We recently did a custom tour to a private game reserve on the Garden Route. Just outside Mossel Bay, some 45min drive lies the private game reserve Botlierskop. Hidden between the Outeniqua Mountains and the Indian ocean. A magnificent 3500 ha big, offering the visitor a unique experience in a malaria free region and home to 4 of the Big 5.
On arrival at the day centre, we were greeted by some friendly staff and after going through the check in and signing of indemnity forms we waited in the main lodge for our open vehicle and ranger/guide.
Our guide arrived and after the introductions and safety briefing, we set off. First stop were some wildebeest, just chilling and wondering who was watching who. Our next sighting was exciting, we came round a corner and there they were, three white rhino (not three blind mice) our guide started going through all the facts and passing on his knowledge regarding habitat, gestation, lifespan, reproduction. We also saw many of the two hundred bird species that have been counted on the reserve. Our next cool sighting were three giraffe, sticking their heads up over the acacia trees and keeping a beady eye on us. It was here that we decided to have our drinks stop. When you book the sundowner tour, you not only get a great selection of alcoholic as well as soft drinks to choose from but also snacks, my favourite was the biltong (dried beef)
At the beginning of this game drive our guide mentioned that due to the heavy rain they had received during the last two days, some of the reserve would be impossible to reach, meaning the elephant and the lion enclosure, this was at the time a blow for the group. When in South Africa, you need to see the big stuff...anyway, after our cocktail stop, the ranger said he would use his 4x4 skills and try get to the enclosure concerned. The original problem was the roads were too wet and partially washed away. Anyway he did his best and with much spinning of tires, screaming engine, we got to the apex of the climb and entrance to the cats enclosure. As we came round the corner, we spotted something walking in the distance, the tension grew in the group and the guests excitement could be measured by the whites of their knuckles as they held onto the seats.
Once in the enclosure we drove towards the lion we had seen from a distance, an old male looking for his ladies, they were hiding in the grass somewhere and all we did was follow the old boy and their they where, laying flat on their backs like lazy cats do and paying no attention to us.
We spent about 45min with them before heading back to the main camp.
All in all it was a great experience for anybody with limited time on the Garden Route or in Cape Town. You get value for money and the services of a knowledgeable ranger for the duration of the game drive. Botlierskop offers luxury tented accommodation and a good restaurant should you wish to overnight.
If you would like to have a holiday tailor made to your requirements, please do not hesitate to contact us. You can read more regarding here If your interested in having any of our bicycle tours tailored to your requirements, see our list of South African cycling tours