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Why did we hand pick Garonga Safari Camp?

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  • Traditional luxury and intimacy in 6 canvas tents in the middle of the wilderness
  • Option of a night at the incredibly romantic sleepout platform for utter privacy and tranquility
  • Located in a ruggedly beautiful Big 5 conservancy

Garonga Safari Camp

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Price tier (pps): R200  R1500+

Child policy: 8 years and older

61km from Hoedspruit


-24.1103, 30.7283


Designed to offer a ‘safari for the soul’, Garonga Safari Camp combines exceptional Big Five game viewing with luxurious accommodation, fantastic cuisine and a range of facilities that allow guests to completely unwind in the serene bushveld.

Situated in the Makalali Conservancy just west of Kruger, the lodge has attractive North African-inspired architecture and offers daily morning and afternoon game drives, with the chance to have unhurried encounters with all members of the Big Five and an abundance of other wildlife. These drives, as well as fascinating guided walks, three exceptional meals a day and all drinks, are included in the rates.

Accommodation consists of six romantic luxury tents with earth-sculpted walls, tucked between the indigenous trees and raised up on wooden decks with beautiful views of a dry riverbed. 

A romantic sleep-out on a platform in the middle of the bush, complete with a fluffy bed, dreamy bush bath and a delicious picnic hamper with drinks, is also included and makes for an unforgettable experience under the stars. 

Opulent and spacious, the tents are appointed with King-size beds (convertible to twins) draped with mosquito nets, along with ceiling fans and safes. The intriguing sculptured bathrooms each have a large shower and double basins, while an outdoor shower provides a soul-soothing connection with the bushveld.The hotter hours of the day can be spent lazing in the hammock on the deck.

Guests are not obliged to go on the daily game drives and walks, and can instead opt to relax at the lodge’s swimming pool or head to the open-air Sala for some invigorating aromatherapy, reflexology and massage treatments. Adventurous souls can embark on stunning microlite flips over the reserve. 

Those who do go on the safari excursions will be under the care of an experienced guide at all times, who will enlighten you with fascinating information about the wildlife being viewed.On returning from the morning drive, guests will enjoy a delicious breakfast feast at a private table in the dining room. To celebrate a special occasion, breakfasts can be served out in the bush.  

Lunch is also served privately, while dinner locations vary from a communal round table, to the outdoor boma or a private table in a beautiful setting. To keep guests thoroughly satisfied throughout the day, tea and cake is served before the afternoon drive. 

The day’s experiences can be recalled over a nightcap in the comfortable lounge, which is warmed by a fireplace in winter, before guests head off to their rooms and drift off to the nocturnal sounds of the African bush.

During their stay, guests won’t find much cause to leave the reserve. 

If they do want to explore, then the surrounding areas have a variety of worthwhile attractions and activities that make for good day trips. Those with a thirst for golf can visit the manicured bushveld course at Hans Merensky Golf Club in Phalaborwa. The courses at Hoedspruit, the Kruger National Park and the Blyde River Canyon are also within comfortable driving distance.

Rates & Summary

6 Luxury Tents

Each sleeps 2 in King-size/twin beds
Can accommodate extra child if need be
En-suite shower, double basins and outdoor shower 
Deck with views over riverbed


  • For pricing detail, click on CHECK AVAILABILITY & BOOK ONLINE above


Full Board


Children 8 and older are welcome.

Why Stay Here?

Situated in the 22 000ha Makalali Conservancy west of the Kruger National Park, Garonga Safari Camp is an intimate lodge that offers full board accommodation in six luxury tents, complemented by facilities such as a swimming pool and health spa. Garonga focuses on giving guests an unhurried, boutique safari experience that combines Big Five game viewing with luxurious relaxation. To get a true connection with nature, guests can go for a pampered sleep-out on a raised platform in the middle of the bush.


