fbpx

Exciting News at Kambaku

We’re thrilled to announce two well-deserved promotions within our Kambaku family!

Cordelia has been promoted to the position of General Manager (GM). Since joining Kambaku in 2013, Cordelia, or Cordy as she is affectionately known, has consistently demonstrated dedication, loyalty, and exceptional leadership. Her commitment to providing an unforgettable experience for our guests have made her an invaluable asset to our team. We can’t wait to see her continue to thrive in her new role!

Phanuel is our new Head Guide! Phanuel, otherwise known as Phany, has also been with us since 2013, sharing his extensive knowledge of the bush, wildlife behavior, and conservation with our guests. His enthusiasm, patience, and love for the bush has consistently left a lasting impression on everyone who has had the pleasure of joining his safari drives.

To those of you who already know these two incredible staff members well, please join us in celebrating their growth and dedication! To those still coming to Kambaku – be prepared to meet these two legends !

The Ultimate Guide to Planning a Luxury Safari in Timbavati. | Travel the Kambaku Way

The Ultimate Guide to Planning a Luxury Safari in Timbavati

Planning a luxury safari in Timbavati can be an overwhelming task, but with a little research and preparation, you can create a truly unforgettable experience. From choosing the right lodge to packing the right gear, this guide will provide you with everything you need to know to plan your dream luxury safari in Timbavati.

Choosing the Right Lodge: Timbavati is home to a variety of luxurious game lodges, each with its own unique character and amenities. Take some time to research different lodges to find the one that best fits your preferences and budget. You can book Kambaku Safari Lodge or Kambaku River Sands.

Deciding on the Right Time to Visit: Timbavati is a year-round destination, but the best time to visit depends on your priorities. If you’re interested in seeing newborn animals, then the best time to visit is during the summer months (November – March). For the best wildlife sightings, consider visiting during the dry season (May – September).

Researching Safari Activities: Many of the lodges in Timbavati offer a variety of safari activities, including game drives, walking safaris, and helicopter rides. Research the activities offered at your chosen lodge to determine which ones you’re most interested in.

Packing the Right Gear: Packing the right gear is essential for a comfortable and enjoyable safari experience. Be sure to bring warm layers for early morning game drives, comfortable walking shoes for guided walks, and a good camera to capture all the incredible wildlife sightings.

Planning for Additional Activities: While game drives and walking safaris are the main attractions of a safari in Timbavati, there are also many additional activities to consider. Some lodges offer spa treatments, cultural experiences, and even astronomy sessions under the stars.

Understanding Conservation Efforts: Many of the lodges in Timbavati are involved in local conservation efforts, such as anti-poaching initiatives and community development programs. Take some time to learn about the lodge’s conservation efforts to understand how your visit can help support these important programs.

Preparing for Wildlife Sightings: Seeing wildlife in their natural habitat is a magical experience, but it’s important to remember that these are wild animals. Be sure to follow your guide’s instructions and respect the animals’ space for a safe and responsible safari experience.

Considering Your Dietary Requirements: Many of the lodges in Timbavati offer gourmet dining experiences, but it’s important to let the lodge know about any dietary restrictions or preferences ahead of time. We will cater to your dietary restrictions if you let us know when you book what you need. 

Booking in Advance: Luxury safari lodges in Timbavati can book up quickly, especially during peak travel season. Be sure to book your lodge and activities well in advance to ensure availability and avoid disappointment.

Planning a luxury safari in Timbavati requires some research and preparation, but the end result is an unforgettable experience that will stay with you for a lifetime. By choosing the right lodge, understanding the local culture and conservation efforts, and preparing for wildlife sightings and activities, you can create the ultimate luxury safari experience in Timbavati.

10 Reasons Why Timbavati Should Be Your Next Safari Destination. | Travel with Kambaku Game Lodge

10 Reasons Why Timbavati Should Be Your Next Safari Destination.

If you’re looking for an authentic African safari experience, look no further than Timbavati. Located in the heart of South Africa’s Kruger National Park, Timbavati is home to some of the continent’s most incredible wildlife, stunning landscapes, and luxurious game lodges like Kambaku Lodges.

Here are 10 reasons why Timbavati should be your next safari destination:
  1. Unbeatable Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: Timbavati is known for its diverse wildlife, including the Big Five (elephant, lion, leopard, rhino, and buffalo). You’ll also have the chance to see cheetahs, wild dogs, hyenas, and more.

  2. Pristine Natural Beauty: Timbavati is situated on a private reserve adjacent to Kruger National Park, which means the natural beauty and landscapes are unspoiled and breathtaking.

  3. Luxurious Game Lodges: Timbavati is home to a variety of luxurious game lodges that offer an all-inclusive safari experience. You’ll have access to top-notch amenities, gourmet dining, and expert guides.

  4. A Variety of Safari Experiences: Whether you prefer guided walking safaris, game drives, or even helicopter rides, Timbavati has something for everyone.

  5. Cultural Experiences: Timbavati is home to the local Shangaan people, who offer cultural experiences such as traditional dance performances and visits to local villages.

  6. Educational Opportunities: Many of the game lodges in Timbavati offer educational experiences that allow you to learn about the local flora and fauna, as well as conservation efforts in the area.

