&Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge
The magic and mystery of Africa come alive in the colonial ambiance of elegant &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge.
A timeless, unhurried atmosphere, combined with the quaint traditions of a bygone era, creates an aura of romance and nostalgia. This old-world haven in the midst of the African bush charms with its colonial antiques, silver cutlery and crystal glassware.
Style and grace mingle faultlessly with the rugged natural beauty of the setting, as manicured lawns give way to dense mopane thickets and wild animals saunter down to drink at the waterhole that forms the heart of this authentic safari lodge.
- The two-bedroom Family Suite, with its own swimming pool, as well as a dedicated vehicle and ranger / tracker team, offers an exclusive family getaway
Why Stay at &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge?
Protected by a living canopy of immense mopane and tamboti trees, &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge carves out a set of intimate, elegant spaces sheltered in harmonious seclusion by the thick vegetation. Twenty thatched cottages with shaded verandas nestle among the trees, ensuring the perfect privacy of your retreat. The two-bedroom Family Suite, with its own swimming pool, as well as dedicated vehicle and ranger, makes for an exclusive family getaway.
Nature is never far at &Beyond Ngala, with breakfast and lunch served in the shade of an enormous weeping boerebean tree. A walled courtyard provides a sheltered space to indulge in sumptuous cuisine, while the boma creates a dramatic setting for fire-lit dinners. An afternoon by the poolside rewards you with a refreshing dip as well as blissful relaxation time. Secret nooks and crannies with cushy sofas are ideal for quiet hours of contemplation in the leafy shade.
Creamy soft linen on curtained beds, soft tinted prints and etchings combine with the evocative smell of thatch to carry the classic safari atmosphere into your private cottage. The green slate of the bathroom reflects the dappled sunlight from outside, creating the dazzling effect of leafy shadows carried into interiors. At night, a myriad lanterns and candles peep out between the boughs of trees, shining out a promise of warmth and comfort.
&Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve is home to all of the Big Five, but is particularly known for its elephant, buffalo and rhino, as well as its packs of wild dog. Leopard and cheetah are also often encountered. The largest of all land mammals, the African elephant, is most often spotted leisurely browsing on the vegetation. Elephant are completely dependent on water and will travel considerable distances to a watering hole, making this the perfect place to watch out for them. Elephant, as well as buffalo, are often encountered in the reed beds around the Timbavati River.
Although its numbers are not decreasing as steadily as before, the African wild dog is still highly endangered, with fewer than 3 000 remaining animals. Ngala is one of few reserves to offer regular opportunities to view this rare animal and its fascinating social structure. Packs of wild dogs operate along a strict hierarchy, with all members taking responsibility for the feeding of any pups. Although meat is obtained for the pups, the entire pack remains sedentary until they are old enough to join in the hunts. Another highly social species encountered at Ngala is the lion.
The blue wildebeest, with their low hindquarter, handlebar horns and cantankerous nature live up their reputation as the clowns of the bushveld, cavorting and engaging in head-butting contests. In contrast, the statuesque kudu enthral with their spectacular spiral horns, as well as their prodigious grace and jumping ability. Striking zebra with their vibrant stripes and intriguing social system are a common sight among the bushveld savanna. The typical raised tails of warthog act as a signal device for groups, allowing each warthog to follow the one ahead of it.
True African hospitality lies at the core of &Beyond's lodges and camps throughout the continent. The people of Africa, with their warm and welcoming nature and the ability to draw guests into their hearts, inspire, educate and enchant our guests every day.
A shared passion for creating extraordinary guest experiences unites all &Beyonders across Africa. For the staff members at &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge, there is no better way to spend the day than in making our guests' safari dreams come true. Our chefs, butlers, housekeepers, security and workshop staff are trained with the same dedication as our field staff, but their pleasure in sharing your special moments is something that cannot be taught. They are the magic ingredient at &Beyond Ngala and their commitment to creating moments that take our guests' breath away is genuine.
&Beyond is renowned for having some of the most highly trained, professional, passionate and knowledgeable rangers and trackers on the continent. They have a passion for people and wildlife, ensuring unbeatable interpretive safari experiences.
Our rangers at &Beyond Ngala impart an incomparable wealth of knowledge, personally researched and experienced, about habitats, ecology, birds, trees, plants, small animals and insects. Many of our rangers and trackers belong to the surrounding communities and can share cultural information with our guests.
The Very Best Training
&Beyond runs three full-time ranger training schools headed by professional ranger trainers in Africa. Each ranger at &Beyond Ngala undergoes a rigorous training course at one of these schools before joining the team. They then receive further on-site training and benefit immensely from their colleagues' ongoing mentorship. It is through their passion for what they do, and their desire to develop and learn that &Beyond's guides are among the finest in the world.
At &Beyond we seek to maintain a low impact on the land while deriving high yield for our conservation initiatives by creating very small luxury lodges that support enormous tracts of biodiverse land, which remains untouched. At every lodge we seek out small (and sometimes not so small) but meaningful ways of putting our values into action every day. Each &Beyond lodge supports the conservation of wildlife and contributes to its neighbouring communities in one way or another. In addition, we seek to limit our impact in terms of fossil fuels, the use of renewable energy, water and waste management, and recycling.
At &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge, innovations in lodge electrification allow guests to remotely shut down all the energy used in their suites when they are out on game drives, resulting in a 60% drop in energy consumption.
