Tshukudu Private Game Reserve borders the world-renowned Greater Kruger National Park and combines home comforts with the exciting Big 5 safari experience. The 4-star game lodge has magnificent views of the Drakensberg Mountains and offers unique, close encounters with a number of rehabilitated and orphaned animals, which now roam free in the reserve. Part of the Tshukudu safari experience is meeting the three cheetah siblings that grew up in close contact with the Sussens family. Each day, guests at Tshukudu are offered the opportunity to be taken on a guided bush walk through the reserve, standing a chance to encounter wildlife on foot, while discovering and learning about the natural environment they call home. The enthusiastic and expertly trained guides lead guests to breath-taking sightings of wildlife, viewed in a safe and professional environment. Daily game drives are also exciting and unpredictable, offering the chance to get up close to wildlife in the safety of a vehicle, while a traditional stop for ‘sundowners’ allows guests to stretch their legs and enjoy a refreshment while watching the sunset in the bush. The three cheetahs are siblings: Hunter and Floppy are the males and Ntombi is the female. The pair of males was initially raised by the mother, Savanna before she was sadly killed by lions, while Ntombi was the runt of the litter and consequently raised by Chris and Vicky Sussens who have many years of experience helping to raise orphaned and injured wild animals. Today, all three cheetahs live in the reserve and fend for themselves, but they have not forgotten their special connection with humans and often visit the lodge on their own accord. Hunter and Floppy are always together while Ntombi lives a solitary life and can often be found at her favorite spots in the reserve relaxing happily. The cheetahs love receiving attention and often join in on bush walks, giving guests the unique opportunity to walk with cheetahs in the wild. Similarly, the cheetahs’ habituated behavior allows guests to watch the cheetahs feeding on their prey and are even treated as rubbing posts when the cheetahs need a scratch behind the ear! This interaction is entirely unique and it is the result of successfully rearing orphaned cheetahs in the wild where they can hunt and explore freely. Tshukudu is known for its one-of-a-kind cheetah safari encounters, but the extent of the experience here goes far beyond with extraordinary boma dinners, warm hosting and hospitality from the lodge staff, fantastic accommodation and facilities, and the professionalism of the guiding team.
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