dam. Coarse (bait) fishing can also be tried in either the Great Fish River or one of the other large dams to target Yellowfish, Carp, Sharptooth Catfish and more. A fun activity for children as well as for adults.

Interpretive Bush Walks (Included)

In between game drives, take a closer look at the subtle, unseen wonders of the bush on a leisurely walk within easy reach of your lodge. Dense euphorbia thickets are best explored on foot, revealing a secret world of lichen, mosses and ferns. Various birds of prey and other species nest in the taller trees or in the spiny canopy. An armed ranger guides guests through ‘up close and personal’ sightings of various antelope species, giraffe, warthog or zebra. Not suitable for children under 12 years of age.

Children’s Activities (Included)

We have a variety of children’s activities at our properties:

– Children receive a welcome gift on arrival which includes an Eco-nect Guide comprising animal checklists, themed games and activities, and a pledge to ‘live green’ (‘Junior’ for under 6’s and ‘Senior’ for ages 6 and up), crayons/ pencils, and an age appropriate gift from our gift shop.

– Families can participate in fun and adventurous activities on the reserve, including kite building, scavenger hunts across the reserve with thought-provoking clues to seek hidden items which will help you in your next task… or treasure hunts during a game drive which teach basic navigation using a sun-compass and how to use major landscape features in order to find the treasure!

– Giving back: families have the opportunity to plant Spekboom, a type of thicket vegetation that is native to the Eastern Cape and prolific on the reserve, and one of the top five carbon-storing vegetations on the planet. In this way they are encouraged to offset their carbon footprints.

– Activities are tailored according to individual and family interests and skillsets. For young guests this includes assisting with gardening projects at the local Mgcamabele Community; participating in arts and craft activities; and toddlers are invited to join in playtime at the pre-school.

– Children are also welcome to participate in Kwandwe’s ‘Knit a Bit’ program. The knitted squares are joined to make blankets and given to the Ubunye Foundation that distributes them the communities surrounding Kwandwe.

– Other activities for children include ‘crumpet creatures’ (using a variety of coloured crumpet mixtures in squeezy bottles, the ranger and kids will create animal shaped crumpets); sand art, making moulds from Plaster of Paris, beading, Minnow’s fishing trip with a ranger, baking and pizza making with specially designed ‘Chefs in Training’ aprons and toques, DVDs and popcorn, eco educational board games (learning about recycling and the how to care for our planet in a fun way) and African bedtime stories.

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Madikwe Hills

Madikwe Hills

General

Traversing over 75 000 hectares, Madikwe Hills Private Game Lodge is situated on a hill, in the heart of the malaria-free Madikwe Game Reserve. Ingeniously set amongst boulders and age-old Tamboti trees, the lodge offers visitors the utmost in luxury and hospitality, where you will find yourself enchanted by a world of intrigue and majestic beauty.

The Madikwe Game Reserve is home not only to the Big Five, but also to a wealth of other fascinating creatures, including the rare Wild Dog. Our team at Madikwe Hills looks forward to showing you Africa’s wonderful wildlife and to fulfilling your every wish, making your stay the ultimate in privacy and luxury.

The utter dedication and passion of the team at Madikwe Hills ensure that every guest departs with a memory of an African safari never to be forgotten.

Luxury suite

Ultra-luxurious glass-fronted suites complete with their own deck and private plunge pools offer absolute privacy and majestic views with ensuite bathroom, outdoor shower and lounge

Activities at Madikwe Hills

Your day in the African Bush 

Where its Majestic Beauty waits to Enchant You…

Traversing over 75 000 hectares, Madikwe Hills Private Game Reserve is where the plains still team with game and the acacia savannah symbolizes a paragon of beauty. Madikwe Hills is in the middle of the reserve, giving you a huge advantage on game drives.

The malaria-free Madikwe Reserve is home not only to the Big 5 of Africa, but also to a wealth of other fascinating creatures, including the rare Wild Dog. Our team at Madikwe Hills looks forward to showing you Africa’s wonderful wildlife, and to fulfilling your every wish. Wildlife can be viewed on game drives, walking safaris, and from the privacy of your suite deck.

Bush Breakfast and Boma Dinner

As guests complete their evening game drive, they will be enticed by the essence of a burning fire, to arrive to a hurricane lit “dining room” in the bush.

With the finest in cuisine and service excellence, guests will enjoy an unforgettable feast under starlit African skies.

Wildlife Photography

Those with a passion for wildlife photography will be able to get various tips from their ranger on taking the perfect safari picture, while on their game drive. Our rangers are avid fans of photography, many of them having entered renowned international and local competitions with great results. Our ranger s will be happy to assist in any way they can.

