KAPAMA PRIVATE GAME RESERVE
PRIVATE SAFARI GAME LODGES
Spanning 13 000 hectares of pristine African bush, Kapama offers the perfect sanctuary to a wide variety of wildlife. Here, more than 40 different species of mammals, including the BigFive – elephant, lion, leopard, African buffalo, and rhinoceros, as well as 350 bird species, thrive in their natural habitat. Visitors get the opportunity to observe these magnificent creatures in the wild by means of two guided game drives daily, nature walks, and once-in-a-lifetime elephant encounters.
Kapama’s four luxury lodges each have a charm of their own – Buffalo Camp delights with its old- worldly feel, Southern Camp offers warmth and hospitality, River Lodge’s ambience is festive year-round, and Karula’s elegance is simply breathtaking. The more adventurous spirits among us can experience the bush like never before by opting for one of our romantic sleep-outs.
To create the best experience possible for our luxury Kruger Safari guests, Kapama now also boasts a private aeroplane and airstrip to receive guests travelling directly from Johannesburg or Cape Town, as well as a courtesy transfer service from Eastgate Airport.
Johann Roode bought the farm, Moria, in 1986 for his Bonsmara cattle to graze on. He soon needed more land, however, and a second portion, Drakensig, was acquired. Within the next year Johan decided to shift his focus to eco-tourism, a move that gave birth to Kapama Private Game Reserve.
A TALE TO TELL
Johann began to develop Kapama into an ecotourism destination dedicated to the celebration and preservation of this breathtaking pristine wilderness, with construction starting in 1989. Buffalo Camp is now located on the land that used to be Moria, and River Lodge stands proudly on the former Drakensig.
Nowadays, Kapama is still owner-managed by the Roode family, making it the largest family-owned reserve in the area. After Johann’s tragic passing in 2002 his wife, Lente Roode, and their two children, Bernard and Adine, took over the management and development of the reserve. Bernard has since further expanded the land through the acquisition of, most significantly, Gwala Gwala and Hongonyi. These two portions of land lent themselves perfectly to the development of the modern Southern Camp and the luxurious Karula.
THE KAPAMA LEGEND
According to local legend, Shangaan chiefs who demonstrated acts of extreme bravery were honoured by being reborn as lions. Kapama was the name of the last chief of this revered bloodline.
It is said that, if you look deep enough into the eyes of one of Kapama’s lions, you will be able to stare past the beast and into the soul of a Shangaan chief.
According to local folklore, a solitary lion named Kapama lived on the land. According to the legend, he was no ordinary lion. Not only was he enormous in size, he was also crafty beyond measure. Every young man in the village had pitted their hunting skills against this great beast, but he evaded them at every turn. So proficient was Kapama in thwarting his prey, that the people began to believe he was an ancient king who, through some misdeed, had been condemned to wander the land in the body of an animal.
There came a time when the earth saw no rain for many months, and the people and animals suffered greatly. But the great “king” Kapama knew where to find water and would track the fattest game. The young men of the village, who had grown to revere the old “king”, quickly learnt to follow rather than hunt him, enabling them to feed their people. When the rains finally came, it crashed down to the hard earth in torrents, giving birth to a new river, which was named Kapama. According to legend, the “king” had by then paid his dues and was never seen again.
ACCOMMODATION AT KAPAMA
AN AFRICAN EDEN
Nestled between the Blyde River Valley and Kruger National Park, Kapama Private Game Reserve’s four individually appointed and luxurious camps offer an escape for nature lovers from across the globe. This untouched part of Africa is home to some of our most endangered, beautiful and fascinating wildlife species.
With its light, airy, open spaces and surround views of the wilderness, Karula, our flagship lodge, is truly the pride of the reserve. Effortlessly elegant and stylish, Karula’s beauty will leave even the most seasoned traveller breathless.
Our superior villas feature wraparound glass sliding doors that open onto an outside deck area with stunning views of the Klaserie River.
Enjoy some liquid refreshments from your personal minibar, while relaxing in your villa’s heated pool or lazing around on the patio. Wrap up your day in the bush with a refreshing shower under the stars or, if the weathers on the chilly side, you can always cuddle up in front of the gas fireplace while sipping champagne or enjoying a fine vintage from our superior wine selection. Air con will keep you comfortable, no matter the weather, and your will wake in the morning to the aromatic smell of your favourite roast, courtesy of your own personal Nespresso coffee machine.
