Ngala Game Reserve Walking Safari

The first day we went on the walk in the Ngala game reserve, we actually came across a lion. He looked like a log, until he rolled over. Then he sat there and roared for a while until he suddenly spotted us, turned round and walked back into the bush. That was amazing.

Table of Contents
Accommodation & Performance
Food and Weather
Disappointments and Highlights
Tips & Advice
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Could you describe the accommodation?

It was a tent in the Ngala private game reserve in South Africa. It had its own toilet, and it had the hot bucket shower but they were all sort of part of the tent.

So it was a permanent structure?

It was a permanent tented camp, yes. But it was a tent, rather than a building with a canvas roof… it was a real tent.

Which Ngala game reserve safari company did you use and how did they perform?

CC Africa. Oh, absolutely fantastic… couldn’t have been better. It was brilliant. The amount of knowledge was just amazing. The people there are local and they could tell us all sorts of things about the place rather than just the animals so it was well worth it. And I’d recommend that over just a lodge, because we seemed to get so much more out of it than just being in one place.

Onto food… would you describe a typical breakfast and dinner at the Ngala game reserve camp?

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Gosh! Well, breakfast was all cooked on fires. We had our own chef in camp. Breakfast we had fruit juices, teas, homemade toast, cereal and yoghurts and things. Then we had sausages, bacon and mushrooms, that sort of thing … choice of eggs. That was breakfast.

Then we had afternoon tea which was sandwiches and biscuits and things, that was 3 o’clock.Then we came back after our night drive and we had a full 3 courses really, all cooked on the fires and it was you know, different every night.There was lots of food. It was such good value for money.

And did you have good weather?

We had fantastic weather during our Ngala game reserve stay. It was a little bit overcast on our first day, but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing because it kept the temperature down a bit! The weather was fantastic. They had rain a few days before for one day, which was amazing really because it had started to take effect, things were starting to green up, which was amazing.

What did you see, in terms of wildlife?

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A lion while we were walking, it was completely by accident as our tracker said. He said he’d never come across a lion with a walking group before, which was a little bit scary but very exciting.

There were rhinos, a huge herd of buffalo, we even actually found a pride, we went on a drive, and there was a pride of lions and we went back to see if we could find them the next morning and they’d actually killed a buffalo. So we actually got to watch them having breakfast which was quite exciting. That was from the vehicle.

We saw cheetahs and things by vehicle as well, buffalo, impala everywhere. We didn’t actually get to see elephant in the Ngala game reserve, which is the one thing I would have liked to have seen. Which was nice, is that there were a lot of birds actually that our ranger – when we were out walking – would point out to us and told us what they were.

Did you manage to see leopard at all?

Yes, we did. It was a 9-month old cub – that was exciting. Our tracker had been left by our Land Rover to see if he could find him and he radioed back to our driver and said “Yes, I found him”. He’d given us all sorts of information, the mother had gone off hunting elsewhere in the Ngala game reserve and she was back in a couple of days and he was sort of just being left to his own devices.

We sat there for ages watching him, it was amazing. He went in a tree and watched what was below him. It was probably one of the luckiest things we saw. The cheetahs were a family – it was a mother and 3 cubs, older cubs. They were quite… they didn’t seem particularly bothered by us, which was quite nice because we could really watch them.

Was there anything that didn’t meet your expectations about the Nagala game reserve trip, any disappointments?

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No, if anything, it was better than we expected. It was our honeymoon, you see so… I think our expectations were probably higher than some people’s anyway!It was fantastic; I’d recommend a Ngala game reserve safari to absolutely anybody.

And what would you say the highlight of your trip was?

I’ve got to be honest: the people. The people were probably what made it; the fact that they were so genuinely friendly and how they passed on things rather than just giving stats if you know what I mean.

How much did you walk every day?

Yes, quite a distance. We’d probably leave about 5 or 6 o’clock in the morning and we’d be back about 10:30. We weren’t walking particularly slowly so we covered quite a bit of ground, yes. The first morning we actually went out from camp and the next morning the Land Rover took us out a bit further and we walked back to camp. So it was a circular walk the first day and then a straight run so we could see lots of different things.

Any tips or advice you could give to someone planning a similar trip to Ngala game reserve?

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A very good pair of walking boots. And however many shirts you think you might need, take more because you’re going to be really warm … and a hat. Definitely, yes actually that was the best thing we brought, before we went somebody had said to us "buy hats" so we got good hats, yes definitely best tip.

Were you bothered much by mosquitoes?

No, none at all. In fact I was really surprised at how few bugs there were. There weren’t any in the tent at all.

Safari Location: Ngala Game Reserve, South Africa
Safari Company Used: CC Africa
Duration: 3 nights 4 days, in November. 8 Adults in the group
Traveller Details: Linda Rich, UK
Rates & Availability: Make a Ngala game reserve enquiry

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