Big 5 game reserve in your stoep – Discover Dinokeng
Gauteng residents are accustomed to travelling long distances for a bush experience…as the province is “not” home to a big 5 game reserve. This statement, however has finally become redundant since Gauteng now proudly has its own big 5 game reserve…Dinokeng, which is located in Hammanskraal less than 40km from Pretoria and 90km from Johannesburg.
Dinokeng Game Reserve enjoys 18,500 hectares of pristine African bush and is the only free roaming big five reserve in the province. An initiative of the Department of Economic Development, Dinokeng Game Reserve Management Association and private landowners. Project is establishing a world-class game reserve in a previously economically depressed area of the province.
- Reserve is not a self-drive reserve, guests are required to book game drives with one of the many establishments in the area.
Unlike other game reserves, Dinokeng Game Reserve is only open to group bookings and not individuals. This means groupings such as stokvels, clubs etc can now take a sho’t left within the province and get to see lions, elephants, rhinos etc without driving to Kruger National Park or Pilanesberg.
The Game Drive
Dinokeng – still grazing
Charl Pretorius, our tour guide explaining to us why behind him there is a fence…a landowner who refused to be part of the Dinokeng development.
Dinokeng – Giraffe
Dinokeng – early morning game drive
Charl explaining the reason why an invasive tree/bush has to be removed. It consumes 400 litres of water per day, a nearby water stream is dry because of the many invasive trees that have to be removed.
There is a large population of invasive trees across Dinokeng Game Reserve which have to be removed…for more drinking water to be available for the growing game across the reserve.
Scribes finding time to pose for the camera…from left to right – Golden, Tebogo and Sydney.
Kwalata Game Lodge Facilities
inside my room 10…with twin beds
Game drive fleet is still sparkling new…yet to accumulate more mileage driving guests around the reserve.
Kubu Camp Bar
Kwalata Game Lodge offers pristine lawns perfect for a romantic picnic…
Dinokeng Community Upliftment Projects
Below are some community projects assisted by Kwalata Game Lodge…which we paid a visit:
Freedom Walls Art Gallery & Tea Garden
One unique community upliftment project is run by a local resident Jeanne Silver who trains the locals on painting and art skills using locally sourced recycled materials in Steve Bikoville / Kekana Gardens. She is renowned for capturing highlights of South African history.
- Contact Jeanne Silver on – 072 937 0738
Big 5 Art
Steve Bikoville based Frans Phahlane spent 10 years in jail for armed robbery and learnt the skill of making art from recycled material in prison. He uses egg holders to create the famous big five animals.
- Contact Frank Phahlane on – 082 426 4422
Frank Phahlane creating a new lion sculpture using egg holders
Frank Phahlane chatting to me while busy creating a lion sculpture
Mohale’s Green Goddess Nursery
With 20 years nursery work experience, Solly Mohale started a nursery at his shack backyard in Steve Bikoville. Running out of planting space Kwalata Game Lodge assisted Solly to move his operation to the AIM farm. His operation grew and he relocated to the Rust De Winter road. On your way to Kwalata and Dinokeng Game Reserve look out for Mohale Green Goddess Nursery! He has a wide variety of gardening plants and specializes in nursing indigenous trees. Kwalata can facilitate bulk deliveries in Gauteng.
- Contact Solly Mohale on – 082 452 7217
Solly Mohale, the nursery owner…
Mohale’s Green Goddess Nursery
- Writer was hosted by Gauteng Tourism Authority for the World Tourism Day celebrations.