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If you have been dreaming of a trip to South Africa, now is the time to start the planning and booking process! Whether it’s that bucket list item of the photo safari, or just hanging out in Cape Town savoring the amazing local food and wine, the Rand to US$ exchange rate is so much in your favor that you’ll be able to have that 5-Star trip for a 3-Star budget!

The big draw for South Africa is obviously the photographic safari (sorry, we don’t promote recreational hunting here). While many visitors choose the Greater Kruger National Park area, there are a couple of other “Hidden Gems” that are two of Savvy’s favorites – The magical Tswalu Kalahari private game reserve and the Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge .  Combining visits to these two lodges will give you the perfect safari experience and something quite unique and authentic.

The private game reserve owned by the DeBeers Diamond Oppenheimer family, Tswalu Kalahari has two beautiful hotel properties giving each guest “barefoot luxury amidst the wilderness.” Situated on 272,000 acres, South Africa’s largest private game reserve accommodates no more than 30 travelers at a time, allowing each guest’s experience to be customized. The pinnacle of my safari experience here a few years ago was tracking a Rhino on horseback! The main lodge, called “Motse” (“Village” in Tswana) camp has 9 suites, located at the foot of the Koannaberg Mountains. Each suite has private decks overlooking a watering hole that attracts a variety of animals, indoor/outdoor showers, a pool and fireplace.   When you are not enjoying the amazing wildlife you can relax in the award-winning spa or treat yourself to a romantic dinner under the stars.Tswalu at DuskOur other favorite lodge, the luxurious Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge, in the Malaria-free Madikwe Game Reserve, also offers an incredible safari experience. The Lodge itself has a colonial style with an African flair that is just naturally elegant. Each private suite has a view of a watering hole, a private rim-flow pool, expansive decks and outdoor showers. Indulge yourself and dine alfresco on the Best Safari Cuisine in Africa (2014 and 2015) prepared by their uber-talented chef. When out on game drives you’ll probably also see one of my favorites, Wild Dog (or Painted Dog, as they are now being called).Jamala Royal Madikwe SuiteAfter your safari, spend a few days down in the beautiful Cape Town at one of our favorite hotels there. If you’re into a colonial feel, the fabulous five-star Belmond Mount Nelson will be right up your alley. It is certainly one of the best luxury resorts in Cape Town with an amazing history, tranquil gardens, and an overall great buzz. With close proximity to downtown, it as also close to the gorgeous beaches and offers two beautiful pools on property. Views of the mountain or the spectacular gardens can be seen from most balconies. Don’t forget to enjoy a traditional high tea or relax in the luxurious spa.MNH-ACC-SUI-01With Breathtaking views of Table Mountain, Lion’s Head and the marina, the elegant One&Only is ideally located in the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. This fabulous urban chic resort also offers a spectacular infinity edge pool with poolside dining and has great shopping and dining within safe walking distance. With all the excitement of the city it is also a perfect gateway to such exciting activities as shark cage diving, surfing lessons and whale watching! One of Savvy’s favorite restaurants in Cape Town is also located here in the hotel – Reuben’s, which is owned and operated by superstar chef, Reuben a smaller boutique guesthouse is your preference, the luxurious Cape Cadogan Hotel is a boutique hotel housed in a National Monument building built in the early 19th century. It is the sister property of Lion Sands Game Reserve and offers the same exceptional five-star service. The hotel’s location is ideal for exploring the exciting city of Cape Town with close proximity to the Waterfront. The personalized service offered by the staff is unparalleled and they will make sure you enjoy all that Cape Town has to offer! This hidden gem has never had a bad review!cape-cadogan-loungeWithout question, now’s the time to visit South Africa. And with our partners there in Cape Town to do all the heavy lifting for the planning, you’ll be in good hands. We’d love to show you these amazing properties – just CLICK HERE for more info.

We’ll Show You the Way.