Game Drives & Bush Walks 

An Exceptional Safari Experience in the Madikwe Game Reserve

Explore the wonders of the African bush in state of the art open game vehicles with bucket seats and fold-down armrests ensuring your optimum safety and comfort.

Knowledgeable and professional rangers conduct early morning and late afternoon, or evening, game drives in search of Africa’s big game and smaller wildlife.

On Morning Game drives, should you be feeling energetic, you may choose to experience an up close and personal glimpse of the African bush on foot with a gentle bush walk through the bush back to the Lodge. This experience provides exceptional close encounters with the smaller inhabitants of this wilderness

 

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Tswalu Kalahari

Tswalu Kalahari 

 

General

Tswalu lets you reconnect with the richness of the earth. It offers an escape to a place that’s governed by the ancient rhythms of the seasons, rather than the clock and the calendar. The cool breeze carries both myths and promises – by making good on them we can fulfil our founding family’s vision of restoring the natural environment and empowering people.

Tswalu offers a vision of hope that brings together conservation, research and an unrivalled safari experience. Everything we do is centred around our creed: To leave our world better than how we found it.

No two Tswalu experiences are the same. That’s because the way you see and touch this magical place will be shaped by your particular interests and will happen at your own pace. Tswalu is a generous landscape and as the sun rises above the Korannaberg mountains each morning, new opportunities to learn, play and explore come to life.

With your own dedicated guide and vehicle, you can experience Tswalu exactly the way you want to. There are no fixed schedules or time limits at special sightings – during your stay, the dunes and grasslands are yours to explore the way you want to, and each wildlife encounter can unfold at its own pace.

In the shelter of the mountains – which also provide a dramatic backdrop to wildlife sightings – you can encounter Tswalu’s 240 kinds of bird and 80 mammal species, including Hartmann’s mountain zebra, wild dog, black maned lion, pangolin and aardvark.

As we learn more about Tswalu through research projects supported by the Tswalu Foundation, this amazing region continues to surprise. To date, more butterfly species have been recorded here than in the entire British Isles. By way of confounding stereotypes, Tswalu is even home to three species of amphibian.

Tswalu offers a fully inclusive guest experience:

  • Private game viewing vehicle with a dedicated guide and tracker for all bookings
  • Walking safaris
  • Nature walks, including traditional plant use interpretation
  • Habituated meerkats
  • Horse riding and bird watching
  • Some of the oldest bushman rock engravings in Africa
  • A visit to our community clinic and pre-school
  • The Tswalu Foundation research projects
  • Involvement in all wildlife project work currently on the property
  • Accommodation –  all meals including a variety of dining experiences from boma dinners to dune picnics
  • All beverages and full selection from our award-winning wine-list
  • In-suite tea and coffee making facilities
  • In-suite private bar and gourmet pantry
  • Laundry and valet services
  • Wireless internet access and national telephone calls
  • Children’s Junior Ranger programme and baby-sitting
Motse Legae ( 6 rooms )

A ‘village’ of just nine houses (three of which feature a second bedroom for children), The Motse captures the soul of the Kalahari in its design and materials. Private spaces flow effortlessly into waterhole views and beyond to the savannah.

The architecture of The Motse aligns beautifully with Nature to create moments of warmth and coolness, seclusion and shared memories. Bedrooms are illuminated by the sun rising over the ridge behind The Motse, and indigenous trees create pools of shadow. Each space at The Motse invites you in, just as Tswalu beckons you to explore and investigate your surroundings.

Motse Family Suite ( 3 rooms )

Luxury is a given when you are on safari at Tswalu. At The Motse, just 18 adults are accommodated in nine individual legae (suites) made from desert sand, rock and thatch, with every comfort imaginable – open fireplaces, outdoor showers, private sun decks, spacious living areas, separate dressing and study areas and wireless internet.

We have three family legae (suites) which have 2 en-suite bedrooms separated by a large lounge and deck.

At the main lodge elevated decks around the freeform pool, allow panoramic views of the surrounding Kalahari landscapes, and a waterhole popular with wildlife. A spacious lounge and dining area, library, spa, fully-equipped gym, impressive wine cellar and traditional boma complete the luxury facilities.

ACTIVITIES AT TSWALU

Your own private safari

With your own dedicated guide and vehicle, you can experience Tswalu exactly the way you want to. There are no fixed schedules or time limits at special sightings – during your stay, the dunes and grasslands are yours to explore the way you want to, and each wildlife encounter can unfold at its own pace.

