Zeederberg Trail self-drive tour

This Zeederberg Trail self-drive tour allows you to head off the well-trodden paths and explore a quieter, beautiful part of South Africa. And enjoy the Greater Kruger Park as well.

It combines game-viewing at three contrasting game reserves. The magnificent Kruger National Park. The rugged Mashatu Game Reserve. And the beautiful Entabeni Game Reserve. Along with scenic touring in the highlands of Tzaneen and the Blyde River Canyon. You travel on tarred roads for practically all of the holiday. Yet you travel through some of the most remote and authentic parts of South Africa combining a superb, varied safari experience with wonderful scenery and food.

What could be better? Accommodation is a mix of premier/luxury accommodation.

Accommodation at a glance:

1 night Entabeni Lakeside Lodge, Waterberg – Full Board & Game Drives
3 nights Mashatu Main Camp, Tuli Block – Full Board & Game Drives
2 nights Lesihba Wilderness – Full Bard & Activities
1 nights Kings Walden Garden Manor, Tzaneen, B&B
3 nights Elephant Plains Lodge, Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Full Board & Game Drives
2 nights Rissington Inn or Chestnut Country Lodge, near Hazyview, B&B

Tailor made options

As this Zeederberg Trail self drive tour is only 12 nights, you can easily add on some time elsewhere – perhaps in Cape Town or Victoria Falls? You can also shorten it by 1 night if necessary by having only 2 nights at either Mashatu or in the Sabi Sands.


See Day by Day
Day 1

Arrive in Johanessburg and drive to Entabeni Lakeside Lodge, Full Board & Game Drives

On arrival at the Johannesburg airport you collect your rental car and drive to the Waterberg region for your 1 night stay at Entabeni Game Reserve at either Lakeside Lodge (3 hours drive, 270km). The Waterberg is a stunning area of natural beauty, a dramatic forested plateau dissected by ravines and waterfalls with panoramic views over the plains below.

Entabeni Game Reserve is a beautiful 12,000ha malaria-free game reserve with varied terrain supporting a wide range of game including the Big Five. It offers unspoilt African bushveld ranging from rocky outcrops, where the leopards watch from hidden crevices, to wide open savannah where the herds of zebra, wildebeest and impala congregate. Activities at Entabeni include twice-daily game drives in open game 4×4 vehicles, guided nature walks & horse riding

Entabeni Lakeside Lodge enjoys a stunning lakeside setting with 24 thatched chalets each with private sundeck. It provides a memorable blend of luxury in the wilderness. (You can also upgrade to Entabeni Hanglip Lodge or Kingfisher Lodge for a supplement.)

Accommodation: Entabeni Lakeside Lodge
Located in: South Africa - Waterberg - Waterberg & Limpopo

Day 2

Head north to Mashatu Main Camp in the Tuli Block for 3 nights, Full Board & Game Drives

Head north to the Tuli Block just over the border in Botswana for your three night safari at Mashatu Game Reserve (3-4 hours, 315km). You are collected at the border post and transferred by open 4×4 vehicle to the lodge. (Your car is kept in a secure compound.)

Mashatu is true Africa – a wild and rugged landscape of savannah, open plains, sandstone outcrops and riverine forests. It offers some exceptional game viewing with a strong chance of seeing large herds of elephant and many of the predators such as lion or cheetah. The wildlife experience is personal at Mashatu with dedicated and experienced Tswana rangers and trackers keen to show you their world. Game drives typically take place in the early morning and late afternoon when animals are most active.

Mashatu Main Camp has air-conditioned rooms and family suites, a large swimming pool, a wildlife interpretative centre and a stunning setting overlooking an active waterhole, so it’s ideal for couples and families alike and especially good during high summer.

Accommodation: Mashatu Main Camp
Located in: Botswana - Mashatu Game Reserve

Day 5

Drive toward Makhado for your 2 night stay at Lesihba Wilderness.

