Set on the northernmost reaches of South Africa’s eastern coast, award-winning Phinda Private Game Reserve offers visitors privileged access to seven distinct ecosystems.
Encompassing mountains, wetlands, freshwater lakes, woodland, savanna and rare sand forests within its relatively small 60,000 acres, Phinda’s guests can go fishing, sailing, snorkelling or scuba diving in the nearby Indian Ocean as well.
One of the biggest reintroductions of big game in Africa took place on Phinda – indeed, the reserve’s name means “return” in Zulu, and today, you will find that this sanctuary has been restored almost perfectly to its original state, with great gameviewing all year round. All of the ‘Big 5’ are present, as are many rarer species such as cheetah. With just six luxury lodges in total on the entire reserve, guests at Phinda are assured of an exclusive safari experience.
Aside from five-star accommodation and facilities, guests here enjoy a wide array of activities ranging from game drives and bush walks to canoeing, river cruises, community visits and scenic flights. From this reserve, it’s also easy to visit neighbouring iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a World Heritage Site which encompasses Lake St Lucia, which harbours crocodiles, hippos and prolific birdlife as well as Sodwana Bay, popular with nesting turtles in summer and home to some of Africa’s most beautiful coral reefs.