A guide to Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Sabi Sands Game Reserve is one of the country’s original wild areas and one of its most special. To see animals in their natural habitat is a remarkable experience and an opportunity not to be missed. Find out what makes this private reserve so unique.
In the early 1900s, when the impact of excessive sport hunting on wildlife numbers started becoming apparent, a handful of pioneering conservationists had the idea to privatise the vast area of land that now forms Sabi Sand and Kruger National Park with the purpose of protecting the area’s unique flora and fauna. Many generations later, and the land is still protected. The fences between the private reserve and national park are long gone and game is free to migrate throughout the expansive territories, ultimately creating a wider and more diverse gene pool among the animals. The oldest and most successful private reserve in the country, Sabi Sand offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience, immensely beautiful landscapes and intense diversity of animal life, coupled with the care and attention of a premier private reserve.
Sabi Sand is rich in biodiversity and truly world-renowned for its spectacular game watching. The land is home to over 145 mammal species, an impressive elephant population, the infamous Big Five (elephant, black and white rhino, giraffe, zebra, hippopotamus, buffalo) as well as warthog and a variety of antelope species. If you’re lucky, you may even have the privilege of seeing a hunt or fresh kill, with large predator species including lion, leopard, cheetah, wild dog and spotted hyena. Avid twitchers will be kept busy with identifying over 530 species of bird.
The dry season from April to September is traditionally the best time to see game as there is less vegetation to conceal the animals and less rainfall pushes them to easy-viewing locations such as watering holes and rivers. Days during this time of year are generally dry and warm, with cold starry nights.
The rainy season begins around October when the parched earth bursts into a cacoffiny of colour as the landscape is blanketed in springtime blooms. This is also the best time to see baby animals. Ending around March, summers in this subtropical area are hot and rainy with lush vegetation sometimes making it more difficult to spot game.
December until April is the highest risk period for malaria. It is recommended that anti-malaria prophylactics are used by visitors to the Kruger National Park and Sabi Sand.
Giles first opened up Checkout Travel (Club Travel Fourways in those days) over 15 years ago. He is passionate about researching new technologies whether it be in the digital marketing space or actual travel platforms ensuring seamless quoting procedures for our travel creators – gone are the days of dusty hotel guides! Currently completing his MBA, this adventure junkie’s best travel memory thus far is trekking around South East Asia for 3 months.
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