Leshiba lies in a hidden valley on top of the Soutpansberg mountains in the Limpopo Province. The reserve has one of the country’s most unique environments with a high biodiversity of flora and fauna. Leshiba offers unrivaled scenery, unspoiled nature, a variety of wildlife and a high number of endemic species.

This private game reserve is a family-run mountain retreat that offers a uniquely African experience with luxury touches, warm hospitality and rich memories.

Day 7

Drive to Tzaneen, 1 night King Walden Country Manor, Bed & Breakfast

This morning you leave Mashatu and return to your rental car at the border. Continue south-east to the beautiful Tzaneen area through fertile countryside covered with the tea and citrus plantations (3 hours drive, 280km).Spend two nights at Kings Walden Garden Manor

Kings Walden Garden Manor is a little gem, recently renovated to combine luxurious accommodation with a truly amazing historic garden with spectacular mountain views of the escarpment. Six luxury en suite room each have extra length beds, sitting area with fireplace decorated in clean elegant lines with warm earthy tones and textures. Each room leads out onto a private terrace overlooking the romantic garden with its large swimming pool, extensive lawns and cascading terraces where paths lead to shaded secret spots.

Accommodation: Kings Walden Garden Manor
Located in: South Africa - Tzaneen & North Limpopo - Waterberg & Limpopo

Day 8

3 nights on safari in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Elephant Plains Lodge, Full Board & Game drives

You stay 3 nights in the Sabi Sands, one of the prime safari destinations in Africa.

The Sabi Sands has open borders with the Kruger National Park so animals travel freely. It offers a Big Five safari experience with large herds of elephant and buffalo often seen. Here you enjoy open-vehicle game drives with an experienced ranger and tracker who work together to give you a deeper understanding of the wildlife and the natural cycles of the bush. Their bush knowledge, practical skills and love of nature promise you informative, exciting and rewarding encounters with the wildlife.

Elephant Plains Game Lodge comprises six luxury glass-fronted suites, each with lounge area and private sundeck with beautiful views of the waterhole. A further five original thatched rondavels are set in a beautifully landscaped garden. All rooms and suites have en suite bathrooms with shower and bath, air-conditioning, ceiling fans and mosquito nets.  Meals are served around a fire in the open-air boma under a starlit sky. Adjacent to the swimming pool, the wooden sundeck offers spectacular views overlooking the waterhole and scenic plains.

Day 11

Travel South via the Blyde River Canyon, 2 nights Rissington Inn

Today you head south, perhaps via the scenic Blyde River Canyon, to Rissington Inn. The Drakensberg escarpment provides welcome relaxation after the excitement of a safari. This area of tumbling streams and waterfalls amongst indigenous woodland and forest plantations provides scenic drives, relaxing walks and horse riding.

Rissington Inn is an affordable, award-winning country lodge in the heart of the Lowveld close to Hazyview and the Kruger National Park. It is also within easy touring distance of Blyde River Canyon. Stylish but relaxed and informal, the inn is the perfect stopover on your way to the game reserves and an ideal base from which to explore all that the Blyde River area has to offer.

Rissington Inn’s 16 individual rooms and suites are surrounded by 10 acres of extensive colorful gardens and offer comfortable, spacious and airy accommodation. All rooms have their own entrances and verandas. Each has a private bathroom and the garden suites also offer outside showers.

Accommodation: Rissington Inn
Located in: Blyde River Canyon - South Africa

Day 13

Return rental car

You can return your rental car at Hoedspruit Airport (Or Kruger Airport if you prefer) in time for your onward flight

View Interactive Itinerary
See Route on Map
Meals and accommodation as shown in text, Group C car rental with unlimited kilometres and super cover insurance. Upgrades to larger vehicles easily arranged.
International & domestic flights, visas, items of a personal nature, meals not specified
Best time to go:
All year round but especially April through to November
Health requirements:
Malaria area – anti-malaria precautions necessary
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