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MMashovhela Lodge lies in Limpopo's Soutpansberg mountains in the Morning Sun Nature Reserve. It's a big game reserve filled with ancient gorges, sacred pools and wild stretches of African bush. With hiking, picnicking and 4x4 game drives, Mashovhela offers bush adventures by day and the chance to sleep out under the stars at night.
Mashovhela's new Hammock Camp is situated near a waterfall and consists of ten luxurious hammocks laid out under the shade of tall trees. Wake up at dawn for a plunge in the pool and a walk through the mountains, or sit around the fire at night and discover the stars, planets and constellations above.
The name Mashovhela means 'place where the drums beat' and it takes its name from the pools on the reserve, which are believed to be sacred by the local Venda people. You can climb down a scenic path along the river to these pools, and enjoy birding along the way. Or take a sunset drive to the highest point in the reserve and watch the sun slide down.
Explore the rich culture and traditions of the Venda people on a guided tour to the heart of ancient Venda, the place they call 'the land of legend'. Visit artists in their studios, beautiful tea estates and lively waterfalls. Shop for curios and crafts, or ramble around historic heritage sites.
Among the most significant sites here is Lake Fundudzi, which is set in the Thathe Vondo Holy Forest and is said to be guarded by the spirit of the great Thohoyandou (the name means 'head of the elephant') who once ruled the powerful Venda people.
Travel tips & planning info
Who to contact
Tel: +27 (0)79 427 6333
How to get here
Mashovhela Lodge is 30km north of Louis Trichardt on the N1. Turn left at the signpost to Mashovhela Lodge.
Things to do
Visit the scenic tea estates at Mukhumbane; take a tour of the sacred Lake Fundudzi and the Phiphidi Waterfall; visit the Schoemansdal Museum outside Louis Trichardt; go picnicking at the Mussina Nature Reserve.
Morning Sun also offers Venda cultural tours and walking trails. The Tshipise hot water springs, Mapungubwe world heritage site and the Northern Kruger Park are all within easy reach.
What to pack
Mosquito repellent, sunscreen and a hat.
Where to stay
Aside from the Hammock Camp, Mashovhela Lodge also has accommodation available in rustic thatched chalets.
What to eat
Drumbeat Restaurant at Mashovhela Lodge offers contemporary Afro-fusion cuisine.