  7. Bird Watching: With over 360 species of birds, Timbavati is a bird watcher’s paradise. You’ll have the chance to see everything from eagles and vultures to colorful bee-eaters and kingfishers.

  8. Accessibility: Timbavati is easily accessible from Johannesburg, with several daily flights to nearby Hoedspruit. From there, it’s just a short drive to your safari lodge.

  9. Year-Round Destination: Unlike some other safari destinations, Timbavati is a year-round destination, with each season offering its own unique wildlife viewing opportunities and experiences.

  10. Conservation Efforts: By visiting Timbavati, you’ll be supporting the conservation efforts in the area, which include anti-poaching initiatives and community development programs.

The Timbavati is an incredible safari destination that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re a wildlife enthusiast, a luxury traveler, or someone who wants to learn about local cultures and conservation efforts, Timbavati has it all. So why not make Timbavati your next safari destination? You won’t be disappointed!

Exploring the Unique and Evocative Soundscape of the African Wilderness

Exploring the Evocative Soundscape of the African Wilderness

The Sounds of the African Bush

The African bush is a place of incredible beauty and diversity, a vast expanse of wilderness that is home to some of the world’s most iconic wildlife species. However, the African bush is also a place of incredible sound. From the haunting calls of jackals to the rumbling roars of lions, the soundscape of the African bush is a unique and evocative experience that can transport you to another world. In this article, we’ll explore the sounds of the African bush and what they can tell us about the wilderness.

The Sounds of the African Bush

The sounds of the African bush are a symphony of natural sounds, ranging from the soft chirping of birds to the thunderous stampede of a herd of elephants. Some of the most iconic sounds of the African bush include the roars of lions, the grunts of hippos, and the trumpeting of elephants. However, there are many other sounds that make up the soundscape of the African bush, including the calls of birds, the buzzing of insects, and the rustling of leaves in the wind.

Each sound in the African bush has its own unique meaning and purpose. For example, the roar of a lion is a powerful symbol of the wilderness, a reminder of the raw power and majesty of nature. The grunts of hippos, on the other hand, are a warning to other hippos to stay away from their territory, while the trumpeting of elephants is a form of communication between members of a herd.

The Importance of Sound in the African Bush

The sounds of the African bush are more than just a beautiful symphony; they also play a crucial role in the ecology of the wilderness. Many animals in the African bush rely on sound to communicate, find mates, and locate prey. For example, the calls of baboons are used to warn other members of their troop about potential danger, while the chirping of birds can signal the presence of food or water.

Moreover, sound can also be an indicator of the health and well-being of the wilderness. Changes in the soundscape, such as a decrease in the number of bird calls or an increase in the sounds of machinery, can be a sign of environmental degradation or habitat loss. By paying attention to the sounds of the African bush, we can gain a deeper understanding of the ecology of the wilderness and work to protect it for future generations.

Experiencing the Sounds of the African Bush

Experiencing the sounds of the African bush is a unique and evocative experience that can transport you to another world. Whether you’re sitting around a campfire listening to the calls of nocturnal animals or waking up to the sound of birdsong, the sounds of the African bush can create a sense of peace and tranquility that is hard to find in our modern world.

One of the best ways to experience the sounds of the African bush is to go on a guided safari. Experienced guides can help you identify the different sounds of the wilderness and teach you about the animals that make them. Moreover, many lodges and camps in the African bush offer night drives or guided walks, which can provide a unique opportunity to experience the sounds of the wilderness at night.

The sounds of the African bush are a unique and evocative part of the safari experience. From the haunting calls of jackals to the thunderous roars of lions, the soundscape of the African wilderness is a symphony of natural sounds that can transport you to another world. Moreover, by paying attention to the sounds of the African bush, we can gain a deeper understanding of the ecology of the wilderness and work to protect it for future generations.

The Art of Tracking in the Timbavati

Following Wildlife Trails in the African Bush.

The Art of Tracking in the Timbavati

The Timbavati Private Nature Reserve in South Africa is home to a stunning array of wildlife, from majestic lions and leopards to graceful giraffes and towering elephants. For many visitors to the reserve, one of the highlights of their safari experience is the chance to track these animals through the wilderness. However, tracking wildlife is not simply a matter of following footprints or droppings. It’s an art form that requires skill, patience, and a deep understanding of the environment. In this article, we’ll explore the art of tracking in the Timbavati and how it contributes to our understanding and conservation of wildlife.

 

The Basics of Tracking

At its core, tracking is the process of following the trail of an animal through the wilderness. In the Timbavati, trackers use a combination of visual clues, such as footprints, droppings, and broken foliage, as well as their sense of hearing and smell, to track animals. The goal is to locate and observe the animal without disturbing it or altering its behavior. Wildlife trackers must be patient, as following a trail can take hours or even days. They must also be aware of their surroundings and the animals in the area, as they must remain safe while tracking.

The Art of Tracking

While tracking may seem like a straightforward process, it’s actually an art form that requires years of experience and training to master. Skilled trackers in the Timbavati are able to read the signs of the bush in a way that allows them to follow an animal’s trail with incredible precision. They are able to identify different species of animals by their tracks and even discern the individual animal’s age, sex, and mood based on the size and shape of their footprints.