  • Traditional luxury and intimacy in 6 canvas tents in the middle of the wilderness
  • Option of a night at the incredibly romantic sleepout platform for utter privacy and tranquility
  • Located in a ruggedly beautiful Big 5 conservancy

Things to consider Bringing

Sunblock, hat, walking shoes, swimming costume, swimming towels, mosquito repellent, binoculars for bird watching/game viewing.

Road Conditions

The gravel approach road is suitable for all vehicles.

Activities & Attractions

  • Swimming pool
  • Game drives
  • Game walks
  • Bush sleep-out
  • Microliting
  • Spa
  • Nearby: The Three Rondawels, God’s Window, Bourke’s Luck Potholes, Blyde River Canyon, waterfalls, wildlife rehabilitation centres, golf courses, boat cruises, river rafting, tubing, quad biking, horse trails, hot air ballooning, reptile park, silk farm.


Accommodation & Hospitality

  • Communal lounge
  • Dining table
  • Verandah / patio
  • Air conditioning
  • Fireplace
  • Firewood provided
  • Bed linen supplied
  • Bathroom towels supplied
  • Daily housekeeping
  • Laundry service available
  • Ironing service available
  • No smoking indoors

Catering & Kitchen

  • Full board
  • Licensed
  • Fridge or minibar


  • Water supply good for drinking
  • Electric geysers
  • Eskom electricity

Leisure Amenities

  • No gym available
  • Swimming pool
  • No television
  • Library

Business & Connectivity

  • Wi-Fi
  • Good cell phone reception
  • No conference facilities available

Access & Convenience

  • Not wheelchair friendly
  • No babysitting
  • No pets allowed
  • Off street parking
  • Nearest shops further than 50km
  • Nearest fuel further than 50km
  • Shuttle service available


  • Credit cards accepted
  • Cash accepted


  • Personal safe







The Mopani region is a heady mix of mountain and bushveld, history and culture. Mopani includes the towns of Tzaneen, Giyani, Phalaborwa and Hoedspruit. It also includes sections of the northern Drakensberg mountains, parts of the Kruger National Park and an eastern chunk of the Blyde (Motlatse) River Canyon. Think dramatic mountain scenery, ancient rivers and unspoiled wilderness reserves.

Mopani is named after an edible worm, of all things. The best way to discover the delights of the region is by exploring the Valley of the Olifants self-drive tourism route. This takes you through wilderness areas with excellent mountain views. It is this combination of mountain and bush that gives the Mopani region its special charm.

The route is named after the Olifants (Lepelle) River, which cuts its way through steep mountains and then flows through the Kruger National Park to join the Limpopo River.

From the quaint hamlet of Haenertsburg, north-east of Polokwane, the panoramic 40km-long Magoebaskloof Pass descends 600m in a series of dizzying bends to the subtropical town of Tzaneen. Every bend greets you with a different surprise: waterfalls, historic bluegum trees, lookout points, nurseries and roadside stalls.

Surrounded by blue-green mountains, Tzaneen is a laid-back centre of agriculture and farming. From here you can explore wilderness and mountains, visit the realm of the legendary Rain Queen, and see the country’s biggest baobab tree.

From Tzaneen it’s a pleasant drive through scenic bushveld to the towns of Phalaborwa and Hoedspruit. Phalaborwa was established in 1958 after the discovery of huge mineral deposits. It is the central gateway to the Kruger National Park via the Phalaborwa Gate. It’s a small but busy town that reaches scorching summer temperatures.

Apart from having the biggest opencast mine in the world, Phalaborwa’s other claim to fame is that it’s the closest town to the Kruger National Park. It’s a five-minute drive from the centre of town to the Phalaborwa Gate. Residents are used to the ‘Hippo Crossing’ signs and the odd warthog trundling down the high street.

Hoedspruit is a centre for surrounding wildlife reserves, private reserves, game reserves and conservation centres. The town is known for its bushveld beauty and conservation ethos and is a stepping stone to assorted bush adventures. These include game viewing, birding, hiking, river rafting and mountain climbing.

