Marakele National Park, South Africa
Marakele National Park is situated in the heart of the Waterberg Mountain range in Limpopo Province in South Africa. It is an excellent place to view the Big Five as well as a wide range of flora and birdlife. You can enjoy walking and game driving in the park, while exploring the beautiful landscapes, deep valleys and grass clad green hills.
How to Reach Marakele?
Marakele Park is 250km from Johannesburg. From Gauteng, you can reach the Park by car within 4 hours and from Tshwane, it will take 2 hours. The park is open from 6’o clock in the morning till 5.30 PM.
Marakele Flora & Fauna
Marakele is a heaven for birding enthusiasts. It houses the largest colony of Cape Vulture. You can also spot Crimson breasted shrike, Southern Boubou, arrow marked babbler, tawny flanked prinia, dark capped red eyed and black eyed bulbul, Kalahari Scrub Rob and much more species of birds here. Marakele Park is also home for various eagle species, including black chested eagle, African hawk and Verreaux. Wahlberg Eagle can be spotted in summer.
Marakele is diverse in vegetation. Waterberg moist bushveld type vegetation is prominent. Mixed bushveld and sweet bushveld also grow here. A rare and endangered plant species called Waterberg cycad is grown here. The Park is home to camel thorns, yellow moods and hundreds of other plant species.
The park is the habitat of a range of mammals, including white and black rhino, elephant and leopard. Leopard, lion and brown hyena can also be found here. Antelope species including eland, waterbuck, sable, impala, kudu and tsessebe live in the park. Vervet monkey and Chacma baboon in Marakele Park offers hours of entertainment.
Things to Do in Marakele
The spectacular views and scenery like the surrounding mountain landscapes and the mesmerizing sunset offer plenty of photography opportunities. Bird watching, bush walking, eco trail and game driving are some of the best activities that can be enjoyed here. Sunrise and sunset drives are available. You can get the mountain pass to enjoy viewing the Cape Vulture colony closely. There are many accommodation options, from well equipped tented suites to camp sites to luxury lodges.
In order to preserve the eco system of the park, most of the facilities including restaurants, shops, fuel, vehicle repair and public telephone are available in the nearby town of Thabazimbi.