Kwandwe Uplands Homestead
Kwandwe Private Game Reserve, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Uplands Homestead is a sensitively restored 1905 Cape Dutch farmhouse, situated in the heart of Kwandwe Private Game Reserve. Comprising three spacious en-suite bedrooms, Uplands is available for sole use by small groups and families.
At a Glance
Three bedroom private home in the bush
Private 4×4 safari vehicle, butler, chef, and ranger and tracker team
Contemporary farm style kitchen
Great service and food
Total flexibility of timing for game activities and meal times
Kwandwe Private Game Reserve stretches along 42 kms of the Great Fish River and the 22,200 hectare reserve is set on the edge of the former Karoo Basin, where several of Africa’s vegetation zones converge and biodiversity is extremely rich. The Kwandwe landscape is dominated by valley bushveld on open plains and rolling hills, with succulent euphorbias, aloes and spekboom among the characteristic plants. Thousands of animals, including the ‘big five’ (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo) have been reintroduced to roam the reserve, which is also a haven for endangered animals and birds and numerous programs to support them have been introduced.
Uplands Homestead is perfect for those for whom privacy is paramount. It is ideal for a group or family of six people. The 1905 Cape Dutch farmhouse combines modern touches with classic architecture and the private balconies and full size swimming pool with large lawn with gazebo ensure a comfortably luxurious stay.
In the modernised farm kitchen, Uplands Homestead’s private chef prepares delicious Pan-African cuisine and local specialties. Nothing beats a bush banquet in a surprise setting under the magical African sky.
Kwandwe Uplands Homestead offers guests three suites furnished with beautiful authentic antiques and claw-foot tubs in the bathrooms, along with yellowwood chests and wardrobes in the bedrooms. Amenities include air-conditioning and in-room safes. Each suite has its own veranda with wonderful outlooks.
There are just 3 spacious suites offering a large double bedroom with en-suite bathroom. All the suites have a private veranda.
Children are welcome to come and stay at Uplands Homestead. However, the recommended minimum age is 6 years. They can arrange for baby sitting for younger children while the rest of the family goes out on a game drive.
There is a myriad of exciting activities on offer for children of all ages at Kwandwe. Through the Blue CraneConservation Club, the Reserve teaches young guests about green living in a fun way, and encourages them to start their own initiatives once back home.
Children receive a welcome gift on arrival which includes a Blue Crane Conservation Guide comprising animal checklists, themed games and activities, and a pledge to ‘live green’ (‘Junior’ for under 6’s and ‘Senior’ for ages6 and up), crayons/ pencils, a BPA free water bottle and a ‘Frolicking Rhino’ range of bath products including shampoo, body lotion and bubble bath (Kwandwe supports the Bespoke Amenities Co., who created thisange in support of their efforts to eradicate rhino poaching).
Activities for children include a ‘Bugs & Bones’ walk (a great way to stretch little legs and learn all about this ecologically diverse reserve whilst searching for insects, bones and skulls and being taught how to identify animal tracks and droppings), sand art, face painting, making moulds from Plaster of Paris, beading, chocolate fun (making spider webs and insects from chocolate), Minnow’s fishing trip with a ranger, special game drives outside of normal times where available, baking and pizza making with specially designed ‘Chefs in Training’aprons and toques, DVDs and popcorn, eco educational board games (learning about recycling and the how to care for our planet in a fun way), chocolate mould making, creature cookie baking, and African bedtime stories.
Giving back: children have the opportunity to plant Spekboom, a type of thicket vegetation that is native to the Eastern Cape and prolific on the reserve, and one of the top five carbon-storing vegetations on the planet.In this way they are encouraged to offset their (own small!) carbon footprint. Families can also participate inKwandwe’s voluntourism activities through the reserve’s Angus Gillis Foundation, which works with communities living in and surrounding the reserve. Activities are tailored according to individual and family interests andskillsets. For young guests this includes assisting with gardening projects at the local Mgcamabele Community;participating in arts and craft activities; and toddlers are invited to join in playtime at the pre-school. Children Are also welcome to participate in Kwandwe’s ‘Knit a Bit’ program
Facilities at the Uplands include an inviting, large swimming pool, open verandas and an extensive lawn. The dining and sitting areas feature lovely high ceilings, wooden floors and beautiful fireplaces.
Game drives, guided walks, fishing, canoeing, bush picnics and rhino tracking are all included in room rates, however archaeological drives are charged additionally.
Location & Directions
Kwandwe Private Game Reserve, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Nestled in the heart of South Africa's unspoiled Eastern Cape province lies Kwandwe Private Game Reserve, a world-class Big Five safari experience in 22 000 hectares (54 000 acres) of pristine private wilderness and featuring 30 km of privately owned river frontage of the Great Fish River.
When to go
Game viewing is excellent all year round. Summers (October to March) are hot and wet, whereas winters (May to August) are cool and dry. Daytime temperatures in summer are high and may soar above 36°C/97°F. Winter is known to produce beautiful warm days, though the evenings and early mornings can be quite chilly.