Melanie Chinnick was lucky enough to stay at Chitwa Chitwa recently, a luxury safari lodge nestled in Sabi Sands Game Reserve, near Kruger National Park in South Africa. Here’s some of her memories from her time in a wild slice of African paradise…

Chitwa Chitwa is a beautiful lodge lying beside a watering hole. This means you’re able to see wildlife from the comfort of your room throughout the entire day – we arrived to a herd of elephants splashing in the water! The rooms have floor-to-ceiling glass windows, which give you a complete view of all the action. On our deck we had a lovely seating area, sunbeds, an outdoor shower and, most importantly, a plunge pool. We loved relaxing in the pool with a gin and tonic watching the hippos wallowing in the water, while a buffalo grazed nearby.

Our game drives at Chitwa Chitwa were headed up by an extremely knowledgeable ranger and tracker, who were synonymous of all the staff at Chitwa Chitwa, who were all so attentive and a real credit to the lodge. The wildlife was in abundance and we felt so lucky to see as much as we did. Some of my highlights were eight-week-old lion cubs, rhinos (including a baby one), being surrounded by elephants and tracking some young leopards. When we first arrived at Chitwa Chitwa, our ranger asked us what we would like to see and I said a cheetah, to which he replied that they were extremely rare, so our chances of seeing one were low. Yet, on our second day two turned up! This was also the day a couple of guests decided to stay back at the lodge, so the moral of the story is the moment you miss a drive, you will miss something amazing for sure!

All the food we ate at the lodge was absolutely amazing. I don’t eat meat, which sometimes can be a bit difficult, but there was so much variety it was never a problem. I think my favourite dining experience was breakfast in the bush, which was a fabulous dining experience eating off a table lined with white linen surrounded by the African wilderness!

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