Shamwari Game Reserve - Bayethe Tented Lodge

Game Lodge, Eastern Cape Game Reserves


Ideal for safari virgins or those coming from Cape Town or the Garden Route, malaria-free Shamwari Game Reserve boasts Big Five game and six superb lodges across a 25,000 hectare reserve.  Home to prolific game and exceptional game rangers,  Shamwari is well known for their intense conservation practices, and their ethos is to 'conserve a vanishing way of life' which is apparent at each of their lodges.  

Perhaps the fairest of them all, this tented beauty comes with just twelve luxurious tents, a pool and a spa.  Its thatched main lodge and deck affords beautiful Eastern Cape views, and the food is excellent.  So too is the service: after all, “Bayethe”, which translates as “I salute you”, is one of the warmest Xhosa greetings going.


Secluded under trees beside the bush, Bayethe’s dozen detached tents are airy, cheerful and spacious.  Each one’s plunge pool, wooden floors, air-conditioning and heated bathroom will probably make you forget you’re staying under canvas.  There are two categories: the three Superior Tents boast bathtubs, fireplaces and a private deck with a hammock, while Luxury Tents contain indoor ‘spa baths’ or outdoor showers.


Inside Bayethe’s cosy main lodge, a lounge & dining room spill out onto the sprawling deck, whose large pool overlooks river basins where animals regularly gather – prey thirstily drinking, predators hungrily stalking.  There’s also a spa, with treatments at an additional cost.  Delicious dinners are also served in a traditional, reed-and-thatch boma, the stars glinting romantically above.


Included in your board are 4x4 game drives at dawn and dusk, each lasting 3-4 hours.  You’re very unlikely to see vehicles from Shamwari’s other lodges, but odds-on to spy the Big Five and numerous other beasts.  Also complimentary are guided nature walks and visits to the Rhino Awareness Centre, the Born Free Centre and a Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre and Hospital – where guests can have one-to-one experiences with current patients.  As all this suggests, Shamwari is extremely conservation-minded, scooping regular awards for its efforts.

Child Policy

Only children aged 12 and over can stay.  However, the reserve’s Riverdene Lodge and Sarili Lodge welcome all ages.


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