Skip to Content

Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Golden Gate, Mapungubwe, Marakele

Moderator: lion queen

User avatar
Imberbe
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 14480
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:28 am
Location: Pretoria, RSA

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby Imberbe » Wed Jan 28, 2009 11:35 pm

Our friends woke up one night at Bontle, thinking it was raining ... just to discover that their tent had just been sprayed by a rhino! :lol:
Imberbe = Combretum imberbe = Leadwood = Hardekool = The spirit of the Wildernis!

Want to know more about the SANParks Honorary Rangers? Visit www.sanparksvolunteers.org


One positive deed is worth more than a thousand critical words.

User avatar
DuQues
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Posts: 17941
Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2005 5:42 pm
Location: Red sand, why do I keep thinking of red sand?

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby DuQues » Wed Jan 28, 2009 11:49 pm

:lol:

However, to go serious, does that smell a lot? A little?
I've seen middens, and never smelled anything near what you expect from a neat stable?
Arriving currently: The photos from our trip! Overhere! :yaya:

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

User avatar
Imberbe
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 14480
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:28 am
Location: Pretoria, RSA

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby Imberbe » Wed Jan 28, 2009 11:52 pm

It has a strong smell ... but not as strong as elephant!
Imberbe = Combretum imberbe = Leadwood = Hardekool = The spirit of the Wildernis!

Want to know more about the SANParks Honorary Rangers? Visit www.sanparksvolunteers.org


One positive deed is worth more than a thousand critical words.

User avatar
Jozigirl
Posts: 15
Joined: Fri Oct 31, 2008 6:30 pm
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby Jozigirl » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:28 pm

My husband and I went to Marakele for the first time in December. We thought the scenery was magnificent and also saw a lot of animals including a big herd of rhino grazing near reception. We stayed at Tlopi camp and were also a little disappointed with the accommodation. Our tent, and I think I speak for most of them, needed a lot of attention and on arrival was missing a few basic items, apparently taken home by previous guests. :naughty: We were also dissapointed to only receive one towel, which got soaked during a heavy thunderstorm as the velcro on the tent flaps had perished, so we were unable to close the flaps properly. We nevertheless had a fantastic 5 days and the setting of the tents couldn't have been better. At Easter we've booked a trip to Mapungubwe, but will still go back to Marakele. :D

sander Hofman
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2008 11:55 pm

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby sander Hofman » Sat Jan 31, 2009 8:41 pm

We stayed in Marakele Tlopi the 12th and 13rd of January this year. You will not hear us complaining. Although two nights is enough when you do not drive a 4x4. The roads we were allowed to drive were good enough (Yes, they need a descent map) and the tent was serviced properly. The western section was packed with wildlife. We loved the rhino and tsessebe. The drive up the mountain was spectaculair with a wonderful view, dassies and klipspringer as a reward. Don't go for big five viewing. But hey, who cares about big five if you can enjoy these views, the atmosphere and all the other not big 5 creatures. First night we had a leopard calling quite close to the camp.

User avatar
DuQues
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Posts: 17941
Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2005 5:42 pm
Location: Red sand, why do I keep thinking of red sand?

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby DuQues » Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:58 am

DuQues wrote:I think the pages and folders have not been updated to reflect the changes, will ask SANParks to check the pages.

Done and updated!
Thanks Woodlin for pointing it out!
Arriving currently: The photos from our trip! Overhere! :yaya:

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

Cassius
Guru
Guru
Posts: 69
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2007 2:16 pm
Location: Pretoria

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby Cassius » Fri Feb 06, 2009 2:25 pm

Hi Jozigirl

We would like to apologise for the experience at Tlopi camp. I am sure we will ensure that we don’t have similar incident in the future. Marakele is a good National Park with a lot to offer. Keep visiting our national parks.
SANParks
Regional Communications Officer

User avatar
Imberbe
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 14480
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:28 am
Location: Pretoria, RSA

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby Imberbe » Tue Mar 03, 2009 4:29 pm

Safari Tent accommodation at Tlopi Tented Camp temporarily closed at Marekele National Park

All 10 Safari Tents at Tlopi Tented Camp in the Marakele National Park have been temporarily closed due to major renovations taking place.

According to the construction schedule, all renovations should be completed by the end of April 2009 so bookings can resume as of 1 May 2009.


FROM HERE posted on 3 March 2009


:clap:
Imberbe = Combretum imberbe = Leadwood = Hardekool = The spirit of the Wildernis!

Want to know more about the SANParks Honorary Rangers? Visit www.sanparksvolunteers.org


One positive deed is worth more than a thousand critical words.

