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This page displays all information relevant to this park/camp, except the following:

Visitor Tips

  1. Remember to bring a camera, binoculars, bird and wildlife reference books, a hat and sunscreen lotion. Also remember to take along medicines such as anti-histamine and lotion for insect stings and bites.
  2. Cool clothing for summer and warm for winter - the region is subject to sudden changes in weather, particularly in the mountains.
  3. As outdoor lighting in camps is limited, a torch/headlamp is required when walking outside at night.
  4. Remember charcoal or wood, as this is not available in the park.

Where To Stay

Notices

Park Shop closed - Marakele National Park

Please note that the Park Shop has closed down due to renovations at Marakele National Park. We apologize for any inconvenience caused.

Things To See

  1. Cape Vulture
  2. African Elephant
  3. Leopard
  4. Kudu
  5. The not-so-often-seen-elsewhere antelope species such as reedbuck, mountain reedbuck, eland and tsessebe can be found here

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Accommodation

Tlopi Tented Camp

Safari Tents (ST2/4)

Each tent has two beds (two stretchers are available which are more suitable for children), private bathroom (shower, wash basin and toilet), and a fully equipped kitchen with a refrigerator/freezer, two-plate stove and electricity. Each tent has a veranda with table and deck chairs and barbecue facilities. One tent has wheelchair access. The camp is unfenced and is approximately 17km from the Reception Office.

Safari Tents (ST2/4) Exterior View Safari Tents (ST2/4) Exterior View Safari Tents (ST2/4) Exterior Safari Tents (ST2/4) Interior Safari Tents (ST2/4) Braai Facility

Safari Tents (ST2/4Z)

Each tent has two beds (two stretchers are available which are more suitable for children), private bathroom (shower, wash basin and toilet), and a fully equipped kitchen with a refrigerator/freezer, two-plate stove and electricity. Each tent has a veranda with table and deck chairs and barbecue facilities. One tent has wheelchair access. The camp is unfenced and is approximately 17km from the Reception Office.

Safari Tents (ST2/4Z) Exterior Safari Tents (ST2/4Z) Exterior Safari Tents (ST2/4Z) Exterior view Safari Tents (ST2/4Z) Patio Safari Tents (ST2/4Z) Interior

Motswere Guest Cottage (GC8)

This farm-house turned guest cottage is a stand-alone secluded self-catering unit, it is a must visit secluded place within the park for a group of friends or families (big and small) and couples who would like to experience the mountainous area in the comfort of a "home" away from home.

The farm house was converted into a guest cottage in 2012 and was named Motswere (a seTswana name referring to the Leadwood tree), in recognition of this indigenous tree that is found in the area. The wild life roaming around and the roar of lions make everyone's stay in the guest cottage a great and comfortable experience.

The guest cottage boasts four fully furnished bedrooms and two bathrooms, which offers guests the magnificent view of the Waterberg Mountains and the ambiance of the area without feeling they have actually left their home. It is beautifully furnished and offers TV with selected DSTV channels, a fully-equipped kitchen which has a fridge, microwave, kettle, cutlery and crockery, the only items that guests need to bring are their clothes and food to last them their stay.

Braai facilities and benches around the facility with spectacular views offer a more relaxed and well-rounded experience of Marakele. A family with small children can let them (children) run around and enjoy themselves in this secured (fenced) environment without fear of wild animals coming closer.

The access road to the guest cottage requires a high-rise or 4x4 vehicle due to sensitive soil type which easily become sandy or get muddy. Allow for enough travel time as it is situated approx 27km from the gate and the road takes time to traverse.

"Experience the tranquilly, come one come all the Waterberg mountains are calling".

Motswere Guest Cottage (GC8) Kitchen Motswere Guest Cottage (GC8) Kitchen Motswere Guest Cottage (GC8) Exterior Motswere Guest Cottage (GC8) Interior Motswere Guest Cottage (GC8) Lounge

Bontle Rest Camp

It's no coincidence that bontle means "beautiful" in Setswana. This pleasant rest camp consists of 36 camp sites with power points, arranged into three clusters with one communal ablution block per cluster.

It also has 10 tented units for those who would prefer a permanent structure more than putting up a tent and camp themselves. The tented units consist of four (4) family units and six (6) two sleeper units. All these units have a private veranda and are self-catering with its own fully equipped kitchen and outdoor braai stand.

The rest camp, with its unobstructed views of the unspoiled bush and mountain, is located in close proximity to the Park's main entrance gate.

Safari Tents (ST2 & ST4)

Six two-bed tents and four tents with and double bed and two single beds. Each tent has a fan, two-plate stove, braai area, en-suite bathroom with shower, microwave, fridge and a kitchenette with utensils.

