Mashatu Game Reserve

Mashatu is a wild and rugged landscape of savanna, open plains and sandstone koppies. It offers great game viewing with large herds of elephant and many predators such as lion and leopard.


Mashatu is a wild and rugged landscape of savanna, open plains and sandstone koppies. It offers great game viewing with large herds of elephant and many predators such as lion and leopard.

Mashatu Game Reserve lies in the Northern Tuli Game Reserve. Here is a wild and rugged landscape of savanna, open plains, sandstone outcrops and riverine forest. This diversity offers great game viewing with a strong chance of seeing large herds of elephant and many predators such as lion, leopard or cheetah.

Mashatu is also distinctive in offering more adventurous safaris. As well as day and night 4×4 game drives, it offers mountain bike safaris, horse-riding safaris, walking safaris. Plus Mashatu has very good specialist photographic safaris with ground-level hides at some waterholes for really eye-catching shots. Sometimes you can even accompany research scientists who are based at Mashatu.

Mashatu’s innovative decision to encourage guests to accompany research scientists on their field work is a win for both researcher and visitor. The research scientists are the direct beneficiary of the small fee. So this helps to fund their ongoing research. Likewise you get to learn exactly how research is conducted. And to learn from the experts about that particular species’ behaviour and characteristics.

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Madelyn Nieuwoudt

Africa Travel Specialist
Our experienced band of Safari Planners can create a bespoke plan for you. More enriching, more restorative and making more of a difference. Discover how working with a specialist adds value to your African adventure.


Why you may love it

  • Mashatu is easily accessible from Johannesburg
  • It combines well with the Waterberg and northern Kruger safaris
  • Mountain biking safaris
  • Game-viewing on horseback
  • Photographic safaris with water-level hides at some water-holes
  • Chance to join predator and elephant researchers for a half day
  • Perhaps visit Mapungubwe National Park en route?

Explore the Mashatu Game Reserve map

When to visit Mashatu Game Reserve

December to March

Summer in Mashatu Game Reserve

This is the Summer rainy season. The wildlife tends to be more dispersed and harder to spot. However Mashatu, being in the far south of Botswana, has a very different climate from further north. Its also very hot, being semi-arid, as there is not enough rain to really cool it down.
MAX TEMP 32 ℃ / 90 ℉
MIN TEMP 21 ℃ / 70 ℉

April to May

Shoulder season

This is considered the shoulder season as the summer rains stop. It’s not as hot during the day, especially by May, and the animals start to congregate around the water holes to drink
MAX TEMP 30 ℃ / 86 ℉
MIN TEMP 15 ℃ / 59 ℉

June to September

Dry season

Traditionally this is the best time to visit as the dry season continues. Note that June and July night-time and early morning temperatures can be very chilly given the semi-arid nature of the landscape. The roads start getting dusty and the sky is hazy due to the amount of dust in the air. The scenery tends to become less beautiful as the dry season continues.
MAX TEMP 27 ℃ / 81 ℉
MIN TEMP 8 ℃ / 46 ℉

October to November

Very hot but good game viewing

In contrast temperatures heat up quickly in late September and October prior to the start of the summer rains. Make sure you are comfortable with heat if you travel in October! October and early November tends to be very hot and dry but with good game-viewing. Somewhere in November, the summer rains start. Then the scenery changes back to green, baby animals start being borne and birding is excellent with the arrival of summer migrants.
MAX TEMP 33 ℃ / 91 ℉
MIN TEMP 19 ℃ / 66 ℉

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Did you know
  • HistoryOriginally known as the Tuli enclave
  • AnimalsHome to the largest, single population of elephant on private land