Local Excursions
This is what Jembisa specialises in – providing a wide range of bush experiences for guests to get the most out of their safari holiday whatever their age or interest. The examples below are designed to give a flavour of the experience guests will enjoy at Jembisa.
The classic way to enjoy exploring and game viewing is in 4x4 open vehicles with experienced guides and trackers. Our diverse habitat makes game drives fascinating and thrilling, and includes drives across open savannah, through syringa woodland, evergreen forests, cliff roads and across rivers. Our guides enthral all ages with their knowledge and stories.
Enjoy the opportunity to see nocturnal animals, such as jackal, brown hyena, leopard, porcupine, aardwolf, civet cats, bush babies and the rare aardvark. Surrounded by the vast starry canopy of African night, the atmosphere is different and senses are heightened. Wildlife is seen by 'spotlighting' for eyes with a lamp from the vehicle, guests have the opportunity to do this too.
There is nothing compared to walking in the African bush. It is a highlight for our guests, both young and old. Get the thrill of experiencing the African bush close-up and on its own terms. Feast your heightened senses on new sensations as our guides expertly teach you about the signs of the bush and the wonders of nature.
Extended walks with overnights at our Savanna tented camp and fly camping under the stars. These are 1-3 days long but flexible in length and can be enjoyed in part or in full. Learn how to track and approach game, and explore the fauna and flora. A never-to-be-forgotten experience in this magnificent wilderness.
There is nothing closer to nature than spending the night sleeping under the African stars, around a blazing camp fire. Snuggle up under the milky way, searching for shooting stars after a delicious campfire dinner. Listen to the sounds of the bush and wake up to the African dawn to feel, hear and sense the bush wake up around you. A guest favourite.
 
With 7km of the Palala river meandering through the reserve, a river walk is a delight. Wildlife species to be encountered are hippo, crocodile, otters, monitor lizards, pythons plus the general game of the reserve come down to drink. Water birds are abundant. At lunch time, picnic on the banks, cool off in the rapids and try some fishing.
A local astronomy expert - Dr Philip Calcot, will set up his big telescope and screen in the middle of Jembisa and provide a fascinating experience of the southern hemisphere stars. Find out how to navigate the true south from the southern cross, look at where stars are born in star nurseries and see the planets close up. Zero light pollution provides the perfect viewing environment. (This activity often combined with camp-outs).
Get behind the scenes and shadow a game ranger for a day, helping with fence patrols, bush clearing, wildlife husbandry, game viewing and much more.
The opportunities for landscape, wildlife, birds and flora photography are abundant at Jembisa and in the Waterberg area generally. We have teamed up with some professional photographers who will conduct a full photographic safari including workshops and tutorials. Outings to specific local points of interest are included. Please contact us for more details.
There are 2 highly acclaimed artists living in the area, Clive Walker and Liz Hunter. They will hold 1 - 5 day art safaris during where artists will be guided on techniques, enjoy sketching out in the bush and finishing off artworks in the studio at Jembisa. Their local knowledge of the history of the Waterberg, the fauna and flora is also exceptional adding an extra, fascinating element to the workshops. Please contact us for details.
An exciting way to view game is on mountain bike. Cycle alongside herds of zebra or get up close to a giraffe whilst getting some exercise at the same time. There are a variety of cycle routes to suit all ages, abilities and energy levels.
 
As a result of the existence of the Palala River, there are several sites of archaeological importance at Jembisa where ancient peoples lived. These include a full iron-age village site, circumcision stations and bushman paintings.
Learn how to identify the spoor of different animals and read the signs of the bush to establish direction and age of track from our expert trackers on foot. Discover the methods and safety rules of approaching game on foot.
Join our chefs in preparing some of their own recipes using some unusual local ingredients and learn how to make a pizza oven out of a termite mound! Discover our bush tucker- the edible plants and berries in the wilderness.
There are many other activities specially designed for children of all ages. To view these please go to Children Activities.
The Waterberg is spectacular for horse-riding - the dramatic scenery, and the ability to get close to wildlife makes it a fabulous experience for riders of all ages and experience. There are some riding safari specialists very close to Jembisa where our guests ride. They have professional riding guides and carefully match riders to horses.
Jembisa has chosen not to be home to lion and elephant as the safety element allows us to provide opportunities to experience the African bush in a deeper, wider way on foot and to use all of the senses in this discovery. It also allows other unusual activities like spending the night under the stars, bush kitchen activities and mountain biking. Many guests want to see the more dangerous animals and so we can take them on a half day excursion to nearby reserves for this or we can arrange for them to spend a night there.
It is not necessary to go far from the cottages to appreciate the diverse fauna and flora of the Waterberg. The animals come into the camps, and the trees and wildflowers are in abundance and vary between the different habitats on the reserve. The best time for wildflowers is Spring (October - January).