Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve: About Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve

Located in Sabi Sand Reserve, South Africa

Sabi Sabi blends with the natural landscape of the South African bush.

At the edge of Kruger National Park, where the Sand River swerves south to the meet the Sabie River, the Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve plays host to a shifting cast of Africa’s legendary creatures. Here, dry riverbeds reveal the passage of lions or a scuffle between hyenas, waterholes lure elephants and impalas, and an acacia tree might just hold a leopard guarding its prey. Interspersed among the low woods and grasses, the four lodges of Sabi Sabi offer a gratifying choice: Do you seek a phenomenal family safari adventure at Bush Lodge, or an intimate and tranquil haven in the wilderness at Little Bush Camp? Would you step back in time at Selati Camp to an era when gold prospectors and explorers passed through the Lowveld? Or settle into a gem of modern architecture at the ethereal Earth Lodge, sculpted into a hillside so cleverly it’s barely visible even to the animals?

No matter which lodge you choose, Sabi Sabi promises an exceptional wildlife experience—on game drives and bush walks, but also from the properties themselves, which command excellent views of the surrounding bushveld. Whether you’re immersed in the colonial elegance of Selati Camp or watching monkeys with your kids from the pool at Bush Lodge, the wild mystique of the African bush is all around you.

Why We Love This Lodge

Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve has been a fixture in Sabi Sands for more than 30 years. Established during the uncertainties of the apartheid era, Sabi Sabi was one of the first South African safari companies to actively support the surrounding Shangaan communities. Today, that relationship is stronger than ever. Every game drive is accompanied by a Shangaan tracker as well as a ranger, and most of the lodge staff comes from the neighboring villages. Sabi Sabi also brings in area musicians and dancers to perform and teach about their culture.

What ties all four lodges together is their celebration of the traditions and landscapes that surround them. Buildings, furniture, and décor are wrought from local materials—from fabrics and wooden tools to copper coins—and inspired by local culture. Down to the smallest detail, the owners and their staff have created an utterly spectacular experience in the remote bushveld, and their passion for the lodge and its wilderness resonates.

Highlights

  • Venture out on game drives or bush walks with top rangers and trackers, and spot everything from lions and leopards, buffalo to unusual birds.
  • Indulge in a variety of spa treatments that use local minerals and herbs, or soak in the pool, gazing at wildlife below.
  • Dine under the stars in the outdoor boma built of tree roots, or sit down to a meal with an excellent views of the reserve
  • Enjoy the South African tradition of sundowners, pausing each day’s safari to witness the sunset with a refreshment in hand.
  • Take part in kid-focused activities, learning how to be a junior tracker or trying local arts and crafts at the EleFun Centre at Bush Lodge.
  • Get acquainted with the traditions and everyday life of a nearby Shangaan community, meeting village elders and visiting a school.

National Geographic Exclusive

When you reserve your space through National Geographic Unique Lodges, you’ll be invited to enjoy a private dinner in the wine cellar at Earth Lodge with an introduction to the award-winning wines in Sabi Sabi's collection.

Lodge Features

  • Bush Lodge: 25 suites, including a handicap-accessible suite, 2 luxury villas, and a presidential suite; children of all ages welcome
  • Selati Camp: 8 thatched suites with colonial-era decor, including a presidential suite
  • Little Bush Camp: 6 secluded suites appointed with local materials and African design elements
  • Earth Lodge: 13 nature-inspired suites with luxury amenities and private plunge pool, including the sumptuous Amber Presidential Suite
  • Comfortable and elegant common spaces at each lodge with a bar and lounge
  • Two Amani Spa locations open to guests at all lodges, featuring treatments that incorporate local minerals and herbs
  • Swimming pool at each lodge with wilderness views
  • Boutique selling local handicraft and safari gear (Bush Lodge and Earth Lodge)
  • Wine cellar with South African vintages (Bush Lodge and Earth Lodge)
  • Incredible indoor and outdoor dining options, including reed-enclosed bomas at each lodge
  • Wi-fi at all lodges

Spotlight on Sustainability

Sabi Sabi is committed to preserving the surrounding bushveld and has developed a natural habitat management plan to prioritize their initiatives. They are involved in invasive species eradication efforts and prescribed burning to control the threat of fire, and they use a sustainable wastewater management system that naturally filters water and creates wetlands. The lodge is also deeply involved in the local community. Since its opening more than 30 years ago, Sabi Sabi has formed partnerships with nearby villages in support of schools, sports facilities, and cultural activities. They run a wide range of community programs that address education for both children and adults, healthcare, sports, culture, and conservation.

Awards and Recognitions

  • International Traveller 100 Best Hotels & Resorts, 2014
  • Condé Nast Traveler Readers Choice Award, 2014, 2013, 2012
  • Travel + Leisure World’s Best, 2014, 2013, 2012

Photos from Our Lodge and Travelers

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