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“Welcome to the Wild” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Bukela Game Lodge

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Bukela Game Lodge
5.0 of 5 Lodge   |   R342 Karel Landman Rd | off N2, between Port Elizabeth and Grahamstown, Amakhala Game Reserve 6070, South Africa   |  
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Get one night free
cape town
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Welcome to the Wild”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2013

Jeff, we salute you. An amazing ranger with passion and experience. Jeff delivered in terms of educating us about life in the bush. Yes, there are the big animals but it was his skill in teaching us about all bush life from the termites to the birds, life and death and everything in between. Bukela provided us with the space where we met people from distant places who we know will always be friends. But the animals (all of them) are the stars and that’s the magic of Bukela.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
100roaringlions, Owner at Bukela Game Lodge, responded to this review, October 9, 2013
What a fantastic review - thank you for all your compliments on Jeff especially. Our rangers are at the core of every guest's experience, and we're very lucky to have Jeff's unique skills on our side. Thank you both for staying with us, and for all your great feedback and ideas. Now that we've finished our refurb we really have to get you back again! All the best from the Baileys and the Bukela team
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118 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
UK
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2013

Bukela Lodge met all our expectations and more! The lodge we stayed in was beautiful :) All the staff were extremly helpful and attentive and MJ our ranger was truly amazing! We saw the big 5 and lots more and more then once! My boyfriend and i stayed for 3 nights and the food and wine was lovely! Each morning a great breakfast waiting would be waitng for us when we returned from our morning drive also when returning from our afternoon drive a big log fire and hot drinks would be waiting for us, absolutly wonderful! I cant imagine any holiday ever topping this one, thanks to all the people at Bukela lodge, i would highly recommend this lodge :O)
Shorlen & Lee

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
100roaringlions, Owner at Bukela Game Lodge, responded to this review, October 9, 2013
Hi Shorlen and Lee - what a pleasure to have you staying with us, and to be able to share our little piece of paradise with you. Thank you both for staying with us, and for sharing such great memories on Tripadvisor. Here's hoping the only holiday that tops this one is another holiday at Bukela :). All the best to you both from the Bailey family and the Bukela team.
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2013

this place is one of my favorite place on our Garden route in South Africa. Three nights and days spent there would never been forgotten...dear readers it's five star GAME lodge (not proper 5 star hotel in some megapolice like london with 5 star bed and bathroom, you should understand the difference)...and this place is gorgeous..i love the lodge we stayed there, i love all people worked there, our ranger/ess :) Diane was gorgeous, she tried her best to show as many animals in the Addo Elephant Park as she could. this place is smaller than Kruger but it's worth to stay there if you are short of time and want to see as much as possible for a couple days. We saw all animals so close that still cant belive it looking at photoes taken there. But this feeling in our hearts..special thanks to our chef (sorry cant remember his name, but he is originally from Zimbabwe), his meal was tasty, cooked with love and so sofisticated..my favorite is afternoon tea pastry (well, little cakes and pies with different stuff inside :) so lekker!!! this place is not cheap, but it's worth every penny. we recommend it to our relatives and friends and plan to come back there in a couple years. i feel guilty that fed a vervet monkey one day, but she was with baby and so sad eyes and only one meter from our lodge window :)

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
100roaringlions, Owner at Bukela Game Lodge, responded to this review, October 9, 2013
The vervet monkey still asks after you :D. Thanks for such a great, happy review, Jane: it's great to hear from you about your stay. Andrew the chef was very grateful for your compliments too: thank you. Your photos sound wonderful: we'd love to see some if you don't mind sharing with us. Look forward to seeing you back at Bukela in a year or two! Warm wishes from us all at Bukela
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2012 via mobile

Bukela is very close to me and my family's harts. We are frequent visitors to this unique lodge. Bukela is under new management and this always causes a confusion with the staff and what is requered. We had a beautuful time at Bukela as usual and sat on our decks watching the Elephant playing in front of our decks. Thank you to both the Wellas and Nommie and all the staff for this wonderful experience.

Elsa

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
100roaringlions, Owner at Bukela Game Lodge, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Elsa, thanks for always returning with such a big heart. It's always lovely to see you, and we're so chuffed that the elephants put on a great display for you guys. Here's to your next visit, and to all the good times to come at this amazing place. Warm wishes from the Baileys and the Bukela family :)
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uk
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

Stayed her for 3 nights, felt let down after reading the reviews.We thought the place looked worn, the swimming pool was green and murky and generally the place needed smartening up.Had a nice room Nos 4 but again no view, no deck furniture, creaky bed.After spending a huge amount of money to stay here felt dissapointed .

