Malena Game Lodge Hunting Farm Review

Malena Game Lodge Hunting Farm Review


Malena Game Lodge is situated on a 1700 Ha game farm in the North-West Province. A traditional walk and stalk farm which doubles up as a small wedding venue, the lodge is geared towards hunters and family alike. The area does not have much of an elevation gain, so spying the various herds of game is relatively easy, and hunting is geared towards both experienced and novice hunters alike.


Malena is located near the slurry outside of Mahikeng in the North-West Province (roughly 3.5 hours outside of Johannesburg, or 280km from Pretoria). From Johannesburg, the best route would be to take the N14 and head West through Ventersdorp and only Coligny. From here, you should head North West to Lichtenburg and follow the R505 to the farm. While the roads are in adequate shape ground clearance is important as the large amount of heavy vehicles traveling to and from the Slurry have caused some minor damage. The road up to the farm is dirt, but rather smooth, so a vehicle with some ground clearance is preferable.


The farm itself is a mix of thick brush, long savanna-type grass and open veld. Comprising of a number of plains where the herds of various game species congregate and feed, a lot of “trekking” is done to move between these areas and remain hidden. The mix of terrain allows for you to move relatively unhindered, but you’ll need to keep an eye out for game that sits within the bush during the heat of the day (an impala or two were shot within 20-30m in this thick vegetation). As mentioned, there is not a large amount of elevation gain, so keeping your eyes up and feet soft is important to avoid detection. The area takes on an arid, dry-grass colour, so picking the right gear to camouflage is key.

Type of hunting: 

A great aspect of this farm is that hunting is restricted to Walk and Stalk only (no vehicle shoots allowed). There are a number of well-walked trails leaving from the main lodge. The local lodge guides are highly knowledgeable on the movement of the various species around the farm, so best to chat to them before you leave and follow their lead.

The farm is predominantly flat with only certain areas giving a slight vantage point. This means that utilizing the bush to navigate your way between the plains is vital, and sticking close to the guides as they pick their way through the shrub is the best choice here.

As someone that loves the ability to get close to the game without alerting them, the thicker vegetation presented the perfect barrier to move into good shooting positions and wait for the right moment to shoot.

If you’re looking for a change of pace, there are a few hides that are built around small dams to utilize, although I found these quite overgrown and not really viable (3-6 July 2022). On the afternoon of the 2nd day, I therefore settled for an afternoon of prone observation on the bank overlooking a watering hole, as I had been told that this particular spot was a great area for Warthog. Although the birdlife was fascinating to watch, I wasn’t in luck and headed back to the lodge as the afternoon light began to fade.

As a personal observation, our strategy was to do two separate walks (6:00AM and 14:30PM), and try take advantage of the lower light of the morning and late afternoon. This required us to do a fair bit of walking, as the lodge is not situated close to the plains. However, this gave us some time to form some strategies on ways to approach the open plains from the bush and pick our targets.


Malena boasts a number of game species to hunt, namely Eland, Waterbuck, Impala Blue Wildebees, Kudu, Zebra, Red Hartebees, Gemsbok, Warthog, Blesbok and Sable. While there are herds of Springbok on the farm, these were not available to hunt as the farm owner (Fanus Booysen), was trying to increase the herd number. There are also Giraffe and Golden Wildebees on the farm, but these are not for hunting.

We came across a fair number of Kudu females and Red Hartebees throughout both days, as well as Blesbok. However, as we were the 14th hunting party to come through the farm at that stage of the season, so getting close to any of the game wasn’t the easiest. The one animal we didn’t see much of was Warthog (only 3-4 which quickly darted across the road).

Meat Handling:

The farm can skin and store the carcasses for you, but you will need to transport your meat back to your butcher of choice.


  • Description

As mentioned, Malena doubles up as a small wedding venue. There are four separate chalets (3 x 3 sleeper, 1 x four sleeper), all with on-suite bathrooms, which are well-equipped and comfortable.

  • Facilities

Full kitchen (serviced* and not serviced) and boma (indoor and outdoor area), with a fantastic outdoor fire pit area and swimming pool to utilize in the warmer afternoon heat between possible hunts. The boma and firepit are especially spectacular, and where we spent most of our time in the evenings. There are sufficient fixed braai grids to use, or you can just relax and enjoy the sound of nature with a superb fire crackling in the background.


  • Extras

A great feature at the lodge is the 100m single lane shooting range. Cut into the bush 200m from the main lodge buildings, the range allows hunters to sight their rifles on arrival.

  • Family Friendly

With the number of beds and facilities available, there is enough room for the whole family.


The owner, Fanus Booysen, is present at the lodge in the mornings and evenings to check in and see how your stay is going. Aside from Fanus, there are a number of guides and other staff to help make your stay comfortable. Cleaning staff are able to maintain the boma and kitchen areas, as well as the rooms, and the guides are ready to meet you at any time for your hunt (they’ll ask you the day before what time you would like to head out).


Malena charges R500 per hunter and guest per night (including children that hunt). Children up to 12 years old are charged at R150 per night, and children under 3 years old are free of charge. There are additional charges for breakfast and dinners to be prepared for you, if you would like to choose this option.

In terms of the pricing of game, this is quite affordable on certain species. The Kudu and Wildebees are priced relatively well, and so are the Blesbok. While it may not be the cheapest farm I’ve ever visited, it certainly is worth the cost.

It is important to note that Malena requires a minimum of four hunters over weekends.

Equipment list:

Malena Hunting Lodge caters for most things you’ll need for your stay (crockery, cutlery, towels, bedding, etc.). As thing get quite cold in the mornings, a light jacket will be needed, but try aim to bring one that’s durable (e.g. rip stop), as there are some thorns in the thicker bush areas.

A good backpack (25l) is recommended to store your jacket, radio/cell phone, first aid kit, extra ammo, water and snacks, etc.). While you’re trekking across the farm, you won’t be near any facilities to drop items off or refuel your water bottle, so make use you have enough for a few hours.

I would recommend full sleeve and full pants for the walk through the farm, as the vegetation can be quite dense and you may need to work your way through some brush.

A pair of hunting/hiking boots is best, but I have seen some members of our hunting group navigate their way across the farm in trail shoes and gaiters. The area is generally dry and so you won’t need anything too high end.


We did not receive any special favour from Malena Hunting Lodge for this trip and we paid our way in full.


On the information and pricing sheet, the owners describe Malena as an unparalleled hunting paradise. The mix of good accommodation, amenities and excellent hunting make this statement true.

My one suggestion would be to try and visit Malena Hunting Lodge early in the season. Having visited the farm after a fair number of hunting parties, the game were extremely skittish (namely the Blesbok who had taken a beating prior to our arrival). Being able to get close therefore became difficult and we spent much of our time repositioning due to being spotted by the game.

Aside from this one point, I thoroughly enjoyed my hunt at Malena. I’ll definitely be back next season!



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