Going on Safari? Here Are Your Kruger Airport Options.
Nov06

Going on Safari? Here Are Your Kruger Airport Options.

If you don’t want to self-drive to your safari camp, then you have two ways of getting to your Kruger safari destination, the first is for the more budget conscious traveller, and the second for a more flexible budget.  Budget style is to fly into a major airport and take a scheduled road transfer to your camp/lodge. These road transfers are generally in luxury small busses that seat up to 10 people. The road option does allow you to learn about the area, historical landmarks and enjoy the small towns en route. The ideal option, if you aren’t travelling on a budget, is to fly into one of the smaller safari airports via a connecting flight from South Africa’s major airports that include O.R. Tambo International (Johannesburg), Cape Town International and King Shaka International (Durban) airports. These smaller safari airports normally have a few flights departing and arriving daily. From the smaller airports, rangers from your camp or lodge will come and fetch you and transport you back to camp. Don’t be surprised to see a fleet of game viewers and sea of khaki clad rangers waiting in the arrivals. Here are your Kruger Airport Options : Northern Kruger Park: Phalaborwa Airport (Hendrik Van Eck Airport ) Phalaborwa serves the northern region of the Kruger National Park, and is a small airport. It serves guests flying on private charters and scheduled flights to/from international airports. The airport looks like a safari lodge, with its thatched roofs and plenty of wildlife statues. There are a few curio shops inside the terminal, ATM machines and also a car rental section. Central Kruger Park: Hoedspruit Eastgate Airport The Hoedspruit (Eastgate) Airport is a small but bustling airport that serves popular private reserves including the Timbavati Game Reserve, Kapama Game Reserve, Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Balule Nature Reserve. The closest gate is the Orpen Gate entrance to the National Park. The airport has a restaurant and one curio shop. It is crawling with safari vehicles, with gives it that authentic bushveld feel. You might even notice wildlife darting across the runway. Small, efficient and one of the most popular safari airports, Hoedspruit is a fantastic introduction to any safari. Southern Kruger Park: Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (KMI) The Nelspruit Airport/Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport serves the southern region of the Kruger Park, which includes the world renown Sabi Sand Game Reserve. It’s quite a large airport in terms of safari airports, and certainly caters for the both the business and leisure traveller. With its premier lounge, and curio shop chockablock with African trinkets; this airport has certainly covered all bases! Kruger National Park : Skukuza Airport Skukuza airport has an...

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Magical Coastline Destinations in Tropical Mozambique
Oct20

Magical Coastline Destinations in Tropical Mozambique

Dreaming of a palm-strewn, tropical beach vacay? Same here. Our travel day dreams took us to to the sandy shores of Mozambique where this little wooden bungalow is shaded by thatched roofs and cooled by the ocean breeze. Nyati Beach Lodge is quite simply the beach getaway we’ve been yearning for. It is located near the popular town of Vilanculos, on a private stretch of beach front, and perfectly equipped to see to every beach bungalow desire. We’re going to the beach this week – join us here as we post our favourite Mozambique destinations! Santorini Mozambique is drenched in the liquid glow of the sunrise, as it faces the broad horizon and welcomes the sun each morning. Stretching from one end of the earth to the other, the views on display from your private villa patio are seemingly endless. This seaside paradise is one for the books. There is something for families, honeymooners, and couples travelling together, and it is only a 20-minute drive from Vilanculos airport. This week is all about Mozambique – the perfect place to include in a beach and bush safari adventure – and Santorini Mozambique is one of our favourites. Words that come to mind when we think of Azura Quilalea: warm, tranquil, romantic, earthy, remote. What a place to be, relaxing at the seaside, soaking up the Northern Mozambique sunrises and sunsets from the comfort of a rustic wooden verandah only steps from the gently lapping waves. This piece of paradise is one of 9 private villas on a private island in these glorious Indian Ocean waters, and we want to be there. Mozambique’s coral pink skies bloom overhead as guests settle down on the private shores of andBeyond Benguerra Island. It’s sunset, and the world has blossomed into delicate floral colours while the wash of the water on the sand gently lulls us into an even further state of relaxation. This sublime setting is what makes a seaside sanctuary so alluring, and andBeyond’s revered reputation in the safari world translates flawlessly to their phenomenal beach locations. Luxury, privacy, serenity in nature… Take us back! That island life: palm trees, blue seas, traditional cabanas, the golden sunset glow, and fine, soft sand beneath your feet. It’s no wonder the seaside beckons when we’re in need of rejuvenation and revitalisation. The Big Blue moves in tides, entirely in tune with nature, and its warm, gentle Mozambican Current invites us right in. This private island is Azura Benguerra; it is a seaside villa paradise, with locally built beach suites right on the sand, lulling us into that dreamy state of natural relaxation. Forget blue...

