Wildlife Ratings

Big 5: 8
Mammals: 8
Birds: 7
Reptiles: 5
Trees: 7

Lookout for

Sharpes Grysbok
African Civet
Elephant
White Rhino
Hippo
Lion
Leopard
Cheetah
Spotted Hyena
Jackal
Buffalo
Giraffe
Kudu
Nyala
Wildebeest
Zebra
Waterbuck
Warthog
Baboon

Makalali Conservancy covers 26 000 hectares of undulating rocky savannah woodland, dissected by dry riverbeds and the odd rocky outcrop. The nearby Drakensberg Escarpment provides a backdrop of pure grandeur. The reserve offers consistent lion, elephant and white rhino game viewing, while leopard sightings are fairly common. There is a separate buffalo camp or ‘boma’, where disease-free buffalo are protected in a quarantined area. A healthy cheetah population insures a good chance of viewing these rare predators in their natural grassland plains environment. The reserve is close to some astounding geographical features in the surrounding area, including the Blyde River Canyon, God’s Window and Pilgrims Rest. These natural wonders are an essential destination for those visiting South Africa.

Why we like it

Big 5 reserve; Breathtaking Drakenberg landscape; Close to many essential South African natural wonders

Facts & Figures

Park / Reserve Size: 26 000 Ha
Reserve Type: Conservancy
Big 5: Yes
Specialist Specie: Lion
Malaria Area: Yes
Nearest Town: Hoedspruit

Lodges and Camps (click on the links below)

Lodge Budget Lodge Type
Makalali Lodge Luxury Full Board

Key Species

MAMMALS
Elephant
Lion
White Rhino


BRIDS
Ground Hornbill
Kori Bustard
Bateleur Eagle
Marshall Eagle
Spotted Eagle Owl


REPTILES
Mozambique Spitting Cobra
Black Mamba
Leopard Tortoise


TREES
Knob Thorn
Marula
Leadwood


HABITAT TYPES
Grassland / Open Plains
Savanna
Thornveld
Riverine
Rocky Outcrops