Furthermore, skilled trackers are attuned to the behavior and ecology of the animals they are tracking. They are able to anticipate where an animal is likely to go based on its feeding habits, and they know how to approach and observe animals without disturbing them or putting themselves in danger. By tracking animals in this way, skilled trackers in the Timbavati are able to provide guests with a unique and unforgettable safari experience.

 

The Role of Tracking in Wildlife Conservation

Tracking wildlife is not only an exciting and educational activity for visitors to the Timbavati; it also plays a crucial role in wildlife conservation efforts. By tracking animals and observing their behavior, researchers and conservationists can gather valuable data on animal populations, habitat use, and migration patterns. This information can then be used to inform conservation strategies and protect endangered species.

Moreover, by showcasing the art of tracking to visitors, the Timbavati is able to raise awareness of the importance of conservation and inspire people to take action to protect the natural world. By learning to appreciate the beauty and complexity of the environment, visitors are more likely to become advocates for wildlife conservation and sustainability.

The art of tracking in the Timbavati is a fascinating and important aspect of the safari experience. By following animal trails through the wilderness, visitors are able to get up close and personal with wildlife in their natural habitat, and gain a deeper appreciation for the beauty and complexity of the African bush. Moreover, by showcasing the art of tracking, the Timbavati is able to raise awareness of the importance of conservation and inspire people to take action to protect the natural world. So next time you’re on safari in the Timbavati, take a moment to appreciate the skill and dedication of the skilled wildlife trackers who make it all possible.

The Secret World of the Timbavati: Lesser-Known Animals You Can Spot on Safari | Luxury Accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

Lesser-Known Animals You Can Spot on Safari

The Secret World of the Timbavati:

Lesser-Known Animals You Can Spot on Safari

When you think of a safari in the Timbavati Game Reserve, the first animals that come to mind are probably the Big Five – lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos, and Cape buffalos. But there’s so much more to see in this incredible reserve. The Timbavati is home to a wealth of lesser-known animals that are just as fascinating and beautiful as their more famous counterparts. Here are a few of the secret world’s inhabitants you might spot on your safari.

Aardvarks – These odd-looking animals are rarely seen during the day, as they spend most of their time underground in their burrows. However, they are occasionally spotted at night, when they emerge to forage for food. Aardvarks are nocturnal and have long, sticky tongues that they use to eat ants and termites.

African Wild Dogs – Also known as painted dogs, these beautiful animals are some of the most efficient hunters in the African bush. They live in packs and work together to bring down prey, which can include animals much larger than themselves. African wild dogs are endangered, so spotting them in the Timbavati is a real treat.

Civets – Civets are small, nocturnal mammals that are often mistaken for cats. They have distinctive markings and long, ringed tails. Civets are omnivorous and will eat everything from insects to fruit to small mammals.

Honey Badgers – Honey badgers are tough, tenacious animals that are known for their ferocity. They are fearless and will take on animals much larger than themselves, including lions. Honey badgers are also intelligent and have been known to use tools to access food.

Pangolins – These adorable animals are covered in scales and are sometimes called scaly anteaters. They are nocturnal and feed primarily on ants and termites. Unfortunately, pangolins are endangered due to habitat loss and poaching.

Sable Antelopes – These majestic antelopes are known for their striking black coats and curved horns. They are relatively rare and are not often seen on safari, but if you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of them grazing in the grasslands.

Water Monitors – These large lizards are often seen basking in the sun along rivers and waterholes. They are excellent swimmers and will dive underwater to catch fish and other aquatic prey.

 

These are just a few of the many lesser-known animals you might spot on your safari in the Timbavati Game Reserve. Whether you’re a seasoned safari-goer or a first-time visitor, exploring the secret world of the Timbavati from Kambaku Lodges is an unforgettable experience. Keep your eyes peeled and your camera ready – you never know what you might see!

The Big Five of Timbavati: What Makes This Reserve So Special | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

The Big Five of Timbavati: What Makes This Reserve So Special

The Big Five of Timbavati

What Makes This Reserve So Special

The Big Five – everyone who has ever heard of a safari in Africa knows these five iconic animals: lions, leopards, elephants, rhinoceros, and Cape buffalos. And if you’re looking for an incredible safari experience, the Timbavati Game Reserve is one of the best places to see them all. Here are some reasons why this reserve is so special and why you should add it to your bucket list.

The Big 5 of the Timbavati

The Timbavati Game Reserve is home to a thriving population of the Big Five. While each animal is unique and special in its own way, seeing all five in one reserve is an incredible experience. Lions are often the first animal people think of when they think of the Big Five, and the Timbavati is home to several prides of lions. These majestic creatures are a sight to behold, with their golden manes and you will feel their roars deep in your soul.

Leopards are another highlight of the Timbavati Game Reserve. These elusive cats are notoriously difficult to spot, but they’re plentiful in the reserve. With their spotted coats and piercing green eyes, leopards are some of the most beautiful animals you’ll ever see.

Makes This Reserve So Special | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

Then there are the elephants – some of the most intelligent and emotional animals in the world. Watching a herd of elephants in the wild is a humbling experience, and the Timbavati Game Reserve is home to many of these gentle giants.

Makes This Reserve So Special | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

Rhinos are another highlight of the Big Five, and the Timbavati Game Reserve is one of the best places to see both black and white rhinos. Unfortunately, these animals are threatened by poaching and habitat loss, so seeing them in the wild is a rare and special treat.