The Mopani region also includes the eastern part of the Blyde (Motlatse) River Canyon, offering the essential ‘Kruger to Canyon’ experience that combines mountains and bush. Travellers from Mpumalanga to Hoedspruit will arrive via the scenic Abel Erasmus Pass, which descends 800m in its 24km length.

The highlight is the 133,5m-long Strijdom Tunnel where you emerge from cool darkness into bright sunlight nearly a thousand metres above the Olifants River valley.

Look out for

The northern Drakensberg & Wolkberg wilderness areas - he mountainous heart of Mopani is the Wolkberg Wilderness and Magoebaskloof. This is hiking, birding, fishing, strolling, rambling and botanising territory. If you’re into extreme stuff and adrenalin rushes, you can take a canopy tour, go kloofing, abseiling, river rafting, white water tubing and mountain biking.

The Realm of the Rain Queen - This is set in the village of Modjadji, in mountain foothills, near Tzaneen. It is said that Queen Modjadji settled here after fleeing Zimbabwe in the late 17th century. She brought with her special rain summoning powers, and started the matriarchal Bolobedu tribe. Modjadji is also home to the Modjadji Cycad Reserve, which has thousands of species of the rare endemic cycad (Transvenosus encephalartos) that dates back to the time of the dinosaur.

The country’s biggest baobab - The Sunland Baobab, as it’s officially known, is named after the farm where it has grown for over 4 000 years. This gentle giant is 22m high and has a 47m circumference. Get up close and personal with this giant at Sunland Farm, near Tzaneen. You’ll discover why the surreal baobab is a source of great legend, and the symbol of Limpopo province.

Kruger to canyon trip - The Mopani region’s hallmark is the combination of mountain and bush. The area between the central Kruger National Park and the eastern reaches of the Blyde (Motlatse) River Canyon offers amazing nature and adventure opportunities. These include gentle sundowner cruises and tranquil bushveld walks, adrenalin-charged river rafting and gorge swinging. This part of Mopani has excellent views of lichen-clad cliff faces and dramatic kloofs and canyons.

The Lowveld and the Kruger Park - The Mopani region offers direct access to the central and northern parts of the Kruger National Park. It also leads to the Mpumalanga Lowveld, famed for its game-rich reserves. Just inside the Phalaborwa Gate is the Masorini Museum, a Late Iron Age archaeological site showing smelting furnaces, homesteads and historic implements. Another highlight is the Elephant Museum at Letaba Camp, which is an easy drive from Phalaborwa. Letaba is a pretty camp overlooking the river, where elephant sightings are practically guaranteed. In the northern Kruger Park, near Punda Maria, is Thulamela National Heritage Site. A significant archaeological site, with hillsides that are filled with stone ruins that tell the story of an ancient culture that settled here in the 15th century.

Bush to beach - It is now possible to take this route from the Phalaborwa gate all the way to the beaches of the Indian Ocean in Mozambique. Travellers drive through the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park, which includes the Kruger National Park and Mozambique’s Limpopo National Park. The border post is a Giriyondo, near the Massingir Dam.

Kruger to Canyon Birding Route - This route starts at the beginning of the Blyde (Motlatse) River Canyon at God’s Window. It follows Mpumalanga’s Panorama Route and enters Limpopo via the dramatic Abel Erasmus Pass. From there it leads to Hoedspruit and into the central Kruger Park.

Hans Merensky Golf Course - Undoubtedly the best golfing experience in Mopani. This famous course, designed by Bob Grimsdell, is adjacent to the Kruger National Park. It offers players a unique opportunity to tee off amongst the wildlife.

Wildlife and conservation - Apart from being part of a massive transfrontier park, the Mopani region offers incredible opportunities for viewing wildlife. It’s also a conservation centre. In and around Hoedspruit and Phalaborwa are a variety of wildlife breeding and rehabilitation centres. There are also ranger training camps and guided wilderness experiences.

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