Lekwena Ranch

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iandvl
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Lekwena Ranch

Post by iandvl »

Not a trip report per se, but just some thoughts about the Waterberg.

The weekend of the 15th, Liana and I had a thing on on Saturday at a lodge near Modimolle. I'd had a few very rough weeks at work. We were also childless that weekend as the kids were all with our respective ex'es, so we opted to leave on the Friday and camp somewhere closer to Modimolle, rendezvousing with the rest of the people on Saturday morning.

Most of the camp-sites in the Bela-Bela area appear not to allow bookings for a single night over weekends. So I was a little stumped. But then I found a place I'd not heard about before - Lekwana Ranch (https://lekwenaranch.co.za/). It is situated in the Bateleur Nature Reserve - about 24-odd kilos outside of Bela-Bela. A large portion of this road (about 17km, if I recall correctly) is dirt road. But this does not bother me muchly, most of the times... :)

I booked a site for the Friday night for the princely sum of R450... I was ultimately amazed by the place I'm still sorry we were there for only for one night....

Lekwena Ranch was started just before the COVID hard lockdown, and I presume this is why one still does not hear much about them. As previously mentioned, they are in the Bateleur Nature Reserve, so there are a ton of trails and swimming holes and similar to explore. Their websites lists game drives, horse-riding and fishing as other activies. However, since we were only there for the one night, we obviously did not get much time to take part in the activities.

The camp site itself is awesome. There is a very large amount of space between different stands. The stands have grass and shade, but the natural bush is allowed to grow between the different stands, so camping there gives one an amazing sense of privacy. This was obviously helped along by the fact that we were the only campers there... :)

This may be a deal breaker for some people: There is no power at the camp-sites. No issue for me - I prefer this setup. However, there is power at the "entertainment centre" thing - the "entertainment centre" thing being where the swimming pool, ablutions, wash-up area and so on is. This area also has fridges for people behind the bar and a wide selection of various braaiing implements for those forgetful people that may have forgotten their relevant tools at home... :rolling: :rolling: There is also no cellular reception in the area, but there is WiFi around the entertainment centre for people who would like to keep in touch with people.

There is virtually no noise or light pollution, but don't expect it to be quiet. Our afternoon was filled with the sounds of Woodland Kingfisher, of which there seemed to be a gazillion of them.

After our lodge thing on Saturday, we headed back to Pretoria via those Waterberg dirt roads (those which are still open after all the heavy rains) and Brits.

A few photographs of the place and our trip back. Please note Liana stealing plants next to the road. She regularly does this... :rolling: :rolling:
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On a side note: the Waterberg ranks highly on my list of places to explore a little over weekends. There are so many dives, out of the way places, dirt roads and similar. :)
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Re: Lekwena Ranch

Post by Tinus lotz »

:coolphotos: love it must go there
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Re: Lekwena Ranch

Post by Steele »

Looks great - thanks Ian. :goodpost:
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Re: Lekwena Ranch

Post by Mad Manny »

Looks nice.
Not far from Mabalingwe.
I may go take a look see.
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Re: Lekwena Ranch

Post by iandvl »

Mad Manny wrote: 27 Jan 2022 06:39 Looks nice.
Not far from Mabalingwe.
I may go take a look see.
I'd share some of the dirt trails in the area, but sadly a large number of the roads were closed after all the rain in the area. So I am still not exactly sure of the route I used to get back to Pretoria. :rolling:

The Dikhololo road past Moegatle was open and continues past Assen until Leeukop. After that, there are various roads heading North into the Waterberg, which means one can drive to Bela-Bela on dirt pretty much all the way. There is also a lot of game. Generic rooibok and kudu, and also more exotic stuff like Sable and Roan. We have also even seen Leopard and Buffalo on the stretch between Assen and Leeukop.

When time is not an issue, this is the route I normally use to drive up North. Lovely drive, amazing scenery, game and no trucks and crazies as one gets on the N1 and the R511. It is an awesome drive.
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