Waterberg Big 5 Adventure

Waterberg South Africa: (IT-SAPR01)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/south_africa_waterberg_big_5_adventure.aspx

Introduction
Waterberg South Africa
Discover the Entabeni Reserve of South Africa, its wildlife and nature from the back of a horse: an overwhelming feeling!

Travel as the first settlers did many years ago: listen to the rhythmic sound of hooves galloping on paths used only by animals, the horses breathing breaking the silence, the pungent aroma of horse sweat in the air... We aim to convey a feeling of traveling back in time, disconnecting form everyday life and taking time to absorb the peace and tranquility of an African safari.

On this safari, you will experience pure adrenaline mixed with an ever changing scenery and variety of wildlife, which will give you a true sense of freedom and excitement.
If you would like to design your own safari, we can accommodate a minimum of two people and maximum of eight, on our private rides. This is ideal for people who cannot travel on set dates, or would like to base the ride at one or two lodges, or travel for a shorter number of days.

Accomodation

Accommodations
This is a progressive ride, so nights will be spent in different locations.

Description
You will be staying at different deluxe bush camps and a lodge.
Cellservice is usually available most of the time while riding in the reserve. Our guides always have a radio to keep in touch at any time.

Accommodation Itinerary for 8-day program - subject to changes based on availability
Night 1: Wildside Tented Camp
Nights 2 - 5: Boukenhout Fly Camp (night 5 might be spent camping under the stars)
Nights 6 & 7: Ravineside Lodge

Accommodation Itinerary for 6-day program - subject to changes based on availability
Night 1: Wildside Tented Camp
Nights 2 - 5: Boukenhout Fly Camp


Wildside Tented Camp
It is one of the most charming accommodations on the reserve, with a real African wilderness feel. It is located on the lower escarpment and offers 20 comfortable en-suite tented chalets, all equipped with a tea/coffee station, a minibar (stocked on request), a ceiling fan and a hairdryer.
This camp is fully equipped with Wi-Fi access and electricity.


Boukenhout Fly Camp
Our fly camp is set up exclusively for the group booked and can be broken down in 24 hours (leaving no trace of our passage). We choose the location for its natural beauty, safety and ambience so to allow guests to experience the true wilderness and spend a few days under traditional style canvas tents. Our Fly Camp is usually set up by natural rock pools, allowing guest to relax in the sun or swim when water levels are high.
Each tent can sleep two people, in military style bed frames with a comfortable mattress and white linen and duvets. The tents are high enough to walk in comfortably and are finished with a carpet and a bedside table. The tents are connected between each other with lantern lit pathways. Facilities are shared. There is no Wi-Fi access.
Dinners in the riverbed, are a must at this location as well as cosy evenings by the fire after the days ride to discuss the happening of the day.

Camping under the stars (weather dependant)
This mobile camp is set up for our riders only, and is situated in a remote area of the reserve. Canvas tents are built before the ride starts, and broken down after the night, leaving no trace. There is a kitchen tent, dining tent, a basic wash up area with hand towels and toiletries and central soma area (open fire). The tents are set up along the river. A sleeping bag will be provided (no need to bring your own). Hot water bottles in your bed in in winter, and steering hot showers (hung form a tree) are available during your stay. The true out on Africa experience. There is no electricity or Wi-Fi in camp, but lanterns set the scene as the sun sets, for romantic evenings around the fire, in true wilderness.


Ravineside Lodge
Located on the upper escarpment, under the shadow of Entabeni Mountain, the lodge is built on stilts off the cliff edge offering spectacular views of unspoilt ravines and wooded hillsides. The Lodge has 22 double/twin chalets equipped with a tea/coffee station, ceiling fan and private bathroom with hairdryer. A minibar fridge is available in the communal lounge areas (stocked on request). From the open sundecks, guests can indulge in bird and game watching and experience the beauty of the ravine while listening to the rippling sound of water from below in the valley in summer.
There is Wi-Fi available.

Room Occupancy
If you are willing to share, the single supplement fee does not apply.



Meals
All meals are included from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on the last day.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to most dietary restrictions if given prior notice.
Unfortunately, we are unable to cater to celiacs (but gluten-free diets are okay) and vegans.

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding


Our horse safari groups are small, and we ensure personal attention is given to our guests.

Terrain
Challenging terrain at times, with steep slopes. Leading the horse will sometimes be necessary.

Itinerary

NOTE: Please note that due to changes in weather and other unforeseen events, the itineraries and accommodations used may change at the last minute.

