Horseback riding in Mashatu, Botswana

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- Land of the Giants - Tuli Riding Safari
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Equestrian tours in Botswana, Mashatu
Land of the Giants - Tuli Riding Safari


Itinerary for Land of the Giants - Tuli Riding Safari




Sample Itinerary - subject to changes

Please note that this is only an example as is subject to change, due to weather or other logistics.

Game drives in the Kgotla Area are included. However the Game Drive with the Mashatu guides in the centre of the reserve need to be paid extra and are subject to availability.

Wildlife that can be seen during the safari include elephant, lion, leopard cheetah, hyena and plains game.

Day 1 (Saturday): Arrival
Pick up from the airport and short transfer to the reception area overlooking the Limpopo river, in time for a light lunch.
Enjoy an introductory ride to check you are suited to your horse, before embarking on your first ride out to our Two Mashatus Camp. This will be your first opportunity to experience the beauty of the Mashatu Game Reserve and view the wildlife on horseback. Mashatu Game Reserve is home to the largest herd of wild free-roaming elephants on private land in Africa, and, although not a guarantee, it is almost assured
that there will be great viewing of these incredible creatures.
As evening falls at Two Mashatu Camp, relax in the cool of the thatched rondavel lounge and dining areas, before enjoying a three-course dinner and getting to know your fellow adventurers for the next seven days.
Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Two Mashatus Camp


Day 2 (Sunday): Two Mashatus to Tree Camp
Sunrise, the dawn chorus and tea or coffee which is brought to your tent, sounds the start of your first day. After breakfast, it’s time to mount and depart from the dense woodland that hugs the Limpopo River, and head towards the rocky hills that delineate the edges of the great river valley. As the ride traverses the heartland of Mashatu, you will encounter plentiful game: plains game, many giraffe and herd of elephants.
Having meandered across the hills with vast views back towards South Africa, the ride arrives at Tree Camp in time for lunch. Overlooking the Majale river, it is possible to watch the wildlife from above, coming down to drink at the river.
That afternoon choose a ride or enjoy your first bush walk exploring the area along the West of the Matabole River returning to Tree Camp for sundowners.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Tree Camp


Day 3 (Monday): Tree Camp to the Kgotla
The safari passes through the center of Mashatu to the ancient rock formations synonymous with the Limpopo Valley. Giant Baobab trees continue to scatter the landscape as they have for centuries and ancient elephant trails make for wonderful tracks for long canters through open bush veld. Whilst riding alongside the banks of the Motloutse River, discover the old Leadwood ‘Kgotla’ (or enclosure used for the traditional law court of a Botswana village). This open-air enclosure forms the perfect, secure camp for the night.
In the afternoon, we search for the area’s resident lions on a game drive and draw the day’s adventures to a close with sundowners at the ancient “Amphitheatre” rocks. Back at the Kgotla, dinner is enjoyed around a large log fire. The night is spent with a ceiling of stars and Africa’s nighttime melody to sing you to sleep; a veraciously rare experience which is just about as far away from city life and the modern world as anyone can imagine. 
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at The Kgotla


Day 4 (Tuesday): Ride around The Kgotla
The sandstone formations, including the famed Solomon’s Wall, one of the numerous dolorite dykes in the area, are explored on horseback. Some of the oldest civilizations in southern Africa settled in this valley. Archaeological evidence in the area includes middle and late stone age tools, rock art and the legendary Mapungubwe Dynasty. Mapungubwe means “Place of the Jackal” in the Venda language and this dynasty existed around 1220 AD. The Mapungubwe topography itself is ancient and timeless, and combined with marvelous wildlife sightings, it makes for an incredible riding experience. This afternoon enjoy a short drive to the Mmamagwa Hills.
For the most visually stunning and ethereal sundowner, we visit the Mmamagwa Hills. A short climb up the sandstone ridge, brings us to the site of the Mmamagwa Ruins, which is of a similar period to Mapungubwe (13th century). To date these ruins have not been excavated and have been left alone. It is conceivable that similar treasures to those found at Mapungubwe (for example the golden rhino) could be buried here. After a short climb, enjoy sundowners beneath a beautiful baobab tree with a breath-taking view of the area.  
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at The Kgotla


