Umlani BushCamp is the result of a close-knit family’s efforts, and it shows in every detail and activity.
The fresh pastries baked by chef Goodness (yes, her real name), the stories rangers and trackers relate on game drives, the way the camp is subtly lighted by many candles and lanterns every night, and how managers Morné and Melissa Hamlyn know you by name before you arrive.
In the midst of the Timbavati Game Reserve, your safari home is basic but cosy. Tell people at home that you’ll be in sync with the elephants instead of your Instagram account because there will be limited cell phone or WiFi service for guests. Climb the Umlani Treehouse’s ladder for true wildlife enthusiasts. It’s just you and the shrub up in the wriggly branches. Stay for a few hours (with cold drinks, nice pillows, and warm blankets nearby) or spend the night beneath the elephants. In a heartbeat, you’ll fall in love with beautiful land as you gaze at limitless treetops.
In addition to the Treehouse, Umlani Bush Camp has eight thatched traditional African cottages. There are three of them, each sleeping four people, and one sleeping three. You’ll notice how the traditional huts fit in with the surroundings: they’re influenced by the Shangaan tribe’s architecture. Each hut has an en-suite bathroom with an outdoor shower (there’s nothing quite like a morning shower in the fresh air), mosquito netting, soft and cold sheets, bathroom amenities, insect repellant, and bottled water.
When it gets dark, the camp runs on very little energy (there is a power plug in every room in the main area) and is totally lighted by candlelight and oil lamps. Don’t be afraid; it only contributes to the warm, authentically African atmosphere.
The main area, which includes a bush bar and balcony overlooking a nearby waterhole — a hive of activity for local species – is reached through winding sandy paths. Dine under the stars in a traditional African boma restaurant, swim in the pool, or browse the gift shop for souvenirs. The Treehouse is a little further out from the main lodge, about 1.5 kilometres.
Umlani Bushcamp has a variety of activities.
Get up early in the morning, make a hot cup of tea or coffee, and get ready for your first game drive; wildlife is most active in the mornings and afternoons. Trackers and rangers at Umlani Bush Camp are committed to not just showing you the wildlife, but also presenting a thorough picture of the surrounding flora and fauna. They are earnest and genuinely interested in the region’s history.
Between morning and afternoon wildlife drives, rangers are always on the lookout for an extra bushwalk. Small discoveries reveal the bush’s bigger secrets; let an experienced ranger lead you and you’ll leave with a better grasp of this fascinating environment.
In the afternoon, go outside to admire the gorgeous mauve skies, which are painted with a palette of warm African hues. When the sun sets, wildlife awakens, making an afternoon journey a sensory delight. Allow the staff to spoil you with another delicacy that will meet your needs after the drive: one of their award-winning dinners.
Timbavati Game Reserve is a game reserve in South Africa
Welcome to the white lion’s homeland!
Buffalos, lions, giraffes, wildebeest, impalas, baboons, cheetahs, leopards, and the uncommon white lion are just a few of the animals found in the Timbavati Game Reserve. Over 40 mammals graze freely on this private game reserve (next to Kruger). With 75.000 hectares of jungle, you’ll have a more intimate and personal encounter with wildlife than you’ll find anyplace else. In contrast to Kruger Park, where cars are restricted to paved roads, jeeps are able to go off-road and get much closer to wildlife because they are in a private game reserve.
The white lion’s domain
The presence of the rare white lion in Timbavati Game Reserve is the dazzling white icing on the cake. Their beauty is striking, with a crème-colored coat and ice blue eyes. White lions are not albinos, despite their snow-white coat; it is the product of a rare colour mutation. White lions are native to the Timbavati Game Reserve, with the first sightings in this area dating back to 1938. Fortunately, their colouration does not appear to be an impediment to survival. White lions were successfully returned into their natural habitat by the Global White Lion Protection Trust (GWLPT) in 2009, and they have been hunting and breeding since then.
When it comes to spotting animals, there are no limits.
A barrier built along the Kruger Park’s boundary in the 1960s to limit the spread of ill animals also hindered migration paths. The fence was removed in 1999 after all parties reached an agreement. Timbavati’s 75.000 hectares are now completely fence-free from the Kruger Park, allowing herds to wander freely along the traditional trails they have followed for centuries. Because cars are allowed to approach animals within six metres in the Timbavati Game Reserve, wildlife can be seen up close.
Aside from the Big Five and a slew of other mammals, there’s one just for the birdwatchers. Prepare your cameras for the ‘Big Six:’ Saddle-billed Stork, Kori Bustard, Ground Hornbill, and Pel’s Fishing Owl; Lappet-faced Vulture, Martial Eagle; Saddle-billed Stork, Kori Bustard, Ground Hornbill, and Pel’s Fishing Owl Africa’s most fascinating feathered companions!
Everyone will find the ideal safari.
There are a plethora of reasons to visit the Timbavati Game Reserve. Whether you choose a premium lodge or a more basic one, the personnel at all of our listed lodges will go out of their way to ensure that you have the most unforgettable safari experience possible. When you stay in a private game reserve, you’ll be taken out into the bush by highly trained guides and trackers. Timbavati does not allow day visitors, so you’ll feel like a true explorer experiencing this region for the first time! But, no matter how much we say, the only way to properly understand our enthusiasm is to experience it for yourself.