Meet Kelwan: Our Go-Getter Ranger

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Filled with ambition, a passion for the outdoors and all things South Africa, we recently caught up with Kelwan to find out what life is like for a ranger. This farm boy, turned bush boy has been a ranger at Nambiti Hills for two years now and this is what he had to say:

Tell us in detail what a typical day entails.
As head ranger and assistant lodge manager, every day is different. But my main focus is ensuring guests have the best time out in what we like to call “our wild backyard.” So I wake up at 05h00 and prepare the morning snacks and coffee for our early game drive which departs at 06h00. We’re back just in time for a full breakfast at 09h30. I then check in any new guests, wash the cruiser, and get ready for the afternoon game drive that heads out at 15h00. Dinner and socialising with the guests is how I end my day until about 08h30. Then I retreat to my room after a long day and prepare for another new adventure in the morning.

What do you love about this country?
The fact that we get guests continuously arriving from around the world, is a testament to the kind of country we live in. There is such a special and unique heritage here, it’s hard not to fall in love with South Africa.

Do you have a secret spot on the reserve that you always take guests?
I do. And I’m absolutely not going to let my secret slip. Let’s just say, it’s a rewarding feeling taking guests there and watching their amazement as they witness Africa’s natural beauty first hand.

Which is your favourite animal? Why?

I am in awe of the Leopard. It’s always the most challenging to track and find – which is half of the thrill I guess – but it’s also the most beautiful; disappearing as quickly as it appears. I love the unpredictability of a Leopard.

What do you love most about your job?
Meeting guests from around the world is really special. Not everyone has that luxury in their day-to-day jobs. Just as each day here at Nambiti Hills is different, so too are the guests; with new stories and different things they want to see. It’s what makes it all so gratifying for us. I also love that guests are keen to be “educated” when they’re here; they come with open minds and a passion for Mother Nature, which makes our jobs so much easier.

Did you always want to do what you’re doing now?
This has been a passion of mine since high school, and maybe even before then. I grew up on a sugar cane farm on the South Coast of Durban. After University, I immediately started working at different private game reserves to gain more experience. After graduating as one of the top three students at Bush School in the Limpopo Province, I was ready to get stuck into my dream career. And still to this day, I have no regrets!

How often do you go home and what do you do to relax?
I get to go home every 6 weeks for 2 whole weeks – which is great because I get the best of both worlds. When I am home I spend a lot of time helping my dad on the sugar cane farm, and at the beach. I’m also quite keen on firearms and love spending time at the shooting range with my friends. Off-road bikes, quad bikes and anything that gets the adrenalin pumping is what I call fun.

Who inspires you?
Anyone with a sense of self-motivation, self-preservation and an open mind.

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Our Magical Transformation

Our magical transformation has finally been completed and are so excited to share our pics with you.

Experience, first-hand, our newly upgraded honeymoon and luxury suites, new heated swimming pool, pool deck and outdoor lounge area where you can sit back, relax and take in the beauty of Mother Nature.

It really is a magical experience, and we can’t wait for you to come and see it for yourself.

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A Magical Change is Taking Place

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They say change is as good as a holiday.
So how would you feel if we told you that your favourite holiday destination is about to change. For the better!

Nambiti Hills Private Game Reserve has offered a luxurious escape to those who seek to connect with nature, take time out from their busy lives and relax and unwind in our 5-star sanctuary in the heart of Africa.

Today… the magical change that we are experiencing at the lodge will take the experience you have come to know and love, and make it all the more unforgettable. There are so many exciting developments taking place and we know you are just as excited as we are to see them for yourself.

Keep following us on social media for our big reveal, and be the first to book your next holiday at the new and improved Nambiti Hills Private Game Reserve.

It’s not long now until all will be revealed.

Winter Game Drives: What to wear

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It’s true… a winter game drive here at Nambiti Hills Private Game Reserve can be bitterly cold. But it’s also breathtakingly beautiful especially when the sun breaks through the low-lying mist first thing in the early morning and you get to see wildlife bask in the warmth of the afternoon sun.

It’s a wonderful time of year for a game drive as the wild animals spend a lot of time in the open veld taking in as much sun as they can. The difference however, is that they have these naturally warming felts and coats which protect them from the chill. We, on the other hand, need to come prepared.

So here are some of my basic tips for winter game drive dressing, so you can forget about the cold and focus on the beauty that surrounds you.

FROM TOP TO TOE:
Did you know we lose heat from the top of our heads? So if your feet and head are covered up and kept warm, then you’re off to a great start. Make sure you’ve got a beanie or hat to keep your head snug and some thick socks to keep your toes toasty too. Closed takkies or boots are recommended – they’re also perfect if you want to head out on a guided walk.

THE MUST-HAVE JACKET:
An insulated parka, a bomber jacket, a hooded windbreaker or fleecy jumper… anything that will keep you warm and toasty on the inside. It does get warmer as the day moves on, so a jacket is useful because it’s easy to pull on and off as and when you need it.

THE ESSENTIALS:
It can get nippy sitting in the open air of a moving ranger vehicle, so come prepared with hats, gloves, scarves and beanies. Don’t forget about sunglasses and sunhats too. While it is cold, it’s also bright and beautiful and the African sun can still pack a punch.

Still no clue?
If you’re battling to find the perfect winter safari gear our Nambiti Hills Curio Shop is fully stocked with stylish insulated jackets that offer the best protection from the cold. Available for men and women, they’re modern, comfortable and come with Nambiti Hills branding so that when you leave, you take a little piece of the African Bush with you.

So what are you waiting for?
Pack your essentials and join us for an adventure-filled winter safari.

Ranger Kelwan

The Art of Patience

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In today’s modern society, anyone can be a photographer. Thanks to smart phones and clever filters, you can turn any old photo into something great. But when it comes to wildlife photography, it’s a little different. Lions don’t hang around waiting for the perfect light so you can get your perfect shot. And chances are that bird you’ve been dying to catch on camera will flutter off the moment he hears you coming.

The key to capturing that wow-factor wildlife photograph is simple. It’s called ‘patience’. And here at Nambiti Hills, we’ve got loads of it. We’re happy to sit on the lodge deck for hours, waiting for our subject matter to fly in; or venture out for an all-day African adventure in the bush, in an attempt to spot something wild and wonderful. We think patience pays off. Take a look at this week’s top shots, and let us know what you think.

Until next time, keep snapping.

Ranger Kel.

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