• Activities
    Activities

Things to do

If experiencing the big five is a dream of yours, then let us make it come true. The Kruger National Park is one of the planet’s premier game reserves. Pristine and unspoilt for over 115 years, it is a massive 30 000 square kilometres and includes the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park.

Your once-in-a-lifetime safari with professional guides can be arranged. We offer:  full-day drives, sunrise drives, morning walks, sunset drives and night drives all in the Kruger National Park, as well as Tiger fishing and Elephant-back safaris.

Full-day drives

Experience the call of the African Bush, on your full-day safari with a qualified professional guide in either an open-raised or air-conditioned vehicle. Depart from Needles Lodge at 05h00 in the summer or 05h30 in the winter. Enjoy the African sunrise, and see the first game on the plains. Perhaps you will be one of the lucky few to experience predators on the hunt! At approximately 10h00, stop and have breakfast in Kruger Park.

Spend the day discovering the ‘Big Five’ and learning about the wonders of nature in its truest form. The game drives concentrate on the southern region of the Kruger National Park, internationally recognised as the best game viewing area for the Big 5. Visit Skukuza or Lower Sabie, the main rest camps, where curio shops are situated. Return to the comfort of the Lodge at approximately 17h30 for a well-deserved sundowner on the deck.

Cost: R995.00 per person

Sunrise Drives

As the bush awakens, an early morning start is made worthwhile when you experience the Kruger National Park come alive. The chatting of the birds, calls from the wild and the amazing sunrises will keep you enthralled on your 3-hour, professionally guided tour in an open-raised safari vehicle. Experience some of the nocturnal animals making their way to bed and the diurnal animals coming to life. Only for the brave at heart, the departure times from the Lodge are at 03h15 in the summer and 04h15 in winter.  Return to the comfort of the Lodge at approximately 09h00 for a sumptuous breakfast.

Cost: R620.00 per person

Morning Walks

Bring your senses to life, when participating on a morning walk in Kruger National Park, an experience of a lifetime. See, hear, smell, touch and even taste the bush up close as professional rangers lead you on the game paths through the park. Two armed and trained rangers take up to 8 people out into the bush for 3 to 4 hours. Experience the fauna and flora up close and personal. You may just be lucky enough to have a Big 5 experience on foot to really get your adrenaline going! Once again only for the brave hearted as the Lodge departure times are 03h45 in summer and 04h15 in winter. Return to the comfort of the Lodge at approximately 10h00 for a well-deserved brunch.

Cost: R775.00 per person

Sunset Drives

Experience the fabulous African sunset and enjoy the opportunity of finding the Big 5.  Depart the lodge at 15h30, and drive with a professional guide in the Kruger National Park. The nocturnal animals of Africa such as genets, bush babies and civets come out after dark and with the guidance of spot lights you may have the chance of spotting them. Return to the lodge at approximately 20h30, where your delicious, 3-course dinner will await you.

Cost: R620.00 per person

Night drives

Spot the nocturnal animals of Africa, when you depart the lodge at approximately 19h15 with a professional guide and drive into the Kruger Park at night. Experience the opportunity of seeing many owl species, genets and other elusive animals that only wander out after dark. Return to the lodge at approximately 23h00. Dinner will be served at 18h00 prior to your departure.

Cost: R620.00 per person

Tiger Fishing

Hook, line and sinker, experience fearsome game fish known for putting up quite a fight. Taking on a tiger fish will add a whole new dimension to your South African Safari. The Komati River, only 20 minutes from Needles, offers the perfect location to catch one of these awesome specimens. A professional guide, licenses, equipment, bait and your transfers are included to ensure you have a great experience.

Cost:

From the bank:
Half day 06h00 to12h00 - R 500.00 per person
Full day 06h00 to 18h00 - R 800.00 per person

From the boat:
Half day 06h00 to 12h00 - R 700.00 per person
Full day 06h00 to 18h00 - R 1000.00 per person

A BBQ lunch can be provided for a cost of R 200.00 per person

Elephant-Back Safaris

Emotional and moving elephant experiences at a local private game reserve which has two tamed elephants that live within the Reserve.  The elephants, Tswale and Modjadji, are based at the purpose-built stables in the reserve. Transfer is included in the cost of any of the elephant activities.

One-hour, elephant walk - R 800.00 per person
A walk through the bush in the 70 ha non-Big 5 area where guests can interact with the elephants and the natural environment simultaneously. A great way to combine a walking safari with a close encounter and experience of a lifetime with African elephants. 

