Family Friendly Safari Accommodation in the Greater Kruger

If you’re close to your extended family or have an entire herd of children, holiday destination decisions can be a tough call. You’re probably toying with the idea of either a solo travel break or a couples holiday, or maybe you’re considering a mega-family break. We recommend a family adventure as it will create a lifetime of memories and inspiration for years to come. Going on safari is one of the most rewarding gifts you can give your family, but finding places that accept children with the right room configurations for multi-generational travellers, can be hard to source. If you book your safari through Sun Destinations, you won’t face any stumbling blocks when it comes to sourcing family-friendly safari lodges. We have an array of small-scale, intimate lodges ideal for families looking for an immersive and educational safari experience in South Africa.

For our family safari blog focus today, we’ve decided that Chacma Bush Camp, Nyala Safari Lodge, and Umkumbe Safari Lodge Riverside deserve their time in the limelight. Chacma Bush Camp is an intimate camp located in the Maseke Game Reserve, and has just three chalets that can be configured to suit families—it’s a great place to book up for exclusive use (availability dependent). Umkumbe Safari Lodge Riverside can accommodate larger groups and offer everything from standard rooms to interleading rooms and suites. With only five chalets, Nyala Safari Lodge is also a small camp—four of the chalets have room for a third bed.

It’s worth bearing in mind the child policy for each of these places is 5 and over. 

River Views of UmkumbeChacma Bush Camp Accommodation

How Game Drives Can Strengthen Your Family Bond

Immersing yourself in the wilderness brings you closer to nature and  in touch with the essence of your soul. The minute you arrive in bushveld territory, you’ll be overcome with a sense of relaxation. It’s a complete feast for the senses, and leaves you with a renewed appreciation for the natural world. Taking children away from the chaos of city life, unplugging from technology and the pressure of the modern world can reignite and strengthen your family ties.

All three of our highlighted lodges offer two game drives per day with a similar schedule. They depart early morning to catch the predators in action, and during the cooler hours of the day when wildlife is on the move. Families can enjoy the typical coffee stop during the morning game drive and observe the ever changing colours of sunset during the sundowner stop. It’s here where you can use the opportunity to discuss landscapes, geography and the importance of stopping to take stock of the the small things in life.

Game drives take place twice a day in an open-topped game viewer. There are plenty of laughs that take place when you’re bumbling along rugged terrain in the hopes of being the first to spot wildlife. Being in an open vehicle feels like a wild adventure, and creates a child-like sense of fun for all.

Prior to your first game drive, you could arrange a few friendly competitions and wildlife orientated quizzes. Get your tracker and guide involved! Here are a few winning strategies.

  • As a family, make a list of the top 5 animals you’d like to see, and see if your guide can find them
  • Take bets about which animal you’ll see first
  • Get the kids to identify birds correctly and reward them for the most correctly identified birds
  • Make a visual check list of animals before arrival, and make the family cross off species when spotted
  • Ask your guide if you can play “Bokdrol spoeg” (antelope dung spitting), where competitors spit a dry piece of round antelope dung as far as possible (kids love this game!). This game is obviously at your guide’s discretion and availability of worthy dung.

Chacma Bush Camp Game ViewerNyala Safari LodgeNyala Safari Lodge BaluleUmkumbe Game DrivesUmkumbe Safari Lodge Riverside Game DrivesLions on Game Drive at Chacma

Cool Places Around the Lodge to Connect as a Family

The boma

The boma is the quintessential part of any experience and is the perfect place for families to enjoy a bit of stargazing. A boma is an open area with a huge crackling fire with safari chairs circling the firepit. It’s a convivial place where everyone enjoys chatting about sightings while listening to the eerie sounds of the wild.

The lounge/library

Nyala and Umkumbe each have their own lounge area for relaxation. Umkumbe has a pool table for those interested in games, while Nyala has a flat screen TV. While not a guarantee, there are usually a stack of books for those who want to kick back and read while around relaxing around the poolside.

The curio shop

Umkumbe Safari Lodge Riverside has a small curio shop on site, stocking an array of plush toys and other locally made items. It’s a place where family members can buy something to remind them of their safari of a lifetime.

Viewing decks, pools and patio vibes

Nyala: Nyala’s main area has a wrap-around viewing deck mimicking the curves of the river, and runs the full length of the lodge. It’s a great place to take a brief stroll and monitor the activity below. Their floodlit pan in front of the lodge offers plenty of wildlife drama and entertainment, making for great “bushveld TV”. Pull up a chair on the viewing deck and watch the wild world unfold below.

Chacma: Chacma’s patio area almost spills out into a small pan in front of camp. There’s an elephant fence to protect bigger game coming barging into camp, but the space is nothing short of sensational. It’s literally in front of the deck area and swimming pool, which means adults can relax on the sun loungers watching wildlife while kids can swim.

Umkumbe: Umkumbe’s small splash pool overlooks the seasonal Sand River and has a deck area adorned with sun loungers. It’s the perfect place for adults’ to relax, kids to swim, and the entire family to potentially observe any exciting wildlife activity below.

Nyala Boma AreaNyala Safari Lodge FirepitNyala Lodge Swimming PoolNyala Safari Lodge LoungeBuy Plush Toys at Umkumbe Safari Lodge RiversideUmkumbe Safari Lodge Pool
Chacma Swimming Pool

Our Top 5 Educational Benefits of a Safari for Children

Going on safari has the usual benefits for children, but it can also have the following advantages:

  • It encourages an appreciation of the wilderness and fosters an excitement for the wild
  • Enables children to explore new and diverse cultures
  • Introduces kids and families to conservation, and new methods of how to adopt a more eco-aware lifestyle
  • Nurtures a passion for understanding how humans can in work in harmony with nature
  • Teaches children the art of observation and patience, and how patience can be rewarded

Get booking that family safari experience to the Kruger. Our team awaits your enquiry, and cannot wait to curate the ultimate holiday for you.