Marakele – The Reserve
Marakele National Park is a Big 5 national park located just outside of Thabazimbi in the North West Province, South Africa (about three hours drive from Johannesburg).
Marakele offers stunning scenery and some beautiful views from the top of one of the highest mountains in the area which is home to over 800 breeding pairs of vultures.
Activities at Marakele include game drives, a 4×4 Eco Trail as well as a few self-drive 4×4 routes.
Access to the reserve is easy as it is located right off the main road out of Thabazimbi. The roads in the park are good enough to allow access to all types of vehicles and the 4×4 trails are not extremely difficult.
Marakele is split into two sections, a small 4,000 hectare bottom ‘camp’ which has ample game and offers some beautiful sightings. The northern camp is very large with few roads so you can expect to drive around without spotting much, however, the scenery in that part of the reserve more than makes up for it.
Tlopi Camp is located in the northern part of Marakele and is fairly easy to access, although you do need to be prepared to climb a rather steep hill in your vehicle.
The camp consists of self-catering tents on raised decks located on the banks of the central dam and is un-fenced. The view is stunning and in the mornings and evenings, game can be seen visiting the dam for something to drink.
The tented units are well maintained and consist of all the amenities one might expect from a tented camp, including a seperate kitchen and deck to sit on and enjoy the wondering sights and sounds around you.
Allow at least an hour to reach Tlopi Camp from the main gate.
Bontle Camp Site
Bontle Camp site in Marakele National Park is a powered campsite about a kilometer from the main gate which allows quick and easy access should you decide to visit Marakele for a weekend.
The campsite has a visible waterhole which is frequented by all types of game and because the site has no fence, the game wonder freely among the tents. It is not uncommon to have a herd of Wildebeest spending the night next to your tent once you turn in the for night.
There are enough ablution facilities to accommodate all the campsites and each site has its own braai and power connections.