Sample Itinerary: 8-day program - subject to changes

Day 1 (Saturday): Arrival
Arrive at our tented camp in time for a late lunch. Then, we will go on an introductory game drive with opportunity to see some of the big 5 up close. After getting to know your riding preferences, a horse will be selected to suit you, for your riding safari starting the next morning. Arrive back at the camp as the sun sets. Dinner will be served around 7pm.
Meals included: Dinner
Overnight at Wildside tented camp

Day 2 (Sunday): Ride up the escarpment to Boukenhout Fly Camp
Breakfast is served around 9am. We will then transfer riders and horses to the start of your ride, on the lower escarpment, through big game territory. After about 1.5 hours in the saddle, you will reach Waterberry picnic spot for brunch at approx. 11:00 am. After lunch, you will start your climb up the escarpment. The escarpment is a 600m high cliffs, where you will partly be leading your horse over one of the steepest roads in South Africa (gradient of 40 Degrees at some points).  There will be a support vehicle with ranger accompanying the ride up the escarpment, so if the walking becomes tiring, you are welcome to jump into the vehicle!
As you reach the top, you will have some time to refresh yourself in the natural rock pool with spectacular views and crystal clear water. The ride then continues onto the plains – an idyllic scene hopefully spotted with game. You will reach the fly camp at Boukenhout at about 3:00pm, in time for high tea and settling into the place you will call home for the next 4 nights. Dinner will be served around the glistering fire, at 7:00pm
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp


Day 3 (Monday): Full Day Ride
Starting after breakfast, the ride will take you along flat rock valley, until you reach a waterfall (flowing in summer only). Alternatively you head towards yellow wood rim to a viewpoint with spectacular views of the lower escarpment. You will stop on the way to enjoy a picnic lunch (brought with us in the saddlebags) and a well-deserved rest.
You will be back at the fly camp in time for a snack before dinner is served. You can relax in the hammocks or enjoy a drink while watching the sun set..
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp


Day 4 (Tuesday): Riding Safari & Kgamakutla Point
After a light breakfast, it is time to get back in the saddle. Your guide will point out animals tracks and signs along the way, in hopes of finding some of Africa’s giants. You will arrive back in camp after a 2-hour ride, it time for brunch. After eating, you will have some time to take a plunge in the river or laze in a shady spot on a picnic blanket or hammock... At 3pm, we will serve high tea. Then, you mount for your afternoon ride which will take you to a magnificent spot on the plains for some sundowner's. You will arrive back into camp for a beautifully set table and fire in the riverbed, listening to the sounds of the bush come to life with a wonderful South African wine to set the scene.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp


Day 5 (Wednesday): Plains Ride
Today, you will have an early start and expect to be in the saddle by 6am. You will ride west on sandy tracks with some opportunity to pick up speed. We then head East towards Ingwe valley, with some chances of spotting more illusive animals in the thicker vegetation and past a lake (chance of seeing hippos). The ride continues onto the wide open grass plains and back to camp for a late lunch.
After Lunch, bags will be packed, for one night in the bush under the open skies (weather permitting). The ride will set out for about 2 and a half hours, as the day gets cooler. The ride lets you discover various landscapes, including a memorial spot in monument valley, with spectacular views. You might have to lead your horse where terrain gets tough. On arrival at the viewpoint, your campsite will be set. Tonight, you should expect a romantic dinner by the fire. The views and sunrise are spectacular!
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp or Camp under the star (weather dependant)


Day 6 (Thursday): Yellow Wood Rock Pools & Ride to Ravineside Lodge
After breakfast, you will ride back to the lodge and should expect to arrive around 9am. You will have some time to rest.
In the afternoon, you will ride to an idyllic spot with a natural plunge pool and deck with another awe-inspiring view, where you can stop for a snack. The ride continues as it gets cooler across open grassland, and to Ravineside lodge. You will arrive at your lodge before sunset to settle in. Drinks and a three course dinner at the lodge awaits you.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Ravineside Lodge


Day 7 (Friday): Outer Rime Panoramic Ride
An early start after a light breakfast at 6:30am, just in time to catch the stunning morning views and crisp air from the outer rim, overlooking the lower plateau. The ride will take you into a different scenery, riding some rocky ledges, and taking a swim in the dam with the horses, as it gets warmer. You will return to the lodge after a 2-hour ride, in time for brunch. Then, you will have some time to relax at the lodge and maybe make use of some well deserved spa time (at extra charge).
Your afternoon ride will leave the lodge at about 3:30pm. You will ride for another few hours to Hanglip viewpoint with good chances of seeing abundant game on the open areas and Ungululu. You will stop at the viewpoint, for some stunning pictures with your horse, and back to the lodge along Tswene.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Ravineside Lodge