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Guest Photos from a Greater Kruger Safari Experience
Oct20

Guest Photos from a Greater Kruger Safari Experience

Over the years, we have got to know some interesting, passionate, and wonderful people who have contacted us to arrange the adventures of a lifetime. Some guests have come to know our consultants, and return time after time to sew together some of the most fantastic safari itineraries. Kim Richardson and Geraint Isitt are a couple who have consistently travelled with us, and most recently they returned from a Greater Kruger Park, where they visited three private reserves: Klaserie, Timbavati, and Sabi Sand. Following their safari, they shared their images with us, which we have included here to illustrate what an all-rounded, wildlife-rich experience this part of South Africa offers. Thank you, Kim and Geraint, for sharing your photos and feedback with us! Lodges visited: nThambo Tree Camp, Klaserie Private Nature Reserve Shindzela Tented Safari Camp, Timbavati Private Nature Reserve Notten’s Bush Camp, Sabi Sand Wildtuin The Sabi Sand showing off for Kim and Geraint on their recent trip to the Greater Kruger during a safari arranged by our agent, Natasha. This was only one of many phenomenal big cat sightings, and among numerous leopard encounters. Those icy blue eyes make this tom quite an unforgettable cat! The incredible 180° jaw stretch reminding us why we keep our distance from these enormous river mammals! Kim and Geraint captured some brilliant shots during their time in the Greater Kruger, and were ready at the right time when this hippo put on its territorial display in the middle of his dam. This big “yawn” is the perfect way to let other male hippos know to keep their distance. Battle wounds of a warrior, perfectly captured by Kim while on safari with us at Notten’s Bush Camp. This Sabi Sand king is one of the Charleston males – a powerful coalition of lions dominant in the area – and he is as strong as ever even after a couple of years donning this dislodged canine! All part of an incredible safari in the Greater Kruger. These humbling giants emerge ever so quietly from the bush, ambling silently towards us, making far less noise than would be expected from an animal of this size. Elephants possess the incredible ability to step elegantly over obstacles and remain quiet as a mouse, while they have the equal power to wreak havoc when the need arises. Trees are entirely uprooted and bark is stripped from ancient trunks with ease. These powerful members of the wild are extremely clever, emotional, and feeling animals, and it is a privilege to share their space with them. Thanks once again to Kim for sharing this beautiful capture taken while on safari with us...

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The Big 7 Animals of South Africa
Oct08

The Big 7 Animals of South Africa

The big five are the most sought after species of wildlife to spot while on safari. The term “big five” was coined many years ago by big game hunters who found that lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and buffalo were the most dangerous to hunt while on foot. Years later, avid marketers and journalists continued to use the term to group together five of Africa’s elusive and majestic species. The big five can be found in the Kruger region, and scattered throughout other parts of South Africa within reserves. However, these big five animals are terrestrial and a large portion of South Africa is coastal. In the depths of the waters there is plenty of marine life. From southern right whales to dolphins, orcas and various species of shark; South Africa is a world of ocean splendour. The rugged coastlines of the Cape provide plenty of vantage points for shark spotting and whale watching. The southern right whale and the great white shark are the two most sought after ocean species to spot while cruising South Africa’s coastline. And thus, the these two marine creatures have been added to the big five to make up South Africa’s “big 7”! Here are the big 7 animals of South Africa : Rhino  Rhino are one of the most critically endangered species in Africa, and their numbers are rapidly declining. There are two species found in South Africa, the black and white rhino. The black rhino has a long horn and is far more aggressive in nature than the white rhino, and they’re considered browsers. White rhino are grazers –  their wide-lips allow for them to graze and mow through the short bushveld grasses. Black rhino have a narrower lip structure which allows them to pluck off nutritious leaves while browsing. Rhino have a keen sense of smell and hearing, but have incredibly poor eyesight. These prehistoric creatures are found throughout the majority of reserves in the Kruger and the Eastern Cape. Leopard The graceful and elusive leopard is a solitary wanderer, and when spotted it’s normally in the dead of night. The males tend to cover a huge traverse and will seek out areas rich with prey and availability of females. Females tend to confine themselves to a smaller traverse heaving with prey and potential den sites. You’ll find an abundance of leopard in reserves with caves, rocky outcrops, tall trees and drainage lines. After a kill is made, a leopard will drag the prey into a tree and stash it there for safekeeping, which is why you should always look up while on game drive! Leopards are found throughout may reserves, but the Sabi Sand Game...

