One of the best places to view the big five in the Western Cape, Aquila Private Game Reserve is a luxury accommodation option that offers travellers an authentic safari experience not too far away from Cape Town.
We recently visited Aquila as part of our Karoo trip for a safari tour and buffet lunch. The four-star reserve offers luxury, premier and standard accommodation options to suit any traveller who would like to get up close and personal with Africa’s big five.
After a scrumptious Karoo-themed buffet lunch, we piled into our safari vehicle and headed into the reserve. Our two-hour trip gave us close encounters with elephants, hippos, lions, zebras and rhinos, to name a few.
About those rhinos… It was incredibly sad to hear from our guide that around two years ago, poachers flew in by helicopter at night and killed one of them for its ivory. Since then, efforts have been stepped up at Aquila to protect the remaining rhinos and they are guarded day and night to prevent any future poaching activity.
Aquila is also serious about the environment and is taking steps to become more green. Apart from a massive solar panel installation, we also visited the urban farm, which grows salad leaves and other vegetables used in the kitchen’s restaurant. This farm uses an organic system where waste from the kitchen is cast into an earthworm farm, which in turn produces fertiliser for the herbs and vegetable garden.
Photography Justin Williams