Day 8 (Saturday): Departure
After an early breakfast at approx 6:30am, you will set off to ride for about 1.5 hours, until you start your descent to the lower escarpment, riding and again partly leading your horses for about 45 minutes, until you reach the lower escarpment. You will then ride to the reserve exit, with another spectacular route and beautiful scenery. You will stable the horses at the “extreme 19th” gate, where they are based, by
about 11:00am. Lunch or snacks will be available at the clubhouse (at own expense). You will then have a chance to take a shower at the resort before your departure transfer to the airport.
Meals included: Breakfast

---

Sample Itinerary: 6-day program - subject to changes

Day 1 (Saturday): Arrival
Arrive at our tented camp in time for a late lunch. Then, we will go on an introductory game drive with opportunity to see some of the big 5 up close. After getting to know your riding preferences, a horse will be selected to suit you, for your riding safari starting the next morning. Arrive back at the camp as the sun sets. Dinner will be served around 7pm.
Meals included: Dinner
Overnight at Wildside tented camp

Day 2 (Sunday): Ride up the escarpment to Boukenhout Fly Camp
The day starts with an optional early morning game drive if you would like, followed by breakfast (served at 9:00 am). We will then transfer riders and horses to the start of your ride, on the lower escarpment, through big game territory. After about 1.5 hours in the saddle, you will reach Waterberry picnic spot for brunch at approx. 11:00 am. After lunch, you will start your climb up the escarpment. The escarpment is a 600m high cliffs, where you will partly be leading your horse over one of the steepest roads in South Africa (gradient of 40 Degrees at some points).  There will be a support vehicle with ranger accompanying the ride up the escarpment, so if the walking becomes tiring, you are welcome to jump into the vehicle!
As you reach the top, you will have some time to refresh yourself in the natural rock pool with spectacular views and crystal clear water. The ride then continues onto the plains – an idyllic scene hopefully spotted with game. You will reach the fly camp at Boukenhout at about 3:00pm, in time for high tea and settling into the place you will call home for the next 4 nights. Dinner will be served around the glistering fire, at 7:00pm
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp


Day 3 (Monday): Full Day Ride
Starting after breakfast, the ride will take you along flat rock valley, until you reach a waterfall (flowing in summer only). Alternatively you head towards yellow wood rim to a viewpoint with spectacular views of the lower escarpment. You will stop on the way to enjoy a picnic lunch (brought with us in the saddlebags) and a well-deserved rest.
You will be back at the fly camp in time for a snack before dinner is served. You can relax in the hammocks or enjoy a drink while watching the sun set..
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp


Day 4 (Tuesday): Riding Safari & Kgamakutla Point
After a light breakfast, it is time to get back in the saddle. Your guide will point out animals tracks and signs along the way, in hopes of finding some of Africa’s giants. You will arrive back in camp after a 2-hour ride, it time for brunch. After eating, you will have some time to take a plunge in the river or laze in a shady spot on a picnic blanket or hammock... At 3pm, we will serve high tea. Then, you mount for your afternoon ride which will take you to a magnificent spot on the plains for some sundowner's. You will arrive back into camp for a beautifully set table and fire in the riverbed, listening to the sounds of the bush come to life with a wonderful South African wine to set the scene.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp


Day 5 (Wednesday): Plains Ride
Today, you will have an early start and expect to be in the saddle by 6am. You will ride west on sandy tracks with some opportunity to pick up speed. We then head East towards Ingwe valley, with some chances of spotting more illusive animals in the thicker vegetation and past a lake (chance of seeing hippos). The ride continues onto the wide open grass plains and back to camp for a late lunch.
After Lunch, bags will be packed, for one night in the bush under the open skies (weather permitting). The ride will set out for about 2 and a half hours, as the day gets cooler. The ride lets you discover various landscapes, including a memorial spot in monument valley, with spectacular views. You might have to lead your horse where terrain gets tough. On arrival at the viewpoint, your campsite will be set. Tonight, you should expect a romantic dinner by the fire. The views and sunrise are spectacular!
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Boukenhout Fly Camp or Camp under the star (weather dependant)


Day 6 (Thursday): Departure
After a full breakfast stop close to the camp, you will ride down the escarpment, and traverse the lower escarpment over open plains and out the main gate to head to the 'Clubhouse', on the resort. From there, the horses will be taken home, while you can shower and have a bite to eat (extra cost) before we transfer you to the airport for your ongoing flight.
Meals included: Breakfast


Rates and Dates for Waterberg Big 5 Adventure

Rates include:

Accommodations, All meals with drinks at fly camp, Game drive on arrival day, 6.5 or 4.5 riding days (depending on program) & Taxes
Sadlebags provided
A sleeping bag is provided when camping under the stars (weather dependant)

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionEUR ~US$
    A
    20208 day Safari, AP€2750$3110
    • Single supplement (if not willing to share)€410$465
  • B
    20206 day Safari, AP€1900$2150
    • Single supplement (if not willing to share)€75$85
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.13
Gratuity:
We recommend 10 euros per person per day.
%

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy
Gratuity:
We recommend 10 euros per person per day.

Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionEUR~US$
2020 Transfer from/to Johannesburh airport, pp, return 250 $280

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
A 2020 06/20 - 06/27 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 06/20 - 06/25 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 07/04 - 07/09 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
A 2020 07/04 - 07/11 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
A 2020 07/18 - 07/25 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 07/18 - 07/23 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
B 2020 08/08 - 08/13 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
A 2020 08/08 - 08/15 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Expired
A 2020 08/22 - 08/29 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 08/22 - 08/27 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 09/05 - 09/10 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 09/05 - 09/12 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 09/19 - 09/26 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 09/19 - 09/24 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 10/03 - 10/08 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 10/03 - 10/10 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 10/17 - 10/24 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 10/17 - 10/22 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 11/06 - 11/11 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 11/06 - 11/13 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 11/20 - 11/27 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 11/20 - 11/25 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 12/05 - 12/10 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 12/05 - 12/12 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
A 2020 12/19 - 12/26 8d / 7n 8 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve
B 2020 12/19 - 12/24 6d / 5n 6 day Safari, AP 2 /8 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Optional SPA activities, Optional night drives, Additional game drives, Airport transfers, Drinks at the lodge, optional lunch at Legend Clubhouse before departure & Gratuities

Note:

Due to COVID-19 Corona virus pandemic and certain travel restrictions we are applying some temporary policy changes to some of our tours.

For Waterberg Big 5 Adventure (IT-SAPR01):

We need some income to keep our horses fit, healthy and ready for when you are ready to travel again. We ask clients to help this industry and to support us with their travel, which will help us keep our horses on wildlife patrol, anti poaching fence check and to keep our staff who are currently involved in these activities during lockdown on the reserve - where we all play our part to protect our animals during this time.

The offer will entail a voucher to be paid in full up front.
Discounts will work on a sliding scale as follows:

  • Purchase the voucher in April, May, June 30% off 
  • Purchase the voucher in July and August 20% off.  

The voucher will have flexible travel dates (bookable up to 2 weeks before departure - subject to availability) and are valid for safaris up until September 1st 2021.


For more information please visit our COVID-19 Updates page at https://www.hiddentrails.com/article/covid19update.aspx

Other Info
Meeting:
Airport: Johannesburg
Transfer: Johannesburg Airport

Climate:
                                            Sterkriver area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

90

90

88

84

80

76

75

81

87

89

89

89

Average Low Temperature (°F)

65

65

62

57

49

43

42

49

57

61

63

65

Average High Temperature (°C)

32

32

31

29

27

24

24

27

31

32

32

32

Average Low Temperature (°C)

18

18

17

14

9

6

6

9

14

16

17

18

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

7

6

5

2

1

0

0

0

1

3

7

7

Source: NOAA


Seasons
The region is malaria-free and benefits from a moderate climate with a summer rainfall.

Summer
Days tend to be hot during the day and comfortably cool in the evenings.  Summertime permits swimming as there is abundant water during this time. Rides take place earlier in the mornings to escape the heat of the day, and depart later in the afternoon for the same reason.

Winter
The winter months tend to be dry, with little to no rainfall and warm daytime temperatures. The temperatures at night can reach below 8 Degrees Celsius, so be sure to bring something warm!
Rides start later in the morning as the day warms up, and will also leave earlier in the afternoon.

What To Bring:
We recommend the following in a soft bag (no hard case luggage please).

Riding Equipment:
  • Neutral colored riding clothes / Jodhpurs
  • Helmet
  • Gloves
  • Riding shoes
  • Chaps

Clothing:
  • Walking shoes
  • Sandals
  • Long-sleeved cotton shirts
  • T-shirts
  • Shorts
  • Cotton trousers
  • Raincoat / Waterproof cape (for the summer)
  • Windbreaker (for autumn and spring)
  • Sweater (for winter)
  • Hat
  • Bathing suit (for summer)
  • Warm socks (for winter)
  • Fleece

Other:
  • Swiss army knife
  • Water bottle
  • Handkerchief
  • Water purifier (Micropur)
  • Personal pharmacy (prescription drugs, aspirin...)
  • Anti paludean treatment
  • Mosquito spray (for the summer)
  • Lip stick
  • Sun cream
  • Sunglasses
  • Glasses if you need them or in case you loose your contact lenses
  • Binoculars
  • Camera
  • Flashlight
  • Lighter
  • Earplug
  • IDs
  • Insurance certificate