Day 5 (Wednesday): The Kgotla to Tree Camp
Wind up Elephant Valley along ancient trails stamped into the soil by centuries of migrating elephants, before heading north towards upper reaches of the Majale River. This area is peppered with enormous baobab trees and is one of the more remote areas of the reserve.
After an exhilarating ride through this timeless countryside, enjoy a relaxing lunch at Tree Camp.
An afternoon ride, a bush walk or, subject to availability, a game drive to enjoy the central area of the reserve.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Tree Camp


Day 6 (Thursday): Tree Camp to Two Mashatus
Today’s riding promises great game viewing from horseback as we explore the Pitsane River Valley. Drinking holes, dug by elephants along the course of the Pitsane, attract thirsty herds of game. An area, where history has it, there was a skirmish during the Boer war which destroyed Bryce’s Store, an old British supply post. There was a stagecoach line, called Zeederberg’s, that ran from the towns of the Transvaal in South Africa to the newly forged settlements of Southern Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe. Those coaches crossed the broad Limpopo and followed the Pitsane River into Zimbabwe.
The ride returns to the Two Mashatu Camp in time for lunch and a cooling swim in the pool. A guided bush walk to one of the nearby koppies for sundowners is the afternoon excursion.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Two Mashatus Camp


Day 7 (Friday): Pitsane River Valley Ride
Our ride today meanders its way through the beautiful plains between the Majale and Pitsane rivers, with abundant game and spectacular views into the Limpopo River Valley.
En route, we explore the remains of an old Boer War fort on a rocky outcrop, followed by a ride down into the cooler wetland area where plentiful game enjoy the lush grasses. In the summer months, rain and water dependent, it can be possible to enjoy cantering through the shallows of the Limpopo River. There is time to relax in camp, before either an afternoon ride or bush walk for your last African sundowner.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Two Mashatus Camp


Day 8 (Saturday): Departure
Your last ride in the Limpopo valley is a great opportunity to snap one last picture of elephants and a long and winding canter through the scattered Mustard bush with your guides. Arriving back at the stables with plenty time to enjoy a hot shower and a tasty brunch you get to say farewell to safari companions and newfound friends, it’s time for your onward journey.
Meals included: Brunch

-----------------------------

Sample Itinerary: SPECIAL PROGRAM - subject to changes

Please note that this is only an example as is subject to change, due to weather or other logistics.

Game drives in the Kgotla Area are included. However the Game Drive with the Mashatu guides in the centre of the reserve need to be paid extra and are subject to availability.

Wildlife that can be seen during the safari include elephant, lion, leopard cheetah, hyena and plains game.

Day 1 (Monday): Arrival
Pick up from the airport and short transfer to the reception area overlooking the Limpopo river, in time for a light lunch.
Enjoy an introductory ride to check you are suited to your horse, before embarking on your first ride out to our Two Mashatus Camp. This will be your first opportunity to experience the beauty of the Mashatu Game Reserve and view the wildlife on horseback. Mashatu Game Reserve is home to the largest herd of wild free-roaming elephants on private land in Africa, and, although not a guarantee, it is almost assured
that there will be great viewing of these incredible creatures.
As evening falls at Two Mashatu Camp, relax in the cool of the thatched rondavel lounge and dining areas, before enjoying a three-course dinner and getting to know your fellow adventurers for the next seven days.
Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Two Mashatus Camp


Day 2 (Tuesday): Two Mashatus to Tree Camp
Sunrise, the dawn chorus and tea or coffee which is brought to your tent, sounds the start of your first day. After breakfast, it’s time to mount and depart from the dense woodland that hugs the Limpopo River, and head towards the rocky hills that delineate the edges of the great river valley. As the ride traverses the heartland of Mashatu, you will encounter plentiful game: plains game, many giraffe and herd of elephants.
Having meandered across the hills with vast views back towards South Africa, the ride arrives at Tree Camp in time for lunch. Overlooking the Majale river, it is possible to watch the wildlife from above, coming down to drink at the river.
That afternoon choose a ride or enjoy your first bush walk exploring the area along the West of the Matabole River returning to Tree Camp for sundowners.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Tree Camp


