Marakele National Park, South Africa

Marakele National Park is a South African National park which is part of the Waterberg Biosphere in the province of Limpopo. The area where the park is instituted was home to several Iron Age settlements which are known by the public. Before its formation to a national park, the area was a home to a naturalist Eugene Marais. The park was first founded as Kransberg National Park in 1994 with an area of approximately 150 square kilometers. Shortly, the park was renamed Marakele National park and by 1999, it had expanded to about 670 square kilometers.

Wildlife of the park

Mammal species

Marakele National park is a home to a variety of game species including the big five African animals – lions, leopards, African bush elephant, hippos, rhinos and the buffalos which were recently introduced on 15 October 2013. The park also hosts over 16 species of antelopes, warthogs, kudus, impalas, hartebeests, wildebeests, giraffes, bushbucks, zebras, duiker, eland, waterbuck, tsessebe, sable, brown hyenas and many others. Among the animals in the park include the migratory and resident animals.

Bird species

Marakele National Park records over 250 bird species including the resident and migratory birds. Among the bird species in the park include the largest colony of Cape Griffon vultures in the world. This colony is about 800 breeding pairs. A number of different birds in the park can be sighted around Matlabas River which runs through the park. Among the birds in the park include the Buff streaked chat, white faced whistling duck, maccoa duck, fulvous whistling duck, mocking cliff chat, jackal buzzard, cape vulture, cape rock thrush, black cuckoo shrike, southern white crowned shrike, bee- eaters, violet eared and black cheeked waxbills, southern white crowned shrike and the white created helmet shrike, African fin foot and the half collared kingfisher and many others.

Also, the park contain the bird species which can only be sighted at night and among these include the freckled and fiery necked nightjars, spotted eagles, the African scops owl, the crickets and the cicadas.

Accessibility of Marakele National Park

Marakele National park is located in the Limpopo Province of South Africa.  The park is accessible to all passenger vehicles with almost approximately 80 kilometers of roads within it being accessible to all vehicles though a 4×4 safari vehicle would be better. Marakele National Park also contains developed camp and tent sites on almost all roads within.

Accommodations in Marakele National park

Marakele National Park has got two tented camps namely Tlopi and Bontle that are laid within it. The Bontle which means beautiful in Setswana consists of 10 tented units for those in need of permanent structures rather than putting up a tent or a camp for themselves.  Other accommodations near the park include the Marataba safari loge, Kransberg Country lodge, Marataba mountain lodge, and many others. These facilities are both affordable and comfortable to every traveller.