While we love getting our travelers under canvas out in the bush, sleeping ensconced in luxury but with nature all around, in recent years we’ve seen a few amazing private villa options spring up around the continent. Not only are private villas a fabulous option for families while on safari, these new safari Villas are ideal for accommodating groups of 3-4 families or an extended, multi-generational group.
If you’re planning a safari with friends or as a large family group, here are a few private villas you need to consider.
Sabi Sands Private Safari Villa
South Africa’s Kruger National Park is one of the most well-known safari destinations on the continent. The Sabi Sands private conservancy, located adjacent to the national park, is a great place to enjoy the prolific wildlife in the area in an exclusive setting.
In this exclusive enclave, we have a beautiful six-suite villa. Each villa features a private viewing deck and heated spa bath overlooking the riverbed. Each one is decorated in contemporary African design, complete with luxury furnishings, full bathroom en-suite, indoor and outdoor showers and air-conditioning. Thatched roofs, romantic mosquito nets draped over the comfortable beds and beautiful wooden finishes complete the picture of an exclusive safari getaway.
Delicious dinners eaten outside under gently lit trees are a wonderful experience loved by all. This jewel of the South African bushveld boasts all of the features associated with an exceptional safari lodge – beautiful setting, excellent cuisine and abundant wildlife.
Private Wilderness in Northern Kenya
Then heading north to Kenya, Ol Jogi is one of the most exclusive properties in all of Africa and perfect for multi-generational families looking for an authentic Kenyan experience. Here, stay in a private home as well known for the art collection and superlative service as the amazing concentration of wildlife on the private reserve. This is an uber-exclusive safari experience in a 60,000-acre private conservancy in Northern Laikipia.
From the exquisite setting, service, and style to the leading Wildlife Rescue Center, conservation projects and community programs, Ol Jogi can cater to every whim. Ol Jogi operates as a non-profit, whereby the money brought in from guests goes straight into a conservation platform. The private conservancy is home to 15% of the world’s remaining Grevy’s zebra, more than 50 of the world’s 700 remaining Eastern Black Rhinos, 12% of the remaining Reticulated giraffe, and African wild dog.
Thanda Island, Indian Ocean Private Villas
One of the few truly private tropical islands in the world, Thanda Island just opened to guests in 2016. Situated within southern Tanzania’s Marine Reserve, Thanda offers absolute exclusivity for families and friends to enjoy on a sole-use basis.
The 20-acre private island private island can accommodate up to 27 guests when children are included.
The main house, Private Villa, consists of five suites for up to 10 adults and up to nine children sharing, plus two charming, banda-style beach huts for another eight guests. Each suite features indoor and outdoor showers, air-conditioning, and private patio space.
We love the glass rim-flow swimming pool located right on the beach, as well as the tennis court, fitness center, spa, and yoga pavilion all on site. But perhaps most exciting, here you have access to a wide range of all-inclusive ocean adventures including snorkeling, sailing, stand-up paddle boards, kayaks, water skiing, jet-skiing, wake boarding, tubing, game fishing, day trips to Mafia Island for scuba diving, and more.
The area surrounding the island is a certified marine sanctuary, home to whale sharks (Oct-Feb), dolphins, turtles, and dugongs, with management implementing conservation and community programs in partnership with Tanzanian Marine Parks and the leading NGO, Sea Sense. The villa and island have been painstakingly built as environmentally sustainable with off-grid solar power.