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“Great time” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp

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Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp
4.0 of 5 Bed and Breakfast   |   39 Eastbourne Road, Kenton-on-Sea 6191, South Africa   |  
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
Southern England
1 review
“Great time”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

We stayed for three nights in February, so went for six game drives and one game walk (next to the safer animals). Saw lots of wildlife, and the rangers were excellent spotters of game and birds, as well as very knowledgeable and friendly. This is definitely glamping (glamorous camping) - huge beds in the large tent, full bathroom facilities, hot water. Lights run off solar-charged batteries, I think, so are dim, but fine for most purposes, including reading in bed. We liked the food and there was plenty of it. Forest Camp is nicely laid out, with each tent out of sight of all others, set in the trees but with boardwalks to the reception/dining/sitting area. Recommended if you want to see game and birds while staying somewhere comfortable but not out of place.

  • Stayed February 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ellielover, Owner at Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp, responded to this review, March 18, 2013
Dear Andrew
So happy to hear you had a great stay - we hope to see you back here sometime soon.
best regards
The Sibuya team
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171 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (38)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Pulborough, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

My hobbies are bird watching and wildlife generally. I also enjoy my food and wine. Our ranger was knowledgeable so the hour long trip up the Kariega river was informative. Then lunch for an hour plus in the lodge with refreshing beers beforehand (and on the boat). A choice of wines with our meal. Then a 3 hour trip around the reserve which was 'just right'. I saw all the animals I was hoping to see. Some of the terrain was pretty rough and rugged which added to the enjoyment. Although travelling on my own, I was part of a group of 10 who were great to enjoy the experience with. Excellent value for money for a day trip out.

Room Tip: I can't comment as mine was a day trip.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ellielover, Owner at Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp, responded to this review, March 1, 2013
Thanks very much Paul,
Next time you return, I hope you are able to stay over in the camps as that is when you will really get the chance to live the very special experience that is Sibuya.
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Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

We were in a party of 20 for a wedding split between river camp and forest camp over 3 days
Food Outstanding
Accomodation Outstanding ( tents in Forest Camp)
Staff - Brilliant, polite, hardworking, informative
Rangers - Awesome ( Bryan made the drives a joy)
They really made our friends wedding an event we will never forget.
Especially the wedding meal, wow is all I can say
Can you tell we liked it??

Room Tip: Forest camp stick to 2 or 9 to avoid a long walk
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
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Ellielover, Owner at Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp, responded to this review, March 1, 2013
Thanks Warren,
We absolutely loved having you guys here - to host such a happy and positive party was such a pleasure for all our staff. We really hope that you are all saying - Sibuya - we will return!!!!
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Hampshire, England
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

We stayed here, five of us, in December. The rooms are comfortable, although a bit dark, the food is average and, in fact, we only eat soup and bread for dinner each night because the main meal was not good. Lunches and breakfast were much better. The drives were excellent and we saw everything. The rangers are very good, very knowledgeable and very helpful. There is an open bar and everybody is extremely friendly and relaxed. However, this is definitely an eco camp and that is not made clear in advance. That means that there is very little lighting and no power in the rooms. My husband had a bad accident whilst there due to the lack of light and had to be taken to hospital in Port Elizabeth - a very long way away in an emergency. The first aid facilities at the camp are inadequate for anything other than a very minor incident. In the end, our ranger stayed with us throughout the night, driving us around and generally helping us.

However, be aware that it is only when you arrive at reception, having paid for the trip in full, flown to Port Elizabeth and then driven for another hour and a half to Kenton on Sea, you are presented with a form which you have to sign which unconditionally releases Sibuya Game Park from any duty of care.

For all these reasons I wouldn´t recommend Sibuya for older people, children or those who are not fully fit.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ellielover, Owner at Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp, responded to this review, February 25, 2013
Dear Judith,
Thank you for the positives in your report – when you threatened to “expose us on TripAdvisor” after we referred you to our insurers when you requested compensation I expected much worse – so thank you.
As those who know us on TripAdvisor are aware, I make it policy to try and answer all comments in detail, good or bad. However I think in this case it is better I just copy the relevant portions of my email to you (edited and shortened) after your request for compensation and let the reader decide for him/herself what the actual circumstances surrounding this event really were.