Safari Tents (ST2 and ST4) Exterior Safari Tents (ST2 and ST4) Exterior view Safari Tents (ST2 and ST4) Main Bedroom Safari Tents (ST2 and ST4) Bedroom Safari Tents (ST2 and ST4) Shower Safari Tents (ST2 and ST4) Kitchen Safari Tents (ST2 and ST4) Exterior

Camp Sites (CK6P & CK6PZ)

There are 38 campsites with power arranged into three clusters with one communal ablution block per cluster. A wheelchair accessible site is available.

Camp Sites (CK6P and CK6PZ) Exterior Camp Sites (CK6P and CK6PZ) Exterior Camp Sites (CK6P and CK6PZ) Stand Camp Sites (CK6P and CK6PZ) Communal Ablution

Please note:

Accommodation images may differ from the actual units as refurbishment of various accommodation types occur on an on-going basis.

Concession Lodge

Marataba: Tel: +27 (0) 44 501 1111: The lodge is situtated on a 23 000 hectare private concession in the heart of Limpopo's Marakele National Park. For more information on this lodge, please visit the website - www.marataba.co.za

General Information

To view the accommodation prices, refer to Tariffs

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Activities & Facilities

Activities

Come and enjoy the core of the Waterberg Biosphere Reserve Wilderness experience with qualified and experienced Field Guides/Rangers in the park.

Facilities

The Kwaggasvlakte plains immediately north of the reception/office complex and camping site can be traversed in a normal sedan although certain areas might be a bit challenging. The entrance roads to the safari tent camp and bush camp and t he narrow track up to the towers, can also be accessed with a sedan. Most other roads will present difficult terrain.

In an effort to keep the park ecosystem as undisturbed as possible, most facilities are located outside the park in the adjacent town of Thabazimbi.

Other Facilities:


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Natural & Cultural History


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How to get there

GPS Coordinates

S 24º 31.860' and E 27º 29.896'

Gate Times:

Gate Registration & Indemnity Form


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Park Map

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Tourism Map

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Greater Marakele

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Regional Map

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Bontle Caravan & Camping Site - Camp Layout

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Tlopi Tented Camp - Camp Layout

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Tariffs

Daily Conservation & Entry Fees

Accommodation & Camping Tariffs

Activity Tariffs

Drive/Walk Adult rate Child rate
Sunrise Drive R240 per adult R120 per child
Sunset Drive R240 per adult R120 per child
Guided Walk R325 per adult N/A

General Tariffs Information

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Vital Information

Overnight Visitors:

**If you have a problem with the interpretation of the rules, please enquire at reception.**

Check-in and Check-out times

Office Hours

Day Visitors

Entrance from 07:00 to 16:00. No need to book in advance. Currently there is no limit on number of people per day. 4x4 routes as well as routes for sedan vehicles are open to day visitors.

**Should you be uncertain as to the interpretation of a rule, please enquire at reception.**

Climate

Summers are hot but the area does not suffer from the stifling humidity so typical of the eastern Lowveld. The park is situated in the summer rainfall region and rainfall occurs in the form of heavy thunderstorms or soft rain. Winter is moderate with frost occurring in the low-lying regions only. Mornings and nights can be cold, but day temperatures are pleasant. Rainfall between 500 – 700mm per annum.

Hints & Tips

Contact Information

For enquiries email Marakele National Park or phone us on the following numbers:


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Birding in Marakele National Park

Arguably the Park’s biggest birding attraction is the largest colony of Cape Vultures in the world (around 800 breeding pairs). However the park is also appealing to birders as it falls within the transition zone between the dry western regions and the moister eastern regions of the country.

Thus it is possible to see certain closely related species alongside one another. These include (eastern species first) Southern Boubou and Crimson-breasted Shrike, Arrow-marked and Southern Pied Babbler, Tawny-flanked and Black-chested Prinia, Pin-tailed and Shaft-tailed Whydah, Dark-capped (Black-eyed) and Red-eyed Bulbul, Grey and Cape Penduline Tit and White-browed and Kalahari Scrub Rob in .

The park is an excellent place to look for raptors, with many species using the uplift generated off the cliff faces of the Waterberg to ride thermals. Apart from the vultures, visitors should look for African Harrier Hawk (Gymnogene), Jackal Buz za rd and several eagle species, including Verreaux’s (Black), African Hawk, Black-chested (breasted) Snakeand Brown Snake Eagle. In summer Wahlberg’s Eagle becomes prominent. Rock Kestrel are prominent on the mountain plateau, while Peregrine and Lanner Falcons should be watched for.

