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Eastern Cape, South Africa

malaria-free safaris and luxury hotels

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South Africa’s ‘wild’ province, the Eastern Cape features expanses of untouched beach, bush and forest. It is an area with some enticing attractions – pristine beaches, abundant wildlife and spectacular scenery.

Its natural diversity is impressive: the Eastern Cape incorporates parts of all seven ecological zones that occur in South Africa. It also features all three of the country’s biodiversity regions, which is further enhanced by its 820km of untamed coastline.

This ensures an assortment of plant and animal species, including the Big Five, abundant birdlife and rich marine life (including 27 species of whales and dolphins).

The province offers something for everyone: for the adrenaline addict there’s tubing down the Storm’s River Gorge, skydiving in Grahamstown and taking the plunge off the Bloukrans Bridge on the world’s highest commercially operated bridge bungee; outdoor enthusiasts can try spot the Big Seven or enjoy pristine beaches.

The province is steeped in history – it is the birthplace of Nelson Mandela and a number of other great political activists – and was one of the centres at the forefront of the fight for democracy in South Africa.

Like South Africa’s other provinces, the Eastern Cape has an excellent infrastructure, with good roads and plenty of accommodation.

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★★★★★

Amakhala Bush Lodge

Enjoy a 5-Star luxury safari getaway at Amakhala Bush Lodge. En-suite canvas tents, excellent activities and perfect views promise a wonderful holiday in the Amakhala bushland. Experience the malaria-free Eastern Cape in style at Bush Lodge.
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FromR7,420
★★★★

Amakhala Safari Lodge

Safari Lodge is a luxury safari accommodation set in the Amakhala Game Reserve. Providing guests with excellent lodging and fantastic safari activities, the lodge is a perfect getaway for a range of tourists.
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FromR6,980
★★★★★

Bayethe Lodge

Bayethe Safari Lodge offers guests the opportunity to immerse themselves in tranquillity, surrounded by the rich Shamwari Game Reserve.
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FromR11,045
★★★★★

Bukela Game Lodge

Bukela Game Lodge is set in the malaria-free Amakhala Game Reserve and offers a safari getaway of a lifetime. The intimate lodge is perfect for honeymooners and those wanting a special luxury bush getaway.
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FromR7,420
★★★

Carnarvon Dale

Carnarvon Dale is situated in the Amakhala Game Reserve and promises a unique getaway. The main lodge is an 1820 Settler Farmhouse with guest rooms set in an Edwardian Cottage.
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FromR4,220
★★★★★

Eagles Crag

A sophisticated safari experience, making efficient use of its idyllic setting, Eagles Crag provides exclusivity and spectacular views.
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FromR13,175
★★★

Ecca Lodge

In the heart of Kwandwe Private Game Reserve, Ecca Lodge offers an indoor-outdoor lifestyle embracing the African wilderness.
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FromR14,440
★★★★★

Gorah Elephant Camp

Gorah Elephant Camp is a luxurious tented camp, with a gracious manor house overlooking a waterhole teaming with game in the heart of the Addo National Park.
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FromR23,030
★★★★

Great Fish River Lodge

Perched along the lush green banks of its namesake, Great Fish River Lodge has been designed to showcase the endless landscape in which it is set.
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FromR14,440
★★★★

HillsNek Safari Camp

Nestled in the heart of Amakhala Private Game Reserve lies HillsNek Safari Camp, a world-class Big Five safari destination.
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FromR6,980
★★★★

Hlosi Game Lodge

Hlosi Game Lodge is a 4-star getaway set in the Amakhala Game Reserve. With luxury accommodation, excellent safari activities, and first-class facilities, Hlosi proves to be a stellar getaway.
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FromR6,700
★★★★

Kariega Main Lodge

Main Lodge offers families, friends and couples a relaxed and friendly environment to enjoy the African bush.
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FromR5,950
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Addo Elephant National Park

At Addo, there are lovely picnic areas, and the guided bush walks and game drives are an exciting way to explore the wilderness and spot all the park’s magnificent animals, such as black rhino, zebra, ostrich, spotted hyenas, black backed jackals, buffalo, lion and leopard. Addo’s many antelope species, like the gemsbok, bushbuck, eland, kudu, wildebeest and springbok, never fail to delight. Furthermore, the unique flightless dung beetle is found almost exclusively in Addo. Addo is brilliant for a day’s self-drive and on a good day, from the comfort of your own car, you can see 250-300 elephants and the various other animals mentioned.

Game drives are conducted both in the day and at night by trained guides who are knowledgeable about the area. Other wildlife that guests can expect to see include the rest of the Big 5 (lion, rhino, buffalo, leopard), as well as giraffe, warthog and more. The area is also home to the Big 7 – the Big 5 with the addition of the southern right whale and great white shark. Self-drive game drives are also available.

Amakhala Private Game Reserve

The reserve is renowned for its luxury lodging as well as brilliant wildlife viewings – the area is rich in biodiversity with many animals re-introduced to the bushveld. A mere 50-minute drive north-east of Port Elizabeth and is located along the Greater Addo area. Amakhala is renowned for its excellent wildlife viewing and guests are sure to encounter some incredible animals. Animals that roam freely throughout the reserve include lion, cheetah, the white rhino, elephant, Cape buffalo, various species of buck and antelope, as well as giraffe and zebra. Animals can be viewed on game drives which are conducted by trained guides, or even from the comfort of your safari lodge.

The game reserve makes for a truly unique wedding venue – the tranquil bush, stunning wildlife and the ever present sun in a cloudless blue sky will ensure you have a memorable big day. The many luxury lodges available in the reserve have lavish wedding facilities and go the extra mile for your special day. All of the lodges also have spacious conference rooms for those wanting a fun corporate retreat.

The accommodation available ranges from ultra-luxurious to rustic and simplistic, perfect for all kinds of tourists including families and couples seeking a romantic getaway! All lodges have standard safari activities that are sure to enthral.

Port Elizabeth

Port Elizabeth (recently officially renamed Gqeberha), along with the small town of Uitenhage and Despatch together constitute the metropolitan area known as Nelson Mandela Bay, a city of 1,1 million people of diverse backgrounds. It has earned a nickname as a Friendly City, owing to the generally hospitable nature of the inhabitants and a welcoming endowment of natural and social heritage.

Nelson Mandela Bay draws hundreds of thousands of holidaymakers throughout the year, especially during summer with its internationally acclaimed blue flag beaches along its magnificent coastline. It has five biomes, alluring bio-diversity and is home to the last known islands of the African penguin. The area is endowed with natural beauty. It has five biomes, magnificent bio-diversity and is home to the last known island homes of the African Penguin. Along its coastline are internationally acclaimed blue-flag beaches, which draw hundreds of thousands of holidaymakers throughout the year, especially during summer.