Just like the sands of the Kalahari, we understand that your priorities can shift during your time at Tswalu. That’s why we’ll never try and shoehorn your experience into a fixed schedule.

Tswalu is unquestionably one of the best places in southern Africa to see cheetah in the wild – the vast open spaces and antelope herds of the Kalahari readily lend themselves to high-speed pursuits. Visiting Tswalu also gives you front-row seats for sightings of species that prove elusive elsewhere, from aardvark and pangolin to Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra.

Tswalu’s ecotourism ventures have a notably low ecological impact while also contributing significantly to the sustainability of the reserve and its achievement of its conservation and community upliftment goals. By remaining honest to our guiding principles, we can deliver a safari experience of startling authenticity.

Bush walks

Much of Tswalu’s beauty can be found in the smaller details: the ripples left by the wind on the crest a sand dune, a yellow flower opening to face the sun, or the tracks of a porcupine digging for roots. Walking at Tswalu gives you the opportunity to see these and other signs of the abundance of the southern Kalahari, as well as following the tracks of larger species.

Horseback riding

Another exciting game viewing option at Tswalu is a horseback ride

Horseback safaris allow guests to explore the dunes and savannahs on our well-schooled and well-mannered horses, which are suitable for all ages and all levels of experience.

There is no better way to get close to nature and the wildlife. On a horse safari in at Tswalu, you become part of the landscape and many of the animals react differently to your presence. No-one who experiences this kind of closeness with wildlife ever forgets it.

Our equestrian guides are well trained in the Kalahari ecology, and will lead you on a true safari where you can ride alongside antelope, buffalo, zebra and giraffe, or watch them from a distance without detection.

Children are welcome on horseback safaris. Both trail and English saddles are available and every piece of necessary equipment is provided, in every imaginable size.

Junior Ranger’s Programme

Children are welcome at Tswalu and the reserve is well equipped to cater for them. Tswalu believes that they too can be part of the conservation vision.

The youngsters will be introduced to the Junior Ranger programme and given a backpack with guides and tools to help them learn about the Kalahari. During their stay they will make their own bow and arrow for archery, learn how to identify spoor, and track game on foot.

In between game walks and drives there are activities at The Motse specially designed to occupy the kids while mom and dad relax. Tswalu’s stables will create a special “pony camp” for any child who shares their passion for horses. There is no malaria in this part of the Kalahari and the pool is a big attraction. They can chat to the rangers, decorate cup cakes and even cook their own bush dinner in the special children’s boma. A separate children’s menu caters for their individual tastes.

Babysitters can be arranged for younger children if parents want time alone.

Tswalu Spa

The Spa and Gym at The Motse provide both relaxation and stimulation for body and mind, with inspiration coming from the savannah views and the use of organic materials both in the construction of this space, and in the spa treatments.

Helicopter

Viewing Tswalu from the air is the best way to appreciate the sheer scale of the southern Kalahari. The folds in the land reveal themselves as you look down on mountain peaks where quite possibly no-one has ever walked and trace intertwined game paths that wind through the grasslands.

Flying at either end of the day reveals the fascinating interplay of light and shadow as the land glows warmly or slowly slips into darkness. Watching eland patiently file down to a waterhole, or the puffs of dust raised by the hooves of an oryx on the run are moments that will live with you forever.

Habituated meerkats

Join a group of habituated meerkats as they emerge from their burrows and warm themselves in the rising sun or meet up with them as they return home at the end of the day and groom and play at dusk.

Their gregarious nature and amusing antics (think early morning sunbathing and playing chicken with scorpions) have made meerkats extremely popular as subjects of wildlife documentaries. Our two habituated colonies have accepted the presence of humans without letting it disrupt the important business of grooming and foraging.

Meerkats are just one of the smaller predators which abound at Tswalu: aardwolf, African wild cat and caracal are also frequently seen.

The Malori starbed

Watching thousands of stars slowly spin through a black velvet sky as you fall asleep makes a night spent on our Malori sleep-out deck an unforgettable experience. Enjoy a glowing Kalahari sunset as you eat dinner, then see the world anew as birdsong and the strengthening light awaken you at dawn.

Dining

Every moment of every meal at Tswalu reflects the culinary heritage of South Africa and is carefully designed to be as inclusive as possible. Sustainability is key: we forage for Kalahari ingredients and work with local suppliers who share our low-impact ethos.

We believe that luxury is found in contextual, relevant flavours rather than wasteful over-abundance. Our food offering helps tell the story of Tswalu – it’s inspired by and captures the essence of the Kalahari.

 

 

 

 

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