For the benefit of the reader, the accident referred to occurred when the gentleman, who decided to relax in the bar instead of going on afternoon game drive, fell off a walkway and onto one of the lights, in the process breaking the wine glass that he was carrying, which then cut the artery in his wrist.

Dear Judith,
Thank you for your email and for choosing Sibuya as your Game Reserve destination.
I am very sorry to hear about your husband's accident and I hope he is recovering well. Please wish him a speedy recovery from us all at Sibuya.

Your email requests us to consider compensation of some sort and lists a number of reasons why you believe it should be forthcoming. As a SATSA member (South African Tourist Services Association) we are bound to take out Public liability insurance and accordingly deal with a brokering company called SATIB.
However, before you decide whether you wish to proceed with a claim with them, let me answer some of your points for the edification of all concerned.

• Cause - we accept that lighting in general in a tented bush camp is not comparable with that of a hotel in town. It is most definitely not intended to be so. We offer a genuine bush experience with lanterns being the main source of lighting. Initially lanterns were the only lighting in our camps but subsequently we installed a "solar power station" mainly to replace our gas fridges but also to give added low lighting in the tents and walkways to the tents.
• Injuries - I cannot speak for the doctor, but while your husband was in the doctors rooms I was constantly in touch with my staff who were there at the time. As you will recall I reported back on the radio that he was expected back in camp soon as the doctor had almost completed the stitching. Later on I passed on a message from my staff that the doctor wished to send him to a Port Elizabeth hospital for observation. The main reason, according to my staff at the doctor's office, was because the doctor was a little concerned at your husband's continued slurred speech. Apparently the doctor was not sure whether this was from shock, loss of blood, pills he may have taken or due to the alcohol consumed by him before the accident, and accordingly thought it best that he be kept under observation overnight.
• Facilities - before the season every first aid bag/box in every camp, vehicle and boat was checked and replaced or replenished where necessary (we do this at least twice a year). I can fully accept that a few bandages from a standard first aid box would not be enough to stem the flow from a cut artery and that extra Carlton paper might be required.
• No first aid training – all our ranger/guides are FGASA (Field Guide Association of SA) and DEAT (Dept. of Environment and Tourism) certified. Likewise is our camp manager (Mike) and some of the camp assistants. This first aid certification is redone every two years to keep the guides current.
• Thought to serious injury - we are contracted to and insured by SATIB. They have a doctor on call 24 hrs. a day for such an emergency. This doctor has ambulances, paramedics and even helicopters at his disposal and dispatches them as and when required.
• Negligence and lack of care – I understand your tremendous concern for your husband’s welfare but I worry that this point might have been made hastily and without due consideration to the tremendous effort that my staff put in to ensure your husband’s very best care under the circumstances.
As I understand the course of events were:
Your husband fell off the walkway on his way from the bar to the boma for dinner at about 7.45pm.
Brian and Mike (both first aid certified) immediately attended to him.
They then rushed him through to the Doctor, in one of our vehicles, where he arrived about 8.30 – 8.45pm
Kari contacted the 24 hr. SATIB hotline and engaged the services of the 24hr medical service
Kari, Mike and Bryan were at the doctor’s offices with the patient. I was on standby at the radio at the reserve offices and Chris was on standby at the camp with the rest of the family. At least 20 radio and huge number of cell phone calls were made, arranging doctors, contacting SATIB and keeping the family in camp up to date with the unfolding events at the doctor’s rooms. All calls and transport (including to PE) were done at our expense.
The doctor attended to the wound (and I gather inserted stitches) and suggested the patient be monitored in hospital until the “slurring” stopped (in consultation with SATIB)
SATIB organised Guardmed to transfer the patient to PE.
The family who had been constantly updated via radio wanted to accompany the patient to PE
Bryan collected the family and drove behind the ambulance, to PE as none of our regular transporters were available at that time of night
Kari, in the meanwhile (at 11.30pm), organised a hotel room for the family in PE
Bryan arrived in PE at Greenacres hospital at about 1.00am. After dropping family members at the hospital and then later checking them into the hotel, he left PE at about 3.30am. He got back to Sibuya at about 5.00am.
All in all 5 of our staff were involved in the operation as well as the services of our local doctor, SATIB’s 24hr call advisor, a paramedic team (who supervised the patient until the ambulance arrived) and an ambulance team.
Bryan, in particular, was with the patient and/or family from the time of the accident until all were either settled at the hospital or in their hotel in PE at about 3.30am (for which I am told your family were so appreciative that he was suitably rewarded).