Makes This Reserve So Special | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

Finally, the Cape buffalo – a massive and powerful animal that roams the grasslands of the Timbavati Game Reserve in large herds. These beasts may not be as glamorous as some of the other Big Five animals, but they are still an impressive sight to see.

Makes This Reserve So Special | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

But the Big Five aren’t the only animals you’ll see at the Timbavati Game Reserve. This reserve is also home to countless other species of animals, including giraffes, zebras, hippos, and more. It’s truly a wildlife lover’s paradise.

In addition to the animals, the Timbavati Game Reserve is also known for its breathtaking landscapes. From rolling grasslands to thick forests, the scenery here is stunning. 

All in all, the Timbavati Game Reserve is a special place that offers visitors an unparalleled safari experience. With the Big Five and so many other incredible animals, as well as stunning landscapes, this reserve is truly one of the best places in the world to experience Africa’s wildlife up close and personal. 

What better place to explore the Timbavati than from the comfort of luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

Safari Photography Tips

Safari Photography Tips

Capturing the Best Shots at Kambaku LodgesHere

Going on a safari at Kambaku Lodges is a thrilling and unforgettable experience. Not only do you get to witness the majesty of Africa’s wildlife up close, but you also have the opportunity to capture these incredible moments with your camera. However, taking photos on a safari can be challenging, especially if you’re new to wildlife photography. In this post, we’ll share some tips to help you capture the best shots during your stay at Kambaku Lodges.

Safari Photography Tips: Capturing the Best Shots at Kambaku Lodges | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges
Safari Photography Tips: Capturing the Best Shots at Kambaku Lodges | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

Safari Photography Tips

  1. Bring the Right Equipment A good wildlife photography kit should include a camera with a high-quality lens, a tripod or monopod for stability, and extra batteries and memory cards. Make sure your camera settings are set to continuous autofocus and burst mode to help capture the fast-moving wildlife.

  2. Be Patient and Observant When on safari, the key is to remain patient and observant. Pay attention to your surroundings and be prepared to take photos at any moment. Remember that the wildlife may be far away, so use your camera’s zoom lens to get closer. Also, keep in mind that the best photo opportunities often happen in the early morning or late afternoon, when the light is softer and the animals are more active.

  3. Understand Composition Composition is an important element of photography. When taking photos on safari, try to capture the animal in its natural environment, paying attention to the background, foreground, and overall framing of the shot. Use the rule of thirds to place the animal off-center and make the photo more visually interesting.

  4. Respect the Wildlife It’s important to remember that the animals you’re photographing are wild and should be treated with respect. Always maintain a safe distance and never disturb their natural behavior or habitat. Use a long lens to capture the animals from a distance, and be patient in waiting for them to come closer.

  5. Take Advantage of the Golden Hour The golden hour is the time just before sunrise and just after sunset, when the light is warm and soft, and the sky is often painted with vivid colors. This is the perfect time to capture stunning wildlife photos. The light is low, which can create a sense of drama and depth to your shots.

Safari Photography Tips: Capturing the Best Shots at Kambaku Lodges | Luxury accommodation at Kambaku Lodges

By following these safari photography tips, you’ll be well on your way to capturing stunning photos of Africa’s wildlife during your stay at Kambaku Lodges. Remember to be patient, observant, and respectful of the animals, and most importantly, have fun!

Book your next photography safari at Kambaku Lodges today. 
Follow us on Instagram and Facebook for all our latest images. 
Solar Energy and Kambaku Lodges

Solar Energy and Kambaku Lodges

Eco Tourism

Solar Energy and Kambaku Lodges

We took over Kambaku Safari Lodge in 2011, with only a generator for power, and it was the only option to convert the camp to solar power. In 2011, the International Energy Agency said that “the development of affordable, inexhaustible and clean solar energy technologies will have huge longer-term benefits. It will increase countries’ energy security through reliance on an indigenous, inexhaustible, and mostly import-independent resource, enhance sustainability, reduce pollution, lower the costs of mitigating global warming …. These advantages are global.”

It was a long process taking around 8 months from start to finish, but since then we have been running completely successfully on solar energy.

When we took over River Sands in 2013, the camp was on the grid, and seeing that Safari Lodge was running so successfully on solar, the decision was made to convert River Sands as well.

This project was massive, including the erecting of over 400 solar panels, invertors and a battery array to keep the lights on for at least 3 days.

All this without forfeiting any of the luxuries that River Sands has to offer.

Solar Energy and Kambaku Lodges

Advantages of Solar Energy on the Environment

As solar power is a great sustainable, green energy choice and it also has huge benefits for our planet.
Some of the key advantages of solar energy on the environment include:

Using less water

Water is one of our most precious natural resources. Africa is one of the driest continent on the planet, and we run the risk of running out of fresh water in the future. Traditional electricity production can use thousands of litres of water each year. Water is used for cooling generators, processing and refining fuel and transporting fuel through pipes. Generating power through solar panels, however, uses no water whatsoever. The operation of solar photovoltaic cells doesn’t require water at all to generate electricity, reducing the strain on this precious resource.

