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Questions about Royal Malewane
All your frequently asked questions answered.
There are three lodges at Royal Malewane: Malewane Lodge, The Farmstead, and Waterside. In addition to the suites and rooms, Malewane Lodge and The Farmstead each have a private villa (Africa House and The Farmhouse respectively), and Waterside has a private house (Waterside House).
Yes. Royal Malewane is located within the Greater Kruger Park, which is located on the western border of the Kruger National Park. There are no fences separating Royal Malewane’s reserve with the Kruger Park and wildlife roams freely across the protected area.
Royal Malewane is in the Thornybush Private Nature Reserve and has access to all 15,000 hectares for game drives, bush walks and other safari experiences.
Malewane Lodge, The Farmstead, and Waterside are three separate lodges at Royal Malewane. The three lodges offer the same exciting quality of safari experience, with the only difference being their individual style and design.
Malewane Lodge has six Luxury Suites, each sleeping two people; two Royal Suites, each with two bedrooms; and Africa House – an exclusive-use bush villa with six en-suite bedrooms, the perfect option for a luxury family safari or for a group of friends celebrating a special occasion. Malewane Lodge is bigger with a classic layout and elegant interior style with dark woods, and vast, raised decks overlooking the African bushveld.
The Farmstead has three Luxury Farm Suites, each sleeping two people, and The Farmhouse – a private villa with three and a half bedrooms. The Farmstead is more contemporary and laid back – a homely, light and more compact space ideal for an exclusive-use booking.
Waterside has four Luxury Suites, each sleeping two people; the two-bedroom Baobab Suite; two interconnected Aloe Rooms; and Waterside House – a four-bedroom private house. Waterside is vast and spacious with plenty of playful colour that reflects the brighter details of the bush.
Children over 10 are welcome in the Luxury Suites at Malewane Lodge and in the Luxury Farm Suites at The Farmstead.
Children of all ages are welcome in the Royal Suites at Malewane Lodge, at Africa House, and at The Farmhouse.
Waterside welcomes children of all ages.
We have a wonderful children’s programme called Royal Rangers. Our team is well trained to ensure the safety of your family while on safari.
- Sunscreen and insect repellent are always provided on game drives, but you may like to bring your own if you have a personal preference.
- Binoculars are available for guest use, but your own set will allow you to appreciate the beauty of the many birds that can be seen on drives and walks.
- A small compact camera will be fine for taking photographs, but a digital SLR with interchangeable lenses is recommended for longer range pictures, birds, and close-ups.
- For game drives, neutral colours are recommended (khaki, beige, green, stone, denim blue, black). Bright colours (pink, red, purple, yellow, white) are best avoided.
- Waterproof jackets are advisable for stays from September to April, as there may be rain. Waterproof ponchos and blankets are provided on game drive vehicles, but you may wish to bring a little extra protection.
- Gloves, a warm hat, warm jackets, or fleeces are recommended from April to August as it can get cold on game drives in the early morning and late evening (though not usually wet at this time of year)
- For bush walks, bring comfortable walking shoes and long trousers, as grass may be wet due to morning dew in summer, and some shrubs have thorns.
- A hat is recommended on game drives, along with sunglasses to protect from the strong African sun.
- The dress code around the lodge is informal but you may like to dress up for dinner, bearing in mind that temperatures can drop at night so an extra layer might be a good idea.
There is a small boutique shop at Royal Malewane that sells clothing, hats, caps, batteries, sunscreen, and other essentials, so don’t panic if you forget to pack something.
See our guide on what to pack here.
Royal Malewane is in a low-risk malaria area; however, we recommend that you consult your GP or a travel clinic before your stay to decide whether or not to take a prophylactic.
The best time of year to visit Royal Malewane depends very much on your preferences. There is something wonderful about experiencing nature in different seasons and a magical sighting is possible at any time of year.
The summer months (October to February) see more rain which means there are more insects about. Temperatures can be extremely hot. The bush is verdant, and the grass is longer which makes game viewing trickier.
Game vehicles are not driven off road if more than 25mm of rain has fallen to protect the environment. But for bird lovers, there are many more birds to see at this time of year because of the arrival of the migrant species. The bush itself is alive with sounds of crickets, frogs, and birds. There are also many baby animals born around this time, which can be the highlight of a game drive.
The winter months (May, June, July, and August) are considered peak season for good game viewing because the bush is quieter without the presence of so many birds and insects, drier without the rain, and more open without the lush green vegetation of summer. Animals tend to congregate around watering holes because water is much more sparsely available. Temperatures are more moderate during the day, and due to the dry conditions, you are more likely to be able to go off road for close-up viewing.
Temperatures in summer (from October to the end of February) can reach between 16°C (61°F) after a rainy cold front and climb up to a scorching 40°C (104°F) on a really hot day.
Temperatures in winter (from May through to the end of August) can be as low as 0°C (32°F) on the morning game drives and climb up to a comfortable 18°C (64°F) by lunch time.
The Kruger National Park is situated in South Africa’s Lowveld which experiences summer rainfall and very occasional winter rainfall.
Yes, there is a fully equipped and spacious gym at all of Royal Malewane’s lodges.
Yes, there is complimentary WiFi throughout Royal Malewane.
The rates at Royal Malewane are all-inclusive which means that all your meals, game drives, soft-drinks, house wines, and local beverages are included, as well as the mini-bar in your room (excludes premium beverages). There is complimentary Wi-Fi throughout Royal Malewane. If you have booked a Royal Suite, Africa House or The Farmhouse, your rates will be inclusive of a private chef, private butler and a private game drive vehicle.
The only things for which we charge extra are:
- Purchases in the shop
- Spa treatments
- Private game drive vehicles (unless you are staying in the Royal Suites, Africa House, The Farmhouse, and Waterside House which come with their own private game drive vehicles)
- Kosher services
- External phone calls
- External activities and day excursions
- Transfers to and from Royal Malewane
Check-out is at 11am and check-in is at 2pm.
Hoedspruit’s Eastgate Airport is the closest airport at a 45-minute drive from the lodges. It has direct flights from Johannesburg and Cape Town. Royal Malewane also has its own private landing strip called Jackalberry Airstrip. FedAir flies from OR Tambo Airport in Johannesburg direct to our Jackalberry Airstrip.