Simbavati Trails Camp is one of five properties listed in the Simbavati Safari Lodges portfolio. All are situated in the Timbavati Private Game Reserve, a wildlife-rich area adjoining South Africa’s famous Kruger National Park. They include YZ favorites Hilltop Lodge and River Lodge, which are the more luxurious offerings within the portfolio. Accommodation at Trails is booked on a full-board basis, including all standard meals, a selection of alcoholic and soft drinks, all walks, up to two game drives daily, and transfers between the camp and Hoedspruit’s Eastgate Airport. The camp is open throughout the year.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
The camp is accessed via approximately 1 hour 30 minutes’ road transfer from Eastgate Airport. These transfers are scheduled (13:45 arrival, 11:00 departure), as it isn’t possible to drive any private vehicles into camp. Simbavati Trails is located in the Timbavati Private Game Reserve.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES AT SIMBAVATI TRAILS CAMP:
Guest accommodation consists of just four tents. These are set out in something of a quarter-circle, and each is named after a local bird species – Roller, Nightjar, Hornbill, and Lourie. All are Meru style, which means that an exterior layer of canvas extends over the inner structure, creating a private veranda at the front. The veranda offers a couple of safari chairs, a table, and lovely views into the surrounding bush! Inside, you’ll find twin beds, bedside stands and lighting, two wicker chairs and a table, and a tea tray. The en-suite facilities are positioned behind the sleeping space, and they comprise flush toilet, washbasin, and classic bucket shower. The shower is filled on request, with warm water.
The communal areas at Simbavati Trails Camp are approached along pathways from the guest tents. They include the main dining tent, where guests gather to enjoy delicious food and drink prepared in the neighboring kitchen or over an open fire. You can eat in the boma too, an outdoors structure just a short stroll from the dining tent. On the other side of the site, there’s the deck – this has a number of sunloungers, and it adjoins the inviting pool, making it ideal for relaxation in between walks and game drives! You can sit back with a good book, take a refreshing dip, and even take time for some wildlife watching.
ACTIVITIES AT SIMBAVATI TRAILS CAMP:
As mentioned, the main thing to do here is walks, but short vehicle safaris are also available.
Expertly guided walking safaris– The Timbavati Private Game Reserve covers over 53,000 hectares of what’s described as ‘savanna bushveld’, a mixture of six different types of grasslands and woodlands. It has a river too. Wildlife highlights include all Big Five – lion, rhino, leopard, elephant, and buffalo! There are numerous smaller mammals – predators such as cheetah, spotted hyena, and wild dog, and herbivores such as giraffe, blue wildebeest, zebra, antelopes, and hippo. The birdlife is also impressive, with over 360 species recorded – keen birders can look out for a vast variety of raptors, songbirds, and waterbirds. Walks from camp take place during early morning and late afternoon, both lasting about 3 hours (in between, there’s time to relax in your room or in the pool). Your guide will show you the best of the bush – not only the big game, but also the reserve’s plants, insects, and birdlife. To keep your energy up, snacks and drinks are enjoyed along the way.
Short game drives– Drives at Trails usually happen at the end of the afternoon walk, bringing safarists back to camp in time for dinner! Although only short drives are offered, nevertheless they’re a good opportunity to sit back and appreciate the Timbavati scenery.