South Africa in General
South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa, is a country located at the southern tip of Africa with the geographic co-ordinates being 29 00 S, 24 00 E. Our comparative area is slightly less than twice the size of Texas and our land boundaries total is 4.862 km. South Africa's border countries are Botswana 1.840 km; Lesotho 909 km; Mozambique 491 km; Namibia 967 km; Swaziland 430 km; Zimbabwe 225 km with our coastline being 2,798 km. It is divided into nine provinces and has 2,798 kilometres (1,739 mi) of coastline. To the north lie the neighbouring countries of Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe; to the east are Mozambique and Swaziland; while Lesotho is an enclave surrounded by South African territory. South Africa is the 25th largest country in the world by area and the 24th most populous country with over 51 million people.
The Capital City is Pretoria. Cape Town as the legislative centre and Bloemfontein the judicial centre. Total land includes 1, 219,912 sq km. South Africa has a vast interior plateau rimmed by rugged hills and narrow coastal plains, our lowest point is the Atlantic Ocean and highest point being Njesuthi 3,408 m. South Africa has the most diverse game population in the world with approximately 36 species of antelope.
South Africa is a multi-ethnic nation and has diverse cultures and languages. Eleven official languages are recognised in the constitution. Two of these languages are of European origin: English and Afrikaans, a language which originated mainly from Dutch that is spoken by the majority of white and Coloured South Africans. Though English is commonly used in public and commercial life, it is only the fifth most-spoken home language. All ethnic and language groups have political representation in the country's constitutional democracy comprising a parliamentary republic; unlike most parliamentary republics, the positions of head of state and head of government are merged in a parliament-dependent President.
About 80% of the South African population is of black African ancestry, divided among a variety of ethnic groups speaking different Bantu languages, nine of which have official status. South Africa also contains the largest communities of European, Asian, and racially mixed ancestry in Africa.
South Africa is ranked as an upper-middle income economy by the World Bank. It has the largest economy in Africa, and the 28th-largest in the world. By purchasing power parity, South Africa has the 5th highest per capita income in Africa. It is considered a newly industrialised country. However, about a quarter of the population is unemployed and lives on less than US $1.25 a day.
South Africa has a generally temperate climate, due in part to being surrounded by the Atlantic and Indian Oceans on three sides, by its location in the climatically milder southern hemisphere and due to the average elevation rising steadily towards the north (towards the equator) and further inland. Due to this varied topography and oceanic influence, a great variety of climatic zones exist. The climatic zones range from the extreme desert of the southern Namib in the farthest northwest to the lush subtropical climate in the east along the Mozambique border and the Indian ocean. Winters in South Africa occur between June and August.
The extreme southwest has a climate remarkably similar to that of the Mediterranean with wet winters and hot, dry summers, hosting the famous Fynbos biome of shrubland and thicket. This area also produces much of the wine in South Africa. This region is also particularly known for its wind, which blows intermittently almost all year. The severity of this wind made passing around the Cape of Good Hope particularly treacherous for sailors, causing many shipwrecks. Further east on the south coast, rainfall is distributed more evenly throughout the year, producing a green landscape. This area is popularly known as the Garden Route.
The Free State is particularly flat because it lies centrally on the high plateau. North of the Vaal River, the Highveld becomes better watered and does not experience subtropical extremes of heat. Johannesburg, in the centre of the Highveld, is at 1,740 m (5,709 ft) and receives an annual rainfall of 760 mm (29.9 in). Winters in this region are cold, although snow is rare.
The high Drakensberg mountains, which form the south-eastern escarpment of the Highveld, offer limited skiing opportunities in winter. The coldest place in South Africa is Sutherland in the western Roggeveld Mountains, where midwinter temperatures can reach as low as −15 °C (5 °F). The deep interior has the hottest temperatures: a temperature of 51.7 °C (125.06 °F) was recorded in 1948 in the Northern Cape Kalahari near Upington, but this temperature is unofficial and was not recorded with standard equipment, the official highest temperature is 48.8C at Vioolsdrif in January 1993.
Keep in mind malaria is only in certain areas of South Africa and not an everyday occurrence like the rest of Africa. See your doctor for medical advice. Hospitals and doctors are mostly close by hunting areas. It is important to take out a medical insurance.
Vaccine recommendations are based on the best available risk information. Please note that the level of risk for vaccine-preventable diseases can change at any time.
Vaccination or Disease
Recommendations or Requirements for Vaccine-Preventable Diseases
Recommended if you are not up-to-date with routine shots, such as measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria/pertussis/tetanus (DPT) vaccine, poliovirus vaccine, etc.
Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG)
Recommended for all unvaccinated people traveling to or working in countries with an intermediate or high level of hepatitis A virus infection (see map) where exposure might occur through food or water. Cases of travel-related hepatitis A can also occur in travelers to developing countries with "standard" tourist itineraries, accommodations, and food consumption behaviors.
Recommended for all unvaccinated persons traveling to or working in countries with intermediate to high levels of endemic HBV transmission (see map), especially those who might be exposed to blood or body fluids, have sexual contact with the local population, or be exposed through medical treatment (e.g., for an accident).
Recommended for all unvaccinated people traveling to or working in Southern Africa, especially if staying with friends or relatives or visiting smaller cities, villages, or rural areas where exposure might occur through food or water.
Recommended for travelers spending a lot of time outdoors, especially in rural areas, involved in activities such as bicycling, camping, or hiking. Also recommended for travelers with significant occupational risks (such as veterinarians), for long-term travelers and expatriates living in areas with a significant risk of exposure, and for travelers involved in any activities that might bring them into direct contact with bats, carnivores, and other mammals. Children are considered at higher risk because they tend to play with animals, may receive more severe bites, or may not report bites.
