Samara Private Game Reserve

Surrounded by a natural amphitheatre of mountains, Samara Private Game Reserve sits in 67,000 acres of pristine malaria-free wilderness in South Africa's Eastern Cape. So much more than just a traditional Big Five safari destination, experiences for all ages range from cheetah tracking on foot and mountain biking, to wilderness picnics and sleeps outs.

Just 2.5 hours by car from Port Elizabeth, the Reserve is made up of 11 former livestock farms which have been rehabilitated to form what is now the Samara Private Game Reserve. The Great Karoo landscape is a semi-arid paradise of mountains and grasslands and is home to over 60 mammal species, from the Big Five to the more elusive animals such as aardvark and black-backed jackal. The Reserve is renowned for its successful cheetah conservation endeavours in addition to its community projects.

Combining colonial comforts and modern luxuries with a rustic and welcoming feel, Karoo Lodge is the perfect place to relax and allow the tranquility of the Karoo to envelop you – on the wide verandah in summer or by the cosy fire in winter. Antiques, family heirlooms and vintage books permeate the décor throughout. Guests at the main homestead are accommodated in four Lodge Suites which open onto a wrap-around verandah, while the three Karoo Suites have a garden cottage feel and feature fireplaces and outdoor showers with views. Sharing a wooden deck, the two Sibella Suites are ideal for families with children.

For family and friends looking for more privacy, the Manor is set away from the main lodge with stunning wilderness views. Comprising four Luxury Suites, the Manor is unique in its warm design reflecting local landscapes and traditions with a light, modern twist.

A true family friendly lodge, the Samara Kids Programme is designed for children and young teenagers and Samara is passionate about educating the next generation of conservationists, with engaging activities including spoor identification, rock painting like the San people, African crafts, and orienteering.

From romantic getaways to child-friendly safaris, adventure travel to milestone celebrations, Samara has something for everyone.