Set floating above the Sand River, among massive gabbro boulders and intermingled among Ebony and Boer-boon trees sits a refuge whose tranquillity is difficult to fathom. It’s where wild meets luxury – an inviting oasis where organic interiors integrate seamlessly with the raw African beauty outside. The romance of the African bush and safari life is only surpassed by the attention to detail that awaits you at the lavish Singita Boulders Lodge, a property that pays homage to its African roots with organic architecture that incorporates the primal elements fire, water, air and rock.
It gets its name from the aforementioned boulders around which the lodge was crafted, without excavating it. Every effort has been made to reuse and recycle materials during the build, using tree trunks as columns, stumps for stools, and rustic wooden surfaces. This environmentally sensitive approach is an extension of Singita’s dedication to ecotourism and their ‘touching the earth lightly’ principles.
Set in the infamous 66 000 hectare Sabi Sand Private Game Reserve adjacent and open to the world-renowned Kruger National Park, Singita Boulders traverses a massive piece of African wilderness famous for its wildlife density. Experienced rangers and Shangaan trackers work tirelessly to track and find the most elusive animals including leopard, lion, rhino and potentially large herds of elephants and buffalo. It is, however, the leopard viewing which has made Singita Boulders famous and if it is this mysterious animal that you are in search of then Boulders is undoubtedly your place. With an astonishing 9,000 sightings of 142 individual leopards recorded in this area in 2016 alone; this is the leopard's playground!
These shy and elusive cats have become accustomed to vehicles in the Sabi Sand and, unlike many other areas, where leopards are rarely glimpsed in daylight, sightings are not uncommon on game drives.
Each opulent ultra-private suite comes complete with a private heated plunge pool, double-sided fireplace and an inside and outdoor nature shower. Lots of natural stone and rustic wood beams are contrasted by super-mod furnishings, soft rugs and decor. Amenities include luxury linens, iPod docking stations and an impressive mini-bar stocked with snacks and drinks.
The main lodge’s wine cellar is mind-boggling in size and scope. Of course there are the usual spa amenities, as well as a private wraparound terrace and infinity plunge pool for each suite. Animal skins cover wooden floors, chiffon floats from four-poster beds, and rooms are decorated with copper, bone and hand-woven fabrics for an authentic feel - the effect is striking. Outdoors, thatched roofs peek out from the bush canopy and private viewing decks provide a voyeuristic perch to watch the comings and goings of giraffes, elephants, zebras and other game along the Sand River. For those that prefer to catch the last tranquil rays of the day with a drink in hand at infinity’s edge, a larger swimming pool can be found at the main lodge. This decadently decorated communal space also provides the comforts of a modern world – a spa, gym, well-stocked library and the all-important internet connection for those that need.
Game drives are included and all conducted in state-of-the-art Land Rovers, accommodating a maximum of six guests to ensure intimate game viewing while guides often venture off-road in search of exceptional sightings. Singita means “place of miracles” and it’s true, there really is a certain magic about this place.
11 official Languages Spoken
Afrikaans – English – isiNdebele – Sepedi.– Sesotho – Siswati – Xitsonga – Setswana – Tshivenda – isiXhosa
How to say hello?
Molo – Xhosa
Sawubona - Zulu
Hallo - Afrikaans
Dumela - SeSotho
Electricity – Volt & plug
The South African electricity supply is 220/230 volts AC 50 HZ. Most plugs are 15 amp 3-prong or 5 amp 2-prong, with round pins.
WiFi/Internet Access on tour
WiFi can be found at most accommodations, restaurants and airports, however, the download speed is often slow and many connections limit your data usage. In short, you’ll be able to stay connected with home, but don't expect to watch HD movies in your spare time.
When to go
South Africa is blessed with a mostly mild climate, but different areas will yield different temperatures throughout the year. Summer in South Africa is usually peak season, lasting between November – February, however Easter time (March) is often still considered peak season too. Temperatures range from 25ºC in coastal areas to high 30ºs in inland areas. Cape Town has ideal weather during this time and Durban sports warm beaches and humid air, Johannesburg experiences hot clear days and often an afternoon thunderstorm.
