Madikwe Game Reserve
Size: 75,000 ha / 750 km2
Nearest major city: Johannesburg (3h approx by car)
Species Numbers: 28 Mammals 296 Birds 161 Reptiles
Big Five: Yes
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- Excellent choice of accommodation
- Great for birding – over 350 species occur
- It is the only place in Africa where Springbok and Kalahari Gemsbok meet naturally
Madikwe Game Reserve is named after the Madikwe or Marico River, on whose basin it is located; it was opened in 1991 and comprises 750 km² of bushland up to the Botswana border. There are 30 lodges on the property, and six lodges in the private farms outside the main reserve. It is one of the largest game reserves in South Africa and not that widely known.
The terrain is mainly open grasslands and bushveld plains, interspersed with rocky outcrops and single mountains. Madikwe Game Reserve has been regarded as one of the better conservation areas in Africa, offering all the major species, including lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo, both white and black rhino along with almost all the plains antelope species.
A special feature of Madikwe Game Reserve lies in its unique location, a transition zone on the edges of the Kalahari, where a number of rare species occur naturally, and the bushveld. The climate is generally mild to hot, but winter nights can be cold.