Its Monday and a Big 5 Bonanza at Mkulumadzi

I do hope that you are all well and have had a wonderful weekend; and sitting comfortably. This week we are hearing from Steph on what is happening at Mkulumadzi in Majete, Malawi.

” ‘Confucius say, ‘Roads were made for journeys…not destinations.’

The journey to Mkulumadzi was just about as rewarding as the actual destination! Having set off a little later than planned due to delayed flights, we made our way from the city of Blantyre, down the long and winding escarpments, taking in the sights and sounds of village life. Although we were all anxious to get to our destination, the sunset was a sight for sore eyes and a photo opportunity we could not pass up on. Our driver was only too happy to comply and we had a wonderful time watching the sun as it lit up the valley in shades of orange, yellow and crimson.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We reached Majete Wildlife Reserve just after dark. Once in the reserve, the drive to the lodge was another 30 minutes and at this point we were all quite disappointed that our late departure from Blantyre had cost us an evening game drive. We were however pleasantly compensated when we turned a corner and came face to face with 2 beautiful lionesses, preening themselves in the middle of the road. We couldn’t have asked for a better journey… or better welcoming committee!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The rains had turned Majete lush and green, but has not compromised the wildlife sightings which have been excellent!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were fortunate enough to witness something rather special on our morning game drive…

It all began with the usual 5am wake-up call, followed by a quick breakfast and a cuppa before heading out into the park. During the drive, the antelopes of Majete really put on a show for us – sable, nyala, kudu, bush buck, waterbuck and impala all making an appearance within the first hour. Mali, our safari guide, suggested we have our morning tea break on the Majete airstrip – this may sound strange, but he assured us that is was quite a hub of activity and a popular place to see giraffe. True to form, we arrived at the airstrip to see it littered with warthogs, impala and giraffe! Way to go Mali!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the morning tea break, it was back to business. Mali asked if there were any special requests in terms of what we would like to see. Leopard was top of the list as the night before we had been treated to a lovely lion sighting. Mali explained that although he was not ruling out seeing a leopard, they had however been quite elusive over the past few weeks. Less than 5 minutes later, lo and behold, we came across a beautiful leopard, enjoying the early morning sun! We were in awe and thus the photographic evidence is a little shaky however none the less, here it is!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we continued our drive, we had another Big 5 experience, with some fantastic elephant sightings, including a very playful young male. The guy was so intrigued with our game viewer that he proceeded to block the road for a good 10 minutes while he took a closer look. Not that any of us were complaining!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once the young elephant had had his fill, he moved on and we then began to make our way back to the lodge, only to find yet another member of the big 5! Out on the river bed in front of the dining area, a small herd of buffalo. We sat and watched the herd all come down for a drink before sauntering back into the bush. Our morning could not have gotten any better!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After lunch and a quick siesta, we were out in the park, making our way to the jetty for an afternoon of boating. Being out on the river is indescribably peaceful and from the boat we saw an array of bird life and plains game as well as a rather prehistoric looking crocodile who was sunning himself on the river bed without a care in the world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mali then docked on a small sandbank on the river for sundowners, where we enjoyed our G&Ts while watching yet another glorious sunset.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were not so lucky seeing the 5th member of the Big 5, the elusive rhinoceros, but we were very aware of their presence, having come across several tracks.

That marked the end of our time at Mkulumadzi but re-affirmed our need to return!”

Thanks, so much Steph for sharing this with us; it certainly sounds like the wildlife and camp is going from strength to strength. As we have been offered such a lovely story from Malawi, I am going to leave you on that note and bid you all a very fond farewell. Have a fantastic week with lots of smiles and laughter.

 

 

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