A safari by starlight in the Sabi Sabi explores the transition from day to night in the bush. As night descends the nocturnal hunters begin to stir and you will follow the action with the aid of a spotlight.
Once the heat of the day starts to recede, there is movement as some animals emerge out of the deep shade while others prepare for nightfall. The shadows lengthen and bird calls increase while the sky reflects the beautiful colours of sunset.
Evening scents waft in the air and there is a period of stillness before the darkness descends. This is a dangerous time for many creatures that must remain alert through the long night hours if they are to survive.
Evening Safaris in the Sabi Sabi
While you enjoy a delicious High Tea, the Sabi Sabi rangers and trackers will be preparing for the night game drive
. Field reports and information gathered during the day will have been analysed and plans made to make the most of any game movements in the reserve. Once you have boarded your safari vehicle you will set off on an exciting adventure into the late afternoon hours.
Your tracker will be looking for animal footprints and trails, but really anything could happen! Finding game in the dense bush is a unique experience and there is no predicting what you might see. If you come upon an amazing game sighting
such as a pride of Lion on an evening hunt, it may be appropriate to forego a sundowner stop and follow the action.
If you have not found a game sighting, your ranger will select a suitable spot in the bush just before sunset, so you can get out of the land rover, stretch your legs and have a refreshing sundowner. Standing, drink in hand while watching the sun melt into the horizon is a truly memorable occasion in the wilderness.
Once you are settled back in the vehicle it will be getting dark and time to bring out the spotlight for game viewing on the drive back to the lodge.
The Sabi Wilderness at Dusk
Your ranger and tracker team will be alert for any animal movements as you drive slowly into the dusk. This time of day is favourable for predators on the hunt
especially the big cats, as the heat has receded and they are well rested from hours spent lying in the shade. It's a good time for cubs to watch and learn the skill of the hunt.
The bush in the dark is a very different place, where nocturnal hunters such as the Leopard rule. This stealthy cat is such a strong predator that it can leap up a tall tree with its kill. You may even enjoy rare sightings of smaller predators like the African Wild Cat, Genet or Civet
. Animal calls at night will seem to be very close and every sound is magnified.
Sometimes, you will sit quietly, listening and waiting until you hear the direction of the game before moving on. Your tracker will keep the spotlight trained on any sign of 'red eye' indicating the presence of an animal.
You could spot the flight of a bushbaby as it moves through the tree canopy or see Elephant moving silently under the trees. Every night drive is unique and there is no telling what you may encounter!