Reducing air pollution

The air we breathe can help or hinder our health and wellbeing. Electricity generation from fossil fuels can generate harmful carbon dioxide and methane gases that lower the quality of the atmosphere. Breathing poor quality air on a daily basis can have dire consequences for our health. Air pollution has been linked to asthma and allergies, bronchitis, pneumonia, headaches, anxiety, heart attacks and even some cancers. Generating electricity from solar panels produce no harmful emissions resulting in cleaner air.

Help to slow climate change

The release of toxic gases into the atmosphere, such as carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide, doesn’t just contribute to air pollution, but also contributes to the enhanced greenhouse effect. While the greenhouse effect is a natural process that warms the Earth’s surface to a liveable temperature, human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels, have increased the amount of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. This has led to the enhanced greenhouse effect, which is warming our earth faster than ever before. In recent years, this has been linked to a number of catastrophic weather events, such as flooding, cyclones, storms, extreme heat and drought. Generating electricity from solar panels produce no greenhouse gases whatsoever, and so can help to reduce the effect of climate change if used widely

Reducing the business’s carbon footprint

Solar energy is one of the cleanest sources of energy, and it is more efficient and sustainable. Solar panels don’t use any water to generate electricity, they don’t release harmful gases into the environment, and the source of their energy is abundance.
We at Kambaku take our carbon footprint and impact on the environment extremely seriously and we are proud to say that we have two very efficient solar systems in our camps.

Solar Energy and Kambaku Lodges
Solar Energy and Kambaku Lodges

We are committed to sustainability at Kambaku Lodges and ensuring that we make as little impact as possible on the environment around us. Moving to solar energy is just one of the many changes we have made to ensure sustainability. 

Sustainably Sourced Fresh Produce

Eco Tourism

Sustainably Sourced Fresh Produce

Sustainability is very important to us at Kambaku Lodges. Our goal has and always will to ensure we make as small of an impact on the environment around us. One of the initiatives we are very proud to be a part of is the collaborative partnership with Indalo and the Timbavati Foundation allowing us to offer sustainably sourced fresh produce.

The partnership will also allow Indalo and the Timbavati to cocreate an Enterprise Supplier Development Programme to build and support a cohort of carefully selected community-based enterprises that will be contracted to supply
goods and services required by the lodges.


The approach is to stagger the procurement process in a lean manner, starting at a lower base and preferably link to the current supplier network in order to create a safety net and guarantee uninterrupted supplies to the lodges.


The cohort of suppliers will be selected from some of the Indalo Inclusive trained enterprises in the area as well as some that may be identified in collaboration with the lodge networks in Timbavati Private Nature Reserve

All of our fresh produce is grown and supplied by Benica Fruits and Veggies, located in Acornhoek they are a 100% Black Owned Company that supplies fresh fruit and vegetables to the surrounding hospitality industry. 

Benica grows all the fresh fruit and veggies that they supply and it all undergoes stringent quality assurance controls to ensure that they supply a high quality product. 

Not only do they supply lodges within the Timbavati Nature Reserve but they also sell their produce in 3 different stores as well as 6 local retailers. 

Travel Tips to South Africa

Passports and Visas When Travelling to South Africa

Visitors to South Africa must be in possession of a valid passport and in some cases, a visa.

The following countries do not need visas to enter South Africa

● Australia.
● United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
● British Islands of Bailiwick of Guernsey and Jersey. Isle of Man and Virgin Island.
● Ireland.
● British Overseas Territories do not require visa.

If you unsure about whether or not you need a visa to enter South Africa, visit the South African Home Affairs Department website.

Please note: Under South Africa’s immigration Act of 2002 (Act 13 of 2002) in force since 7 April 2003, (a) Immigration Act 2002 the passport shall contain at least ONE unused page when presenting the passport for endorsements. This requirement reflects the requirements of many of the world’s top travel destinations, in line with the majority of global destinations requirements and failure to have a clear page can result in entry being refused.

What to Pack when travelling to South Africa

  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Sun hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun block
  • Camera
  • Binoculars
  • Anti-malaria precautions (consult your doctor/pharmacist)
  • Light clothing
  • Swimming costume
  • Warm jackets if travelling between May and September

General information about travelling to South Africa

 

Time

South Africa operates two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time. This makes it one hour ahead of central European time and seven hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time in winter and seven hours behind Australian central time.

 

Money in South Africa

Currency: The South African currency is Rand, show by an R. R1 is made up of 100 cents. Visa, Mastercard are widely accepted with Diners and American Expresse also accepted in many establishments. You will also find Bureaux de Changes where you can easily change your currency.

Tipping: While most restaurants do not automatically add a service charge, it is customary to leave a 10-15% tip. It is not compulsory, but parking guards and petrol station attendants can be given a small tip.

Tax: Value added tax (VAT) is charged on most items. If you are a foreign tourist in South Africa, you can have the VAT amount (15%) refunded, upon departure if you have all the relevant receipts.

 

Electricity in South Africa

South Africa’s electricity supply is 20/230 volts AC 50 Hz. You will find most plugs have three round pins but many now also have the two smaller pins. Most main hotels will have adaptors, but you will also be able to purchase them.

 

Medical Care in South Africa

South Africa has a good medical infrastructure that includes world class doctors and a large network of both public and private hospitals across the country. It is advisable to make sure you have adequate health insurance in place to cover any medical bills, should you need them.

