Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

The sight of two Zebras mating was not exactly what I expected to see when we drove through the gates of Gondwana Game Reserve. Judging by the look on the faces of my fellow female companions, the encounter took us all by surprise. Needless to say, it became the inspiration behind the many hilarious conversations that followed over the next two days.

zebras mating e1416041899698 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Whether you’re looking for the ultimate luxury safari, a wedding celebration, a honeymoon, a family or even a business getaway, Gondwana will provide you with an authentic African experience. Situated about 20 kilometers outside Mossel Bay and a mere 4 hour drive from Cape Town, this 11 000 hector game reserve is the only fynbos reserve in the world that’s home to free roaming Big Five game as well as endangered species like the Cape mountain zebra and black harrier among many others.

Gondwana is the essence of extravagance, so expect to be treated like African royalty during your stay. Rustic walkways guide guests to the 14 Kwena Lodge huts designed around Khoi San architecture. Each beehive-shaped dwelling is spacious, decorated with an eclectic mix of original African furniture and fitted with all the amenities one would expect from a luxury property. Every suite also offers breathtaking 180-degree views looking out over the swimming pool and waterholes below, as well as the encircling Langeberg mountains.

gondwana hut e1416132460135 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

 

suite gondwana game reserve e1416132829889 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

view from suite gondwana game reserve e1416132894125 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Game viewing is carried out early morning and late afternoon on game drives. The open safari vehicle made it easy for us to spot wildlife, but it was the incredibly knowledgeable and witty sense of humour of Brendan Mandy, the highly experienced head ranger, that made every safari excursion unforgettable. The amount of knowledge I gained in two days is impressive.

safari truck gondwana e1416133021267 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: This truck can drive over trees!

Brendan mandy game ranger e1416133083338 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: This is what a walking wildlife encyclopaedia looks like.

brendan game Ranger e1416133156896 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: The pointed petals of the pincushion flower are edible and can easily add some colour to an everyday salad.

zebra gondwana e1416133233834 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: It was previously believed that zebras were white animals with black stripes, since some zebras have white underbellies. Embryological evidence, however, shows that the animal’s background colour is black and the white stripes and bellies are additions.

rhino gondwana e1416133330352 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: An adult rhino can produce as much as 50 kgs of dung per day! That’s a lotta poo!

hippo gondwana e1416133402441 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: The colour of a Hippo’s milk is bright pink. The reason why it is pink is that hippo secretes two kind of unique acids called “Hipposudoric acid” and “Norhipposudoric acid“. The two acids got their names from the word Hippopotamus.

lion gondwana e1416135615690 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: Lions mating habits are the stuff of legends – every 20 minutes for 3 – 4 days!

female lioness gondwana e1416135843937 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: Lions mating is a non-stop affair, filled with uneasiness and violence. In order to stimulate the female to ovulate, the male has barbs on his penis which dig into the female. When the penis is retracted it hurts the female causing her to lash out at the male.

elephants e1416136225966 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Fast fact: Elephants are the only mammals, besides humans, to have chins.

cheetha at gondwana e1416136463437 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

Cheetahs have low genetic diversity, which causes frequent birth defects among cubs. Two-headed and six-legged cubs are not uncommon.

It’s safe to say that a stay at Gondwana is incomplete without a real authentic South African dining experience. The chefs and kitchen staff will ensure you continue to feast on the memory of your stay long after you return home! The Kwena Restaurant serves hearty farm breakfasts and a a la carte lunch and dinner menu, offering soul soothing and proudly African cuisine complemented by a list of fine locally produced wines.

kwena restaurant gondwana e1416136876491 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

On the last evening of our stay we were treated to a private dinner in the Lehele Restaurant across the valley. The five course feast paired with wine and a couple of Ranger Brendan’s captivating stories, created the scene for yet another unforgettable evening in a surreal setting.

When it was time to leave I was not ready to go. I could have easily stayed for another night or two. As we left the gate of the reserve I knew that this was one of those once in a lifetime experience that will stay with me forever.

anel bonnie e1416137921983 Exploring the wild side of Gondwana Game Reserve

For the ultimate safari experience contact Gondwana Game Reserve and make you reservation at:

Tel +27 21 555 0807
Email: reservations@gondwanagr.co.za

Visit www.gondwanagr.co.za for more information about the Game Reserve and its facilities.