Wildlife & Animals – Timbavati NR

Philip Briggs
Expert
By Philip Briggs

Philip lives in South Africa and has authored many guidebooks to African destinations, including the Bradt and Insight guides to South Africa.

Philip lives in South Africa and has authored many Africa guidebooks, including the Bradt and Insight guides to South Africa.

Philip is the author of many Africa guidebooks, including the Bradt and Insight guides to South Africa.

Philip is the author of the Bradt and Insight guides to South Africa.

Timbavati is part of the Greater Kruger ecosystem, where animals roam throughout the bordering parks and reserves. This means all main safari animals can be seen. Timbavati is the closest competition to the better-known Sabi Sand Game Reserve, but it is a bit quieter and wilder. All of the Big Five can be spotted, and sightings are of the highest quality.

Abundant
Common
Occasional
Rare
None
ElephantCommon
GiraffeCommon
HippoCommon
BuffaloCommon
ZebraCommon
White RhinoOccasional
Black RhinoVery Rare
LionCommon
LeopardCommon
CheetahCommon
HyenaCommon

Wildlife Highlights

Timbavati is known for its large herds of buffalo, while lion and elephant are found in good numbers as well. The reserve's claim to fame is its white lions, but pure white lions haven't been seen for a long time. You might be able to see some very pale individuals that carry the gene. Cheetah and leopard are seen less often than in nearby Sabi Sands.

Best Time for Wildlife Viewing

The dry months of June to September is peak wildlife viewing time in Timbavati. August to September is a desirable time to visit, as the temperature warms up and sightings are made even easier because animals gather around predictable water sources.

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