Drinking Water in South Africa

The tap water across South Africa is safe to drink. You will find bottled water easily available across the South Africa should you prefer that.

Vaccinations and Malaria Needed when Travelling to South Africa

If you are entering South Africa from a yellow fever zone, you need to have a valid international yellow fever inoculation certificate. Currently no other vaccinations are required to enter South Africa.

Malaria is found in the Lowveld of Mpumalanga and Limpopo and on the Maputaland coast of KwaZulu Natal. It is not much of a risk during the winter months but if you are visiting these high-risk areas, you can consider taking the necessary precautions. The Timbavati Nature Reserve is considered a low-risk malaria area.

Is it safe to travel to South Africa?

South Africa is, for the most part, safe to visit as a tourist. It is advisable to take the necessary precautions like avoiding walking alone, keeping your valuables on you at all times and generally being aware of your surroundings.

South Africa has an excellent transport infrastructure, you can easily and safely drive the length of the country. Some of the more rural roads do not have streetlights so driving at night can be more dangerous.

The maximum allowable alcohol blood content is 0.05% which is roughly one glass of wine for a woman or a 1.5 to 2 glass for a man. The general speed limit on main highways is 120kmph and between 60 and 80kmph in small towns and suburbs.

In order to be able to hire a car in South Africa you will need an international drivers permit.

2021 in Photos | Kambaku Lodges Timbavati Nature Reserve

Family Travel to South Africa

We may be biased but we think South Africa is an incredible family destination. There is so much to see and do as a family in South Africa that it will take a few trips for you to really experience it all.

South Africans are a very family friendly nation so you will not be wanting to find activities for the kids to see and do during your stay. From the world-class beaches of the Western Cape to the nature reserves spread across the country, your children will not utter the words “I am bored.”

There are a few other reasons why South Africa needs to be on your family travel bucket list.

1. Travel from Europe means not jetlag

The time difference between Europe and South Africa is an hour in winter and 2 hours in summer which means that there is no jetlag. This is a big consideration when travelling with children – it means no tired or cranky kids and no time spent trying to adjust, you can land and start enjoying everything South Africa has to offer…

2. The list of family friendly activities is endless

South Africans enjoy a lot of time outdoors because the weather is fantastic pretty much all year round. Even the winters are mild and outdoor activities are still popular. There are incredible beaches running along the entire coast of South Africa, perfect to enjoy some beach time. Hiking can also be enjoyed across the country with trails available suitable for all ages. And of course, no family trip to South Africa is complete without a visit to one of the countries nature reserves, like the Timbavati Nature Reserve. All of the reserves in South Africa cater for children and many have swimming pools and other family-friendly activities. Kambaku Lodges offer visiting children the option to join Kambaku Kubs where they can learn more about the flora and fauna of the area.

3. There are malaria free options

If you are visiting South Africa as a family to enjoy a safari holiday it is possible to avoid malaria areas. The Timbavati Nature Reserve is a low-risk malaria area but lodges in the Western and Eastern Capes are also malaria free.

4. South Africa is a budget friendly

The exchange rates make travel to South Africa really affordable, especially when travelling as a family. Accommodation, even luxury accommodation, like Kambaku River Sands is reasonably priced when you consider the exchange rate and eating out is also very affordable. This makes South Africa very attractive as a family friendly holiday destination.

5. Escape the cold

If you want to escape the icy, snowy winters of the Northern Hemisphere then South Africa is perfect. If you are looking to head to South Africa, the best time weather wise is between November and March but if you are heading on safari, then you can visit at any time of the year, the winters in South Africa are relatively mild. The reason this is a benefit to families travelling means you can pack light and avoid thick jackets and boots.

6. South Africa has a diverse landscape

The flora and fauna of South Africa is so diverse, you can expose your family to a range of different types of topography. The coastline is spectacular and has an abundance of birdlife, the mountain ranges of the Drakensberg, Blyde River Canyon and God’s Window are breath-taking, the Karoo dessert has more to often than you might think.

7. World class beaches

Nothing says family holiday like a beach holiday, right? South Africa has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world for you to choose from. Camps Bay in Cape Town is one of the most popular beaches and it is definitely spectacular, even if the water is a little cold. The beaches along the Garden Route are quieter than the main beaches but just as stunning.

8. There is a great selection of world class food.

South Africans enjoy good food which means you will find a wide range of different types of cuisines, ranging from fresh from the ocean seafood to traditional South African meals like pap and wors. You will not have to look hard for family-friendly restaurants, most wine farms are accommodating of children, and many have special alcohol-free tastings for children. Even if you are travelling with the fussiest of eaters, you will find meals easily for them when travelling as a family to South Africa.

9. South Africa are a friendly people

When you travel to South Africa with your children you will find the people very welcoming and accommodating of children. South Africans in general appreciate tourists and as such are very friendly to tourists.

10. English is the main language

South Africa has 11 official languages, but English is the most widely spoken which means that communication is fairly easy. Travelling to a country where you understand the language does make it a little easier when you have children with you.

Book your next family holiday at Kambaku and SAVE!

Download our family holiday deals here.

A Safari in South Africa | Kambaku Lodges

Safari in South Africa

When is the best time to travel to South Africa for a safari holiday?