Guests’ safety, and that of their belongings, are our priority, therefore visitors have access to a lock-up safe for their valuables. Each suite is also equipped with all the latest tech comforts, such as Wi-Fi, an iPod docking station and international adapters for your convenience.
Karula’s family villas have spacious open-plan living rooms with a cosy gas fireplace to huddle around and enjoy a game of cards on chilly winter’s nights. Grab yourself something to drink from the minibar or indulge in our unique selection of fine wines and champagne. Open the floor-to-ceiling doors and to step out onto your private deck, take a dip in your heated swimming pool or relax in a comfortable lounger as you savour the exquisite views.
Each of the bedrooms is en-suite and spacious enough for optimal privacy. If you are travelling with the kids, you’ll be happy to know the second bedroom is equipped with a flat-screen TV, with access to a selection of movies and a Wii game console. Air-con in the suites offer maximum comfort and your personal Nespresso coffee machine means you can wake up to the smell of your favourite roast, warm and aromatic.
For peace of mind, we’ve provided a lock-up safe for your valuables, and the suites are equipped with a range of tech comforts, such as Wi-Fi, an iPod docking station and international adapters for your convenience.
LOUNGE, BAR & LIBRARY
Enjoy a refreshing cocktail in the lounge as you search for game in the surrounding vegetation.
The library offers guests the opportunity to lose themselves in a book or connect with the family back home in our media centre. Guests can even arrange a romantic dinner for two around the fire.
KARULA SPA & WELLNESS CENTRE
After a day out in the wild, there’s nothing more welcoming than getting pampered at our award-winning luxurious spa. A range of reviving treatments are on offer. Should you, however, feel the need to spent some pent-up energy, our state-of-the-art fitness centre is the place to visit. For those in search of something different, there’s always the steam room or spa pool – not forgetting the curio shop where you are sure to find the perfect gift for a loved-one back home.
HOME IN THE TREES
High up in the tree canopy, and only accessible by elevated wooden walkways, a stay in the old-world luxury tents of Buffalo Camp are the closest you’ll get to living among Africa’s wild creatures.
Buffalo Camp is a tranquil and intimate lodge where you can unwind in the shade and simply indulge yourself in the peace of your natural surroundings.
Set among tall, shady trees, with views of the seasonal river below, these suites are, in fact, ultra-luxurious tents that consistently delight our guests. Dark wood and leather finishes add a nostalgic flair, while the oil lanterns illuminating the walkways at night create a wonderfully romantic ambience.
Each tent has air conditioning and its own en-suite bathroom. Guests are also provided with heated blankets for complete comfort in cooler weather. Tea and Nespresso coffee facilities come standard, together with a fully stocked minibar. These suites also have lock-up safes for your valuables, with international plugs for the convenience of our overseas guests.
LOUNGE & POOL
The intimate Buffalo Camp lounge, under a vaulted, thatched roof, is the perfect spot to settle into a comfortable sofa for a spot of birdwatching – refreshing cocktail in hand, of course.
Enjoy excellent views of the surrounding fauna and flora from the sun loungers scattered around the elevated rim-flow pool.
BREAKFAST & LUNCH
Tuck into delectable delights from our a-la-carte menu served under traditional thatch and surrounded by the unspoilt wilderness.
Gather around a crackling, open fire in an authentic African boma to dine on traditional dishes to the sounds of the African bush at night.
LOST IN AFRICA
The hospitality of the staff at Southern Camp create a welcoming atmosphere for families in search of the ultimate African safari experience. It is and perfect environment where even the tiniest tots can have a ball, as they are a priority, and the memories made will be with you and your family forever.
The light and airy en-suite bedrooms all lead out onto private patios from where to view the indigenous wildlife. Huge windows in all the suites are a constant reminder that you find yourself in one of the most picturesque places in Africa.
Designed for the African heat, each suite has air conditioning, as well as a fully stocked minibar. Tea and coffee facilities are also available. Here too, lock-up safes protect your valuables, and overseas guests can enjoy the convenience of international plugs.
With loads of room to stretch out, you’ll want to light the double-sided fireplace on chilly winter nights to create that special warm and fuzzy ambience.
In summer the airy spaces allow for a cool breeze and you can splash about in your private lap pool or rid yourself of the day’s dust in under the stars in your outdoor shower. Those who prefer a little more privacy can always opt for the convenience of the en-suite bathroom.
