We work and live in an amazing wilderness area. Singita Lebombo and Sweni Lodges lie on the eastern side of the central part of Kruger National Park. Both lodges look onto rocky ridges that form part of the Lebombo “mountains”, which are a line of hills that run along the eastern border of South Africa (the border with Mozambique).
It is an area of spectacular wild beauty. The two lodges are nestled between the N’wanetsi and Sweni Rivers. These two rivers meet at a confluence that lies between the two lodges.
Neither of the two lodges are fenced and animals are able to wander freely through the area. We often see nyalas, bushbuck, monkeys and squirrels in the lodge areas. At night we sometimes see thick-tailed bushbabies and large-spotted genets.
When guests arrive at either lodge, they are greeted by a signboard that explains that animals may be encountered in the lodge areas. The signboards warn guests that they need to pay attention as potentially dangerous animals may wander through the camps. Guests are also told, upon arrival, that they need to be accompanied by a lodge representative when moving from the main area to their rooms, after dark.
Fortunately, due to the positioning of the lodges (Lebombo is on top of a steep ridge and Sweni is bordered on one side by the Sweni River), we do not often have dangerous animals walking through the camps.
Every winter, when food resources become more limited, a pair of honey badgers make more frequent visits to the lodges hoping to find scraps to eat. During these months they are often seen, just before day-break or at night, behind the kitchen, trying to get into the refuse cages. Recently, they have also developed a taste for the sweet cordials at the bar!