Kruger National Park in South Africa’s northeast region is one of the continent’s largest game reserves. Its high density of wild animals means visitors have a good chance of spotting the Big Five — lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffalo.
Settled on the park’s unfenced western boundary is the little-known Manyeleti Game Reserve (meaning ‘Place of the Stars’), a virtually untouched African wilderness spread across 56,000 acres between Sabi Sand and Timbavati private game reserves. Myriad mammals and more than 300 bird species, such as vultures, eagles and storks, call the mountains, bush plains and tropical forests home.
The Manyeleti Game Reserve, which is owned and managed by the local Mnisi tribe, offers low vehicle density on game drives and guarantees visitors an intimate and private bush experience, led by engaging and accredited guides. The trackers are of the Shangaan tribe and offer fascinating insights into local nature and traditional folklore.
With only three lodges in the reserve, and more than 124 miles of gravel roads, guests can enjoy unrivalled exclusivity and privacy. Six air-conditioned suites, a two-bedroom family suite and the Presidential Suite, make up Tintswalo Safari Lodge, all themed after 19th-century explorers. Each suite lies along the banks of a seasonal riverbed, and linked with wooden walkways to the main lodge. Guests can revel in the unique ambience, relaxing on the extended wooden decks with private splash pools overlooking the bushveld and watching passing wildlife. In addition, Tintswalo Manor House can accommodate families of six to 10 people, including children, and has a large lawn area with a splash pool and outdoor bar. Offering a privately catered safari experience, it includes the services of a chef, a butler and a private game vehicle.
The Bushwillow Spa is the perfect spot for visitors looking to unwind, with a focus on natural, raw ingredients. The region boasts more than 336 tree species, including thousand-year-old baobab trees. Drawing on this, healing tree and plant extracts are used in the spa’s range of Africology spa products, designed to rejuvenate mind and body.
Tintswalo Safari Lodge — with its exhilarating Big Five game viewing — is a safari experience with soul
Need to know
• 6 Explorer luxury suites
• Grant family suite: 2 bedrooms with private game vehicle
• Baines Presidential Suite: 2 bedrooms with butler, chef and private game vehicle
• Tintswalo Manor House: 5 luxury bedrooms
• Private wooden decks and plunge pools, and wood-burning fireplaces
• Bathtub and shower
• Bushwillow Spa
• 2 game drives per day
• Boma with al fresco dining
• Wine cellar
• Curio Gift Shop
• Transfers to and from Hoedspruit