Tag Archives: vacation

Announcement: DeWetsWild’s portfolio grows again!


We are delighted to announce that DeWetsWild portfolio of reservation services has grown again and now includes the following luxury lodgings in some of South Africa’s best known destinations!

In Addo Elephant National Park:

  • Kuzuko Lodge

In the Bushveld:

  • ANEW Resort Hunter’s Rest
  • Clifftop Exclusive Safari Hideaway, Welgevonden Private Game Reserve
  • KwaFubesi Tented Safari Camp, Mabula Private Game Reserve
  • Mabula Game Lodge, Mabula Private Game Reserve
  • Safari Plains, Mabula Private Game Reserve

In Cape Town:

  • ANEW Hotel Green Point
  • Cape Cadogan Boutique Hotel
  • More Quarters Neighbourhood Hotel
  • Oldenburg Residence, Stellenbosch
  • The Cape Milner
  • The Commodore Hotel
  • The PortsWood Hotel

In the Drakensberg:

  • ANEW Resort Vulintaba

In Johannesburg:

  • ANEW Hotel Parktonian
  • ANEW Hotel Roodepoort
  • DaVinci Hotel & Suites
  • Raphael Penthouse Suites
  • The Leonardo
  • The Michelangelo Towers

In the Kalahari

  • Tswalu Kalahari Reserve

In the Kruger National Park:

  • Hamiltons Tented Camp
  • Hoyo Hoyo Safari Lodge
  • Imbali Safari Lodge
  • Lion Sands Narina Lodge
  • Lion Sands Tinga Lodge
  • Lukimbi Safari Lodge

In the KZN Midlands and Holiday Coast

  • ANEW Hotel Hilton
  • ANEW Hotel Ocean Reef
  • ANEW Resort Ingeli Forest

In the Lowveld:

  • ANEW Resort Hazyview
  • ANEW Resort White River
  • Angels View
  • Elephant Point
  • Kruger Park Lodge

In the Marakele National Park:

  • Marataba Safari Lodge
  • Marataba Mountain Lodge

On the Mpumalanga Highveld:

  • ANEW Hotel Highveld
  • ANEW Hotel Witbank

In Pretoria:

  • ANEW Hotel Capital
  • ANEW Hotel Centurion
  • ANEW Hotel Hatfield
  • The Centurion Hotel

In the Sabi Sand Game Reserve:

  • Idube Game Lodge
  • Lion Sands Ivory Lodge
  • Lion Sands River Lodge

In the Thornybush Game Reserve

  • Monwana Residence

In Zululand and Northern Kwazulu-Natal:

  • ANEW Hotel Hluhluwe

Don’t forget that DeWetsWild can assist you in putting together the perfect itinerary for visiting our country’s most beautiful places with stays at any of 277 destinations right across South Africa.

DeWetsWild can assist you with reservations at all these destinations! (map courtesy of mapsland.com)


Bontle’s Springhares

I know of no place better than Bontle Camp in the Marakele National Park to more reliably see our very own African kangaroos, or Springhares to give them their proper English name even though they’re not hares either!

Pedetes capensis

The Springhare is a large rodent, measuring up to 90cm in length and weighing between 2.5 and 3.5kg. Their mode of propulsion is unique among mammals in sub-Saharan Africa, jumping kangaroo-like as they move around and covering up to 2m in a single bound.

They inhabit areas with compact, but not hard, soil – usually sandy or sedimentary – in which they very prodigiously tunnel their own burrows of up to 140m in extent. Each individual Springhare lives in its own burrow system, except for females who’d share it with their latest baby, and these have several entrances, side tunnels and escape holes. They’ll often block the tunnel entrance behind them once they’ve entered it. These tunnels are important refuges for many other kinds of animals that shelter in holes in the ground. While several Springhares may have tunnels in near proximity to one another they’re not social animals.

Female Springhares give birth to a single young (very seldomly twins) at any time of year after a 3 month gestation period. The baby stays in the mother’s tunnels until it is weaned at about 2 months of age. Females may have between 2 and 4 young every year. They only live to about 6 years old in the wild.

Springhares are a favourite prey of almost every predator on the continent, humans included. They are active at night and do not emerge from their burrows until total darkness falls well after sunset. They forage near their burrows to enable a quick escape, and feed mainly on grass (roots, stems and blades), bulbs and herbs. Springhares are often considered a pest in farmlands where they can do considerable damage to crops.

The Southern African Springhare (P. capensis) is found in portions of all South Africa’s provinces with the exception of Kwazulu-Natal and the Western Cape. Beyond our borders their distribution extends northwards to the southern DRC. The East African Springhare (P. surdaster) from Kenya and Tanzania was recognized as a closely related but distinct species in the 1990’s. The IUCN considers both species of Springhare to be of least concern.

