Back from Safari_Londolozi

May 6th, 2005, 12:54 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 15
Back from Safari_Londolozi

My husband and I are just back from a wonderful 3 days in Londolozi. I can recommend the lodging, the food, the staff......everything without qualms. We had Cliff as our ranger and Zach as a tracker. These guys were amazing. Cliff was extremely knowlegable and knew about everything from the birds to the trees to the game. His excitement and interest in it all was contagious. Working together with Zach, Cliff was able to get us some unreal sightings. We saw 4 of the big 5 in one drive!

We spent 3 nights at the Safari Lodge. Though this lodge was a bit separated from the rest of the Londolozi reserve, it was extremely nice and actually gave us the feel that we were the only ones in the bush. I am sure all the ranger/tracker teams are good, but if you are headed to Londolozi be sure to request Cliff and Zach.
LFWW is offline  
May 6th, 2005, 04:57 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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Glad you had a nice trip. Can you elaborate on any of your sightings? Thanks.
atravelynn is offline  
May 7th, 2005, 07:06 AM
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Would love to hear more about your sightings and any other memories...

Also, did you visit any other destinations on this trip?

Kavey is offline  
May 9th, 2005, 03:16 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2005
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Here is summary of what we saw on our safari –

We were there 3 nights and, thus, had 6 different drives. On each drive, we had great sightings. The advantage of the private reserves like Londolozi was that we could really drive off the beaten roads right up to the animals as they grazed. As this was our first safari, we really did not know what to expect. It was so much more than I could have imagined. I was in awe as we drove up to watch about six giraffe, when we realized that there were 5 rhinos grazing in the area as well. Seeing a breeding herd of elephant for the first time was also just truly amazing.

We did have at least one leopard sighting everyday, a couple of which we literally just happened upon as they were walking on the road towards our vehicle. I still cant believe how close the leopards came to our vehicle. On numerous occasions a leopard would walk right past us, so close that I could reach my hand out and pet her. The point when my jaw literally dropped was when we were following a leopard at night, when we lost her in some thick bush. I thought that would be last that we would see of her. However, our ranger informed us that we were going to head to a clearing where our tracker knew Kudu could be found and that the leopards liked the area. Sure enough, in a few minutes we picked up her eyes coming out of the thick bush and into the clearing!

Other highlights included sitting in our vehicle as we were surrounded by a buffalo herd (300+) passing through the area. It was also such a thrill to watch and follow a pride of lions as they set off to hunt. Again at one point, I thought that one of the lionesses was going to hop into our vehicle. She just kept coming straight towards us. I definitely saw a couple of beads of sweat form on my husband’s brow as she approached. We were also able to sit and watch some hyena cubs play at their den which was great.

Just being in the bush and seeing the beautiful African sunrises and sunsets was amazing and something I am not likely to ever forget.

For first timers like us, the experience could not have been better and has really set the bar very high for future trips.
LFWW is offline  
May 9th, 2005, 03:20 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2005
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Here is a quick rundown of the rest of our two week trip. Let me know if you want any further details on anything that we did.

Somerset West – We used Somerset West as a base for the first week of our trip. From here we explored the wine region and took a day trip down to Hermanus, where we went out to Dyer Island to see the seal colony. We also got some glimpses of the great whites as other boats were out there cage diving. We took a day trip into Cape Town for to explore the city for a bit as the weather was not cooperating. We also took a trip to one of the townships, organized through Selwyn. It was really an interesting trip and definitely worth while. We went on a Sunday and were able to visit a church service. The music/singing was amazing. We have some of it on video and every time I hear it, I get chills.

Highlights from this part of the trip also included sitting out by the pond at Spiers eating a fantastic picnic that one can pick up at their deli, and enjoying a great bottle of wine. We also ate at Spiers Mojo restaurant one night which was great. In Franschoek we ate at Le Petit Ferme which had an amazing view. However I did see recently that Le Quartier Francias was voted one of the top 50 restaurants in the world. Guess we will just have to go back and try it!

Garden Route – Towards the end of our week in Somerset West, we made an impulse decision to hop in the car and check out some of the Garden Route. We stayed at Hunters, which was by far the most amazing place we stayed on our trip. I cant say enough for the place. The service was impeccable without ever being overbearing or stuffy and the food was just amazing. I could have spent a week there! From there, we explored Kynsa and Plett before heading back to Somerset West in order to catch our flight to Londolozi.

Londolozi – Here we stayed at the Safari Lodge. We were booked at the Bateleur Camp but some how our travel agent (not Londolozi) switched things around on us. We loved the isolation over at the Safari Lodge but would have liked to have the plunge pool at Bateleur. It still was great to sit out on our porch and watch water buck as they came through the river ravine. And also to just see elephants as they walked through camp.

Cape Town – We stayed in Camps Bay at the Atlanticview. Unfortunately we were not able to make it to the top of Table Mountain as the weather did not cooperate for us. We were able to go down the peninsula and have great weather there though.

Sorry for the long post. Thinking back on our trip makes me realize how amazing the whole experience really was.
LFWW is offline  
May 10th, 2005, 04:19 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Great series of posts, LFWW, not long at all! I'm a soon-to-be first-timer, going to Londolozi, and I very much appreciate your informative and useful report.
DonTopaz is offline  
May 10th, 2005, 05:56 AM
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Sounds fab! Thanks for the extra info!
Kavey is offline  
May 10th, 2005, 12:04 PM
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Not a long post at all. Thanks for sharing the details.
May 10th, 2005, 05:12 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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Thanks. Appreciated the Safari Lodge tip.
atravelynn is offline  
May 10th, 2005, 06:40 PM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 316
Thanks for the report on Londolozi Safari Lodge. We depart for South Africa on June 2, and spending 3 nights at Londolozi (Tree Camp). Your report of the great animal sightings and close enocounters sounds really exciting and we can hardly wait to leave.
How was the food at Safari Lodge?
Glad you had such a great trip!
brandywine is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 06:23 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 15
The food was very good and always different. My only complaint was that it was too much! I love to eat, but I felt that I was eating all of the time.

We did have dinner one night served on our porch of our hut which was great. It was very romantic – lanterns set up and all. They even had drawn a bath for when we got back from our drive.

Have a great trip!
LFWW is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 06:25 AM
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Great trip report, LFWW. Isn't the first safari the most unimaginable, unbelievable, magical experience!
sundowner is offline  
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