About Lion Sands

All you need to know about Lion Sands

Lion Sands Sabi Sand is one of the oldest and most successful private reserves in South Africa. It is one of the finest safari areas in Africa due to its high density of wildlife per square hectare and the use of sound environmental practices. The wildlife don't feel threatened by visitors, and so you can be sure of regular sightings, often only a few metres from your private safari vehicle, of some of Africa’s most elusive predators and big game.

The Lion Sands Game Reserve has its own full-time ecologist (the only reserve in the Sabi Sand Wildtuin to do so) to monitor the effect of commercialization on the wilderness. The rangers and trackers are passionate about their work. Game drives, walks, talks, bush dinners and night drives will provide you with a fascinating and complete picture of Africa's amazing wilderness.

Part of the family-owned and operated collection of MORE properties, Lion Sands Private Game Reserve consists of properties in both the Sabi Sand and a private concession in the Kruger National Park. Lions Sands Kruger is one of only seven private concessions in the Kruger National Park - a 5,000 hectare concession with the highest concentration of Black Rhino in South Africa. Located in the Southern Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Lion Sands Sabi Sand is the only Reserve in South Africa to offer a safari in both the Sabie and Sand River ecosystems. 

You can expect your daily programme to look a little something like this, with a few surprise treats thrown in:

Daily Programme

5:30 am: Morning Game Drive: Guests are waking up for their morning game drive.
7:45 am: Coffee & tea: Guests are enjoying coffee and tea in the bush.
9:00 am: Breakfast: Guests are returning from their game drive for a hearty breakfast.
11:00 am: Activities: Guests are enjoying an interpretive bush walk.
13:00 pm: Lunch is served on the wooden viewing deck.
14:30 pm: Rest & Relaxation: Enjoy a massage on the deck of your suite or relax in your private pool.
16:00 pm: Evening Game Drive: Guests are enjoying high tea before evening game drive.
17:30 pm: Sundowners: Guests are sipping cocktails in the bush and watching the sun set.
20:00 pm: Dinner: The fires are lit in the boma for dinner under the African stars.

History of the Lions Sands

It was the late 1920s and there was only one word on everyone's lips – gold. So Guy Aubrey Chalkley, an American of Irish descent, decided to come to South Africa to explore his opportunities as a mining engineer. The stock exchange had just been created to help raise finance for mining activities, and Guy chose to establish himself in this field instead. Together with Paul Davis, he formed a stock-broking firm, Chalkley Davis. Their business flourished, becoming one of South Africa's foremost brokerage firms.

Guy, affectionately known as Chalk, was a keen hunter and traveled extensively throughout Africa. It was on one such adventure that he stumbled across Kingstown. Belonging to the Transvaal Consolidated Lands, this was a jewel of a property on the border of the Kruger National Park. These were the same lands that were soon to become the basis of what is now the world-famous Sabi Sand. Guy was filled with affection for the animals around him and with admiration for the pristine condition of the Kingstown property.

Guy purchased the property in 1933 from Transvaal Consolidated Mines. The Sabie River, snaking through the Kruger National Park and Kingstown property, was the life source of the plentiful fauna and flora. In the late 1930s, Guy built a small camp on the river's banks. There weren't any roads yet so Guy, in his old Ford Sedan, had to follow markings on trees to find his route to the camp. For over 60 years, the camp was enjoyed as a peaceful private retreat by the Chalkley and More families.

Guy's passion for conservation of wilderness areas has been passed down through four generations to the three More brothers who now own and run Lion Sands Private Game Reserve on the same property. John More, who married Guy's granddaughter, Louise Chalkley, introduced Kingstown to the public in 1978 when he built River Lodge and Bush Lodge.

In 2000, an enormous flood changed the face of the banks of the Sabie River forever. The river rose above the roofs of River Lodge and the family camp, Warthog Wallow, washing away decades of history. Nicholas and Robert More, fourth-generation owners of Kingstown, set about rebuilding River Lodge and created the stunning new Ivory Lodge. They incorporated Kingstown and River and Ivory Lodge, and gave the property its new name - Lion Sands Private Game Reserve, which in recent years has added even more properties to its name.

The brothers have the type of passion for Lion Sands that can only be instilled by a profound sense of history and heritage. 

We at Rhino Africa are Kruger Park experts and will gladly assist you in building an itinerary that best suits your requirements and budget. We encourage you to have a look at the individual properties and tours or to Get free, no-obligation advice to put together the perfect tailor-made African safari just for you.

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