There really is no right or wrong time to travel. The Timbavati really is beautiful all year round (but we might be biased).

If you spotting wildlife is your main focus, then winter (June to September) is ideal. During winter the bush is less dense as most of the trees and shrubs have lost their leaves, so spotting animals is a little easier.

Summer in South Africa (December to February) is when the bush is at its most dense and lush which makes seeing animals a little more challenging but not impossible, especially when you have an experienced tracker.

What to pack when going on safari in South Africa? 

  • Lightweight, cool, and comfortable clothes made of a natural, “breathable” fabric.
  • A hat, sunglasses and sunscreen – even in the winter months.
  • Walking shoes.
  • Binoculars
  • Camera and accessories
  • Lip balm and insect repellent

What is the best time for a game drive?

While the wildlife of the Timbavati don’t stick to a schedule, generally the best time for a game drive is in the early morning.

So be prepared for a few early mornings during your stay with Kambaku, but we promise that the early mornings will, without a doubt, be worth it.

Be Open-Minded

A safari in South Africa is never predictable.

If you are visiting for the time, be open-minded and flexible.

You might see all of the big 5 in one drive but you also might be out for a few hours and spot some impala.

While we do our best to show you the best of the Timbavati, sometimes the animals have other ideas. Sometimes it is equally special to shift focus from the big animals to the smaller, but equally special animals like the abundance of birds.

Game Drive Etiquette

Game viewing is one of the biggest reasons you visit the bush which makes game drives the highlight of each day.

There are a few things to keep in mind when you are on your daily game drives.

  • Do not stand up in the game drive vehicle.
  • Do not hang over the side of the vehicle.
  • Do not call, whistle or throw things at the animals in an attempt to get them to react.
  • Noise level on the vehicle is to be kept to a minimum, this is for the benefit of both the animals and any other vehicles.
  • Never hang out of the vehicle while it is moving.
  • Respect the environment you are in.

Expect the unexpected. 

Book a safari in South Africa and explore the Timbavati Nature Reserve with a stay at Kambaku Lodges. You can book your adventure at Kambaku Lodges or Kambaku River Sands – both offer luxury accommodation.

Travelling to South Africa | Kambaku Lodges Timbavati Nature Reserve

Travelling to South Africa : What You Need to Know

South Africa is a beautiful country to visit, there is so much diversity – from the beautiful oceans of the Western Cape to the bushveld of Mpumalanga to the bustling city of Johannesburg. You can plan the adventure of a lifetime while travelling South Africa. 

English is Widely Understood

South Africa has 11 official languages including English and it is the most widely spoken and understood language across the country. If you can communicate in English, even as your second language, you will be easily understood. 

South Africa is Large

South Africa is a large country – roughly double size of France. You won’t be able to explore it in a week – in fact, you may need a few trips to really experience everything that South Africa has to offer. When you are planning your trip decide what type of holiday you would like and which cities you would like to see. At Kambaku Lodges, we can help you plan your trip to make sure you get the most out of your time in South Africa. 

South Africa Has What You Need

When you land at any one of South Africa’s international airports, you will notice similarities to airports around the world. You will find shopping malls and familiar retail outlets all over the country. This means if you need electronics, toiletries or clothing, you will easily find them. 

Budget Travel is Easy in South Africa

The South African Rand is the monetary unit used in South Africa and you will find that food and accommodation are very affordable – even luxury accommodation can be enjoyed at a reasonable price. You will also find a diverse selection of restaurants in South Africa including fine dining to markets.

It is Safe if You Are Aware

South Africa is a tourist-friendly, but it is important to stay aware and look after your belongings especially when travelling through larger, busy cities as pickpockets and scammers will try their luck. 

Rent A Car

While South Africa has a pretty decent transport system, it does not have a great public transport system. Renting a car is the best way to explore the country, especially if you are exploring different cities. A road trip through South Africa is an adventure in itself. That said you will find ridesharing services in the major cities and the Gautrain runs through Johannesburg and Pretoria.

Water is Safe to Drink

When you are in the bigger cities of South Africa, the water is safe to drink. It is advisable to check with the smaller towns whether or not you drink the water.

Bird of the Year | Cape Rockjumper

Bird of the Year 2021: Cape Rockjumper

The Cape Rockjumper was chosen, by BirdLife South Africa as the Bird of the Year 2021. The main goal of this initiative is to raise awareness about this interesting little bird and in doing so contributing the conservation of the rockjumper. 

The Cape Rockjumper is endemic to the mountain fynbos region of South Africa. This medium-sized bird is aptly named and can often be seen jumping across both rocks and grassland. The black and orange rockjumper seldom actually takes flight. 

They are facing some challenges and are particularly vulnerable to climate change and habitat loss and are currently classified as ‘Near Threatened’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Cape Rockjumpers forage on mountains and slopes for insects like caterpillars, moths, grasshoppers and beetles. They will also eat geckos, scorpions and spiders. 

You can find the Cape Rockjumpers in family groups consisting of a breeding pair and one or two of the offspring from the previous season. The breeding pair build the nest together and share incubation responsibilities. They generally build their nests on the ground under rocky overhangs.

While you are not likely to spot this pretty little bird at Kambaku Lodges, if you are in the Western Cape are, be on the look out for them!

