Sue and Lee Flischel visited Londolozi recently and spent a marvellous few days at Tree Camp with ranger James Tyrrell and tracker Mike Sithole. Sue recounts some of their trip highlights for us:
Safaris come in different shapes and sizes. We started our holiday with what we call a “wine” safari! We flew to Cape Town to explore some of the wine regions of South Africa. After 7 days of touring Constantia, Franschhoek, and Stellenbosch and tasting many fine South African wines, we decided it was time for a more traditional photographic safari. On the recommendation of our travel agent, we headed for Londolozi in the Sabi Sands region of South Africa. As this was our first traditional safari, we were very excited to see the Big 5 along with whatever else presented itself.
After arriving at Londolozi, we had a nice late lunch on the deck and watched the monkeys try to finish off the rest of the buffet. Matthews did an excellent job of keeping them away with his slingshot!
For our first game drive we met with James Tyrrell, our guide and “Magnetic” Mike our tracker. (We dubbed Mike with this nickname after we realized he was able to find the proverbial needle in a haystack or in this case, the wild game in the bush.) James gave us an excellent overview of the Londolozi property. We asked what we could expect to see, and he told us every drive was different, so we headed out with no expectations. As we were driving out, James explained that there had been a sighting earlier in the day of a female leopard with 2 cubs and a kill, so we were going back to the area to check it out. We found the female leopard and one cub under a bush with the kill. Momma was eating, while the cub watched. When the cub tried to join in on the feast, momma let her know to back up! Soon darkness was upon us, so we enjoyed some sundowners in the bush and headed back to camp, spotting crocodiles and genets on the drive back.
On our drive back, we saw some rhinos, and then James rescued a leopard tortoise from crawling over the electric grates on the way back in to camp.
We drove towards a very large rock outcrop on the property since there had been a sighting earlier of a cub in the rocks. Apparently it had been left behind from the large pride of thirteen. James was thinking that the mother lion might return for the lost cub. Lo and behold, not a half hour later, Mike spotted the mother lion coming from very far away.
With our remaining days at Londolozi every game drive was special and unique. We finally saw hippos, elephants, Cape buffalo, zebras and a large variety of birds. We were even able to witness a leopard hoist a kill up a marula tree. .
Photographed and Written by Sue & Lee Flischel