Kwandwe Ecca Lodge

premier Camp | Eastern Cape, South Africa

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Kwandwe Ecca Lodge provides a stylish and luxurious base for exploration in one of South Africa's most impressive conservation projects, Kwandwe Private Game Reserve. The six elegant suites enjoy expansive views over rolling green thicket. Wildlife adventures connect guests with myriad animals, including the Big Five and many highly endangered species, each and every day. The enriching wilderness experience of Kwandwe is beautifully enhanced by the intimacy and comfort level of the fine accommodations on offer.

Photo of Lauren Deeley

Our Expert Says

Exclusivity while on safari is key, and since Kwandwe is a private reserve, there are no packs of vehicles or crowds of people around animal sightings. You can get off the road, often getting comfortably close to animals, and each sighting is a quiet and intimate experience. Being in a private reserve also affords you the privilege of getting out on foot with your guide, as well as drives that continue past sunset in search of nocturnal animals before returning to camp in the evening.

– Lauren Deeley

Photo: The Camp

The Camp

Location: Kwandwe Private Game Reserve, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Number of Suites: 6

Kwandwe Ecca Lodge enjoys a magnificent view over an acacia, aloe and spekboom-studded valley. The lodge is intimate and laid back while exuding chic contemporary style and simple luxury. Its six stand-alone suites are exceptionally spacious, each with a separate bedroom and lounge and beautifully decorated with plush beds, fine linens and bright, contrasting colors. Each suite has a huge, luxurious en suite bathroom with free-standing soaking tub, double porcelain sinks, and both an enormous indoor rain shower and an outdoor shower on your private deck. A private plunge pool is located on each wrap-around veranda, overlooking the rolling green hills. The lodge's public spaces are open and airy, including a lounge, indoor and outdoor dining areas, an interactive kitchen, centrally located infinity pool, and wooden decks throughout from which to take in the scenery.

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Photo: Facilities & Amenities

Facilities & Amenities

  • En suite bathroom with tub and indoor/outdoor showers
  • Shampoo, soap and lotion
  • Hair dryer
  • Air conditioning
  • Room fan
  • Mini bar
  • Tea/coffee in room
  • 220v charging outlets in room
  • In-room safe
  • Private plunge pool
  • Central pool
  • Massage treatments (extra cost)
  • Wi-Fi in room and main area
  • Laundry included
  • Local drinks included (house alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks)
  • Credit cards accepted (Visa, MasterCard, American Express)

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Photo: Wildlife Viewing & Activities

Wildlife Viewing & Activities

Kwandwe Private Game Reserve lies within the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. The 54,000-acre wilderness is a Big Five sanctuary and habitat for cheetah, kudu, springbok, eland, red hartebeest, giraffe, black wildebeest, gemsbok and more. The reserve has private access to 19 miles of riverfront land on the Great Fish River. Birders will enjoy the fish eagle and endangered blue crane along with a wide variety of other bird species. Nocturnal sightings of aardvark and aardwolf are frequent. Rhino conservation is at the forefront here, and a hands-on rhino conservation safari can be arranged at additional cost in advance of your arrival, subject to availability. Daily activities include dawn wildlife drives with a naturalist guide, and afternoon wildlife drives that linger into evening with chances to see nocturnal creatures and watch the sun set with a cocktail or refreshment in hand. Guided large mammal tracking is available at additional cost. Kwandwe is malaria-free, making it an ideal destination for families.

The Eastern Cape's most common large mammal and predator sightings are illustrated in the chart below. Because each of the private game reserves of the Eastern Cape is fenced and unique, there may be some variations. Other typical sightings may include warthogs, baboons and monkeys, a variety of birds, and small carnivores such as jackals and caracals. Exact sightings will depend on the actual reserve you are visiting.

Country Park/Reserve
Black Rhino
Gemsbok / Oryx
Greater Kudu
White Rhino
South Africa Eastern Cape

Usually viewed
Frequently viewed
Occasionally viewed
Sporadically viewed
Rarely to never viewed

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Month Max Min Rainfall
January 92° F 60° F 1.9 in
33° C 15° C 48 mm
February 92° F 61° F 2.1 in
33° C 16° C 53 mm
March 87° F 56° F 1.3 in
30° C 13° C 33 mm
April 82° F 51° F 1.0 in
27° C 10° C 25 mm
May 76° F 44° F 0.5 in
24° C 6° C 13 mm
June 72° F 39° F 0.1 in
22° C 3° C 3 mm
July 71° F 39° F 0.4 in
21° C 3° C 10 mm
August 75° F 40° F 1.0 in
23° C 4° C 25 mm
September 78° F 44° F 0.9 in
25° C 6° C 23 mm
October 84° F 50° F 0.6 in
28° C 10° C 15 mm
November 87° F 55° F 1.8 in
30° C 12° C 46 mm
December 91° F 58° F 1.2 in
32° C 14° C 30 mm

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Photo: Conservation


Kwandwe Private Game Reserve is a sanctuary for endangered wildlife with thousands of protected animals roaming free within its vast plains. Kwandwe means "place of the blue crane" in the local isiXhosa language, and it is a protected breeding habitat for these highly endangered birds, along with other rare species. The reserve was created by reclaiming 54,000 acres of farmland, which now provides a refuge for wildlife with more than 32,000 acres of sensitive subtropical thicket vegetation, which also provides 520,000 tons of carbon storage. Kwandwe has reintroduced some 7,000 wildlife species, many that are endemic to the area but were eradicated by hunting and farming over the last centuries. Cheetah have been returned to the Great Fish River Valley for the first time since 1888, and the endangered black rhinoceros has been reintroduced as well, along with establishing disease-free populations of Cape buffalo, lion and white rhino in South Africa. Eleven post-graduate research studies have been conducted on the wildlife and vegetation of Kwandwe thus far.

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