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Posted by Cayla Capri
Sabi Sabi Wild At Heart
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Take newly-married life up a notch (think ‘in like a lion’), with an exquisite earthen-laden venture into Sabi Sabi, a national wildlife reserve located in South Africa, 5 hours outside of the city of Johannesburg. Sabi Sabi is all about getting up close and personal – scoring that coveted exclusive with some of the engulfing safari’s biggest (and furriest!) stars.
the romance
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What’s more apropos for a honeymoon than one literally dripping in bee colony sweetness and moon-waxing poetics? Sabi Sabi is a leopard-streaked oasis, miles away from ho-hum civilization, boasting the rippling musculature of heated, pulsing plains and an emboldened diversity of rare, protected species.
Sumptuous luxury suites, seeped in fiery sunset and red-wine flush, provide lush recluse from the every-creature-for-themselves peril that lurks deep in the heart of the African bush come nightfall. Unless, that is, heart-pounding adrenaline is what you hunger for – then you’re fantastically in luck.
the scenery
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Sabi Sabi is a private game reserve located within the South-Western section of the renowned Kruger National Park. Here, this overwhelmingly stunning habitat is home to a surplus of 200 species, of game both large and small alike. Native to the area, these noble beasts roam with liberal, graceful ease through acres of an unspoiled, flaxen canvas.
Available suites are of world-class caliber, tenderly fashioned with sweeping canopy beds, richly hooked rugs, and oaken, thatched edifice. Sleight-of-hand specialties include Jacuzzis bedecked in suds and petals, satiny upholstery cushioned seven layers up to heaven, and splendidly crafted artworks of local zest.
the adventure
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No doubt about it - Sabi Sabi IS adventure, in its peakest of conditions and leanest of resilience. Game rangers offer safaris both day and night to ensure you catch various glimpses of a dazzling array of Noah’s Ark –the four-legged ‘Big Five’ - elephant, rhino, buffalo, leopard, and of course, their regal king, the lion. Opt for an excursion on an all-terrain Land Rover, or embark on a walking safari for an unparalleled experience BBC Planet Earth-style. Bask in the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of being able to watch a baby elephant nuzzle up to its mother’s silvery hide, a lone leopard lounging in a shadowy tree, or a pride of lions lapping at neighboring waterhole.
the secrets
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Birdwatchers rejoice! Sabi Sabi is home to over 350 species of exotic birds, guaranteed to leave you speechless with their indubitable display of plumage. As mystical night creeps in on velvety padded paws, such illustrious calls and songs are sure to lull you to sleep, drowning out all memory of city’s siren and streetcar screech.
For those ever-so-special to witness, the swooning skies come alive at night to put on a spectacular star show. With no city lights for miles, and icky pollution non-existent, honeymooners are granted the spectacular chance to gaze upon the cosmos, and all of the tell-tale Grecian constellations most likely to be revealed.
the attractions
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Visitors to Sabi Sabi have the choice between four separate, luxurious five-star lodges, each with its own unique character and style. Spend your nights in a romantic suite at the elegant and romantic Selati Camp; savor the intimate and soupy warmth of hospitable Bush and Little Bush Camp, or choose to relish the avant-garde artistry of the Earth Lodge.
Sample the best of South African cuisine in a private candlelit dinner for two alongside a glinting blue pool, partake in the pamper-y indulgences of offered spa treatments, sashay to the sounds of a live marimba band, or engage in insightful workshops led by local nature conservationists.
before you go
What to Expect
Summer: May – September are the most pleasant months, with hot days and cool nights (mid- to high 20°s)
Winter: October – April is Sabi Sabi’s summer, and these are the hottest and driest months (low 30°s).
Light colored and casual clothing. A sweater for the evenings.
South African Rand (ZAR)
The Lingo
A valid passport
Local Delicacies
Braaivleis: meat roasted over an open wood or charcoal fire
Pap: a porridge made with corn meal