Day 3 (Wednesday): Tree Camp to the Kgotla
The safari passes through the center of Mashatu to the ancient rock formations synonymous with the Limpopo Valley. Giant Baobab trees continue to scatter the landscape as they have for centuries and ancient elephant trails make for wonderful tracks for long canters through open bush veld. Whilst riding alongside the banks of the Motloutse River, discover the old Leadwood ‘Kgotla’ (or enclosure used for the traditional law court of a Botswana village). This open-air enclosure forms the perfect, secure camp for the night.
In the afternoon, we search for the area’s resident lions on a game drive and draw the day’s adventures to a close with sundowners at the ancient “Amphitheatre” rocks. Back at the Kgotla, dinner is enjoyed around a large log fire. The night is spent with a ceiling of stars and Africa’s nighttime melody to sing you to sleep; a veraciously rare experience which is just about as far away from city life and the modern world as anyone can imagine. 
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at The Kgotla


Day 4 (Thursday): Ride around The Kgotla
The sandstone formations, including the famed Solomon’s Wall, one of the numerous dolorite dykes in the area, are explored on horseback. Some of the oldest civilizations in southern Africa settled in this valley. Archaeological evidence in the area includes middle and late stone age tools, rock art and the legendary Mapungubwe Dynasty. Mapungubwe means “Place of the Jackal” in the Venda language and this dynasty existed around 1220 AD. The Mapungubwe topography itself is ancient and timeless, and combined with marvelous wildlife sightings, it makes for an incredible riding experience. This afternoon enjoy a short drive to the Mmamagwa Hills.
For the most visually stunning and ethereal sundowner, we visit the Mmamagwa Hills. A short climb up the sandstone ridge, brings us to the site of the Mmamagwa Ruins, which is of a similar period to Mapungubwe (13th century). To date these ruins have not been excavated and have been left alone. It is conceivable that similar treasures to those found at Mapungubwe (for example the golden rhino) could be buried here. After a short climb, enjoy sundowners beneath a beautiful baobab tree with a breath-taking view of the area.  
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at The Kgotla


Day 5 (Friday): The Kgotla to Tree Camp
Wind up Elephant Valley along ancient trails stamped into the soil by centuries of migrating elephants, before heading north towards upper reaches of the Majale River. This area is peppered with enormous baobab trees and is one of the more remote areas of the reserve.
After an exhilarating ride through this timeless countryside, enjoy a relaxing lunch at Tree Camp.
An afternoon ride, a bush walk or, subject to availability, a game drive to enjoy the central area of the reserve.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Tree Camp


Day 6 (Saturday): Tree Camp Ride
Today’s riding explores an area of the Northern Tuli which is hardly visited by humans.  The route, at first, follows a stream to its source before arcing to the west on high ground and then descending to the upper reaches of the Majali River.  It then follows the river all the way back to Tree Camp. This is a relaxed ride during which guests become immersed in the wilderness. There are good opportunities to see elephant, giraffe, zebra, eland and kudu, but it is the sense of being completely away from manmade features that is so compelling on this ride.
In the afternoon, there will either be a bush walk or, a possible game drive with Mashatu Game Reserve (subject to availability).
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Tree Camp


Day 7 (Sunday): Pitsane River Valley Ride
With an early departure from Tree Camp, this ride offers sweeping views to the east and south, bathed in early morning light, as it traverses along the edge of a ridge near the centre of the reserve. The path then descends to a game rich area along the Majali River. The deep river pools are the favourite haunt of baboon and impala. Sooner or later the great herds of elephant come past for their daily drink, to play in the water and enjoy a dust bath.
The final part of the ride is first across open plains with some fast canters, and then through cool riverine vegetation along the approaches to Two Mashatus Camp. This area typically boasts the highest density of elephants in the reserve, who sometimes roam through the camp in a gentle yet determined way.  It is also excellent for lion and leopard as well as baboon, bushbuck and waterbuck. 
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Two Mashatus Camp


Day 8 (Monday): Departure
Your last ride in the Limpopo valley is a great opportunity to snap one last picture of elephants and a long and winding canter through the scattered Mustard bush with your guides. Arriving back at the stables with plenty time to enjoy a hot shower and a tasty brunch you get to say farewell to safari companions and newfound friends, it’s time for your onward journey.
Meals included: Brunch



Non-Riding Activities
For those who do not ride a horse, we now have the exciting option of joining the safari on a bicycle. Cycle out each day on one of our Mountain bikes, with our mountain bike guides, before regrouping with the horse riders in your group for meals and sundowners.
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Land of the Giants - Tuli Riding Safari
Tour Code: IT-BORT04
8 days / 7 nights
Dates : Available all Year

