SIMBAMBILI GAME LODGE
Located in the northeast of Sabi Sands Game Reserve, Simbambili is home to the highest concentration of leopards in the world. Home to also the Big Five, Simbambili offers guests opportunities for amazing encounters.
Bringing the romance of Africa to life, Simbambili Game Lodge has sophisticated suites that have spectacular views of the riverbed and surrounding bushveld. Guests can enjoy the onsite spa which offers the latest beauty treatment options or they can work out at the small, intimate gym.
BIG FIVE GAME
Sabi Sands Game Reserve.
No children under
6 years old.
Yes, in the main area
& in the rooms.
Yes, but the area is low-risk.
Before booking any lodge, we do our research and a few days before arriving at Simbambili they posted a picture of Tiyani carrying her cub in a riverbed and we thought we could get lucky and see leopard cubs. Anybody who has been to the bush knows how elusive these mammals are especially when they have cubs. Upon arrival, it was the first question we asked the manager about the cubs. And we found out that Tiyani has denned on their Simbambilis concession! That afternoon on our first drive out, we were at our first stop and we were at a loss for words when these two small precious six week old cubs came out to play in front of us. It was such a special sighting, and over our next three days at Simbambili we returned to the den daily where we were spoilt with sightings of them exploring, playing, tackling one another and their mother.
On the border of Simbambilis concession, there was a pride of about twelve lions, four adult females and the rest were sub-adults. The night before was very chilly, and we found them all resting on each other to try to keep warm. A magnificent sighting!
On an afternoon game drive, we found Shadulu who had been in a territorial dispute with the Mokemshave female. They had been in various fights on different occasions, and Shadulu was tending to his wounds.
The following day we found the magnificent Mokenshava female leopard. She lay next to the vehicle and groomed herself, she had injured the pad of her foot in the fight with Shadulu and was constantly licking it. I consider this sighting with the Mokenshava female one of my favourites as it is special to see a leopard that close and for it to be so relaxed in our presence.
Wild dogs! Always an exciting word when in the bush!
A pack of around ten plus wild dogs had been found and were hunting. Off-roading we went and followed them through shrubs, bushes, trees and more. Nothing held us back and it was phenomenal to feel a part of the pack.
On the airstrip, we heard a commotion to the right of our vehicle. Within a few seconds, they came bolting out the bush, one with a scrub hare in its mouth and a few others trying to grab some meat.
Watching from the dam wall, we observed a beautiful herd of Buffalo which has a number of Yellow-billed Oxpeckers sitting upon them. The Yellow-billed oxpecker is considered vulnerable and was thought to be extinct locally in South Africa in the early 20th Century. This was due to the chemicals used for cleaning livestock. However, the yellow-billed has slowly begun to be more visible in the South and North of Kruger. Over the last 3 years of travelling to Kruger, we have slowly seen more and more oxpeckers throughout the Kruger National Park.
Seeing Rhino’s in the bush is always a blessing due to poaching. We found a female White Rhino with a middle-aged calf and we followed them to a mud wallow hoping we could watch the two of them cool themselves down in the small pan. But to our shock, a big male Rhino came crashing in from the sidelines, upset that we had gotten between him and his female and scared the mother and her calf off. Eventually, he caught up to them and she immediately became aggressive towards the male.
There was a call over the radio that Tortise Pan had a kill in a tree. We headed off to the sighting and found the magnificent male in the process of removing all the hair from his impala kill. Sitting in the vehicle, we watched the leopard TP from the base of the tree shed the hair from the impala, and in the process of doing so, it began to fall all over us.