Areas of South Africa with Malaria: Present in northeastern KwaZulu-Natal Province as far south as the Tugela River, Limpopo (Northern) Province, and Mpumalanga Province. Present in Kruger National Park. (more information)
If you will be visiting an area of South Africa with malaria, you will need to discuss with your doctor the best ways for you to avoid getting sick with malaria. Ways to prevent malaria include the following:
All of the following antimalarial drugs are equal options for preventing malaria in South Africa:Atovaquone-proguanil, doxycycline, or mefloquine. For detailed information about each of these drugs, see. Chloroquine is NOT an effective antimalarial drug in South Africa and should not be taken to prevent malaria in this region.
More Information About Malaria
Malaria is always a serious disease and may be a deadly illness. Humans get malaria from the bite of a mosquito infected with the parasite. Prevent this serious disease by seeing your health-care provider for a prescription antimalarial drug and by protecting yourself against mosquito bites (see below).
Travelers to malaria risk-areas in South Africa, including infants, children, and former residents of South Africa, should take one of the antimalarial drugs listed in the box above.
Malaria symptoms may include
Malaria symptoms will occur at least 7 to 9 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. Fever in the first week of travel in a malaria-risk area is unlikely to be malaria; however, you should see a doctor right away if you develop a fever during your trip.
Malaria may cause anemia and jaundice. Malaria infections with Plasmodium falciparum, if not promptly treated, may cause kidney failure, coma, and death. Despite using the protective measures outlined above, travelers may still develop malaria up to a year after returning from a malarious area. You should see a doctor immediately if you develop a fever anytime during the year following your return and tell the physician of your travel.
South Africa is widely covered by cellphone signals. Communications with camp is via satellite phone, cell phone, telephone or fax, email or radio. It is advisable to bring your own Satellite phone and or cell phone with. We do have wireless internet in basecamp which you can use to connect your smart phone, Ipad or labtop with.
Hunting in South Africa with PBS
South Africa is still the plains game capital of Africa and is the only country where you can hunt all of the Dangerous Seven with ease. A wide range of plains game occurs in South Africa which could be added onto any big five safari. Arrival point is OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg for all of our Freestate, North West and Mpumalanga Safaris. For safaris in the Limpopo Province we advise clients to do a flight from Johannesburg international to Polokwane International. South Africa is very safe to hunt and tour and is in general the best destination to take your family with on safari. Phillip Bronkhorst Safaris operate in eight of the nine provinces. We use concession areas for most of our dangerous and plains game. The PBS base camp is on our own family owned game reserve which already has 3 of the big five on it namely Buffalo, Rhino and Leopard.
We also do cater safaris outside the borders of South Africa and these destinations include Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia and Zambia.
Main Hunting Areas
Basecamp is situated around 4 hours drive north of Johannesburg or 2 hours west of Polokwane. Closest town is called Lephalale formerly known as Ellisras. Town is only 45 km (30 miles) from camp. We mainly do plainsgame from this area. Buffalo, Hippo, Crocodile and certain speciality species are done in and around the province
Several lodges are used in this province due to the spreading of specific species. Most of the areas is within 4 hours drive East of Johannesburg. Most of the areas consist of open grass plains, rolling hills and high mountains with scattered trees and brush. Speciality species are done in and around the province
Our main hunting area is situated 3 hours drive south from Johannesburg close to the town of Winburg. We mainly use a small guest house. Terrain is open plains, rocky hills with scaterred brush. Plainsgame species are mainly done around this area.
North West Province(Kalahari)
Our main hunting area is situated 6 hours drive west from Johannesburg close to the town of Bray. A safari lodge is used as accommodation with grass thatched chalets. Terrain is flat sandveld and dunes with scaterred brush. Plainsgame species are mainly done around this area.
Base camp, situated almost in the heart of the Limpopo Province on the foothills of the Waterberg escarpment is from where all hunting is done. Hunting is done in areas which vary from hillsides, savannah, valleys, and riverine areas to grass plains. Different species occurs in different topography and since Southern Africa is so specie rich we will inform and advise you which area to hunt and what the specific topography would look like in that area.
Luxury Safari accommodation is in all areas consisting of luxury chalets and rooms to typical East African Style tents. 220Volt Electricity is available in all camps. Bush cuisine is served in lodges consisting mostly of venison, vegetables and fruit from the area. A bar is available and before arrival in camp you will inform us what you wish to have in camp. We also do make use of other accommodation, all depending on areas that we have to hunt and species that you require. All of our various accommodation types and lodges carry the stamp of approval of the national government. Laundry is done on a daily basis. In some areas you might have to fly-camp for a day or 2, all depending on the specie you are hunting for.
Pick-up is done from the airport by a Phillip Bronkhorst Safaris agent. Transfers is done from there to various destinations which include Beira in Mozambique, Maun in Botswana, Harare or Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe, Lusaka in Zambia and Windhoek in Namibia. For the more adventurous all of this destinations could be reached vehicle. Extra days are vital in this case.
Hunting usually starts in April since it rains before that. Hunting is done until late October before the rains start again.
Trophies are field prepared in camp from where it is shipped to a local taxidermist. You have the option to dip and ship your trophies to a local taxidermist in your country of origin or you can have it mounted in South Africa.
Terms of Business
Since we work on a system of first come basis it is required from you to book your safari and preference list well in advance. You are therefore required to do a 50% deposit of your daily rate, which is not refundable. This must be done almost 12 to 15 months in advance. Daily rates must be paid up before the safari starts and the rest of the trophy fees is payable at the end of the safari.