Air-con also comes standard and a Nespresso machine offers you the convenience of luxury coffee straight from the café. For something a little stronger, feel free to peruse your minibar. Each suite has lock-up saves for peace of mind with access to international plugs.
LUXURY FAMILY VILLAS
With your own pool big enough for a rousing game of Marco Polo and comfy recliners just begging to be lounged in while sipping on an ice-cold cocktail and enjoying a good book, there is more than enough space for the whole family to relax and unwind in style on their own private patio. For refreshments, tea and a Nespresso coffee machine and a minibar will satisfy all your refreshment requirements.
Each suite features en-suite bathrooms and air conditioning for added comfort. For peace of mind, there’s a lock-up safe for your valuables, and for our guests from abroad, international plugs for convenience.
LOUNGE, POOL & DINING
The contemporary and elegant lounge is the perfect spot to relax, sip on a refreshing beverage and engage in an imaginary game of hide and seek with the local wildlife.
BREAKFAST & LUNCH
A contemporary, open-sided dining area with our tempting wine selection as focal point.
Our traditional outdoor boma allows you to dine under the stars while our chefs create delectable dishes right in front of your eyes.
SPIRIT OF AFRICA
The largest of our camps, River Lodge’s wide-open spaces and airy design are a constant reminder that you’re sleeping under African skies. River Lodge is more festive and social than our smaller, more intimate camps, which is why it is such a popular choice among young couples and groups of friends.
Lose yourself in a suite reminiscent of Hemingway’s Africa, or take in the beauty of the reserve from the privacy of your patio.
Privately tucked away among russet bushwillow trees surrounding our African spa, these suites feature magnificent floor-to-ceiling glass doors and frameless windows that offer expansive views of the reserve – even from your bathroom.
For those wanting to rediscover their zen, the spa suites are highly recommended, as is a spot of yoga in the privacy of your patio while overlooking the magnificence of the bush. Each suite is equipped with en-suite bathrooms, air conditioning, coffee- and tea-making facilities, a minibar, as well as a lock-up safe and international plugs.
Perfect for big family getaways or breakaways with friends, these rooms are extremely spacious, allowing for additional beds for your little ones. With triple balconies, there is more than enough space and opportunity to bask in the tranquillity of the bush.
En-suite bathrooms offer complete privacy, and each suite has air conditioning to enhance your experience of comfort. Tea and coffee facilities are available, along with a minibar. For peace of mind, there’s a lock-up safe for your valuables and for our guests from abroad, international plugs for convenience.
Our Royal Suites offer guests the opportunity to Relax and unwind in the opulence of your bedroom before enjoying a hot cup of coffee or tea from your own private lounge – on one of the spacious patio’s recliner couches. Revel in the beauty of your surroundings from the huge windows of your own private bathroom as you prepare for an exciting day. These suites boast en-suite bathrooms with dual showers from where you can enjoy an unsurpassed view of the bush and its resident wildlife.
These suites also include a fully stocked minibar, a lock-up safe and international plugs. Air conditioning also comes standard.
LOUNGE & MEDIA ROOM
Relax next to a roaring fire in our African-themed lounge or get a refreshing cocktail from the bar to enjoy next to the sparkling rim-flow pool. Remember to keep an eye out for the thirsty elephants leisurely strolling to the watering hole close by.
The media room seats up to 20 delegates and is the ideal venue to host that intimate conference.
It is equipped with amenities such as satellite TV, a DVD player and adjacent guest Wi-Fi.
Choose from our authentic African buffet around the crackling fire in the open-sided thatched Rhino Boma.
Set in a dry riverbed in front of the lodge, guest can enjoy a romantic dinner under the star-studded African night sky.
BREAKFAST & LUNCH
The Siyadla Lounge boasts its own bar and lounge along with two magnificent fireplaces and glass stack doors that open up onto the surrounding bushveld.
The lounge caters for all dietary requirements.
Our illustrious wine cellar is stocked with more than 600 of the finest South African vintages.
RIVER LODGE SPA
Regarded as one of the finest safari spas in Africa, no wonder the River Lodge Spa is a firm favourite with all our guests. Here you can relax in the spa pool or enjoy a quick workout in before you Immerse yourself in the skills our highly trained and experienced beauty therapists for one of our distinctly African treatments.
EXPERIENCES AT KAPAMA
Kapama offers a variety of ways in which you can explore our beautiful landscapes and wildlife. Our twice-daily game drives and educational bush walks are integral parts of the comprehensive Kapama experience.
