Deep within the Mashatu Game Reserve is a diverse wilderness of savannah, riverine forests, marshland, open plains and sandstone outcrops. The reserve is situated in the remote eastern corner of Botswana, at the confluence of the Limpopo and Shashe Rivers. In an area known historically as the Tuli Enclave, it is here that Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe meet. Mashatu Game Reserve – the largest of the Rattray Reserves – is home to the largest elephant population on a private reserve.
Mashatu Tented Camp is a 30 minute drive from Mashatu Main Camp, but so exquisitely blended into its environment, you’ll be hard-pressed to find it. Only children over the age of 12 are accommodated in this bush camp, where intimacy, quiet and privacy are of fundamental importance.
If you’re looking for a place of authenticity, free from the ego of pretentious ceremonies, then this tented camp will leave you in awe. Visitors are part of a community the minute they arrive, sharing meals in an open-air gazebo or sealed-off boma. The hospitality area and pool are thoughtfully built, equidistant for all guests to indulge in.
The 8 secluded tents are nestled under the ample shade of vast, ancient trees that hug the banks of the Nyaswe River. Inside the tents are big enough for adults to walk erect, yet comfortable and simple in detail. Fixed to earth by sturdy concrete foundations, the stability of the tents, complete with en-suite facilities, soothing shower and spellbinding views of the Okavango wilderness leave guests delirious with excitement.
Activities and Wildlife
At Masutu you’re privy to daily game drives in 4×4 vehicles, during the best times of day for game viewing. Revel in the expertise of the rangers, who know these parts intimately. On these drives into the wilderness you’re bound to glimpse one of the 7 goliaths of the Okavango – lion, giraffe, eland, elephant, ostrich, Kori bustard and the magnificent Baobab tree.
For bird-lovers and patient bush-observers, a robust hide offers a spectacular view of one of the most frequented waterholes in the area. From this vantage the animals are unaware of you watching, and the behaviours you see are real in every sense of the word. Other activities inspire adventure, including bush walks, galloping horseback safaris and mountain biking through the Mopane forests. Specialist research activities and cultural tours create a lasting memory of Botswana that is real, vivid and touching.
During the course of the game drives you may come across animals wearing collars. These collars track of certain individual elephants, leopards and wild dogs, the focus of various important research programmes conducted at Mashatu. A number of male lions have been fitted with trackers, preventing hunters from luring them across the borders of Botswana, where they are hunted legally and illegally. Mashatu exemplifies active conservation in every sense of the concept.