One-hour, elephant-back safari - R 900.00 per person
A half an hour interaction which includes touching, feeling and feeding the elephants and then a half an hour Elephant Back Safari through the bush in a 70 ha non-Big 5 area.  Sightings of wildebeest, kudu, zebras, impala and warthogs are possible.

Two-hour, elephant-back safari - R 1500.00 per person
A longer game-viewing experience with greater distance being covered allows for more possibility of animal sightings and includes either morning coffee and rusks or afternoon sundowners.

Panorama Trip

Experience the breathtaking beauty of rock formations, picturesque waterfalls, landscapes and magnificent views of the Blyde River Canyon, God’s Window and Bourke’s Luck Potholes, as well as Pilgrims Rest, situated in the Lowveld Escarpment.

Minimum 4 Pax  - R 4000.00 (4 persons) R 750.00 per additional person

Price includes all entrance fees, but excludes meals & drinks. Departs the lodge at 07h30 and returns late afternoon.  Stop for lunch.

Swaziland Full Day Tour

  • Visit a Swazi Cultural Village: breakfast, tour & performance.  
  • Ngwenya Glass Factory – handmade glass.Ezulweni Valley.
  • Craft Market – crafts & curios.
  • Gone Rural – exclusive rural handcraft / weaving.
  • Rosecraft (mohair products).
  • Lunch at a local restaurant.
  • Swazi Candles – watch the creation process and meet the artisans.
  • Maguga Dam.

Minimum 4 Pax  - R 4000.00 (4 persons) R 750.00 per additional person.

Price includes Village Tour & Performance, but excludes meals, drinks & VISAS. Departs the lodge at 07h30 and returns late afternoon.

Mozambique (Maputo Capital City) Day Tour

  • Stop at a local coffee shop.
  • Samora Machel statue  Catholic Cathedral.
  • Steel House & Botanical Garden.
  • Fortress & Train Station.
  • Maputo Craft Market – Woodcraft & Batique vendors.
  • Lunch at the Fish Market - prawns & local beer.
  • Ocean Drive.

Minimum 4 Pax  - R 4000.00 (4 persons) R 750.00 per additional person

Price excludes meals, drinks and border VISAS. Please note that visa’s can be obtained at the border but this can be time consuming. We recommend you obtain a visa before arrival.

Depart the lodge at 07h00 and return late afternoon.

Walk or jog in Marloth Park and on the banks of the Crocodile River

Marloth Park – home to Needles Lodge – shares a 15 km border with the mighty Crocodile River and the Kruger Park. Enjoy a walk or a jog in the bush and along the Crocodile River. You could spot the Big Five, crocodiles, hippopotamuses and many other game species. Explore and learn about the different indigenous trees, grasses and wild flowers growing in Marloth Park's 4300 hectares. Sit with your binoculars at one of the hides or viewpoints, and see what strolls by.

Bird watching

Sightings of over 300 bird species have been recorded in Marloth Park. Join the many guests who have used our birdlife reference books to get acquainted with them. Get up close with your camera and record your memories of the wonderful species that are endemic to this region. Learn the various bird calls, and see how many species you can identify.

Self-drive safari

Needles Lodge is situated between the two main southern entry points to the Kruger National Park – 35 km to Malelane Gate and only 30 km to Crocodile Bridge Gate. This makes for quick, easy access to the Park for day trips, with time enough for you to view its southern – most popular – part. The Lodge's management will go over the maps with you, and where required give advice, including our guides' advice on the latest sightings of the Big Five.

Mozambique and Swaziland trips

Apart from its easy access to the Kruger National Park, Needles Lodge is the ideal springboard for your day trips to Mozambique and Swaziland. It is also a perfect stopover for travellers leaving these countries for either shopping trips or continuing holidays.

Maputo, Mozambique's capital is a wonderful experience. Tour the city with its wonderful architecture and history, visiting the various craft markets. A trip to Maputo would not be complete without enjoying the finest African/Portuguese cuisine, which incorporates in some of the finest sea-food and traditional fare on the Costa Do Sol beachfront.

Swaziland is also just an hour away, and this day trip offers a different yet equally enjoyable experience. Visit traditional cultural villages, see bushman paintings, visit art and craft centres, and view the beauty of one of Africa's last remaining kingdoms.

If you would prefer escorted tours to both Maputo and Swaziland, these are easily arranged.