Madikwe Game Reserve, situated in the North West Province of South Africa close to the Botswana border, is home to our Madikwe Photo Safari. This Reserve which is only a four hour drive from Johannesburg, is the perfect getaway for photographers. Being Malaria free, it is also a great destination for families with young kids.
Having guided in Madikwe for about five years and running the Madikwe Photo Safari, these would be the lenses I would recommend for travelling to this unique destination.
Wide Angle (24-70mm)
Madikwe has numerous waterholes, which in the drier months can become a highway for wildlife. Having a wide angle in these situations would help capture the entire scene, which is often accompanied by gorgeous light being on the edge of the Kalahari.
On all of our safaris to Madikwe, we will try (weather dependant) to do some star photography, where a wider lens might come in handy, a 16-35, 17-40mm or similar.
Medium Zoom lens (70-200mm)
Definitely a lens that is suited for this Reserve. In Madikwe, as with most Reserves in South Africa, off roading is permitted for high profile species, which means you generally get close to the animals. This lens will also help capture “animal in environment” type images, and with the scenic waterholes and mountains this Reserve, the possibilities are endless.
Telephoto Lens (300-500mm range)
From past experiences in this Reserve, a focal length of 400mm is the maximum required to capture most scenes, however with the amount of birdlife in the area, a 500mm would come in handy if bird photography is what you are after. Focal range more than 300mm will also enable you to deconstruct your subjects and look for more abstract images.
- Wide angle lens for Landscape images from vistas and around scenic waterholes
- Mid focal range 70-200mm for “animal in environment” type images.
- Telephoto lens of 300-400mm for close up portraits
- 500-600mm if bird photography is of interest.
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