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The Zambezi River’s Newly Built Victoria Falls Island Lodge
Sep06

The Zambezi River’s Newly Built Victoria Falls Island Lodge

The Victoria Falls Island Lodge is a new and exclusive lodge located on Kandahar island in the midst of the mighty Zambezi River just off the Zimbabwe mainland. This island is upstream from Victoria Falls, and provides an intimate and unusual experience in one of the world’s most sought after destinations. Guests will have the opportunity to stay in elegantly crafted wooden tree houses with expansive views of the surrounding waterlogged and lush landscape. This recently constructed lodge falls under the Zambezi Crescent Collection and offers guests plenty of things to do, while indulging in sumptuous food and spectacular sundowners. The only way to access the island is via boat. As you gently cruise towards the private island, keep an eye open for crocodiles, hippo and an array of birds en route. Hugged by a gentle biome of Zambezi teak and riverine trees, each tree house unit is designed to reflect the natural environment. The 3 tree house suites are developed to be an extension of the wild surrounds, not an intrusion into Africa’s natural habitat. Each of the tree house suites are handcrafted from natural wood and glass, giving rise to expansive views over the riverine canopy of trees and of one of Africa’s longest rivers, the Zambezi. Each suite is elevated on raised wooden decks and interconnected via wooden walkways. There are private plunge pools, a personal butler and chef; and balconies that lead out from your open plan suite. Loungers on your private deck are the perfect place to soak up the atmosphere and observe the birdlife. There are over 650 species of bird in Zimbabwe and Zambia, and this private island is in a prime position to spot at least a few of these species. Small mammals, reptiles and plains game live in harmony in the thick forested areas on the island, which means there’s always plenty to see. There are 3 suites, each accommodating 2 people, with the minimum age of the guest being 16 years old. The lounge and dining areas are open-plan and guests can connect to the free Wi-Fi on offer. In terms of activities guests can enjoy a complimentary game drive or river cruise. If you’re looking for a unique island safari experience on an exclusive untouched island upstream from Victoria Falls, then the Victoria Falls Island Lodge comes highly recommended. A tranquil, luxurious adventure...

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Client Feedback : Safari in Timbavati’s Honeyguide Mantobeni
Sep05

Client Feedback : Safari in Timbavati’s Honeyguide Mantobeni

Liselle’s clients enjoyed a spectacular safari experience at Honeyguide Mantobeni in the acclaimed Timbavati Game Reserve which shares unfenced borders with neighbouring private reserves and the Kruger National Park. Here is their feedback :  Liselle, Thanks for your email, we had a SUPERB trip to South Africa, it all went off without a hitch and I must admit our 3 days in Honeyguide were amazing and a huge highlight!!! Would recommend it to anyone at all in a heartbeat. The staff, guides, tents, drives, food, all were absolutely fabulous and we were blown away by it all, especially the kids!! Thank you so much for helping me organise it and I have all your details saved in case we ever go back or if anyone I know needs help booking their trips. My husband is already talking about potentially doing the Serengeti in a couple of years I’m not sure if you cover safaris there?? But I’ll need to start saving first   Thanks again for everything, hugely appreicated,...

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South Africa’s Luxury Family Safari: Kwandwe Game Reserve
Aug23

South Africa’s Luxury Family Safari: Kwandwe Game Reserve

A living testament to conservation and rehabilitation, Kwandwe Private Game Reserve is a wild sanctuary in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province. It spans 22 000 hectares of vast bushveld, endemic birdlife, a broad variety of unique and rare wildlife species, and is dedicated to the active protection of the endangered rhino. Giving back to the local community and to the natural environment is top priority, while Kwandwe has put the value of a family safari experience at the forefront of its offering, making it a dream-like destination that can be tailored to a tee. There are 5 award-winning, luxury lodges, making up 26 rooms in total, and a team of expertly trained and passionately dedicated staff who tie the experience together seamlessly. Of the 5 lodges – Ecca Lodge, Great Fish River Lodge, Uplands Homestead, Melton Manor, and Fort House – 3 are exclusive-use villas, which offer families and groups some of the most exquisite private safari experiences in South Africa. There is a 30km stretch of private Great Fish River frontage running through the reserve, while vistas include indigenous vegetation, undulating horizons, marshmallow coloured sunsets, and a diversity of animal life. Here is a breakdown of Kwandwe’s exceptional family orientated activities, as well as a selection of daily safari experiences that set it apart from the rest.   FAMILY FIRST The value of family is celebrated at Kwandwe with the specifically tailored activities that are geared towards children of all ages. This is not just about giving parents the opportunity to switch off while their kids are safely entertained (although there are excellent child minders at hand to offer help wherever parents may need it); the variety of activities are versatile, interactive, educational, experiential, and full of nature-orientated fun. “Eco-nect” family interaction activities, designed to connect families in the beauty of nature: scavenger hunts following clues and maps while out on game drive, kite building, pellet gun target shooting to simulate ranger training Kids Eco-nect guides upon arrival (0-6 and 6+): animal checklists, themed games and activities, and a pledge to ‘live green’, crayons/pencils, water bottle, and a ‘Frolicking Rhino’ range of bath products Giving back programme: planting spekboom trees to reduce carbon footprint, community involvement through arts and crafts, gardening, and playtime at the school in the Mgcamabele Community Kids activities: baking and cooking, sand art, face painting, eco-educational board games, arts and crafts, fishing, bedtime stories, ‘bugs and bones’ walk in nature with a field guide Children-orientated menus at every lodge, and child minders to offer baby sitting services SAFARI EXPERIENCES Game drives: Twice daily at dawn and dusk – included in daily rate ‘Save the Rhino Drive’: 3-4 Hour game drive,...

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