Continuing our Marakele Game Drive

So far we’ve seen a leopard, beautiful birds, elephants, rhinos and buffaloes, creepy crawlies of all description, and inspiring scenery. Let’s see what else we might encounter as we continue our explorations of Marakele National Park.

Remember that DeWetsWild will gladly assist you with a reservation and planning if you’re interested in visiting Marakele National Park and making the most of your visit.

Marakele’s Magic

The Marakele National Park, and the Waterberg Mountains it protects, is a beautiful place.

Remember that DeWetsWild will gladly assist you with a reservation and planning if you’re interested in visiting Marakele National Park and making the most of your visit.

A more demure Marakele

We jump from one side of the size scale to the other, as in today’s post we’re taking a closer look at some of the more diminutive inhabitants of the Marakele National Park that crossed our path when we visited last week.

Where there’s big herbivores, like those we featured yesterday, roaming free you’re sure to find Dung Beetles going about their important work.

Just because they’re a lot smaller doesn’t mean that the predators featured in the next few paragraphs are any less fierce! Watching this Solifuge inspect every nook and cranny of a zebra dung pile for an unwary prey was every bit as exciting as watching a lioness stalk her prey.

This Yellow-and-Black Kite Spider is a lot more laid back with her hunting technique!

And this Puff Adder might be slow to cross the road, but that’s just because it is so confident of its own notoriety.

Lizards and chameleons put in regular appearances as we traveled through the Park

At night, Red Toads hunt around the ablution blocks and other artificial lights spread around the camping area.

With so many dangerous creatures around it’s no wonder this millipede decided to go underground!

A particularly interesting sighting in Bontle Camp was a multitude of butterflies, flies, moths and beetles congregating at and around a fallen-over Marula tree stump oozing sap.

Remember that DeWetsWild will gladly assist you with a reservation and planning if you’re interested in visiting Marakele National Park and making the most of your visit.

Marakele’s Behemoths

There’s no denying that Africa’s mega-mammals are a great attraction for visitors to our national parks, and being in close proximity to these majestic and charismatic animals remains a thrill we cannot ever tire of, no matter how often we have the pleasure to see them up close.

The Cape, of African, Buffalo may not box in the same weight division as the rhinos and elephants that also call Marakele National Park home, but they have a well deserved fearsome reputation, especially the cantankerous lone males, of which we saw quite a few while we were exploring the Park on our short visit last week.

With our white and black rhinos being so severely threatened by poachers it was heartening to have several good sightings of these prehistoric-looking animals at Marakele, and we realised again what a great debt of gratitude we owe the rangers who keep these animals safe on a daily basis.

An elephant roadblock is always a wonderful experience, but in Marakele, where the elephants are less used to having vehicles in their space, it can be downright exciting! It is important to give the grey giants lots of space and respect, so I am grateful that I can trust Joubert to get the shots while I keep the car pointing in the right direction!

Remember that DeWetsWild will gladly assist you with a reservation and planning if you’re interested in visiting Marakele National Park and making the most of your visit.

More to Marakele’s Birdlife than Hornbills

The rich variety of habitats protected within the borders of the Marakele National Park harbours an amazing variety of bird species (besides the hornbills we showed you yesterday). These are just a few of the other species we saw and photographed in the two days we spent at Marakele last week.

Remember that DeWetsWild will gladly assist you with a reservation and planning if you’re interested in visiting Marakele National Park and making the most of your visit.


Bontle’s Hornbills

Yellow-billed Hornbill

A few days ago the image we posted of a Yellow-billed Hornbill (re-posted above) elicited quite a bit of interest. Hornbills, particularly the Yellow-billed and Red-billed varieties, are very common at the Marakele National Park’s Bontle Rest Camp, and they already came to welcome us as soon as we started pitching our tents soon after arriving. They’re used to having humans around and have very expressive faces, making for wonderful photographic opportunities. Enjoy this little gallery of other hornbill pictures taken in Bontle while we put together a few more posts about our recent short visit to Marakele and have a read here if you’d like to learn more about these charismatic creatures.

Remember that DeWetsWild will gladly assist you with a reservation and planning if you’re interested in visiting Marakele National Park and making the most of your visit.


A Marakele First

“The harder I practice, the luckier I get.”

Famous South African golfer Gary Player’s words can certainly be applied to searching for South Africa’s wild animals as well, for today, having visited Marakele National Park regularly for 20 years, we had our first encounter with one of the Park’s elusive leopards. These shots were taken by Joubert this afternoon.

Marakele in Autumn

It’s the autumn school holidays in South Africa and we’ve managed to escape Pretoria for a couple of days camping at beautiful Bontle in the Marakele National Park.