On areas of high ground Cape Rock Thrush, Buff Streaked Chat, Mocking Cliff-Chat; Mountain Wheatear, Cape Bunting , MalachiteSunbird, Lazy and Wailing Cisticola, Gurney’s Sugarbirdand Swee Waxbill should be searched for.

Other species to look out for in the lower lying bushveld and broadleaf woodland regions include Purple Roller, Black Cuckoo-shrike, Brubru, Southern White-crowned Shrike and White Crested Helmet-shrike and the exquisite Blue, Violet-eared and Black-cheekedWaxbills. Bee-eaters are conspicuous, particularly White-fronted and Little with Swallow-tailed (winter) and Carmine and European (summer) present as well. The Matlabas River (formerly home to the Tented Camp, but now only accessible from the Hoopdal Road ) can be scanned for signs of Half-collared Kingfisher and African Finfoot. From the relocated tented camp, now called Tlopi, water birds have a different profile. Black Crake may be seen in the rushes just in front of the units. A steady stream of woodland species uses the foliage around the safari tents to drink from the water’s edge. At night Freckled and Fiery-necked Nightjars and Spotted Eagle and African Scops Owl compliment the pulse of crickets and cicadas.

An annual birding census in the park and surrounding farms is organised by the Marakele Honorary Rangers . Check the Big Birding Day link for sightings records and details on how to take part.

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Mammals

Marakele is home to most of the large mammals synonymous with the African bush, including elephant and leopard. Large Predators such as brown hyena, leopard and now also lion, occur in the park. Resident antelope include, sable, kudu, eland, impala, waterbuck, tsessebe and many smaller species. Chacma baboon and vervet monkey are two species to be watched carefully for mischief, particularly around the rest camps.

Download the Marakele National Park mammal list.


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Vegetation

Approximately 55% of the park is characterized by the Waterberg Moist Bushveld vegetation type (veld type 12).

This vegetation type occurs in the intermediate to high lying areas in the southern and south-eastern portions of the park. This area is characterized by relatively high rainfall (719 mm) and the resultant leaching of the soils results in a fairy low soil nutrient status. This limiting factor in turn results in a fairly low carrying capacity and only ubiquitous species such as kudu and common reedbuck are common in these areas. This vegetation type is characterized by Transvaal beechwoods (Faurea salinga), proteas (Protea caffra) and stem fruit trees (Englerophytum magaliesmontanum). The vegetation along the tarred road leading to the towers are typical of the vegetation type.

Another major vegetation type is the Mixed Bushveld (veld type 18), which covers approximately 42% of the park. This vegetation type is mainly found in the northwestern and isolated southwestern pockets of the park. It occurs predominantly on the undulating to flat plains and the soils are generally clayey, deeper and more nutrient-rich. Most of the charismatic game species such as black rhino, elephant and wild dog will be associated with this vegetation type. This vegetation type is characterized by species such as silver cluster leaf (Terminalia sericea), sickle bush (Dichrostachys cinerea) and round-leaved teak (Pterocarpus rotundifolias). The vegetation around the camping site and tented camp is typical of this vegetation type.

Less than 3% of the park is comprised of Sweet Bushveld (veld type 17). This veld type is mostly found along the banks of the Matlabas River and forms an important winter refuge area for game particularly during limiting periods at the end of the dry season. The planned western expansion of the park will include more of this vegetation type, which is crucial to sustain adequate numbers of prey species for large predators such as lion and spotted hyena.

One of the rare and threatened plant species of Marakele is the Waterberg cycad (Waterbergbroodboom) Encephalartos eugene-maraisii. The naturalist, author and poet Eugene Marais lived in the Waterberg for 16 years and this cycad was named in his honor. This cycad is endemic to the Waterberg region and grows to 5 m tall among low shrubs at an altitude of 1 450 m.

From its Waterberg Cycads to Yellow-woods and Camel Thorns, Marakele National Parks supports about 765 plant species.


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People with disabilities

Wheelchair Access

Accommodation

Marakele is a wilderness area with limited tourism facilities for everyone. Much of the park requires a 4x4 vehicle. The safari tent camp has 10 units, one of which is accessible to people in wheelchairs, with an access ramp and adapted ablution facilities (roll-in shower). No accessible facilities are available at the Bush Camp.

Tlopi Tented Camp

Safari Tent (ST2/4Z)

The unit is accessible to the mobility challenged. The tent features two single beds and a bathroom with universal access shower, a fan, and kitchen.

Click to view enlarged Click to view enlarged Click to view enlarged Click to view enlarged Click to view enlarged

Please note:

Accommodation images may differ from the actual units as refurbishment of various accommodation types occur on an on-going basis.

Accessible Activities & Facilities


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