September 2023

Gonarezhou day trip


Gonarezhou day trip

The Malilangwe Reserve shares a border with the Gonarezhou National Park, our like-minded neighbours that we affectionately call “Gonaz”. We offer our Singita Pamushana guests a day trip to Gonaz which usually sees us setting off from the lodge with a light breakfast, doing a game drive south through our reserve to the park’s entrance at Chipinda Pools in the north. We then weave our way south to Chilojo Cliffs, stopping there for a delicious, packed picnic lunch and return back to the lodge by mid-afternoon.

Gonarezhou National Park is one of Zimbabwe's most stunning and remote wilderness areas. Chipinda Pools is renowned for serene surroundings along the Runde River, and if you don’t see elephants here then you absolutely will see them later on. Gonarezhou means “the place of elephants”. The park stretches over 5 053 square kilometres (1.25 million acres) and has one of the highest densities of elephants anywhere in Africa.
The road winds its way through the park's diverse landscapes, including woodlands, grasslands, and riverine areas, and has greater hill elevations and valleys than the Malilangwe Reserve. Generally the wildlife sightings are good, the birdwatching epic, and the baobab and riverine trees simply incredible.

On our most recent day trip the wildlife highlights were waterbuck – far from the water, in fact they were surprisingly high up on the hills, a hilarious warthog that thought he was king of the castle, some of the most majestic kudu you could ever wish to see, and, of course, several breeding herds of elephants, and groups of bulls.

Chilojo Cliffs are a permanent highlight of the journey. These towering red sandstone cliffs rise dramatically from the Runde River, creating a stunning backdrop. At the designated picnic area we stretch our legs and enjoy a leisurely lunch while gazing at the cliffs. A quintessential photograph to get has to be of elephants with the striated cliffs in the background!

Jenny Hishin
By Jenny Hishin
Author / Guest Guide