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Accommodation, Experiences, Inspiration

Little Black Book of Private Safari in South Africa

Ker & Downey Africa > Journal > Little Black Book of Private Safari in South Africa

Guests at Londolozi Private Granite Suite enjoying a game drive.

With dedicated professional guides and private safari vehicles, a private safari in Africa allows you to set your own schedule and take joy in uncovering the mysteries of Africa at a pace that suits you, without groups or tours to keep up with. From private jet charters and exclusive-use villas to dedicated safari guides and professional staff, a luxury private safari offers travelers the ultimate bespoke experience socially distanced by design. In this journal, we provide you, the discerning traveler, with insightful information on 8 properties that provide guides and private game-drive vehicles. Enjoy the perks of a private safari vehicle and walk the game trails with a professional armed ranger, lingering in the places you enjoy the most. There is no need to feel rushed on your private guided safari, as you set the pace every day, and can enjoy your safari your way.

Private Granite Suites | Londolozi Game Reserve, South Africa

Londolozi is iconic as one of the top private reserves in South Africa.

Londolozi with Ker & Downey Africa

Londolozi is one of the premium safari destinations and offers the ultimate private safari experience. 

The Private Granite Suites is one of the five lodges situated in Londolozi and has been included in this private safari in South Africa journal as there are just 3 separate villas to this camp, and thus, offers the ultimate privacy. Guests staying at the suites/villas also have the use of a private vehicle making this an easy choice for the discerning traveler that wants to set their own pace. No children under 16 are accommodated (unless booked on an exclusive use basis).

Each suite has a private, heated swimming pool – ideal for the discerning safari enthusiast. 

Private granite suites at Londolozi leading out to a heated pool in a private safari in South Africa

Each of the three suites at Private Granite Suites has a heated swimming pool with expansive view

Between game drives, you can enjoy bush walks, spend time in the photographic studio, enjoy a local village experience, a relaxing beauty treatment, and massage, or get centered with a yoga class. Retail therapy is provided at the in-house boutique that stocks a variety of luxury items and mementos.

We do recommend a minimum of 3 nights so you can thoroughly enjoy this incredible camp – your first visit is very likely to not be your last!

Kamara House | Thornybush Game Reserve, South Africa

We have included Kamara as it opened in mid-2023 and looks set to be a premium private villa for a fantastic private safari experience in South Africa, and is sure to soon be one of the most popular options.

Kamara House on a dry river bed on a private safari in South Africa with Ker & Downey Africa

This private two-bedroom house calls the Thornybush Game Reserve home. 
Located overlooking the Monwana dry river bed.

Located overlooking the Monwana dry river bed, this private two-bedroom house offers its own game-viewing vehicle and experienced guide and tracker. While not enjoying game drives, the family can enjoy themselves in the spacious dining area, rim-flow sparkling swimming pool, or enjoy a good book in the dedicated library. Meals are prepared in the villa by a personal chef and bush breakfasts are often set up as a special surprise.

For children the reserve provides kiddies special activities including baking, beading, bug walks, and treasure hunts, and also can provide babysitting services if required.

For children the reserve provides kiddies special activities

Kiddies enjoy special activities on a private safari in South Africa with Ker & Downey Africa

Children are well catered for with many activities to keep them entertained

Cheetah Plains | Sabi Sands Private Game Reserve, South Africa

This is the home of exclusive-use luxury and is famous for offering a sustainable safari experience with its electric game-drive vehicles.

Electric safari vehicle at Cheetah Plains with a tracker on private safari in South Africa with Ker & Downey Africa

A tracker sharing a game sighting with guests at Cheetah Plains

Each exquisitely appointed villa accommodates up to eight guests and features a formal lounge, living room, dining room,  and spacious deck which leads out to a sparkling and refreshing swimming pool, expansive entertainment lounge, a wine gallery, chef’s kitchen, and four large private guest suites.

This is completely a private safari in South Africa with a private chef, private expert field guide and tracker with a private vehicle for the entire duration of your stay. They are your dedicated team.

Cheetah Plains serving sundowners as the sun sets with Ker & Downey Africa

The sun sets on another perfect safari day at Cheetah Plains
This is a completely private safari experience in South Africa with the services of a private chef, private expert field guide & tracker, and your own vehicle to enjoy. 

To top it off guests also receive daily spa treatments in the villa,  by their dedicated spa therapist.  The staff provides the highest quality service, tailored to your individual needs and preferences. Personalization is the order of the day, every day.