Shoulder season is April and May, as well as September and October. Surprisingly, the weather in Durban is often at its best during this time, and other areas simmer down from their scorching highs. Prices are lower and crowds are smaller. September and October see eruptions of flowers and blooms all around the country.
Winter is beautiful in most parts of the country. Cape Town experiences winter rain and is often a little cold and miserable, but still crisp and beautiful. Because of the warm Indian Ocean, Durban has spectacular weather in winter, often hovering around 20-25ºC with clear blue skies. Inland areas get quite chilly and the odd snowfall is not uncommon (it only lasts for a day though!). Prices are at an all time low and it is an ideal time for game viewing, as the animals are more active in the cooler weather.
Best time to go
Jun-Jul = Safari
Jan-Feb = Beach
With the possible exception of Christmas Day and New Year's Day, most tourist services and attractions are open on South African public holidays. In addition most city shopping centres, restaurants and entertainment venues remain open.
|1 Jan||New Year's Day|
|21 Mar||Human Rights Day|
|30 Mar||Good Friday|
|2 Apr||Family Day|
|27 Apr||Freedom Day|
|1 May||Workers' Day|
|16 Jun||Youth Day|
|9 Aug||National Women's Day|
|24 Sep||Heritage Day|
|16 Dec||Day of Reconciliation|
|17 Dec||Day of Reconciliation Holiday|
|25 Dec||Christmas Day|
|26 Dec||Day of Goodwill|
Visa & Travel docs
Travellers from most Commonwealth countries (excluding New Zealand), most Western European nations, Japan and the USA receive a free, 90-day visitor's permit on arrival. These travellers do not need a visa to enter South Africa. A valid passport is essential with at least two empty pages. You generally will need to show return or onward travel arrangements. Children aged under 18 must show an unabridged birth certificate (showing both parents details).
Some countries do, however, need a visa. Visas are not issued upon entry, they must be attained beforehand. It is advised that you clarify this before you leave, the Department of Home Affairs office has a comprehensive list of countries that do not require visas. http://www.dha.gov.za/index.php/immigration-services/exempt-countries
What to pack
We're generally laid back in South Africa, so no need to haul out your best silks and diamonds when you head to our shores. Here's some clothing advice when in South Africa:
Health & Safety
There are no compulsory vaccinations required to enter South Africa with exception of a yellow fever vaccination if you have been in a yellow fever area within the last 12 months.
The only major health risk you might face in South Africa is malaria, which is confined to small areas in the north-eastern parts of the country. Small pockets of the northern parts of the Kruger National Park fall under this area but the risk here is considered extremely low and it is not always necessary to take anti-malaria tablets. Remember as a precautionary measure to check with your accommodation what is recommended.
South Africa may have high crime statistics, but if you conduct yourself wisely, most tourists enjoy the country without any incident at all. Ensure that you lock away your passports and travel documents in a safe, which is usually provided by your accommodation. Don't flash around valuables and keep an eye on your belongings at all time. Majority of South Africa’s crime is opportunistic petty crime, so if you are vigilant about your belongings you should not have any problem.
South Africa has 3 world-class airports that receive international flights every day; Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town. Most international airlines will have flights into one or all of these airports daily.
There are numerous budget carriers that offer domestic flights between the major cities for very reasonable rates; this is the fastest and safest way to span large distances, especially between Johannesburg and Cape Town, which is a 2-hour flight.
From the airports there are numerous shuttles and taxis that you can pick up upon arrival, there are also many different car hire options at each airport and in all major cities. Uber is another reliable and affordable option.
Our currency in South Africa is the South African Rand. You can easily convert your currency to rand at a bank or Forex Bureau, the airports and larger towns often have many different Forex options. You can also withdraw from an ATM, banks are available throughout South Africa. Be sure to check what international bank charges you will incur for withdrawals before you arrive. Major credit cards are usually accepted in hotels or restaurants, however, there may be a surcharge. It is advisable to have small amounts of cash for curios and tipping.