Kambaku@Sea Wins Prestigious Awards

“Before you, the mountains. Behind you, the forest. On this expanse of forty hectares, our boutique hotel waits to envelop you in the beauty of this rich, natural environment.”

At Kambaku @Sea you are not simply a guest, rather you are family we are proud to host.

Located in Sedgefield along the Garden Route, Kambaku @Sea is the perfect getaway for anyone look to escape the madness.

We are so proud of our team at Kambaku @Sea who have won a few prestigious awards over the last 2 years.

We won in 2019:

Kambaku At Seahas won an Haute Grandeur Excellence Award for:

  • Best Boutique Honeymoon Hotel in Africa
  • Most Luxurious Suite in Africa (Honeymoon/Family Room 5)

And in 2020:

Kambaku @ Sea has won an Haute Grandeur Global Excellence Award for:

  • Best Bed and Breakfast Hotel on a Global level
  • Best Boutique Hotel in Africa
  • Best Romantic Hotel in Africa
  • Best Boutique Honeymoon Hotel in South Africa 

There really is so much to do when you stay at Kambaku @Sea. From sunset cruises to adventures on kayaks – there is something for both the adventure seeker and those who need to rewind and relax.

There is also an abundance of things you can do in Sedgefield.

Gerick’s Point beach walk 

Sedgefield Beaches – there are five of them to explore, each one as beautiful as the next.

Boating – the Swartvlei and other waterways – from Kambaku @Sea

Cloud 9 Paragliding – Soar with eagles and get a bird’s eye view of the Garden Route

Horse  Riding –  riding opportunities

Wild Oats Farmers Market

Scarab market

Timberlake

OystersRUs Restaurant

Sedgefield’s Slow Festival in March / April every year

Oudtshoorn – ostrich farms and vineyards

Knysna Oyster festival

George Transport Museum

Wilderness –  Eden Adventures :  Kloofing, Kayaking, canoeing  

Acrobranch Tree Adventures

Dolphin Point

If you want to experience this award winning accommodation, book here.

Kambaku Lodges are Covid Travel Ready

Kambaku Lodges are Covid Travel Ready

The world is opening for travel again and we are so excited! We know that COVID-19 is still very much a concern for everyone which is why we have put all the safety measures in place to make sure your stay with us is safe and memorable.

Kambaku is an exclusive game lodge

Kambaku River Sands has only 10 luxury thatched chalets, each with its own private en-suite with a bath and both an indoor and outdoor shower, offering you the perfect place to relax and unwind in between game drives. This means that even if we are fully booked, we keep to a max of only 16 people in the camp at any one time, affording you an exclusive getaway in one of the most beautiful locations in the world. Exclusive use rates are also available and affordable.

Kambaku Lodges are Covid Travel Ready

We have a remote location

The Timbavati really is far from the maddening crowd. Kambaku Lodges are located in the Timbavati Nature Private Nature Reserve which is around 450km from Johannesburg. Not only are we far from the big cities in South Africa but because we are a private reserve, we are able to limit the number of people who enter the reserve. Further ensuring your safety and guaranteeing a wonderful safari experience.

We have wide open spaces

One thing we have in abundance at Kambaku Lodges is wide open spaces. Our lodges are unfenced which means the animals are free to come and go as they please – it is possible for you to view some of the big 5 without even leaving the comfort of the lodge. The Timbavati covers an area of 53 392 hectares of land which is a lot of wide-open space that can be enjoyed and explored. 

Kambaku Lodges are Covid Travel Ready

We have strict COVID-19 protocols in place

We have all the necessary COVID-19 protocols in place to ensure your safety. Our staff have all been fully vaccinated. Masks are worn at all times. Our game drives are limited to 6 people per vehicle and all the tables in our dining areas are the correct distance apart. We have been given the TBCSA’s certificate of approval that we comply with the recommended industry protocols.

Less people means better sightings

Due to the months of lockdown, the Timbavati has been a lot quieter than normal. This does have some advantages in that we have been treated to some incredible sightings. 

Remote working is possible

We have wi-fi at our lodges which means you are able to work remotely during your stay with us. You can really have the best of both worlds – gorgeous early morning and evening game drives, lazy afternoons at the spa and some work in between. 

If you are looking for your next adventure, book a stay with Kambaku River Sands or Kambaku Safari Lodge.

Kambaku Lodges are Covid Travel Ready

Sign Up For Exclusive
Offers From Us

    Address

    Timbavati Game Reserve, Enkhulu Gate, Argyle Rd, Hoedspruit, 1380

    Reservations

    reservations@kambakulodge.com

    Phone

    +27 15 004 0817

    +27 83 261 7091

    Copyright © 2022. All Rights Reserved.

    Kambaku

    Honeymoon Special

    To book your stay please complete this short form. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

    Kambaku

    Beach and Bush Combo

    To book your stay please complete this short form. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

    Kambaku

    Kambaku Stay 4 Pay 3 Special

    To book your stay please complete this short form. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

    Kambaku

    Trails Booking

    To book your stay please complete this short form. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

    Kambaku

    Overnight Hide Booking

    To book your stay please complete this short form. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

    Kambaku

    Overnight Hide Booking

    To book your stay please complete this short form. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.