As you are aware, we are in the adventure section of tourism. As such, accidents can and do happen, although rarely.
Because of this, we strongly recommend in our detailed guest fact sheet and on all booking forms, that all guests carry travel insurance especially for medical expenses and evacuation to cover them specifically for this kind of accident.
However, as mentioned above, we do carry Public Liability insurance with SATIB but are obligated, by them, to ensure all our guests fill out an indemnity form on arrival. You might remember one was handed to you for signature in reception. This is standard throughout our industry.

So generally, any claim for compensation of this nature, should be made against a guest’s own travel insurance policy which is specifically designed to cover such occurrences.

However, all that having been said, if you wish to take further steps to claim compensation from our insurers, this can be done by submitting a claim to them. Accordingly, please send the amount you wish to claim and the detailed reasons therefore, either to me or directly to Carri at SATIB and she will forward to the underwriters for their consideration.


Again I wish your husband a speedy recovery and you and your family all the very best for 2013 from us all at Sibuya
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Newquay, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
108 helpful votes 108 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2013

We finally had time for a return visit to Sibuya. This time we stayed at River Camp, having sampled the delights of Forest Camp on our previous visit. Absolutely stunning....and even that doesn't do it justice. Hospitality is fabulous and Mike's expertise means that game drives are a real joy. Loved every minute of our time, especially swimming up the river to Forest Camp and back, complete with support boat. Thanks, guys! You make Sibuya a little bit of paradise.

  • Stayed January 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ellielover, Owner at Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
Thanks Kate and Steve ...... wonderful !!!!!!!! - Sibuya - "we will return " (in Zulu) - we hope you will be back again and again.
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Ballina, Australia
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2013

We stayed for 3 nights in early January and had the pleasure of Ranger Chris as our guide.
From the twice daily safaris, to fishing for crabs off the jetty, or kayaking up the river this was a diverse way to enjoy our safari experience.
Our luxury tent (cabin-8 ) at forest camp was overlooking the waterhole and we were lucky enough to witness the animals in their daily rituals.
The food was amazing and plentiful and free booze was a welcome bonus.
Chris's incredible knowledge of all animals, birds and fauna was astounding. He is a hilarious and great fun and made sure our stay was memorable.
Thanks to all staff, we had a ball!!

Room Tip: Go for tent 8 at forest camp. Views over waterhole
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Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ellielover, Owner at Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp, responded to this review, January 31, 2013
Dear Aussies
Thanks for your wonderful compliments - I will pass on to Chis and all in camp
Chris also has some really great pics in our latest newsletter - I hope you got a copy of that. If not please contact reception so they can fwd a copy and add you to our mailing list.

All the best from all here in sunny SA

The Sibuya team
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Randburg, South Africa
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013

This is definitely one of the places to see before you die!!! Don't miss out on this piece of Paradise. I spend a day with New Zealand visitors at Sibuya and it was worth every cent. Everything you can think of is available at this beautiful place. The hospitality, the staff, the management — they are all superb. The food was plentiful and delicious. They definitely went the extra mile for every single person. The game was plentiful and in beautiful condition. Thank you for such a wonderful experience.

Room Tip: Clean, comfortable, lots of good food, friendly and just worth every cent.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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.
Ellielover, Owner at Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp, responded to this review, January 31, 2013
Dear Tereza,
Thank you for your wonderful compliments.
We really hope that you can visit us again sometime soon
"Sibuya" (we will return)

Best regards from all at Sibuya
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp

Address: 39 Eastbourne Road, Kenton-on-Sea 6191, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Greater Addo > Kenton-on-Sea
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 B&Bs / Inns in Kenton-on-Sea
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp 4*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sibuya has more navigable river than any other game reserve in South Africa. The unique experience starts immediately with a half-hour boat transfer to River/Forest Camp - luxury en-suite tented accommodation nestled in riverine forest and constructed in an environmentally conscious manner. Guests are hosted and guided by a team of experienced professionals. An abundance of wildlife from elephants to otters, Big Five, cheetah breeding program and prolific bird life await you. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sibuya Game Reserve & Tented Camp Hotel Kenton-On-Sea
Sibuya Game Reserve And Tented Camp

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