Is Madikwe a bit zoo?

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Aug 22nd, 2012, 10:57 PM
  #1
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Is Madikwe a bit zoo?

I´ve been on safari several times from Londolozi to Chiawa, from Chiefs Camp to Kicheche... and was lucky enough to have some great experiences. In January I will be in SA but have only 3 or 4 days for a safari and think about Madikwe but I have some doubts...
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Aug 23rd, 2012, 06:11 AM
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We've been there a couple of times, and no, I wouldn't say it's a zoo at all. Yes, it was the site of a huge re-introduction of game in the 1990s, but aside from a few (crumbling) remains of old farm buildings or roads the evidence of its past life are pretty scarce. Yes, it's fenced, but so is Phinda, and Madikwe is three times as big. You really don't sense the enclosure on game drives, any more than you do on most drives in the Sabi Sand reserve. Come to think of it, you see old farm bits (windmills, water troughs etc.) in the SSGR too.

I wouldn't say game viewing is equal to Sabi Sand (never seen a leopard at Madikwe, but always get the "ya shoulda been here yesterday" bit.) But Madikwe is a high-quality experience, and its convenience to Joburg can't be overstated. Close to Gaborone too (you can see the lights from the Buffalo Ridge rooms) so that a day trip into Botswana is easy if you wish. Maybe Speedy Motors is open.

We've stayed at Buffalo Ridge (community owned/operated, a good thing) and have enjoyed ourselves immensely. Highly recommended.
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Aug 23rd, 2012, 07:40 AM
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Why not go to Sabi Sand or Timbavati reserves, or Kruger? I've been to Madikwe, May of 2007, 5 days, and would not go back. Game viewing was ho-hum.

Here is my Fodors trip report of Madikwe, May 2007 -
http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=35016274

regards - tom
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Aug 26th, 2012, 09:14 AM
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If you want to see something different, I do agree that Madikwe is a good choice. I suggest Madikwe Safari lodge (More Hotels). I was there last July and saw wild dog which I have never seen in the Sabi Sands on 29 trips to Africa. We also saw brown hyena and the big five except leopard. If you can squeeze in one more night (5day/4night) you could go to Tswalu in the Kalahari on stay4-fly free. They take you there on their private jet from Jo'burg for no additional charge. Here you can expect to see both black and white rhino and many other Kalahari species like Oryx and Springboek that you would not have seen in the Kruger ecosystems. They also have meerkats which are a major reason some people go (on top of the five star cuisine and luxury).

Craig Beal – owner – Travel Beyond
2011 & 2012 Travel & Leisure A-List agent for Southern Africa
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Aug 27th, 2012, 08:41 AM
  #5
 
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Madikwe can never top the Sabi Sands, Timbavati or for that matter the Greater Kruger Park for Game Viewing. Take it from a local who lives here.
However, if you are looking to see Wild Dog then Madikwe gets my vote.

From a Local who lives in Africa
Mark
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Sep 6th, 2012, 01:01 AM
  #6
 
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Yes Madikwe was great, we there in May 2012 and stay in a a geat place called The Bush house. they have a waterhol with a hide. And you can see animals up close.
http://www.bushhouse.co.za/index.php

Game drive are great too.

cheers, Annemieke from South Africa
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