Cheetah Plains Private Game Reserve

Cheetah Plains Private Reserve lies adjacent to the Kruger National Park, in the northwest corner of the Sabi Sand Game Reserve. There are no fences between the two reserves, allowing game to move freely between the two areas.

Cheetah Plains has on its one boundary the Kruger National Park and on the other Mala Mala – perfect neighbours! You are also guaranteed exclusivity – our private concession traversing rights dictate that only two game vehicles at a time can traverse the individual areas, exclusivity at game sightings is the norm at Cheetah Plains.

Note – Cheetah Plains accept children of all ages

Accommodation at Cheetah Plains

The eight traditionally-thatched chalets at Cheetah Plains melt into beautiful indigenous gardens, which in turn are surrounded by pristine African bushveld.

Each chalet has either a double bed or two single beds, an en-suite shower, air-conditioning, mosquito net, and a verandah overlooking the gardens and the wild African bush.

There are two different room types at Cheetah Plains:

6 Standard Chalets

The standard chalet’s are comfortable with an indoor shower, and no bath.

2 x Luxury Chalets

Each luxury chalet consists of an ensuite bathroom, with a bath and a beautiful outdoor shower.

All rooms have air conditioners as well as overhead fans to ensure your comfort – day and night

Swimming pool

Take a plunge in the lodge swimming pool, surrounded by bushveld trees with a view over the dam where animals drink and bushbuck can be seen at the waters edge.

Safari Experience At Cheetah Plains

Early morning game drives

An early morning wake-up call is followed by a journey through the magic of the African sunrise. Bushveld inhabitants will also be waking up for the day, or settling down to laze in the shade after a hard night’s hunting.

An experienced field guide will take you through the reserve in specially equipped game drive vehicles to make the most of the finest game viewing opportunities. Lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant, antelope and more will be spotted among the gorgeous thorn and marula trees.

Early mornings are an ideal time to watch Africa’s magnificent animals in their natural habitat: birds and mammals are out at this time of day to gather food and drink water.

Evening game drives

Shortly after your arrival at Cheetah Plains, after snacks and drinks, you’ll be taken on the first of your exhilarating twice-daily game drives. Go on a personalised journey with your professional field guide to learn and see things you never thought possible.

Setting out into the bushveld in the late afternoon is the ideal time to spot the predators that prowl the Sabi Sand. Leopard & lion emerge in the early evening to drink water or rest before the night’s hunt.

As part of our concession rights, only two safari vehicles are allowed in the shared areas of the reserve at any given time. You’re guaranteed exclusivity as you go on safari through Cheetah Plains and the surrounding area, giving you the added privilege of peace, quiet and relatively undisturbed wildlife.

Halfway through the drive you’ll disembark for a sundowner against the dramatic, inspiring African sunset. Specialized Birding Safaris [ additional cost ]

Cheetah Plains in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve is delighted to introduce specialized birding safaris – identify birds by sound, habitat and sight – with professional and passionate specialist birding guides.

“There are birds on every continent in the world. They represent nature in all its glory. They are numerous, varied, intelligent, garrulous and beautiful. Their ability to fly communicates a sense of freedom and independence and will always impress us.” —Martin Benadie

White-headed Vulture (juvenile)
Led by passionate birder Martin Benadie, you will soon be listening to every chirp and song you hear – ready to identify and discover the source of the sound. With extensive knowledge at his finger tips you will absorb every detail and be transported to the new and exciting world of birds.

Specialized Photographic Safaris [ Additional cost ]

Cheetah Plains Private Game Reserve, is undoubtedly one of the best locations for a riviting and exciting Photographic Safari. The area is brimming with photographic opportunities, which will thrill both the experienced photographer to the complete novice.

All our scheduled Photographic Safaris at Cheetah Plains are a unique experience because of the specially designed photographic seats and control arms, custom-built into a brand new Toyota Land Cruiser.

We would love you to join on one of our Photographic Safaris, hosted at Cheetah Plains in the prestigious Sabi Sand Game Reserve – an area world-renowned for game, especially big cat photographic opportunities. This experience promises a lifetime of special memories and unforgettable photographic moments. See below for scheduled dates.

The northern area of the Sabi Sand Game Reserve arguably offers game enthusiasts and photographers some of the best wildlife and birding photographic opportunities in the world. Combine our on-site professional wildlife photographers, a specially adapted vehicle, an amazing lodge and you have a unique package! See below for scheduled dates.

Professional photographers will ensure that you benefit from one-on-one instruction on everything from how to achieve the best position for the ultimate wildlife shot to professional tips on image editing, including both a pre-game drive and post-drive briefing.

Enquire about the next Nikon Photographic Safari now.

What we offer on our tours:

  • Professional tuition by one of our wildlife photographic experts
  • Cheetah Plains specialised photographic vehicle
  • Time spent on editing
  • About our specialised vehicle
  • What sets the Cheetah Plains Photographic Safari apart from any other safari of its kind in the Sabi Sand is the vehicle. With specially designed seats and control arms, it’s the first of its kind anywhere in the world!
  • Advantages
  • One of the biggest irritations on a photographic safari is movement within the vehicle.
  • The second biggest irritation must be the discomfort of putting yourself in awkward positions to get that angle for a shot. Our vehicle has specialised seating and control arms to allow you to wait for your subject in comfort.
  • Being able to pan with a moving subject is made easier with our swivel seats, and our Wimberley Heads that are fixed to the control arm. You can rotate 180 degrees without lifting yourself from the seat.
  • The vehicle has been designed in such a way that four photographers can capture the same image at one time.

Village trips

Cheetah Plains is actively involved in the surrounding local communities of Utah and Dixie. A visit to these neighbouring villages will give you insight into the rural South African way of life, allowing you to meet the village elders and share in the exuberance and enthusiasm of the villagers.

Visit the Manyeleti community

Student Movement for Real Change (SMRC) is a non-profit organisation registered in the United States that has been working in Manyeleti for six years. SMRC has a formal relationship with the Buffelshoek Trust and Djuma and welcomes contributions, which it uses to help improve lives in the community.

If you live in the United States, donations for the community should be given to SMRC to ensure you get a tax deduction for your gift. You can send cheques to 1807 18th St, NW, Washington, DC 20009 or donate online at

The Buffelshoek Trust is a South Africa based non-profit organisation that was initiatied in 2001 with the aim of uplifting the lives of the Manyeleti community. To date, together with our partners, the trust has spent over R20-million on projects in the area. Donate online at

Together, we have:

  • Supplied water to two villages
  • Fed 2 500 children a day
  • Built three crèches and 40 classrooms
  • Constructed five libraries and four admin blocks
  • Constructed three sports fields
  • Installed electricity in a number of schools
  • Built a bakery and sewing unit.
  • Installed 200 computers in seven schools and spent R1-million a year on training
  • Set up seven agricultural projects that provide up to eight tons of vegetables a year in some schools
  • Built a clinic and community centre
  • Set up community health projects, including talks on HIV/Aids by local clinicians

While at Cheetah Plains Private Game Reserve, you can visit the Manyeleti community with a qualified guide to gain an inside perspective on the community’s way of life. The four-hour excursion is always informative and inspiring.