Arguably the most enchanting region in South Africa, the Western Cape offers a dizzying array of experiences for the traveler. Explore the individual districts within the Western Cape, and you’ll begin to feel as if you have been transported to another world, from Cape Town and the Winelands to Hermanus and the Garden Route. Perhaps the most undiscovered paradise within the Western Cape, however, is Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. Seated at the foot of the Warmwaterberg Mountain Range in the heart of the Little Karoo, Sanbona is one of South Africa’s largest privately-owned wildlife reserves and one of the Western Cape’s most diverse regions.

Restorative efforts in the Western Cape began in 2002, when indigenous antelope species and black rhino were reintroduced to Sanbona, thus improving the ecological balance of the reserve and providing natural prey for the existing leopard, brown hyena, jackal, and caracal populations. One year later, lion and cheetah were released to the Klein Karoo environment for the first time in 300 years. Today, Sanbona maintains its status as the first authentic free roaming Big Five wildlife reserve in the Western Cape and a magnificent shelter for free roaming self-sustaining white lions, the critically endangered and highly elusive riverine rabbit, the world’s second smallest butterfly, the Dwarf Blue butterfly, and over 200 identified bird species.

Sanbona is also the spiritual breathing ground for the ancient San people, who made this arid environment in the Western Cape their home for centuries. The legacy of these people and their spirituality can be witnessed in seven recorded rock art sites portraying more than 3,500 years in the lives of the San Bushmen and KhoiKhoi tribes. If history wasn’t enough, this region in the Western Cape also plays host to the longest wine route in the world, R62, which links the Breede River Valley with the Klein Karoo.

From wineries to wildlife, Sanbona invites guests to explore a truly special wilderness sanctuary in the Western Cape, offering five star accommodations at three luxurious lodges and a back-to-nature Explorer Camp adventure, surrounded by ancient volcanic mountains and endless majestic vistas. There is no South African itinerary that is complete without a visit to the Western Cape and the surprise of Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. Contact your Ker & Downey travel expert to include it in your next luxury South Africa safari for an unforgettable experience.