Mount Savannah Game Reserve, Muldersdrift
If you ever need a quick and easy getaway this is certainly the place. Situated in Muldersdrift, less than 45 minutes away from central Gauteng and Pretoria, this lodge provides a true South Africa experience both to locals and foreigners who visit.
It's basically a small lodge in the middle of a game reserve which forms part of the Cradle of Humankind [World Heritage Site]. The 2 000 ha game reserve upon which Mount Savannah is built, is home to buffalo, giraffe, kudu, red hartebeest, impala, zebra as well as a variety of birdlife.
It's a beautiful and scenic stretch of land, with amazing sunsets. The lodge is apparently owned by people who also own the surrounding land, but is managed by an elderly couple who live in a cottage next to the lodge.
They were our guardians for the weekend [lol]. It's a full self-catering lodge with a shared kitchen, braai area and entertainment hut. For the men who can't miss out on weekend sport there is a public lounge which has a satellite TV and the most comfy and bulky couches to relax on.
The pool situated just outside the main dining / reception area. It's not heated and stays pretty freezing cold all year round. We didn't have the will power to jump in let alone dip our feet in, with the fear that we might turn into an ice block, but it's a great feature nonetheless.
We stayed in this beautiful little room situated on it's own little deck overlooking the endless grass and wilderness. Each room had its own space and I believe there are six or so rooms like this to book out.
Inside there is one big room with two single beds, which can be separated into two single beds or made into one big king size bed. Very spacious, clean and fresh and authentically decorated with traditional prints and textures.
Because the rooms are made from thatch you can imagine it gets very cold in winter and very hot in summer, which may it's down side but it's all part of the experience.
We were in charge of our lunches and dinners, but breakfast was provided by the lodge every morning. The elderly lady used to wake up super early and start her breakfast prep, by the time we strolled in at about 9am we had a proper Afrikaans style breakfast spread to choose from...delicious!
We drove up here after work on a Friday night and spent the weekend here, therefore Saturday was the only full day we had to explore as we left after lunch on Sunday back home.
Friday night we settled in, unpacked a bit, unwinded and relaxed after a hectic week, before we tucked in and called it a night. Bright and early on Saturday we watched the sunrise and had our home-cooked breakfast before heading out on a safari, which is accounted for in the package, through the game reserve.
Being an animal lover, I never really get tired of safaris or zoo visits or animal viewings because animals just make me so happy in general. Living in SA a safari is always just around the corner, so are game reserves and farms, therefore spotting wildlife isn't rare at all. However, on this hour long safari I experienced something new which had me jumping out my shoes.
We all sat [about 6 of us] in this very open safari van which had no windows and very low doors, which is normal - unless you plan on driving through a huge buffalo herd.
Now, in SA we know that buffalo's are quite dangerous animals and when they feel attacked they will charge at you full speed. A 600kg animal charging full force at you is quite a scary vision.
At first I thought we would drive about 1km away from them, and swiftly bypass them from a distance. Nope, the driver took us literally right through the herd, like in between the entire family who were grazing and lazying around about one metre away from us. It gets better....
A lady on the van carelessly dropped her phone somewhere in the middle of all the long grass...right by the buffalo! And we all know how attached we are to our phones these days, she insisted the driver stop and let her get off and look for the phone.
So, we did just that. Picture the scene, this small little safari van parked in the middle of the wild surrounded by at least 12 - 15 buffalo's, and what's worse we were invading their space and the lady was off the van treading on their territory.
I have never been more terrified in my life. I remember seeing this huge male kneeling under a tree right in front of the van, about one metre away staring at us. The driver was very aware of him and the minute he stood up that's when it was time to kick down and head out.
Needless to say, the lady found her phone and we all survived.
Not to take away from the safari, it was amazing, we drove right through the entire game reserve and all the way back again. We managed to spot giraffe, of course the buffalo and lots of them, kudu, impala, Springbox [SA national animal], warthogs and tons of zebras.
It was an amazing experience and something I will remember! Looking back now, I am glad the safari driver took that risk because if he didn't we wouldn't have had such a vivid memory for our memory books.
Definitely check this place out and enjoy!