At Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, we believe that your safari dining experience should be as memorable as every other aspect of your stay with us.  Our team of chefs are as dedicated to their craft as our Game Rangers and hospitality team are to their passions, to ensure every detail of your safari is taken care of.

The cooking style at Sanbona celebrates the multi-cultural flavours of South Africa. Sometimes traditional, sometimes presented with a contemporary twist, always unique, it’s also a celebration of the people in and around the Klein Karoo that supply the ingredients – the cheesemakers, dairy farmers, fruit growers, butchers and winemakers. Much of it is artisanal, driven by innovation, ideas of sustainability, and heritage styles.

Each lodge has its own menu. At Dwyka Lodge, chef Duane Williams prefers to serve South African dishes on your safari with a surprising difference. So, instead of the more usual slow-cooked Karoo lamb shanks, he serves springbok shanks which are smaller and tastier.

The dining room at Dwyka Tented Lodge.

Dwyka Tented Lodge Grilled beef fillet for dinner by lamplight in the outside boma.

At Tilney Manor, sous chef Jacques Sauls tries to use whatever is to hand locally, whether it’s herbs and salad leaves from his vegetable garden or venison from the local butcher. His menus are driven by the need to demonstrate to guests that South African safari cuisine is easily on par with the best of international food styles


Grilled gemsbok with mixed herbs and smoked beetroot with, to accompany it, a Danish-inspired savoury with sun dried tomato pesto topped with a butter ball. Lunch at Tilney Manor At Tilney Manor lunch is served on the stoep, gemsbok tartare presented with pickled peppers and garnished with spring blossom, accompanied by a simple green salad.


Chef Tim du Preez at Gondwana Family Lodge grows as much as he can in a vegetable garden that supplies fresh ingredients for his menus. He makes his own cheese, pesto, droewors (dried sausage), biltong (traditional dried meat), cured meat, smoked chicken, biscotti, pastries, bread and chocolate truffles. What he can’t make, he sources within the ambit of the reserve’s location in the Klein Karoo. Foraging in the veld, he finds brakslaai, edible cactus, guarri bush, which he uses to make beer, and buchu, which he uses to flavour a white chocolate dessert. He adds these wild ingredients sparingly, but sophisticated palates would find them interesting additions to the range of adventurous tastes already on offer.

Bobotie is a South African dish consisting of spiced minced meat baked with an egg-based topping. Typically, it’s served with sambals, banana and chutney and garnished with coconut.

Artisanal-style bread is baked in the kitchens at Gondwana Family Lodge.


Beetroot risotto as a main course.


If you are on safari for a special occasion, do let our teams know, as special occasion meals, birthday cakes or special requests will be accommodated to help you mark your special occasion.