The Top 8 Game Reserves to Visit in Mpumalanga

Friends, holiday and adventure safari road trip, standing together in African game reserve.

Nestled in the heart of South Africa, Mpumalanga is a captivating region boasting a wealth of natural beauty and diverse wildlife. With their unique landscapes and pristine wilderness, game reserves in Mpumalanga offer unforgettable experiences for tourists and locals alike. When it comes to self-drive safaris in these reserves, you should rent a car in Mpumalanga from an affordable and reliable company. This article aims to provide valuable information about the top eight game reserves in the region and explore their distinct activities and facilities. 

Kruger National Park

Established in 1898, Kruger National Park is one of the largest and most renowned game reserves in the world. Spanning over 19,485 km2, the park is home to the Big Five, diverse landscapes, and various ecozones. Visitors can enjoy guided safaris, self-drive adventures, and walking trails to experience the park’s vast beauty. Accommodation options include a range of camps and lodges to suit all budgets. 

Sabi Sand Game Reserve

Adjacent to Kruger National Park, Sabi Sand Game Reserve offers a luxurious and exclusive safari experience. Established in 1948, the reserve is renowned for its excellent wildlife sightings, including the Big Five. Guests can partake in guided game drives, bush walks, and photographic safaris to capture unforgettable memories. Accommodation is provided in high-end lodges and camps, ensuring a comfortable stay. Note that self-drive is not permitted in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, only guided game drives are allowed.

Manyeleti Game Reserve

Situated between Sabi Sand and Kruger National Park, Manyeleti Game Reserve is an off-the-beaten-track destination with fewer tourists and exceptional wildlife sightings. Established in 1963, the reserve offers game drives, bush walks, and birdwatching for nature enthusiasts. Tented camps and lodges provide comfortable accommodation options. Like in Sabi Sand, self-drive is not permitted in Manyeleti Game Reserve, only guided game drives are allowed.

Women on a safari game drive in South Africa Kruger national park.

Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve

Home to the world’s third-largest canyon, Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve is a breathtaking destination with stunning landscapes, diverse bird species, and rich flora. Visitors can enjoy hiking, birdwatching, and scenic drives to experience the reserve’s natural beauty. Rest camps and picnic sites are available for a comfortable stay. Make sure to hire a car in Mpumalanga for your adventure.

Mthethomusha Game Reserve

Located on the southern border of Kruger National Park, Mthethomusha Game Reserve is renowned for its ancient San rock art sites, wildlife, and scenic views. Established in 1983, the reserve offers game drives, guided walks, and rock art tours for a unique safari experience. Accommodation is provided in bush lodges. Self-drive is not permitted in the Mthethomusha Game Reserve, only guided game drives are allowed.

Giraffe in the bush of Kruger national park South Africa. Giraffe at dawn in Kruger park South Africa

Marloth Park

Marloth Park is a wildlife sanctuary situated along the Crocodile River, bordering Kruger National Park. Established in 1972, the park allows free-roaming animals, providing close encounters with wildlife. Visitors can enjoy self-drive adventures, walking trails, and birdwatching within the park. Lodges and guesthouses are available for a comfortable stay. If you are wanting to do a self-drive safari, you should rent a car in Mpumalanga from a reputable company.

Songimvelo Game Reserve

Songimvelo Game Reserve, established in 1989, offers a unique blend of landscapes, wildlife, and archaeological sites. Situated in the Barberton Greenstone Belt, the reserve provides game drives, guided walks, and horseback safaris for an unforgettable adventure. Accommodation options include tented camps and lodges. Self-drive is not permitted in the Songimvelo Game Reserve, only guided game drives are allowed.

Loskop Dam Nature Reserve

Established in 1939, Loskop Dam Nature Reserve is centred around the impressive Loskop Dam, offering a variety of wildlife and water-based activities. Guests can enjoy game drives, fishing, and boating within the reserve. Accommodation is provided in chalets and campgrounds. Self-drive game drives are allowed in Loskop Dam Nature Reserve.

Woman taking a picture of an elephant from the car window, Kruger National Park, Lesotho, Africa

The top 8 Mpumalanga game reserves each offer unique features and activities, showcasing the region’s diverse natural landscapes and wildlife. Exploring these reserves will provide an unforgettable experience for any traveller.

Explore the Eastern Cape and surrounds by renting a car in Mpumalanga. SANI Car Rental is a South African homegrown car rental company. Vehicles available to rent include compact cars, economy cars, premium cars, people carriers, and SUVs. SANI Car Rental has customers all over South Africa, including at all the major airports, both domestic and international. 

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