User avatar
DRIESV
Posts: 32
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2008 3:08 pm

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby DRIESV » Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:32 am

Hi,
I must agree with Woodlin 100%. We spent 3 nights at Bontle during December 2008. Although the area is beautiful and there are quite a few animals in the Kwaggasvlakte area, I will not go back. The so called "Big 5 area" was a huge disappointment. We only saw one rhino with her calf and 2 Klipspringer in that whole area. There are no Buffalo left - they showed on 50/50 how they were all caught and sent to KZN. If anybody has ever seen a lion there, count yourself lucky!! I also had the nasty experience of standing ankle deep in water in the shower due to a blocked drain. Marakele can never be compared to Kruger, it isn't fair to even try. Kruger is unique!!!
In my opinion it is however fair to compare Marakele to Pilanesberg. Sadly I must say that Marakele comes off second best. Pilanesberg may be more expensive, but I'll rather go there than visit Marakele again.
I would fence Bontle in, remove the electronic gate and introduce predators into the Kwaggasvlakte area!!!

Cassius
Guru
Guru
Posts: 69
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2007 2:16 pm
Location: Pretoria

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby Cassius » Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:52 am

Hi DRIESV

Marakele is a unique National Park with activities like Bird watching and game viewing, Mountain pass up to an incredible view and proximity to the vulture colony, Night drives and guide walks. Subsequently we cannot at this stage start comparing the Park with Kruger National Park; it must be obvious that each and every National Park has its unique features and attractions just like KNP.

Things that one would look for when you in Marakele are Cape Vultures, Leopard, Silver Sugarbush and Common Reedbuck, however, it is not given that you will find these animals every where in the Park as they migrate to find grassing around the park.

What we know is we do have these animals in our Park.
:big_eyes:
SANParks
Regional Communications Officer

User avatar
JoelR
Senior Virtual Ranger
Senior Virtual Ranger
Posts: 510
Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2006 2:36 pm
Location: Pretoria
Contact:

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby JoelR » Thu Mar 05, 2009 11:14 am

Awesome! The less people like Marakele, the better. The park offers stunning scenery, fascinating trees and plants and a unique combination of bushveld/kalahari/mountain birdlife. I won't tire the forum with all my intruiging mammal sightings - people might just consider a visit to Marakele. :naughty:

Aardvark? Lion? Mountain Reedbuck? Klipspringer? Elephant? Rhino? Tsessebe? Gurney's Sugarbird? Ostrich? Etc?

naomi c
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 2429
Joined: Wed Nov 09, 2005 10:55 am
Location: Centurion

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby naomi c » Thu Mar 05, 2009 1:54 pm

I totally agree with JoelR - Marakele is an awesome place. We just spent 4 nights at Bontle - our 7th visit to the Park - and enjoyed every minute.

If you want a "big five" experience, stay away - but if you are a true nature lover you will not regret a visit to Marakele. I have never in my life seen such a variety and abundance of butterflies as on this last visit, the birdlife is amazing - saw Shelley's Francolin for the first time ever! The scenery is indescribably beautiful.

And PLEASE - do not ever put a fence around Bontle!! :shock:

User avatar
giraffee
Posts: 150
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2007 4:44 pm
Location: Pretoria South Africa

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby giraffee » Thu Mar 05, 2009 3:31 pm

I could go to Marakele every month :roll: .
It makes for comfortable and quick travelling on weekend trips from Pretoria. I love it for the scenery, the quiet, the stars, the mountains, the vultures and Thlopi Camp with it’s barbels.
Marakele has its own very unique magic.
Please never ever close the road to the towers. And while I’m at it :redface: please build two or so cabins like the ones at Golden Gate mountain retreat on top of the mountain. Heaven could not be any better than that.
Of all the things I'd been skeptical about, I didn't feel skeptical about this: the wilderness had a clarity that included me. ~Cheryl Strayed

User avatar
Jozigirl
Posts: 15
Joined: Fri Oct 31, 2008 6:30 pm
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby Jozigirl » Sat Mar 07, 2009 2:59 pm

I’m really pleased to see that Marakele is presently undergoing renovations, which in my opinion are long overdue. It’s such a lovely park and it seems a shame to be spoilt by second class accommodation. I can only hope that my letter of constructive criticism to SANParks had something to do with this! I can’t wait to return and see what renovations have taken place.

A note to future guests – please don’t take anything that belongs to the tents home, like the very nice frying pan and the upright fan that was missing from ours.

I’ll give credit where it’s due, but if a complaint is necessary I’ll do that too.

User avatar
JenB
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 18217
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2007 1:41 pm
Location: Johannesburg - where they cut down trees and name streets after them.
Contact:

Re: Marakele - Disappointing, yet magnificent

Unread postby JenB » Sat Mar 07, 2009 3:03 pm

Please don't ever renovate Bontle? :pray: We love it just the way it is. :wink:
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." ~ Anatole France


Return to “Northern Parks”