Amber Villa | Sabi Sabi Earth Lodge, Sabi Sands Private Game Reserve, South Africa

Amber villa exterior on a private safari in South Africa with Ker & Downey Africa

Amber villa opened in mid-2023 and offers premium safari accommodation

Sabi Sabi Earth Lodge is situated in the Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve in the southwestern region of the wildlife oasis that is the Greater Kruger National Park. Chiseled into a slope of the earth and inconspicuous set within the environment, Earth Lodge uses texture, light, and space to create a luxury safari lodge like no other. With a focus on the environment at the heart of its design and operations, it has been described as the most environmentally sensitive lodge in Africa.

Sabi Sabi unveiled the new private Amber Villa in mid-2023 to meet the increased demand for families to stay together in luxury, exclusivity, and privacy. The villa has two bedrooms and two bathrooms so perfect for families or friends. Guests staying here will enjoy their own private game vehicle, ranger, and professional tracker.   There is a minimum 3-night stay to ensure you spend quality time at the premium lodge, and we are sure guests will want to linger longer at this premium villa.

Loapi Camp | Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa

Tswalu Loapi – the third camp to join the award-winning Tswalu family, Loapi is located deep amidst the wide open savannah grasslands of the southern Kalahari, Loapi Tented Camp is described as ‘pioneering and nomadic in spirit’. Comprising just six individual tented homes, each operating as a mini-camp in itself and positioned at least 50m (165 feet) apart, guests can expect a truly private and exclusive wilderness experience. Loapi guarantees personalized, world-class service, offering a dedicated butler, private chef, private safari vehicle, and private guide for each tented home.

The new Tswalu Loapi with Ker & Downey Africa

Loapi Tented Camp offers fix individual tented homes in the famous Tswalu Kalahari Reserve
Tswalu Loapi – the third camp to join the award-winning Tswalu family.

Sarili Lodge | Shamwari Private Game Reserve, South Africa

Sarili is located in the malaria-free game reserve of Shamwari which is situated in Eastern Cape in South Africa. This is an exclusive-use private lodge. However your safari experience begins on arrival at the Shamwari gates and game sightings are in abundance. Sarili is the ultimate private safari in South Africa as it consists of five bedrooms and a tailor-made safari experience has never been better as this property comes with personal staff including a house manager, private chef and dedicated ranger.

Tswalu Loapi – the third camp to join the award-winning Tswalu family.

Sarili with fireplace, dining room and lounge with Ker & Downey Africa

Sarili is an exclusive-use lodge in the malaria-free Shamwari for a family private safari in South Africa

The outlook is over the Bushman’s River with expansive views of the plains below, from its southern location in the reserve. We highly recommend it for families or small groups, with its five bedrooms.  For families Shamwari is well known for its “kids on safari” programme where kids ages 4 and above enjoy special children’s safari activities in this award-winning reserve for a wonderful experience.

Little Madikwe Private Camp | Madikwe Hills Private Game Lodge, South Africa

Little Madikwe with private swimming pool with Ker & Downey Africa

This is a private 5* villa

Little Madikwe is located in the malaria-free Madikwe Game Reserve for the magic of the African bush with peace of mind while on your private safari in South Africa. The Madikwe reserve spans over 75,000 hectares and stretches all the way to the Botswana border. While out on your private safari you will enjoy 2 x three-hour daily game drives with a qualified ranger and tracker and end the day with drinks and gourmet canapes as the sun sets over the African savannah.

This huge 390m2 private villa consists of two bedrooms, a private lounge, a private swimming pool and a fully stocked minibar plus a dedicated kitchen with a personal chef, and personal butler (who can also be a childminder) and the villa has expansive views of a waterhole.  You can also make use of the fully equipped gym at the main lodge if you want to work off the culinary delights your personal chef has created for you and your loved ones.

Madikwe itself boasts  420 bird species and 104 tree species and a wide variety of wildlife, big and small.

Kariega Homestead | Kariega Game Reserve, Eastern Cape, South Africa

This is another malaria-free destination and is a private safari experience on offer in the Kariega Game Reserve. It has its own dedicated hosts, game ranger/guides and cook so guests have the flexibility to plan their own day according to their individual requirements. The separate house can accommodate up to fourteen guests (seven en-suite bedrooms) thus offering families and groups of friends the convenience of their own private safari haven in South Africa. There has never been an easier way to enjoy quality time together as all meals and local beverages are included.

3 people on a private game drive at Kariega Homestead with giraffe in the background

Enjoy all the comforts and flexibility while on a private safari, including scenic morning coffee stops

The chef is known to make delicious eats with barbeques and crunchy fig-balls for dessert, For special occasions, they provide spectacular tiered cakes and chilled champagne..

Activities can include an amazing river cruise down the Kariega River, walks to see fauna and flora in the beautiful bushveld, game drives to different parts of the reserve and the team can even take you to the beach for a unique experience- very few safaris can offer bush and beach experiences so close to one another.

Contact us, we are ready to curate the ultimate private safari in South Africa experience.

Are you ready?

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