South Africa: Madikwe (4th to 6th of December 2009)

These are pictures from our visit to the Madikwe Nature Reserve. It is about 4 hours drive North of Hartbeespoort, and worth a visit or even a stay over at one of the lodges (See Favourite Places).

We stayed at the lovely Tau Game Lodge (See Favourite Places), and we can really recommend it. The cabins were luxurious, the spa was very relaxing, and the staff was friendly and helpful. (Bottom photo by Jenny)

Tau Game Lodge
Tau Game Lodge

There is a big water hole in front of the cabins, which is frequented by a large variety of animals.

One evening, we had an elephant enter the water to eat some of the grass, right next to our cabin!

Tau Game Lodge: Waterhole with elephant

Each group has a dedicated game ranger for the duration of their stay. Here I am with our game ranger, Ernest, which was very friendly and knowledgeable. (Photo by Jenny)

Tau Game Lodge: Our game ranger, Ernest

My wife's favourite animal. To my wife's delight we saw loads of giraffes. We also learned how distinguish between males and females by looking at the horns, and therefore negating trying to look for the telltale appendages. (Photo by Jenny)

Tau Game Lodge: Giraffes

We came rally up close and personal with the Madikwe elephants, with a female even chasing us one evening.

Tau Game Lodge: Elephant up close

We even saw buffalos, which left leopard as the only one of the big five which we did not see.

The buffalo are very skittish, with most of the photos being just of their behinds.

Tau Game Lodge: Buffalos

We were even fortunate enough to see some wild dogs, who are on the red list for endangered species.

We sat and watched when a lioness came charging in to attack the wild dogs.

Madikwe

Relaxing for a sun downer. There is nothing like looking at the sun set while listing to nature getting ready to go to bed.

Madikwe

We really got close to nature. This was a couple of White Rhinos grazing, and not bothered by the cameras snapping away.

Madikwe

Three lionesses doing what cats do best.

Madikwe

Ok, now that I've caught it, how do I get to eat it? One of the lioness caught a Leopard Tortoise.

Madikwe

The king of the jungle with his family relaxing in an open plain early in the morning. Having all these lions around made selecting a spot to stop and have a cup off coffee a challenge. (Photo by Jenny)

Madikwe

While the parents are having a snooze, the kids where out to play.

Madikwe

There was quite a variety of birds to be seen. Here are just a few of them.

A Spurwinged Goose (Wildemakou).

Madikwe

A Yellowbilled Kite in flight.

Madikwe

A Jackal Buzzard checking out its territory.

Madikwe

A Lizard Buzzard just taking off.

Madikwe

A female (top) and male (bottom) Knobbilled Duck.

Madikwe
Madikwe

An African Spoonbill. Odd looking bird!

Madikwe

A Yellowbilled (left) and a Redbilled (right) Oxpecker cleaning the parasites from a giraffe.

Madikwe