Bohlabela Craft Market
One of the exciting projects that is going along so well is the construction of the new craft market at the new boom-gate on the Orpen Road which is off to a flying start!
Conservation Lessons at Welverdiend
School children from the nearby Welverdiend community are given informative game drives and entertaining lessons which teach them about nature and demonstrate the value of ecotourism. Trained &Beyond rangers and trackers lead these lessons during off-peak times at the lodge.
Craft Market to Generate Income for Local Communities
Africa Foundation, &Beyond's social development partner, is building a craft market at Kruger's Orpen Gate near &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve. The goal is to empower unemployed crafters in the area, giving them the opportunity to earn an income. The project will provide the crafters with skills and business training and includes the construction of the market itself. Three weeks of training kicked off in December and the construction is set to start in early 2008.
Expansion of Protected Areas in South Africa
Over the past decade, &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve's annual lease fees have contributed over R20 million to the SANParks Trust. This has helped to finance the expansion of the West Coast, Karoo and Mountain Zebra National Parks, which protect unique communities of plants and wildlife in some of the country's most important areas for biodiversity.
Getty Green Lodge Award 2005
The &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve Green Team won first prize in the 2005 competition as the &Beyond lodge that has made the greatest progress in terms of environmental issues. A specially constructed recycling station that sees 90% of all waste removed and recycled is a key aspect of the lodge's responsible tourism.
Guest De-light! Energy Saving in the Palm of your Hand
&Beyond Ngala Tented Camp at &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve is experimenting with a remote control with a bright future. Two of the six tents now have remote control buttons so that guests can switch off their electricity when they go on game drive (everything from lights and air conditioning to geysers, except for the plug points so that guests are still able to charge cameras, etc.). It also means that when staff ‘turn down’ the rooms, the lights don’t burn for hours before the guests return. This handy tool ensures guests are “de-lighted” and they are still able to take a hot shower when they return, as the power is not off long enough for the water to get cold.
Mdluli High School Celebrates the Opening of Two New Classrooms
&Beyond and Africa Foundation officially handed over two brand new classrooms to Mdluli High School in the Hluvukani community surrounding &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve. In attendance were prominent community members and enthusiastic students, along with staff (and several guests) from &Beyond Ngala, Africa Foundation, Djuma Game Reserve and Buffelshoek Trust. The school principal gave a heartfelt speech and said that he could not properly express his gratitude and happiness for the new classrooms. Instead, he asked the DJ to put on some music so that he could dance - he felt this was the only way he could show his true happiness! From the speeches that were delivered, it is clear that the members of the Hluvukani community truly value &Beyond's support and recognise the benefits that conservation is having on their lives.
Sing for Life Competition at &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve
The Sing for Life competition brought about a fierce competition between the &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge and &Beyond Ngala Tented Camp choirs. Our star judge, Brandon October, along with Melicent from Welverdiend critiqued the performances, and Lotus from Africa Foundation organised for a choir from Welverdiend to perform for guests in between performances. The &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge choir was crowned the overall winner, and they will move on to the Mpumalanga regional competition. The "Sing for Life" competition is aimed at inspiring &Beyond's staff and communities at over 44 safari camps and lodges to have goals to work towards, and to instill a sense of pride in their African culture through showcasing their talents and voices.
&Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve has a programme to expose rural people with no previous work experience to participate in lodge operations. After an internship period of three months, these individuals are presented with a certificate which affords them employment opportunities in the industry.
World AIDS Day at Ngala
World AIDS Day on 1 December 2006 was an exciting day for 60 AIDS orphans from &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve's nearby Welverdiend community. The excited children were treated to a wonderful day of feasting, face painting, jumping castles and presents at the Welverdiend Clinic.
A Day At Ngala
At &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge, the days are designed to thrill you with intimate wildlife encounters and the nights to spoil you with the romance of Africa.
- Morning Game Drive - As dawn breaks over the African bush, a gentle tap on your door will wake you to the delights of a new day. Your ranger will discuss what you hope to see that day over fragrant tea or coffee and morning biscuits or rusks. &Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve is home to all of the Big Five, but is particularly well known for its large prides of lion and occasional sightings of wild dog, as well as large herds of elephant and buffalo. Venture out in search of leopard or lion sleeping off the exertion of the hunt from the night before.
- Breakfast - Return to your lodge for a delicious breakfast, with platters of fruit and cheese followed by a selection of hot breakfast dishes. Choose from eggs, oats, waffles or a number of other options.
- Lunch - If you wish, you can walk off your breakfast on a short walk near your lodge, accompanied by your ranger, who will share his insight into the smaller animals and vegetation in the area, before returning in time for lunch.
- Afternoon Tea - Cool off with a refreshing dip in the sparkling swimming pool, indulge in an afternoon siesta or simply watch the wildlife from your private veranda. Over a late afternoon tea, your ranger will discuss what you hope to see during the afternoon game drive.
- Evening Game Drive - This game begins in the late afternoon and lasts until after dark, when spotlights are used for a glimpse into the nocturnal bush life. Drive down to one of the reserve's dams to watch the animals drink and bathe or watch out for predators getting ready for the hunt. Enjoy sundowners in a scenic location as the sun slowly sinks beneath the horizon.
- Dinner - Return to your lodge for a mouthwatering dinner beneath the magnificent African sky.