Trip Rating :
Difficulty : Riding Level
Riding Level Explained
ABeginner
Beginner A rider who has limited experience, is unable to post the trot and does not canter.
BNovice
Novice A rider who is capable of mounting and dismounting unassisted, capable of applying basic aids, comfortable and in control at the walk, moderate length posting trots, and short canters.
CIntermediate
Intermediate A rider who has a firm seat, is confident and in control at all paces (including posting trots, two point canters and gallops), but does not ride regularly.
D Strong Intermediate
Strong Intermediate An intermediate rider who is currently riding regularly and is comfortable in the saddle for at least 6 hours per day.
EAdvanced
All of the above, plus an independent seat, soft hands, and capable of handlinga spirited horse in open country.
Lodging: Standard
Lodging Level Explained
   
= Facilities in lodges, estancias, haciendas, resorts, etc.
   
Basic lodging - some with shared bathroom facilities, usually no AC or room service.
Regular standard room - usually with private bath.
 Accommodations with superior comforts.
   
 = Trips with nights in tent camps. Sometimes the first and last night are in hotels.
   
Basic tent camping - everyone helps out with camp chores.
Regular standard with some camp amenities and camp cook.
Camping facilities with superior comforts like camp shower, bathroom facility..
   
 = Trips that combine nights in hotels and camping.
   
Basic accommodation and basic camping facilities can be expected.
Regular standard with some nicer amenities.
Only assigned to hotel and camping facilities with superior comforts.

Online Reservation

Check here for details and availability
Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
D 2024 05/20 - 05/27 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 05/25 - 06/01 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
D 2024 05/27 - 06/03 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 06/01 - 06/08 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
D 2024 06/03 - 06/10 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 06/08 - 06/15 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
D 2024 06/10 - 06/17 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 06/15 - 06/22 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
D 2024 06/17 - 06/24 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 06/22 - 06/29 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
D 2024 06/24 - 07/01 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 06/29 - 07/06 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 07/06 - 07/13 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
D 2024 07/08 - 07/15 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 07/13 - 07/20 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
D 2024 07/15 - 07/22 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 07/20 - 07/27 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Expired
A 2024 07/27 - 08/03 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 07/29 - 08/05 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 08/03 - 08/10 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
D 2024 08/05 - 08/12 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 08/10 - 08/17 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
D 2024 08/12 - 08/19 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 08/17 - 08/24 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
D 2024 08/19 - 08/26 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 08/24 - 08/31 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
D 2024 08/26 - 09/02 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 08/31 - 09/07 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 09/02 - 09/09 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
A 2024 09/07 - 09/14 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 09/09 - 09/16 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 09/14 - 09/21 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 09/16 - 09/23 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 09/21 - 09/28 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 09/23 - 09/30 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 09/28 - 10/05 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
D 2024 09/30 - 10/07 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 10/05 - 10/12 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 10/12 - 10/19 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 10/19 - 10/26 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 10/21 - 10/28 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 10/26 - 11/02 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 10/28 - 11/04 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 11/02 - 11/09 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
A 2024 11/09 - 11/16 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
D 2024 11/11 - 11/18 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
A 2024 11/16 - 11/23 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
D 2024 11/18 - 11/25 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (High) 2 /8 Sold Out
A 2024 11/23 - 11/30 8d / 7n 8 day trip (High) 2 /8 Reserve
C 2024 11/30 - 12/07 8d / 7n 8 day trip (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
F 2024 12/02 - 12/09 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (Low) 2 /8 Sold Out
C 2024 12/07 - 12/14 8d / 7n 8 day trip (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
C 2024 12/14 - 12/21 8d / 7n 8 day trip (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
F 2024 12/16 - 12/23 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
C 2024 12/17 - 12/24 8d / 7n 8 day trip (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
C 2024 12/21 - 12/28 8d / 7n 8 day trip (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
C 2024 12/28 - 01/04 8d / 7n 8 day trip (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
F 2024 12/30 - 01/06 8d / 7n 8 day trip Special (Low) 2 /8 Reserve
Introduction
Day to Day Itinerary
Rates | Dates
Accommodation
Tack: English trekking
Horses: Boerperd, Boepferd and other cross bre...
Pace: Up to 5.5 hours in saddle / day; fast,...
Walk, Trot, Canter,
Airport: O.R. Tambo International Airport (JHB)
Location on Google Map
Video
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What To Bring
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