Home Articles LIFESTYLE: Travel: INTIMATE AND LUXURIOUS BUSHVELD GETAWAY

LIFESTYLE: Travel: INTIMATE AND LUXURIOUS BUSHVELD GETAWAY

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If you’re in the mood for an intimate getaway, to be treated like royalty, to escape the hustle and bustle of the city … it’s time to visit Zwahili Private Game Lodge & Spa

Zwahili, an intimate game lodge and spa, is a mere two-hour drive from Johannesburg (about 41 kilometres outside Modimolle). It has room for just 20 guests, so you can be sure to be treated and spoiled from the moment you arrive until you reluctantly have to pack your bags and leave.

During your stay you will be welcomed by PJ, an adorable tame zebra who will follow you around and may even pay you a visit you in your suite – and pose for some photos.

Some of the perks of visiting Zwahili are three meals a day, two daily game drives, a welcome drink, and a fruit plate. All meals are freshly prepared and menus vary from day to day – so come prepared to enjoy some amazing cuisine.

ACCOMMODATION

The main lodge offers three luxury en-suite rooms where you’ll relax in true African comfort and style.

Scattered on the grounds and decorated in colonial style are seven free-standing luxury tents within walking distance from the main lodge. All the tents have en-suite bathrooms and decks.

Lantern-lit paths lead to the tents: Kifu (desire), Matumba (magic potion), Safiri (journey) and Utambo (space) – all within acacia thorn and combretum bushveld.

Although it may feel like you’re in a bygone era, all the rooms and tents have modern comforts like electric blankets and heaters in winter, and spacious en-suite bathrooms with lovely Victorian baths. And you can even have a refreshing shower outside, with only wildlife as a witness.

At night you can snuggle into a dreamless sleep while listening to a jackal yelping and a kudu barking through your window of stars.

The two executive suites, Rafiki and Madiba, offer more than five-star comfort. Each suite has an open-plan lounge area with a flat-screen TV, a bouquet satellite service, and a mini bar that leads to a private deck with a plunge pool and uninterrupted views.

The Royal African presidential suite is the epitome of regal opulence and grandeur. Here you can immerse yourself in the gentle sounds of nature with a breathtaking view of the African bushveld, while experiencing personalised service and absolute privacy. The suite even has its own private viewing deck and pool. So, while your sipping on an ice-cold glass of wine, you can experience the most spectacular sunset … forgetting about everything else.

ACTIVITIES

There are plenty activities to keep you busy.

Spa

And it’s not just for the ladies. It’s pure relaxation of body, soul and mind, so book a session in advance to avoid disappointment.

Archeological site

The lodge is situated in an area with a rich and interesting history. In some places rock paintings on the walls of caves show past inhabitants such as hunter-gatherers, Koi and Bantu. There are even bead-making sites and a rain-controlling site, and remains of a Bantu city have been discovered.

You can also visit Witkop, an archaeological site that goes back in time to when the Bittereinders, with Boer generals at the helm, utilised the koppie as a hideout from the British for almost two years during the Anglo Boer War of 1899–1902. It stands proud in bearing homage to a period of history not to be forgotten.

Birding safaris

With over 400 species of African birds, the area is a haven for avid birders. There are a lot of rare sightings such as lizard buzzards and brown snake eagles. The world-renowned Nylsvley bird sanctuary is in close proximity of the reserve and a must-visit for enthusiastic birdwatchers. It has over 370 species of birds, of which 100 species are water fowl. During the peak flood season over 80 000 birds can be seen in the reserve. Guests can visit the Nylsvley Reserve on a self-drive basis, or the lodge can arrange a half-day excursion from the lodge.

Bushveld picnic

At Zwahili they elevate the humble picnic to a stylish bushveld get-together.

You will be delighted when you open your traditional African picnic basket to find roast chicken, a layered garden salad, yoghurt with berries/fruit, freshly baked maize bread, and flavoured ice-cold mineral water. Your guide will transport you to a picnic spot of choice.

The large shady marula tree close to the lodge provides an ideal setting to unwind with a view of the small plains and a nearby watering hole.

The more adventurous can enjoy a picnic at the top of Witkop, or on a rocky elevated area offering breathtaking views. Expect calm summer breezes while an array of birdlife serenades you in the background, offering a gentle escape from everyday life.

Wildlife safari

Experienced guides conduct day and night game viewing in open safari vehicles.

Mammals ranging from the large and majestic kudu to the golden mole are present in the reserve. An interesting thought: the golden mole with its metallic green and golden fur is only found in the Limpopo bushveld region.

Predators on the reserve include leopard, caracal, brown hyena, and several varieties of felids, including serval and the African wild cat. Lions are kept in a separate enclosure as part of the Panthera Leo Gene Preservation Project.

While visitors to lodges always look forward to seeing the Big 5, we often forget about the other amazing animals.

Our country has some of the world’s richest biodiversity hotspots, with remarkable birdlife, abundant buck, small game and bizarre insects. To promote these, Zwahili Game lodge has another must-see list, the Little 5, which include the elephant shrew, rhinoceros beetle, ant lion, buffalo weaver and leopard tortoise.

LOCATION

Zwahili is situated 200 kilometres north of Johannesburg and 36 kilometres east of Modimolle, at the foot of the Waterberg in the bushveld region of Limpopo Province – a malaria-free area.

Visit www.zwahili.co.za for more information or send an email to reservations@zgl.co.za