We headed out to Dinokeng to get out of Jozi for the weekend. A camping mission to a place that's an hour from Joburg and a pretty straightforward drive up the N1.
With little to no expectation beyond laying nylon on the ground and having a space for a braai, we trundled into Ngata Safari Lodge and were welcomed with absolute charm and hospitality.
The area has a caravan/camp site shared with luxury tented camps, which is connected to the restaurant area fenced off by an electric fenced ring around the entire site - the other side of the fence is bush. This is where I was bowled over to find that there was a traditional Texan smoker that cooks all kinds of meaty things.
Carl, the owner, is originally from Connecticut, after a brief chat with him you find out that he's built a missile silo, worked hand-in-hand with the Saudi Arabian government, married an Afrikaans woman, oh, and now he lives in the middle of the bushveld running the restaurant as chef and manager, where he sources only fresh ingredients whilst growing all the vegetables.
The smoker itself pounds hundreds of chicken wings weekly, but the restaurant also packs a powerful pizza punch; all this to enjoy while you watch out over a watering hole to see what might stop by - this area has elephant, rhinos, apparently some lion that walk by the back of the campsite plus all kinds of buck and other game (we heard loads of jackals during the night) you can also self-drive around the greater Dinokeng area).
Pretty swanky for being out in the sticks!