We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Magical Pumba - the cherry on the 'incredible South African trip' cake !” 5 of 5 stars
Review of African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve

Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 6 more sites!
Save
You added African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve to your Saves list
African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve
5.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Highlands (just off N2) | (100 kms from Port Elizabeth), Port Elizabeth 8005, South Africa   |  
Hotel amenities
Malta
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“Magical Pumba - the cherry on the 'incredible South African trip' cake !”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2011

We stayed in South Africa for 3 lovely weeks on our honeymoon, but the best 3 days were at Pumba Private Game Reserve! We stayed at the Water lodge and the place is magical - with each lodge overlooking the picturesque lake Kariega. The treatment is 5-star plus - and as honeymooners we got some extras too, although I'm sure they'll find a reason to give something extra to anybody!

The food is mouth-watering - with breakfast, lunch and dinner to die for. The lodges themselves are nicely laid out with a large lounge area complete with couches and a private deck with a small personal pool. Pity it was winter when we went because it would have been amazing to sip a drink in the pool whilst watching the hippos laze around in the lake. We still watched them of course - just not from the pool :) Which brings us to the safari drives - our drives (including the occasional off-road) were done by a young knowledgeable and patient fellow named Gladman who would do everything he could to try and get us close to the animals but at the same time not bother them too much. You get to stop and drink some wine and eat some snacks towards the end of the safari drive - and in the afternoon this is done at sunset.

Pumba is truly an unforgettable experience. I would suggest it to anyone.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

284 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    246
    26
    5
    6
    1
See reviews for
47
188
3
4
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (84)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Port Elizabeth, South Africa
2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2011

We had the most wonderful weekend at the Water Lodge - from the pride of white lions, the tawny males and close encounters with elephants to the wonderful staff, awesome food and the luxury of the rooms - a stunning experience!

Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Inverclyde,Scotland
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2011

This was a holiday of a lifetime - the location was idyllic , the service could not be faulted - why would you when you get hot choc or Gluwein on return from game drive!
The accommodation was beautiful, spacious and very, very comfortable.
The game drives were fascinating and we saw the big 5.
The bit I liked least was the cold water in the private dip pools - only my toes felt how cold the water was!
I would recommend this place to everyone.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Cape Town
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 3, 2011

The most magical safari lodge in the Grahamstown area. Excellent Big 5 viewing inlcluding the famous white lion and two precious cubs. The food was excellent and the staff could not have been more attentive.

A really special place ideal for romantic engagements, honeymoons or family gatherings.

Looking forward to return again and again.

Room Tip: All the rooms had lovely bush views
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Australia
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2011

We stayed in Pumba Game Reserve for three nights for my wife's 30th. From the beginning we were wowed by it's luxurious feel and attentative staff.

We stayed in the Msenge Bush lodge (not the Lake Lodge), and was not disappointed. We initially thought we would've preferred the Lake Lodge, however we were proven wrong! The Msenge Bush Lodge feels more isolated and less commercial than the Lake Lodge (which is just as beautiful, however they do functions there and have many visitors looking at the facilities). In the Bush lodge it felt like our own and more in tune with the surrounding bush. We were lucky enough to have an elephant walk within metres of our little hut! a surreal experience.

The food at the lodge was delicious (and they catered very well for my wife's vegetarian needs) and we were completely satisfied and full after each meal.

The accomodation itself was perfect. Luxury in the african bush - the way it should be. The walls of the hut are predominently glass which makes you feel like you are camping in the bush, but everything inside was luxury.

The game drives were very good - even though it is a game reserve, the animals live within their own ecosystem - and are not fed. We managed to see everything except hyenas. This was our first safari experience, but we were told by other experienced guests who had travelled to the main parks (Kruger, Kenya, Tanzania) that this was preferrable only because they got much closer to the game and not as many vehicles around.

All in all - definitely a trip that will live fondly in our memories.

I would definitely recommend the Pumba Game Reserve to all my family and friends.

