The Olifants River is a tributary of the “Great, grey, green, greasy Limpopo river.” *
The river runs through the center of Kruger National Park, dividing the northern and southern regions.
Olifants rest camp has arguably the best view in Kruger, lying hundreds of feet about the river and offering panoramic views of the African veld from the comfort of your rondavel porch. All of these photos were taken from our porch, with the exception of a few of the following ones, taken in the bush near the river.
If you look you can see blurring near the elephants feet. This is when my camera started to break down after three harsh weeks in the bush.
A huge variety of animals come to the river to drink, including of course the elephants that often walk single file to the water. In South Africa winter is the dry season, and the river provides scare water to a variety of animals. Olifants is the Afrikaans word for elephant, and many elephant herds spend the South African winter near the river.
There is a long walk from the shelter of the veld to the river and animals make the trip in a very cautious manner, always on the lookout for predators. Zebras have a guard who scans the bush while the herd drinks. You can see the guard on duty on the far right.
Giraffes are the most cautious of all. They scan the veld closely before drinking. They must essentially disable themselves to drink, buckling or splaying their legs in order for their heads to reach the water and this makes them vulnerable to attack.
When they drink, they do so briefly, immediately resuming the scan, before they drink again. Giraffes only sleep for minutes at a time, remaining continuously vigilant.
Great herds of Cape Buffalo come to the river to drink.
Hundreds block the road enroute to the river and when you encounter a herd, you sit in your car, surrounded by a sea of huge buffalo and wait.
It is unnerving, especially when you are the only one on the road. You can see this buffalo warning us not to proceed. We listened to him!
I am home at The Holler now, but send you cheers, and a South African river sunset!
* Source:The Elephant’s Child, Rudyard Kilpling

210 thoughts on “Olifants~

      • I had issues with a camera because it was too cold. I can only imagine that combination taking its toll. I hope you have a back up while that one gets repaired. I feel like I’m missing a body part if I’m walking and I don’t have my camera.


      • The really frustrating part was having a second rate backup to use while I was still in Africa. Each camera had issues. It was sooooooo frustrating to have an amazing animal in front of me and cameras with issues. I used both and snapped shots with each. If I ever went to Africa again, I would go with two pristine cameras, expecting the first would poop out!


  1. You have some wonderful memories of my country… it shows in the photos… brilliant…
    Olifants camp is one we spend a lot of time at… love that look out over the river…


  2. beautiful photos – stopped on over from silkandthreades – you got a shout out! Have a great week and I love the photos of the animals from a land I have never visited.


  3. Excellent compositions. Great shots of African Landscape & wildlife. πŸ™‚

    Especially enjoyed the meandering herd of Hardy Olifants. πŸ˜€


  4. Good evening Cindy or I suppose good morning where you are. These photos are just magnificent. I so enjoy lingering on your site and absorbing all the beauty of things I would otherwise never be able to experience… and I thank you so very much…
    Thanks for sharing your wonderful artistry with us…
    Hope your day is most beautiful


  5. My reader showed the picture of the buffalo but your title for your post was Olifants which had me a bit confused until I actually went into your post and saw the photos of the elephants πŸ™‚


    • I have no idea why the reader selects what it does. It would be nice if it would go with my first photo. I am glad you bothered to look after the confusion. Cheers to you and thanks too for telling me~


  6. I love photos of giraffes and the beautiful sunset took.my breath away, Cindy. The water buffalo are interesting and I know less about them. Thanks for sharing, Cindy.


  7. Pingback: Olifants~ | penpowersong

  8. Pingback: Wordless Wednesday Showcase ~ Who’s Next?! | Dorinda Duclos - Night Owl Poetry

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