Budding photographers can enrol in our two-day photography workshop to hone their skills for that perfect lion shot to mount on your wall back home.
Guests can enjoy two game drives per day. Accompanied by a skilled ranger and tracker, you can expect to encounter a diverse number of animal and bird species. Since this is a Big Five reserve, encountering lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo are highly likely over a two-day safari.
While encountering big game is always an exhilarating experience, the many smaller species also make for captivating viewing. Birding enthusiasts will be delighted with the approximately 350 species recorded on the reserve. Throughout the day, you will be able to enjoy sightings of nyala antelope, Vervet monkeys and, very likely even a few of the Big Five.
Experience the African bush on foot guided by a skilled ranger. The latter will point out a wide range of medicinal plants, insects and bird species along the way, and share his knowledge of traditional tracking skills such as using animal footprints to identify animals, with the group.
This truly memorable, authentic and intimate encounter with nature and our wildlife is included in the tariffs.
Bliss awaits the weary at our wellness centres. Indulge yourself in the best spa treatments on the continent, work up a sweat with state-of-the-art fitness equipment and in the steam rooms, or take a plunge in our refreshing pool.
KARULA SPA & WELLNESS CENTRE
After a day out in the bush, there’s nothing more invigorating than a pampering spa treatment. Our luxurious Karula Spa is a haven of relaxation and calm.
But if you feel the urge to burn some energy, our state-of-the-art fitness centre may be just for you.
For those who aren’t really into vigorous exercise, there’s always the steam room or spa pool – and even a curio shop where you can find that perfect gift for a loved-one back home.
A NIGHT UNDER THE STARS
A fairy-tale experience awaits you during the Kapama Romantic Sleep-out. Sleep in the open air on a private elevated platform, illuminated by the golden hues of a ring of lanterns. The adventure begins at your arrival at sunset, when a private chef will serve dinner “in the air”. Satisfied, you can fall asleep under the light of a million stars, creating an unmatched romantic experience.
You will arrive before sunset, just in time to watch the changing colours of sky while sipping on a sundowner. The African bush fairy-tale continues with a five-course dinner served to by a personal chef at an intimate table for two on the platform.
You can, however, also opt to enjoy a romantic dinner at the lodge, departing for the sleep-out venue afterwards. A ring of lantern will provide soft light during the night.
The platform and luxury bathroom underneath it are animal-proof, but a two-way radio and cellular phone are supplied for additional peace of mind. With amenities such as a flush toilet, shower and his and hers basins, the bathroom provides for optimum comfort.
SPECIAL OCCASIONS AT KAPAMA
CELEBRATE YOUR LOVE
Kapama is the perfect escape to celebrate your love. Fall in love again in the rich African landscape, perfect for your anniversary, honeymoon, or romantic getaway with the one who makes your smile.
There is magic in sharing your joy. Our luxurious lodges offer an abundance of space should you wish to celebrate with your family or friends.
Begin your new chapter in the company of Mother Nature and all her glory. You can rest at ease in the knowledge that Kapama will take care of all your needs, creating the perfect setting for making new and lasting memories.
A wedding in the African bush is an experience like no other. Whether small or large, Kapama offers venues with spectacular views that will succeed all your wedding expectations.
Your guests can enjoy the bush by taking a game drive while you and your bridal party have your photo session.
Let Kapama give you peace of mind by arranging decor, entertainment, a wedding cake and floral arrangements for the ceremony, as well as hairdressers and make-up artists for the bridal party. Give your nuptials an African flavour by adding the sweet sounds of an African choir to your celebrations.
Rest assured that Kapama will help you take care of all legal requirements for your wedding. While an ordained minister may perform the ceremony in the bush, the register needs to be signed under a permanent structure to legalise the marriage. Should specialist attention be required for the administration of your union, Kapama will source a wedding coordinator to ensure that this process is flawless. Our proficient team is ready to answer any questions you might have regarding legalities.
Kapama offers a two-day Honeymoon Special, which includes a complimentary bottle of fine South African wine for your safari honeymoon. Step into a fairy-tale and spend your honeymoon night surrounded by the melodies of wild Africa.
The Romantic Sleep-out is set on a raised platform with a giant four-poster bed swathed in billowing mosquito netting. It’s completely private, located deep in the reserve, and incredibly intimate. Enjoy an unsurpassed view of the stars in the soft golden light of lanterns.
The platform is completely safe and animal proof, and it is equipped with a full luxury bathroom. For additional piece of mind, Kapama supplies a two-way radio and cellular phone. At dawn, the ranger will be waiting for your call to return you safely to the lodge.
