More property updates we have received recently.
Reminder: The Springbok Atlas Tours & Safaris 2018 Guided Brochure officially starts on Friday 01 December 2017.
African Oceans Manor (Mossel Bay, South Africa) has no available rooms for the period between 15 December 2017 and 03 January 2018.
Kariega Game Reserve’s Ukhozi Lodge (Eastern Cape, South Africa) has recently experienced a fire in the kitchen and main areas of the lodge and therefore future bookings are not possible as of 27 November 2017 until the end of September 2018. The lodge will be rebuilt and fully closed between 01 February 2018 and 30 September 2018.
andBeyond Phinda Homestead (Phinda Private Game Reserve, South Africa), which was closed late 2016 due to a fire at the lodge, is scheduled to re-open on 01 September 2018. The lodge is currently undergoing an extensive refurbishment. Bookings for travel after September 2018 are now open.
The North West Parks & Tourism Board’s guest safety regulations pertaining to walking safaris in Madikwe Game Reserve (North West Province, South Africa) have changed. Guests over the age of 60 are now required to produce a medical certificate (written Doctor’s Bill of Health) from their physician to show that they are fit for such an activity. This is a decision made by the North West Parks & Tourism Board and is already in place in all Madikwe camps.
Jaci’s Lodges (Madikwe Game Reserve, South Africa) advises that due to sporadic and unforeseen road closures, self-drive guests and road users should confirm their intended driving route on their day of arrival and check local road conditions before their departure or arrival.
Federal Airlines at the Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (Nelspruit, South Africa) have recently renovated their private passenger lounge. Until recently, the lounge was exclusive to Federal Airlines guests; however, as of 01 December 2017, Federal Airlines will offer their lounge access together with a meet-and-greet to non-Federal Airline guests as well, at a fee.
Garonga Safari Camp and Little Garonga (Makalali Private Nature Reserve, South Africa) will be closed for annual maintenance from 01 to 24 March 2018 and 01 to 24 March 2019.
Due to Cheetah Plains (Sabi Sand, South Africa) closing on 15 January 2018 for a full rebuild, Jaci’s Sabi House (Sabi Sand, South Africa) will be offered on a per room basis from 15 January 2018 until 15 March 2018. The house will be split into 2 “Standard” Rooms, and in the main house there will be 1 “Luxury” Room, with a per person per night sharing rate. There will be a maximum of 6 guests in camp at any given stage, and due to the intimacy of the camp, a minimum age of 16 years will be implemented.
MalaMala Re-imagination Update: The MalaMala (Greater Kruger, South Africa) re-imagination is on track and the Sable Camp central facility area and 5 Sable suites will be completed by 20 December 2017. There will be no revamping activity during the Christmas and New Year period and Phase 2 of the re-imagination will commence on 15 January 2018.
Important: Due to the current low water levels in the Okavango Delta, all clients going to Delta Camp (Okavango Delta, Botswana) will walk from the airstrip to the camp. This is an approximate 45-minute game walk and guests should be prepared on arrival with comfortable, closed walking shoes, a hat and sunscreen. Luggage will be transported in a service vehicle. It is anticipated that game walks to camp will take place at least until the end of January 2018, but the camp will keep us updated once mokoro transfers are able to resume.
Delta Camp, Oddballs’ Enclave and Oddballs’ Camp in the Okavango Delta (Botswana) are now limiting the use of mokoros to crossing the channels only. This short passage allows access to the islands where the lodge’s specialised guides conduct their safari walks.
andBeyond Xudum Okavango Delta & andBeyond Xaranna Okavango Delta Camp (Okavango Delta, Botswana) no longer offer boating due to low water levels, however mokoro activities are unaffected and still available.
Okavango Delta (Botswana) Water Level Updates:
- Seba Camp – Water levels are low, with only mokoro activities being offered. There is no boating or fishing
- Xigera Camp – Boating is now about a 40-minute drive from camp. Mokoro activities remain on offer, about 15 minutes’ drive from camp
- Vumbura Camps offer boating and mokoro activities all-year-round as they have permanent channels that always have water
- Abu Camp has stopped boating and the mokoro excursion with elephants. Standard mokoro rides and fishing in the lagoon in front of camp are still possible
- Kings Pool Camp (Linyanti) is still offering the Queen Sylvia barge, however, water levels continue to drop and the barge activity may be stopped at any moment
Reminder: Kings Pool Camp (Linyanti, Botswana) will be closed for a full rebuild from 15 January 2019 and is scheduled to re-open on 15 July 2019.
Reminder: Jao Camp (Okavango Delta, Botswana) will close for refurbishments from 07 February 2018 to 28 February 2018 as well as 07 February 2019 to 28 February 2019.
Belmond Savute Elephant Lodge (Savute, Botswana) has closed on 01 November 2017 for a complete new design of the public areas and guest rooms. The rebuild will be guided by the best sustainable building practices. The lodge is due to re-open on 01 June 2018.
Bakwena Lodge (Chobe, Botswana) now has Wi-Fi in all bedrooms and the main area.
Wilderness Air (Botswana) no longer has set flight times. The flying window is between 10h30 and 16h00 and guests will be given flight times the night before in camp.
Chilo Gorge Lodge (Chiredzi, Zimbabwe) has announced that guests will have access to in-seat rates for a new flight from Harare International Airport to Buffalo Range at Chiredzi. This will be available from 30 April 2018 until 29 October 2018 and will run every Monday and Thursday. Flights depart Harare at 12h30 and arrive into Buffalo Range at 14h00, and then depart Buffalo Range at 15h00 and arrive into Harare at 16h30. This flight is in addition to the existing twice-weekly flights between Johannesburg and Buffalo Range for 2018.
Sausage Tree Camp (Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia) is closed and being rebuilt from 17 November 2017 and is scheduled to re-open on 15 April 2018.
Bidvest Namibia Gravel Road Update: Due to current gravel road conditions in Namibia, Bidvest is proposing that clients do not drive vehicles on “roads not suitable” for the vehicle as the safety of the client is paramount. With the extensive distances between service centres and a lack of communication in remote areas, Bidvest proposes the rental of an elevated/SUV-type vehicle when planning on driving gravel roads.
andBeyond Benguerra Island (Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique) will be closed for a refurbishment from 25 February 2018 and is scheduled to re-open on 17 March 2018.
Reminder: Robben Island Museum (Cape Town, South Africa) requires all guests to produce a form of identification when purchasing a ticket and boarding a ferry to the island. This new regulation is effective immediately. All visitors are required to provide either their identification documents (ID), passport, birth certificate or driver’s licence. Copies of these documents will also be accepted.