Subscribe to our newsletter!

Why did we hand pick Raptor Retreat Game Lodge?

See reviews on
  • Magnificent location on a reserve bordering the Kruger, near the Crocodile River
  • Classically elegant bush lodge, with flexible catering options
  • Big 5 game drives and guided walks, and easy access to the Kruger

Raptor Retreat Game Lodge

Ask a Question
about this venue
Check Availability
Book Online

Price tier (pps): R200  R1500+

Child policy: 12 years and older

44km from Hoedspruit


-24.1401, 30.9177


Situated on the Parsons Nature Reserve bordering the Kruger National Park, only a 4km game drive away from the banks of the Oliphant’s River, Raptor Retreat is an owner-managed game lodge offering luxurious accommodation and excellent service. Hearty meals will be served twice a day in the dining area, or on the deck, where you will experience good old-fashioned home cooking. Meals can also be taken in the boma, which features built-in counters, comfortable seating and a fire pit as well as the usual braai facilities. 

At the heart of Raptor Retreat is the elegant main lodge where guests can gather to dine or catch up on their adventures. Relax with a drink on the deck or slump into one of the voluptuous leather couches.

The huge deck looks out over an open plain where herds come to graze or drink at the waterhole and predators wait for an opportunity. The spacious lounge area features comfortable seating, a fireplace, full DSTV and a modest library of DVDs and books for those rainy days. 

Elephant and Buffalo Lodges each have high thatched ceilings and a large sliding door that opens onto a private deck with double recliners. The deck is nestled in amongst the trees giving you the feeling of being right in the thick of the bush. One could expect an elephant or lion to stroll past any minute.

Slip into your own splash pool and cool off under the hot African sun whilst watching game graze nearby. Complimentary teas and coffees are provided as well as a fully stocked bar fridge. On request, lunch can be served at an additional cost on your private deck.

The self-catering units offer an exclusive experience for those that just like to do things on their own.These spacious units each have two bedrooms: Rhino with a king-size bed and two three-quarter beds, and Hippo with 2 king-size beds. Each has a large raised patio featuring dining facilities, recliners and a splash pool.

The main lodge facilities and all game-viewing  activities offered at the lodge are fully available to self-caterers. These units may also be booked on a fully catered basis.

With the possibility of having the Big 5 on your doorstep and an abundance of bird life, a Game Drive or Walk (accompanied by a experienced ranger) promises much more than just a game viewing experience. Take in the breathtaking views of the Olifants River Valley on early morning or late afternoon informative game drives whilst sipping on a refreshing drink and savouring the local snacks.

The Phalaborwa Gate is only 44km away, enabling Raptor Retreat to offer excursions into the Kruger National Park as a day trip or an overnight stay. Guests with their own vehicles can go on a self-drive excursion into the Kruger Park and be back in time for a delicious boma dinner.

Rates & Summary

2 Private Lodges

Each sleeps 2 in King beds
Screened open plan wet bathroom
Private viewing deck 
Private splash pool

2 Self-Catering Units

Each sleeps 4 in 2 bedrooms
Both bedrooms en-suite
Lounge with DSTV
Fully equipped kitchen
Raised dining & viewing deck
Private splash pool

All units include A/C & ceiling fans, and a private boma firepit with BBQ facilities


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


Breakfast, high tea, dinner, and refreshments on game drives are included
Self-catering units can also be booked on a DB&B basis


Children older than 12 years are welcome.

Why Stay Here?

Raptor Retreat is an owner managed game lodge offering luxurious accommodation and excellent service. This unspoiled corner of South Africa is renowned for its abundance of wildlife, mountainous scenery and indigenous forests. Raptor Retreat offers a great wilderness experience, with chalets enveloped by the bush, enthralling game drives and attentive hospitality.


  • Magnificent location on a reserve bordering the Kruger, near the Crocodile River
  • Classically elegant bush lodge, with flexible catering options
  • Big 5 game drives and guided walks, and easy access to the Kruger


All units offer good privacy.

Things to consider Bringing

Sunblock, hat, walking shoes, binoculars for bird watching or game spotting.

Road Conditions

The approach road is on 10km of gravel, but suitable for any vehicle.

Activities & Attractions

  • Big 5 game viewing
  • Game drives
  • Bush walks
  • Birding
  • Kruger Park Excursions


Accommodation & Hospitality

  • Communal lounge
  • Verandah / patio
  • Air conditioning
  • Bed linen supplied
  • Bathroom towels supplied
  • Swimming towels supplied
  • Hair dryer available
  • Daily housekeeping
  • Laundry service available
  • Ironing service available
  • Self-service tea and coffee available
  • No smoking indoors

Catering & Kitchen

  • Breakfast & dinner
  • Licensed
  • Full Kitchen
  • Braai area available
  • Microwave oven
  • Gas stove
  • Fridge or minibar


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

Leisure Amenities

  • Private swimming pool
  • Satellite television
  • Library
  • Garden

Business & Connectivity

  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Good cell phone reception

Access & Convenience

  • Covered parking
  • Nearest shops further than 10km
  • Nearest fuel further than 10km
  • Shuttle service available


  • Credit cards accepted
  • EFT accepted
  • Cash accepted


  • Personal safe
  • 24 hour security







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.

When to go

To Do

Welcome Message


Welcome to our website. South Africa is awesome and you've come to the right place to help you explore it!

Enjoy the site