Photo Credit: Photo credit: Simone Cheri
Visit Shamwari Private Game Reserve for a 5-Star Luxury Safari Experience In South Africa
Of all the experiences people seek when visiting South Africa, going on safari easily ranks at the top of the list. While a one-day safari may be best for shorter trips, the best way to enjoy the full safari experience is during an overnight stay. There are several game reserves to choose from, but Shamwari Private Game Reserve is by far the ultimate luxury choice.
In Eastern Cape near South Africa’s sixth largest city, Gqeberha, Shamwari has operated as a game reserve since 1992. Nearly 62,000 acres of land are available for the many species of animals, birds, flora and fauna that once called the land home.
7 Luxury Lodge Experiences To Choose From
Shamwari offers guests a choice of seven luxury lodges, each with its own distinct character and appeal. The options range from intimate seclusion to family-friendly accommodations. For more adventurous guests, there is also a tented Explorer Camp, set around a koppie, deep in the bush.
Long Lee Manor is a redesigned lodge with spacious high-end luxury suites, an infinity pool and several dining spaces on the property. Riverdene is the top pick for family-friendly safari stays with a kids on Safari program available. Bayethe, Eagles Crag and Sindile are all fitting for couples, solo or friends getaways, each offering a different luxury outdoor experience. Sarili Private Lodge, a five-bedroom accommodation, is the premium luxury pick for special occasions with small groups of family and friends.
The Luxury Is In The Details
From your greeting upon arrival to your suite’s amenities, no expense is spared in this 5-star stay. Warm hand towels and savory warm shooters await you and your guests as you step into your lodge of choice. The staff at Shamwari ensures you don’t have to lift a finger.
Game drives are also designed for maximum comfort. Early morning game drives can be chilly depending on the time of year, but the team has plenty of accessories to make sure you stay warm. Heated water bottle pouches and blankets for each guest are provided by your game ranger. Spotting the Big 5 just got a lot fancier. Whether you want morning coffee in the bush or a proper sundowner following an afternoon game drive, the Shamwari team can oblige your request.
Each lodge also has a spa for wellness services with the exception of Riverdene and Sarili. Guests in all lodges have access to in-room treatments or the option to indulge in self-care services at Long Lee Manor Spa.
The best part of this luxury safari experience is the many perks that come inclusive with your stay. All meals including the famed Boma Dinner and locally selected beverages are a part of your experience. With activities, such as game drives and bush walks, included, there’s plenty to do on any given day at the reserve. You can also enjoy a complimentary visit to the wildlife rehabilitation center or Big Cat Sanctuary, Born Free.
Boma Dinners: The Culinary Highlight of Shamwari
Boma dinners are one of the best dining experiences you’ll have during your visit to Shamwari. Every third night, with favorable weather conditions, lodge guests gather for dinner under the African night sky. Around a fire pit surrounded by lanterns, the Boma dinner is South Africa’s braai experience. Known as a South African BBQ, a braai entails grilling food over hot coals and is the perfect way to end a day of exciting game drives.
Enjoy your preferred evening cocktail or beverage as the Shamwari culinary team serves a multi-course menu of fresh, unique dishes. From starters to dessert, you’ll explore local flavors in the cozy Boma setting as the fire crackles in the background, an undoubtedly dreamy safari night.
Resorting Wildlife Native To The Area
Once an area abundant in wildlife, the migration of man resulted in the killing of most of the original wildlife in the area. Shamwari is on a mission to restore the wildlife native to this region, bringing back Cape vultures and spotted hyenas.
Anti-poaching teams patrol the reserve to secure the land and more importantly the safety of animals that call its borders home. Ultimately, Shamwari aims to ensure its wildlife population has sufficient space, food and water to thrive while managing the balance between predator and prey species.
Unlike some private reserves, Shamwari maintains its standard of not interfering with the natural order of the plants and animals on the property. That means you’ll never go off-roading in the pursuit of an animal spotting which is good news for the animals and the flourishing flora and fauna within their habitat.
A Safe Haven For At-Risk Wildlife
Aside from the luxury amenities and services available upon request, Shamwari is actively working as a safe haven for rescued and injured animals of varying needs. Two sections of the property house its rehabilitation and sanctuary facilities. Born Free Big Cat Sanctuaries is where you can find animals that should have been born in the wild, but because they weren’t, can never be released into the wild. Animals from circus entertainment, for example, may end up calling Born Free home one day.
Shamwari Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, on the other hand, provides aid to animals from the wild who need assistance getting back on their feet. The rehab center helps to rehabilitate and care for sick, injured, abandoned or orphaned animals under the care of a professional veterinary team. Once these animals have been nursed back to health, they are released back into their natural habitat.
Shamwari is as much wildlife conversation as it is a luxury vacation, making it a feel-good option for safari experiences in South Africa. Every detail of this private safari is more than a cut above anything you’ll find at larger national parks. You can not only avoid the crowds of other reserves, but also dine and explore the outdoors with premium amenities only a request away.