South Africa safaris have been known to be some of the best in the world for a very long time, however they do have a reputation of being less ‘wild’ than other parts of Africa – we hope to completely dispel this myth with South Africa’s top five most remote safari locations. There are still huge parts of South Africa which are exceptionally rural and which offer the chance to get off the beaten track and really feel the wilderness of Africa all around you. South Africa is currently booming thanks to the rand gbp exchange rate and now is certainly the time to go. Although the lodges in South Africa are exceptionally remote, they are always incredibly luxurious, so you are guaranteed the best food, best guides and wonderfully unique rooms and accommodation. Here are the top five most remote South African lodges:
Tswalu Kalahari is so remote they have had to lay on their own flights from Cape Town or Johannesburg. This is the only place which allows guests to see the magnificent Kalahari Desert from South Africa. The vistas here are breathtaking and the Malori Sleep Out is definitely the most luxurious star bed in Africa. Whilst at Tswalu you can explore this vast area on foot, by game drive or on horses and this allows you to really grasp the sheer size of this area.
Makakatana Bay Lodge is in the St Lucia Wetlands and is on the banks of the remote and wild Lake St Lucia itself – this lodge is a tropical paradise and is set in lush jungle, with unspoilt beaches and vast wetlands to explore. There’s no where which feels as wild and untamed as this and this luxury lodge offers guests the chance to explore this area thoroughly.
Marataba is set in its own private concession in the Waterberg and has the most dramatic views of the Waterberg Mountains one could possibly envisage. This area is also wild and out of control, the bush is thick and glorious, and the game abundant. Wonderful days spent on the river by boat are just one of the highlights, as is the walking camp set up for those who want to leave the vehicles behind for a few days.
Samara feels like the ends of the earth and this huge private conservancy with a few luxury lodges really does offer a paradise with vistas that are similar in look to East Africa. Huge mountains and escarpments combine to make picturesque valleys and lakes – the game viewing here is sensational, especially the cheetah viewing.
Although not strictly a safari property this luxury beach lodge backs onto tropical jungle which has such fascinating flora and fauna that you certainly still feel as if you are on safari – here if you’re very lucky you might also catch turles laying their eggs, or hatching, and whales. The snorkeling and diving is not to be sniffed at, and this wild beach is unkempt and enchanting.
Rose Hipwood is Managing Director of The Luxury Safari Company.