For our 3-year wedding anniversary this past February, The Husband treated us to a safari in the world famous Kruger National Park in South Africa, and I got to check "African Safari" off my Bucket List. Can you believe that I have never been on a proper safari in my life before!? Sure, growing up in South Africa I've had many opportunities to encounter wild animals on class trips or on family vacations. But it was usually limited to where we got to feed elephants at sanctuaries, see lions and leopards at enclosed wildlife parks, and then of course there are also the giraffes and lions that roam the streets of our towns... (Just kidding!) But this was the real deal, where we went on game drives with professional guides and got to see the animals in their natural habitat.
With the help of Siyabona Africa travel agency we planned the perfect 4-day safari experience. By the way, I highly recommend this agency. They skillfully put together our personalized trip according to our budget and what we envisioned for our 4-day safari. Our travel agent also offered some very helpful tips and negotiated some pretty good deals for us. Our 4-day package included flights to and from Skukuza Airport (conveniently situated in the park) and Cape Town International Airport, transportation to and from Skukuza Airport to our lodge, 3 nights at the Rhino Post Safari Lodge, all meals, and six 3.5-hour game drives with a professional guide.
We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the Rhino Post Safari Lodge. They only have eight cabins at the lodge, so there are a maximum of 16 guests at a time. From the moment we excitedly set foot at the lodge until it was time to say goodbye again, we were treated like VIPs. The friendly staff all knew our names and were always available to cater to our every need. The food was delicious, the wine was always flowing and there was plenty to do when we weren't on a game drive. This included a beautiful pool, a bar, an outside deck with tables and chairs to relax in, or maybe even catch a glimpse of wild animals passing by the lodge. (We spotted baboons, monkeys and elephants!) Each cabin has its own balcony, a beautiful bathroom and even an outdoor shower. WiFi is available, but only in certain spots of the lodge and the signal was extremely weak. At first this was disconcerting, but it was actually a blessing in disguise to unplug and have a social media detox for four days.
Every day we got to go on two game drives; one very early in the morning and one in the afternoon before sunset. Each game drive was about three and a half hours long, which gave us plenty of time to spot animals. We made a list of all the different animals we saw, and after the fourth day we had counted more than forty different ones. We really enjoyed the game drives; it was relaxing and also fun to see who could spot animals first. Our guide really added so much to our safari experience, as he was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. During the afternoon drives, he would stop somewhere and prepare a picnic with "sundowners" and snacks for the group.
This amazing experience truly exceeded my expectations. I knew it would be a beautiful trip, but being there in nature surrounded by these incredible creatures was mind blowing. It's hard to describe the feeling of pure excitement and absolute wonderment when you are mere meters away from one of these wild animals. The sounds, the smells, the views, the excitement... I know I'll never forget my first African safari!
I highly recommend Siyabona Africa travel agency if you need help planning your safari in Africa, and also the Rhino Post Safari Lodge as an all-inclusive accommodation and safari tours option.