A team building experience in a safari setting is a sure-fire way to breathe new life into your team morale.
“We offer three exciting adventures to choose from. These include: The Kapama Amazing Race, game capture participation, clay-pigeon shooting and an elephant interaction encounter.”
THE KAPAMA AMAZING RACE
Teams are divided into groups of 7 or 8 and supplied with hand-held GPS devices to navigate their way through the African bush on a game-viewing vehicle.
The aim of the game is to reach as many checkpoints as possible within the allowed three hours. With a map, tasks, questions, and a piggy bank, the teams must find their way to the finish line by answering questions correctly and using the “money” from their piggy bank to buy information and tools they might need along the way.
The GPS system also offers them the best routes to the finish, but the face fines for exceeding the speed limit or going too far.
Teams receive more ‘money’ to add to their piggy bank after completing a specific checkpoint’s challenges successfully.
This experience can be tailored to incorporate company-related questions into the activities. Although the race is 3 hours long, it can be adjusted depending upon availability.
Game capture, treating wounds, attaching anti-poaching tracking devices, or relocating animals are sometimes necessary at Kapama. Due to the fact that these actions are all sensitive in nature, space is limited. Your staff can participate in this entire process, from when the animals are darted, their relocation and treatment, to their release back into the reserve.
Enjoy a luxurious dining experience like no other at Kapama. We have various options available for exclusive, as well as group dining.
Indulge in royal treatment during our exclusive private dinners, for couples and groups. Your tables will be hosted in a secluded area at the lodge, with dedicated waiters, where you can also dine on our sumptuous safari menu.
PRIVATE BUSH BREAKFAST OR DINNER
Start your day with a robust and wholesome breakfast or have dinner under the stars around a roaring fire after your enjoyable game drive.
PRIVATE DINNER SET-UP
Dinner is usually shared at a group table, along with your game driver and fellow game-drive guests. Should you prefer to dine on your own, you can request a private table at no additional cost.
TRADITONAL AFRICAN MUSIC
Infuse the rhythm of Africa into your dining experience, with one of our African musical performances. Choose from entertainment by a traditional marimba band, our African choir or a tribal dance group to add authentic African flair to your experience.
Kapama Private Game Reserve occupies a vast area between the northern Drakensberg mountains and the Greater Kruger National Park, in the north-east part of South Africa. It spans 13 000 hectares of magnificent African bushveld, teeming with wildlife, yet is ideally situated to receive fly-in guests on scheduled flights from the nearby Eastgate Airport in Hoedspruit.
This airport is just 10 minutes’ drive from the reserve entrance, and Kapama offers complimentary transfers in open game-viewing vehicles directly to any of the four luxury game lodges on the reserve: River Lodge, Buffalo Camp, Kapama Karula and Southern Camp.
Situated in the Limpopo province, an area renowned for its wildlife and superb safari destinations, Kapama Private Game Reserve is home to all the big game of Africa, with over 40 mammal- and 350 bird species. This equates to huge natural diversity and includes the famed dangerous Big Five, namely lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino. Game drives through the rolling savannah grasslands and riverine forests that make up this magnificent African reserve, are conducted twice daily.
The northern boundary of Kapama Private Game Reserve adjoins Eastgate Airport. This enables easy guest transfers to Kapama’s lodges in game-viewing vehicles. South African Express Airways operates daily flights from OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg and regular flights from Cape Town International Airport to Eastgate Airport, which is situated near Hoedspruit.
Take either the N12 or the N4 from Johannesburg to eMalahleni and Middelburg. Turn onto the R540 towards eMakhazeni, Emnotweni and Mashishing. Emnotweni is set on the Highveld and is an ideal point for exploring the region. The village has a quaint atmosphere and is famous for its trout fishing and is a great halfway or lunch stop on the way to Kapama Private Game Reserve. From Mashishing, proceed on the R36 to Ohrigstad, and through the Strydom Tunnel to Hoedspruit.
This scenic drive through Mpumalanga comprises magnificent mountain landscapes and panoramic views – as you navigate the mountain passes up to the high escarpment, you canl enjoy sweeping vistas of the Lowveld down below. At the Strydom Tunnel, Ethnic curious from the area are on offer at roadside stalls at the Strydom Tunnel. From Hoedspruit, take the R40 to Klaserie and continue until you reach the Kapama Private Game Reserve entrance on the left.