Shamwari Private Game Reserve


Officially declared as a Protected Environment, Shamwari Private Game Reserve is deemed as the most popular reserve in the Eastern Cape. This reserve provides an exceptional array of various wildlife species, notably the Big Five (Buffalo, Rhino, Elephant, Lion & Leopard). Visitors will have unforgettable wildlife encounters on this high quality safari adventure, including features guided game drives in an open safari vehicle along with exclusive accommodation, scrumptious food, and excellent services. Families staying at Shamwari are catered for with its speciality Kids on Safari programme.

Why Go:

  • Exceptional wildlife viewing
  • Activities include walking safaris as well as day and night drives
  • Specialised Kids on Safari children's programme
  • Malaria-free region
  • Game drives in open safari vehicles accompanied by experienced guides
  • Home of the Big Five


Shamwari Private Game Reserve is considered the Cape’s best and oldest private wildlife reserve. The Big Five is quite regularly spotted in this area. Other wildlife sighted in this region includes leopard and white and black rhino.

More About the Wildlife


The Bushmans River flowing throughout the Reserve is the most prominent feature of Shamwari Private Game Reserve. The ecosystem found in the region offers a diversity of rich plant species.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Shamwari Private Game Reserve is the months of May till September when the sky is clear and the months are dry. Visitors are sure to easily spot the wildlife in the dehydrated, sparse bush. The months of October until April are considered the reserve’s wetter months, making it a low season. Visitors can easily get good deals and discounts the activities or accommodations. They will surely be able to enjoy the birdlife since these months offer the sightings of the migrating birds.

More About the Best Time to Visit

Weather & Climate

All around the year, Shamwari Game Reserve receives gentle rainfall. The months of March and October receive the most amounts of precipitation. The summer months of October to April is when the temperature is pleasant, and the sun is shining. The months of May to September are considered the winter months where the days are cool and the nights get occasionally cold and chilly.

More About the Weather and Climate

Wildlife & Animals

Shamwari Private Game Reserve offers a habitat for the various wildlife of the region, specifically the Big Five. Other safari animals that are easily spotted include cheetahs, leopards, lions, springbok, red-hartebeest, white and black rhinos.
Abundant Common Occasional Rare None
  • Elephant


  • Wild Dog

    Wild Dog

  • Hyena


  • Cheetah


  • Leopard


  • Lion


  • Black Rhino

    Black Rhino

  • White Rhino

    White Rhino

  • Wildebeest


  • Zebra


  • Buffalo


  • Hippo


  • Giraffe



Best Time to Visit

Shamwari Private Game Reserve offers an exceptional wildlife viewing experience to the visitors. The semi-arid to arid climate throughout the year draws the attention of the various wildlife to the reserve’s water sources. Those visitors interested in wildlife viewing should visit during June to September, as these are the driest months of the winter season.
May to September
- Winter
  • Good discount rates during the low season
  • Cloudless, clear blue skies
  • Animals are much easily spotted in these months since the water shortage brings the animals to head over the open water sources.
October to April
- Summer
  • Many newborn animals are born in this season
  • An abundance of flowers and greenery in the park's landscape
  • Excellent bird viewing due to the arrival of migratory birds

Weather & Climate

The region of Shamwari Private Game Reserve falls under the arid to semi-arid climate, with mild amounts of rainfall. In this region, the summer and winter seasons are opposite when compared to the North American and Europe regions. All year long, the rainfall occurs evenly distributed. The months of October-November and February-March are when the rainfall is at its peak. The mid-winter season is when the temperature drops to the freezing point.
Climate Chart
Dry Season
- May to September

The winter months at Shamwari Private Game Reserve comprise of cold mornings and nights. Visitors are advised to wear winter clothing, specifically on open vehicles morning and night game drives.

The skies are normally clear and the rainfall is minimum at this time.

  • May This is the starting of the winter season. The morning temperatures are recorded as 8°C/46°F and the afternoon temperature shows readings of 23°C/73°F.
  • June and July June and July During the afternoons, the temperature shows readings of 21°C/70°F.
  • August and September These months offer temperature reading of 23°C/73°F in the afternoon. The mornings show the temperature readings around 7°C/46°F.
Wet Season
- October to April

During these summer months, there is slightly more rainfall and the temperature is pleasant.

There may be some days where the skies will be cloudy and it will start drizzling. Most of the days, it will be sunny.

  • October and November The weather will be warm and the average morning temperature will measure 11°C/52°F. The afternoon temperatures will show an average reading of 25°C/77°F. The highest rainfall will occur in the month of October. Although it won’t be raining every day, day-long drizzle won’t be uncommon.
  • December, January and February These three months are considered to be the warmest of all the months. The afternoon temperatures will show an average reading of 28°C/82°F. Mornings are quite comfortable, with the temperature showing readings of 15°C/59°F. The months of December and January have fewer amounts of rainfall, which gradually increases in the month of February.
  • March and April Of all the months, the wettest is March. During this month, the weather starts to cool down, showing an average morning temperature reading of 14°C/57°F, and 26°C/79°F in the afternoon.

Getting There

Shamwari Private Game Reserve is situated 75km from Port Elizabeth, in the province of the Eastern Cape, South Africa. The reserve is accessible to international and domestic travellers alike as it’s less than 100km from the local airport. Book your stay at Shamwari Private Game Reserve today and experience a 5-star South African safari. At Shamwari Private Game Reserve, we accommodate hundreds of holidaymakers. That’s why our lodges are situated far away from each other. It’s important to know beforehand which lodge you’re staying at, in order to help plan your transportation accordingly.

Airlines & Ticket Prices

To book your International and local flights, it is best to discuss options with our agents. They will be able to secure best tariffs and match it with your safari dates.

Click on Enquire Now for a free consultation.

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