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
100roaringlions, Owner at Bukela Game Lodge, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Thanks for your review - we're sad to hear we didn't hit the mark for you. You're right, the Bukela rooms are set into the bush, so they are more suited to reading and bird-watching (and every now and then monkey-watching). The viewing hide over the water hole has good views from big deep comfy couches, and we love to serve an icy G&T there at sundowners when the animals are at the water hole. While we hate not getting it right for you, we appreciate hearing about the issues you experienced - your deck furniture being MIA, for instance - and we'll do some digging and find out what happened and get it sorted. Thanks and best wishes from the Bailey family and the Bukela team.
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Hanoi, Vietnam
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2012

Stunning series of cabins located right in side the Game reserve.

Rooms are lovely with all mod cons in traditional settings. Particularity liked the out door shower and in room log fire (not for kids!) It was our honeymoon and they put on a very romantic meal in the room - lovely touch.

Food was top draw, best steak we had in a very long time could cut it with a spoon. Wine list is very good and well priced.

Game drives were excellent, our guide was insightful and had an encyclopedic knowledge of the parks wildlife in all forms from bees, trees and elephants.

Room Tip: No 1 room is closest to the watering hole were animals come to drink at dusk and dawn.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
100roaringlions, Owner at Bukela Game Lodge, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Congratulations on tying the knot, and thank you for choosing Bukela as part of your honeymoon - we feel very honoured to have been part of this great moment in your life. We're very chuffed to get such a lovely review - thanks for taking the time to post it. All the best to you both for this amazing first chapter of your journey together. Warm wishes, the Bailey family and the Bukela team
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Cardiff, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
99 reviews 99 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2012

We stayed here for 3 nights and found the staff to be very enthusiastic and proud of what they do. We have been on safari before but have never been offered so much food. Cereals, yoghurt, juices, tea or coffee before game drive, tea, coffee or hot chocolate with muffins during drive, fruit, cooked breakfast, toast, juices, tea or coffee for brunch, high tea, wine, beer or soft drinks with snacks on afternoon drive, 4 course dinner with wine in the evening. On our last evening we had a private dinner. The fire was lit and a hot bath run with rose petals and candles, also far too much food for just 2 people, but it was very romantic. Our ranger, Simon, made sure that we saw 4 of the big 5, also cheetahs, giraffes and many different kind of antelope. Although this is not like Kruger or Masai Mara for game viewing we had the most amazing elephant encounters, they came so close to us you could have touched them. The staff here are really lovely and friendly and so is little Tusker the dog. Thank you all at Bukela.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
100roaringlions, Owner at Bukela Game Lodge, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Your review made us smile: maybe we should think about adding a Bukela Recovery diet programme attachment to our goodbye emails? (I always need a day or two of bread and water to recover from my times at Bukela.) Thanks for taking the time to give us some feedback: we're always trying to get better at what we do, and reviews like yours are inspiring and motivating for the team. You're right, there are so many different and wonderful game experiences in Africa, and at the Amakhala we try to make it intimate and accessible. We're very pleased you enjoyed it so much, and hope to welcome you back sometime. Til then, best wishes from the Bailey family and the Bukela team
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Additional Information about Bukela Game Lodge

Address: R342 Karel Landman Rd | off N2, between Port Elizabeth and Grahamstown, Amakhala Game Reserve 6070, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Amakhala Game Reserve
Amenities:
Free Parking Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 6 Specialty lodging in Amakhala Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Bukela Game Lodge 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Resting in the rolling Eastern Cape hills 80km outside Port Elizabeth, Bukela Lodge offers a gentle, tranquil escape from the world. The abundant Amakhala wildlife – including lion, cheetah, rhino, elephant, giraffe, zebra and buffalo - range over a breathtaking oxbow river plain in the 7000 hectare, malaria-free conservancy.Our intimate four-suite lodge offers an exclusive game viewing experience which, combined with our luxurious, secluded accommodation, and variety of dining options, creates a remarkable, private retreat. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bukela Game Hotel Amakhala Game Reserve

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