Enjoy wild game-viewing, adventurous safaris and a sense of authentic Africa in this beautiful region of open plains and jagged escarpments.
Enjoy wild game-viewing and adventurous walking on a northern Kruger safari. Or gain a sense of authentic Africa and the arts and crafts culture of the Venda people in this beautiful region of open plains and jagged mountain escarpments.
A safari in Limpopo certainly offers unspoilt Africa at its best. Visit sleepy country towns, ancient civilizations and the proud culture of the Venda people. here you can enjoy adventurous northern Kruger safaris to Pafuri Camp or The Outpost. Or you can explore the ruins at Mapungubwe. This was home to an ancient civilization which rivalled Great Zimbabwe in its time.
South of these areas, is Tzaneen. This town within a beautiful upland region of fruit orchards and tea plantations. You can meander along the Magoebaskloof Pass and visit the lovely Debegeni Falls. Alternatively you may like to brave the Magoebaskloof treetop canopy tour. Head to the curious Cycad forest, home of ‘Modjadji’ the legendary rain queen. Or visit the indigenous cloud forests. These offer a variety of hiking and walking trails.
From Tzaneen you can head east for a northern Kruger safari, either to Pafuri. Or to the Klaserie, Timbavati and Thornybush Game Reserves which are an easy drive away. Or you can head south to the Drakensberg Escarpment or you can use it as a springboard into the Venda region.
The Soutpansberg & Venda region in the far north is often an area reserved for second or third time visitors. As it is one of the more remote areas of South Africa. But if you have an adventurous and inquisitive spirit and would like to learn more about African cultures, we recommend it to anyone. Activities include hiking in the Soutpansberg mountains. Or taking one of the artists’ routes and see local potters, wood carvers, textile weavers and bead makers all in their own villages. Your base would be
Perhaps stay at Leshiba Wilderness Lodge to enjoy hiking in the Soutpansberg and cultural interactions with the Venda people. Or visit Mada a Thavi Lodge which supports the arts and crafts of the region.
From here, it is a comparatively easy drive north to Mashatu Game Reserve.
We arrange trips to more than 100+ destinations throughout the African continent.
Need a little help? View our Safari Guide to help you get started
Kings Walden is still our favourite place to stay in this relatively remote part of South Africa. Tzaneen is one of the most scenic places to stay as a stop-over between the Waterberg, Mashatu or the northern Limpopo area and the game lodges of the Greater Kruger Park.
However with Kings Walden, it may not suit everyone. The gardens reek of romance. And yet there is no denying that they have some maintenance issues to deal with. The new owner/manager Bridget as taken back ownership of her beloved family home, which has been operating as a boutique guest lodge under overseas ownership for some years. And she is keen to upgrade the rooms. (For example some areas need a fresh coat of paint. So for now, you get comfortable accommodation in an unarguably romantic setting.
The garden, which they are most famous for, does need some attention. But as it is in the style of a romantic English terrace garden,it is still a magical feature nonetheless.
At the moment they only offer 5 of their 6 rooms. As one of the rooms is being used by Bridget. Room 3 can take a triple and Rooms 5 & 6 are inter-leading. These two rooms overlook the garden and pool, whereas other rooms overlook the lawn and gardena.
They are known for their food. Dinner is a 4 course meal, with options changing on a nightly basis. (So pre-booking for dinner is essential). The dinner was good and very well presented and we especially thought their breakfast was very good as well.
Bridget is a lovely hostess and usually shares a bit of the property/family history with guests. Dining areas are swopped around, so depending on the weather, outside dining now offers a much better view, overlooking the iconic lightning tree. The table setting at dinner added a great ambience to our meal.
The rooms dont have air-conditioning, but this hilly area above Tzaneen is remarkably cooler, because of the elevation, than the heat that we felt in town. The ceiling fan was sufficient even in December (summer).
Conclusion - If you only want ultra-modern and all mod-cons then Kings Walden may not be for you. However if you like a little bit of romance and history and can trade this for a fresh paint of coat, then we recommend Kings Walden!