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OOnly 2 hours by road from Johannesburg, the multi-award-winning Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge guarantees excellent accommodation, great food and superb game – including the Big 5. Go on game drives, take a guided bush walk, chill by the pool, or go glitzy at nearby Sun City.
Tucked away in the bowl of an ancient volcano at the foot of huge granite boulders, Kwa Maritane is the perfect base for exploring the malaria-free 55 000-hectare Pilanesberg Game Reserve – the Kwa Maritane gate into the park is a few minutes’ drive from the lodge.
Accommodation options include 90 luxury rooms, 28 self-catering cabanas or 25 luxurious self-catering chalets. Spend a few extra pennies and opt for one of the eight chalets on the very perimeter of the lodge that have their own plunge pools – but book well in advance.
All the studio twin rooms have two double beds and a sleeper couch, DStv, safes, aircon, tea- and coffee-making facilities, hair dryer, shaving plug and en-suite bathrooms. The three-bedroom chalets are very well equipped with aircon, microwave, oven, a big fridge, a traditional and a gas barbecue, outdoor furniture and recliners, and great views over the bush to the mountains beyond.
What are you going to do while at Kwa Maritane? Take your pick.
An early-morning or late-afternoon game drive is a must. A knowledgeable guide will introduce you to the bush, and then try to find as much game as possible. As well as having more than 300 bird species, this is also Big 5 country, and although leopards are always notoriously elusive, your chances of seeing the other 4 – lion, rhino, buffalo and elephant – are good.
By the way, Pilanesberg Game Reserve gives you one of the best opportunities in the country to spot rhino – both white and black.
You can also choose to go on a guided bush walk with an armed ranger and discover some of the little critters you might miss on a drive, or splurge on a balloon ride at dawn in one of South Africa’s loveliest game parks, or just laze beside one of the two swimming pools. Or you could walk the 150m tunnel to the underground hide and see elephants up close.
The lodge is noted for its good food. Enjoy dinner in the open-air boma or sit on the deck of the Kwa Lefakeng restaurant and indulge in a decadent breakfast as you watch zebra and wildebeest grazing below.
There are special rates for children (who often can stay for free), plus a Junior Ranger programme to keep them happy and occupied as they learn bush lore.
And if you feel the need for some sophisticated entertainment or a flutter, then take the shuttle bus to Sun City, the legendary entertainment complex only 10km away.
TTravel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge
Tel: +27 (0)14 552 5100
How to get here
From Johannesburg/Pretoria take the N1 north towards Polokwane. Take the N4 Rustenburg turn-off. A signboard indicates Pilanesberg to the left on route 91.
Best time to visit
In winter (May to August) the vegetation is low, and although the park is not at its most beautiful, it’s easier to spot game. In summer (November to February), the park is at its best – there are lots of baby animals and migrant birds, but because of the luxuriant vegetation, it’s sometimes harder to spot them.
In your own vehicle, or on a guided game drive.
Around the area
The legendary entertainment resort, Sun City, with its casino, Valley of the Waves water park, golf, the Palace of the Lost City, theatre and movies, is only 10km away by road.
What will it cost?
Check the website for details, but always look out for special offers.
Length of stay
At least two nights.
What to pack
Camera, binoculars and warm jacket for game drives. Hats and sunblock. If you’re self-catering, all your food, drink and provisions.
Where to stay
Choose from 90 luxury rooms, 28 self-catering cabanas or 25 luxurious self-catering chalets.
What to eat
A scrumptious breakfast at the Kwa Lefakeng restaurant (sit on the upstairs outdoor deck), or a bush dinner.
Game drives, guided bush walks, ballooning, birding.
Kwa Maritane has a well-stocked curio shop.