Five Must-Visit Game Lodges In KwaZulu-Natal

thanda villa

Villa iZulu (Courtesy of Thanda)

Thanda Tented Camp – Thanda Private Game Reserve

When it comes to private game reserves, Thanda, which means “love” in isiZulu, falls into a similar category to Phinda. The 14,000-hectare reserve, which is home to the Big Five as well as the Little Five (elephant shrew, rhino beetle, leopard tortoise, ant lion and buffalo weaver), is involved in various conservation projects. Thanda is also strongly committed to preserving Zulu culture and empowering the local communities.

There are three accommodation options – Thanda Safari Lodge, the exclusive bush residence Villa iZulu, and Thanda Tented Camp. The reasonably priced Tented Camp provides a more traditional safari experience. While you’ll be sleeping in tents, this is hardly rough-and-ready camping! The camp is made up of 15 spacious tents that come with their own en-suite bathrooms and private sun decks. Solar power and back-up generators ensure that you’re perfectly comfortable. While a waterhole entices animals to the camp, a partial electrified fence deters them from entering your tent.

Spend a day with the conservation team — tracking the Big Five and assisting with reserve maintenance and monitoring — or get the reserve’s resident wildlife photographer, Christian Sperka, to show you how to capture some of Africa’s most magnificent creatures.

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