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4-Day Sabi Sand Safari Tours

Sabi Sand Game Reserve is home not only to a selection of Africa's most exclusive and luxurious safari lodges but also to some of its most relaxed leopards, lions and other large carnivores. It is essentially a western extension of the vast Kruger National Park, but unlike its larger neighbor it is totally privately managed. There is no barrier to animal movement between Sabi Sands and Kruger, so the two reserves support a similar range of wildlife, including elephant, rhino, buffalo, giraffe, cheetah and African wild dog. The combination of luxurious bush accommodation and expertly guided game drives in open 4x4s ensures that a 4-day Sabi Sands safari will be a highlight of any tour to South Africa.

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1-16 of 16 Sabi Sand Private Game Reserve 4-day trips, itineraries, holidays, packages & vacations

6 Questions About 4-Day Sabi Sands Safaris

 
 

6 Questions About 4-Day Sabi Sands Safaris

Answered by Philip Briggs

Is 4 days in Sabi Sands an ideal length?

“A 4-day tour, allowing for 3 nights inside the reserve and six guided game drives, is probably the most popular option for Sabi Sands. It is long enough that you can be fairly confident of seeing most key species, including all of the Big Five (lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino). But it is not so long that the early mornings and long days out looking for wildlife induce an element of safari fatigue. Having said that, while many people regard 4 days as the ideal length of a Sabi Sands stay, those who get hooked on the safari experience might feel that 5 or 6 days would have been even better.”

1

What is a typical day on a Sabi Sands safari?

“In one word, busy. A typical day starts up to an hour before sunrise, giving you time to grab a quick shower, or coffee and a snack, before you assemble for a morning game drive. These usually start just before dawn, when there is still a good chance of catching nocturnal carnivores on the prowl in the golden light of early morning. You'll probably focus on wildlife viewing for up to 2 hours after sunrise. Then as the sun climbs higher in the sky, you might stop for a coffee break before heading back to your lodge for breakfast or brunch. If you're offered a guided walk after breakfast, it will be a great chance to stretch your legs, experience the bush in the raw and enjoy the prolific birdlife. The middle of the day is generally dedicated to lunch and a welcome siesta. Guided afternoon game drives typically start about 2 hours before sunset. It's the convention to stop for sundowner drinks, then switch over into night drive mode, using a spotlight to pick out leopards, small carnivores and other nocturnal wildlife. You'll generally head back to the lodge about an hour after sunset. There you’ll enjoy a drink around the campfire before dinner, which usually takes place around 8pm. Don’t stay up too late because you'll be setting off before sunrise again the next morning.”

2

Which animals can I expect to see?

“An element of luck is involved on any safari, so there are no guarantees about what you will encounter and when. But over the course of 4 days and 3 nights in Sabi Sands, you can be almost certain of seeing lion, leopard, spotted hyena, black-backed jackal, elephant, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, warthog, hippo, baboon and plenty of different antelope and birds. You also stand a fair chance of spotting white rhino, cheetah, African wild dog and possibly black rhino. Night drives provide an opportunity to spot smaller carnivores such as genet, civet and white-tailed mongoose. You should also look out for nocturnal oddities such as aardvark, porcupine and bush baby. An unexpectedly exciting feature of Sabi Sands is the wealth of birds, which range from colorful rollers, bee-eaters and kingfishers to heavyweight ostriches, storks and eagles.”

3

How can I extend my holiday after a 4-day Sabi Sands safari?

“If you want to stay local, and spend more time viewing wildlife, a popular extension to a Sabi Sands safari would be a few days in the neighboring Kruger National Park. Kruger tends to offer a less intense wildlife-viewing experience than Sabi Sands, but it has more of a do-it-yourself holiday feel. Another great local option is a day or two exploring the waterfalls, viewpoints and other scenic highlights that make up the so-called Panorama Route on the Mpumalanga Escarpment. Farther afield, South Africa is such a large and varied country you could spend several months exploring it, and the options for extending a Sabi Sands tour are practically limitless. Possibilities include driving south to the Indian Ocean port of Durban via Eswatini (Swaziland) and northern KwaZulu-Natal. Or you could fly to Cape Town and spend a few days there or take a road trip along the Garden Route.”

4

Is it possible to self-drive in Sabi Sands?

“Guided game drives are included in all safari packages to Sabi Sands and it is not permitted to conduct self-drive game drives. However, while most visitors fly in from Johannesburg’s O.R. Tambo International Airport or arrange a road transfer as part of their safari package, it is possible to self-drive there. Coming from Johannesburg, it’s a 500km/310mi drive that usually takes about 5½ hours. You will be permitted to drive directly to your lodge from the closest entrance gate.”

5

What is the cost of a 4-day Sabi Sands safari?

“Prices for a 4-day Sabi Sands safari start at around US$800 but go up to more than US$3,000 per person. Factors that affect the cost include the choice of lodge or camp, the group size, whether or not you are sharing a room, and whether return air or road transfers from Johannesburg are included. Most packages will include all accommodation, meals and guided activities for 3 nights in Sabi Sands. Drinks may be included at some lodges too.”

6

Sabi Sand Reviews

4.7/5 75 Reviews
Expert
Emma Gregg  –  
United Kingdom UK

Emma is an award-winning travel writer for Rough Guides, National Geographic Traveller, Travel Africa magazine and The Independent.

Classic Big Five safaris, with superb leopard-watching
5/5

Sabi Sands delivers the classic safari experience on a plate. It’s a prime chunk of wildlife-watching territory tucked up against the southern section of Kruger National Park, with no fences between the two. This feast doesn’t come...

Full Review

Expert
Heather Richardson  –  
South Africa ZA

Heather is a British travel / conservation journalist, and has written for publications and broadcasters such as the BBC, Departures, the Telegraph and the Sunday Times.

Big Five, (almost) guaranteed
4/5

The Sabi Sands is the easiest place to see leopards in Africa – these cats are so habituated they’ll even crawl under the vehicle or stroll right past without a care. The Sands has dense wildlife and it’s rare you won’t see the full...

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Alexandra Banulescu  –  
Canada CA
Reviewed: Jan 25, 2024
5/5

Very experienced spotters that make sure you have the best experience. If you want to see big 5 up close, the Sabi Sand Private Game Reverse does an amazing job of seeing them up close, however due to their focus on the big 5 you might...

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Daniel Muller  –  
United Kingdom UK
Reviewed: May 22, 2023
5/5

It was the best safari I have been on and I have been to Kenya, Tanzania and Kruger before. (not been to Okavango Delta yet, which is probably the pinnacle), but it is the first time I really experienced interaction between all the animals...

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Sonia  –  
Canada CA
Reviewed: Dec 15, 2022
5/5

Incredible sightings everyday, beautiful landscapes, saw big five, up and close with the animals on every drive! Part of the greater kruger area and not fully enclosed reserve, with antipoaching efforts underway making it a great choice...

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David Gryzick  –  
United States US
Reviewed: Oct 9, 2022
5/5

We not only saw all of the animals but we also saw babies of almost all the animals! And our safari drives were not long or arduous. We generally saw a lot of animals on every 3 hour drive. Sabi Sands weakness was they did not have lion...

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