Six of the best: African wildlife Lodges
Africa’s vast plains are teeming with wildlife but where to lay your head? Lynn Houghton picks her favourite lodges for a game break
set over 140 acres in the leafy suburbs of nairobi, the 12-room giraffe manor looks more like a scottish country pile than an African lodge – and that’s because it it was built in the 1930s by sir David Duncan of the macintosh clan. But the stars of the show are the wild endangered rothschild giraffes that roam freely around the property. the ancestors of these tall, permanent guests were rescued by 1970s owner Betty leslie melville. At breakfast time, the giraffes put their heads through windows to be fed by guests.
Ashnil Mara Camp
seeing the Wildebeest migration between tanzania and Kenya at the beginning of every summer is one of natues greatest experiences. Deep in the maasai mara, the Ashnil mara camp is a perfect base for game drives and its elevated location on the riverbank makes for unsurpassed wildlife spotting. even lions come to drink at the river’s edge. Add to that spacious tents and a talented chef presenting wonderful buffets.
looking for a lodge that is deep in the bush? you will not be disappointed by elephant’s eye, a luxury tent camp in Zimbabwe’s Hwange national park. While enjoying a sumptuous evening meal, there may be elephants exploring just a few feet away. As part of the nearby wetland is artificially lit, viewing wild nocturnal activity is possible. even the pool water is unchlorinated as creatures frequently use it to drink. the luxury tents are elevated as wildlife can be present on the property at any time.
in moremi game reserve, Botswana, sanctuary retreats’ smallest camp – with just five luxury suites – is set in a grove of trees and built on raised platforms above the Boro river. the owners encourage the local community in maun to collect cans to be recycled for cash – and the cans form the backbone of the camp’s structure. star baths and sky beds on private decks help create a romantic oasis in the bush.
Great Fish River Lodge
though many might choose to visit the vast, well-known Kruger national park, the wildlife viewing at Kwandwe private game reserve in the eastern cape is equally mesmerising, especially on an early morning game drive. guests can also join a veterinary team on a conservation safari and get up close to black and white rhino. nine separate suites at the great fish river lodge afford privacy with unobstructed views. guests can enjoy a BBQ inside a Boma – formerly enclosures for domestic animals.
situated in the untouched wilderness of the grumeti preserves in the serengeti national park, singita sabora is a 1920s intimate-style explorer camp. A bastion of luxurious relaxation, the camp is also an active family’s dream, with archery, tennis, game drives and guided safari walks to enjoy. singita believes sustainability is key to the future of preserving and protecting large areas of African wilderness.