Room Tip: We were in the end villa (I think it was room D)
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Near London
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2011

This is a very special place where my husand and 20-yr son spent 3 nights at the water lodge staying in Kudu suite, Room 12. It is an open reserve where all the thatched lodges overlook Lake Kariega containing hippo etc and where elephants swam one afternoon. The surrounding grasslands have roaming warthogs, zebra and gemsbuck etc. On our last morning a lion strolled across the lodge grounds! The service is outstanding and meals fantastic. Our ranger, Freedom, was incredibly knowledgeable and had excellent sense of humour. On our six game drives we saw elephants (including Hapoor age 56!), rhinos, male and female white lions plus their 2 cubs, cheetah, leopard, lions, giraffe, zebra, eland, hippos, bush pigs, tortoise, blesbuck, kudu, impala, monkeys and mongoose etc.

The staff are lovely, warm and welcoming people. Alison, on reception, was a star and Sipho, Poppy, Linda and Nwabisa plus many others were so courteous, professional and hardworking. Alison drove us to see Msenge bush lodge (about a 10 minute drive) where we were welcomed by Portia. We ate cake and drank coffee watched by a curious monkey! Msenge is newer and very smart with its own gym and spa but overlooks the bush rather than the beautiful lake. (Maybe if we returned we would stay 2 nights at Msenge and 2 nights at Pumba water lodge)

Although very expensive, everything is included in the price (even washing done and returned same day) so there are no extras to worry about. A fantastic place - thank you to all the staff at Pumba.

Just a few minor cons: No hand showers attached to the baths, maintenance were rather slow - our overbed cooling fan was never mended, the beautiful new multijet shower next to our private steam room didn't emit a drop of water and the lights outside the front door didn't work! Fortunately torches are provided! Swimming pool and plunge pools not very inviiting - could probably do with upgrading.

The highlight of our holiday - the animals!

Prior to staying at Pumba we spent 3 nights at nearby Kichaka Lodge, also excellent.

Room Tip: Believe all lodges overlook the lake.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Solihull
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2011

Absolutely beautiful hotel with amazing food, service and safari! My friend and I treated ourselves to one night and a day safari at Pumba during the quieter part of the year and I have to say it was 100 per cent definitely worth the money! I loved everything about this place and any description i give probably won't do it justice so if you can go there and see it for yourself then do!

We chose this place because some of the other reserves are small and cage the animals in so it eds up being a bit like a zoo. As far as I know this isn't the case with Pumba and it definitely didn't feel that way during the safari. We felt very safe in our accommodation as we were escorted around by hotel staff to make sure we weren't eaten by lions on the way to dinner. I went with my friend which was great but we both said this would have been a great place to save for a honeymoon because the place is stunning and I imagine quite romantic if you were with your other half!

  • Stayed January 2011, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve

Address: Highlands (just off N2) | (100 kms from Port Elizabeth), Port Elizabeth 8005, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Port Elizabeth
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 53 Specialty Lodging in Port Elizabeth
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve 5*
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover wildest Africa in true luxury at Pumba Private Game Reserve & Spa in the malaria free Eastern Cape, South Africa. Our exclusive reserve has achieved gold status for its environmental responsibility, through The Green Leaf Initiative, and a 5-star rating for its exquisite accommodation facilities. With the formalities out of the way, African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve accommodation at one of two intimate and enchanting lodges. Each idyllic chalet is totally private and complete with their own pools framed by timber decks and outdoor showers... only the monkeys and the hippos will be watching you here. Every chalet is designed and decorated using individual and natural fabrics - picking up on different aspects of African nature and wild life, and immersing you into feeling at one with the unspoilt beauty which surrounds you. When dining you'll be treated to an array of gourmet safari cuisine, all prepared by our passionate Five Star chefs, who will cater to all your individual needs. We have additional pampering for the mind, body, and soul, at the Msenge Bush Lodge's Soul Spa - as well as our fully equipped gym surrounded by glass, and extending out beneath a cathedral of trees. Come face to face with Africa’s Big 5 at African Pride Pumba Private Game. Visitors have the chance to experience the wonders of Africa - from the graceful giraffe to the seldom seen leopard. Don’t miss the once in a lifetime opportunity to see the very rare White Lions - 45 species of mammals and other small game. For the bird lovers and twitches the nearly 317 species occurring in our geographical region will never fail to delight you. This is the heart and soul of wildest Africa... this is African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Venere, TripOnline SA, Despegar.com, Priceline, Travelocity and Tingo so you can book your African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Pumba Private Game Reserve Hotel Port Elizabeth

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage African Pride Pumba Private Game Reserve, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.