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“Unforgettable experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Jock Safari Lodge

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Jock Safari Lodge
5.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Nearest Town Skukuza | Inside Kruger National Park, Kruger National Park 2060, South Africa   |  
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Hotel amenities
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
Paris
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Unforgettable experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2014

My friend and I stayed at Jock in April as part of a wider trip to SA (which included several safari stays), and had a truly unforgettable experience.

Everyone, from the friendly welcome staff, the brilliant GM, the wonderful cook and the amazing rangers, contributed to making this a truly special experience. Each went out of their way to make our stay (and that of all the other guests) special, and there is a true family atmosphere at this lodge which makes it unlike any other we have experienced.

I could give many details as to why we found it so special - but I recommend people go with an open mind and make their own experiences!

As for me, I am saving in order to go back in 2 years time, this time with the hope of being able to share the experience with my family!

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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338 reviews from our community

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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 (74)
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English first
Brisbane, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014

We stayed at Jock Safaris Lodge for 4 nights from the 12-16 July 2014 and thoroughly enjoyed our time. Upon arrival we were greeted by staff who were most welcoming and courteous and this experience continued for our entire stay.

Special thanks to Ranger Patrick who worked tirelessly to show us the amazing wildlife and the beautiful landscape in this special part of the world. Well done Patrick you are a real asset to this business.

We were also very impressed with the quality and variety of the cuisine produced by Chef Attie and his team, with nothing to hard for him, even to meet special requests. Waiting staff were also exceptional making dining a very pleasant experience thanks to Precious, Patience, Delsey, and Ika amongst others.

You are all great ambassadors for your country and region and we would love to return some time. We will certainly be recommending Jock Safari Lodge to family and friends who are also considering an adventure in South Africa.

Room Tip: Every room was very quite and private with great views over the river.
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Hereford, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 via mobile

Wow.
Having spent 5 days in a private concession on the edge of the park (Gomo Gomo Lodge in Timbavati/Klaserie) we had a 5 hour drive through the park to Jock. We went with Ilios and Clint (the driver) was excellent, so we talked politics, wildlife and South Africa in general..... A great trip to Jock from the start, and the 5 nights there just outshone everywhere else!
Everything from the moment we got there was excellent. Whilst the routine takes a little learning (not difficult, but nice to have some routine), everything is done so well. The rooms are beautiful, private and have amazing views across the dry riverbed. There is wifi (and our room - 3 - just managed to get wifi from the reception which was handy) but to be honest, if you need costant wifi then perhaps the wilderness isn't for you!
Some key things:
1. Rooms are very clean, well appointed and have phone (for the 5.30am wake up call!) and a minibar. Outside shower was great too ;-)
2. Food...... Well, the only way to describe this was "fabulous". Attie (the head chef, and a very welcoming Bon-viveur character) creates unbelievable food (I've never eaten so much fabulous food and am now on a diet). The boma food was stunning (if you see it on safari, you are quite likely to eat it!). Kudu, elan, warthog, buffalo, springbok, impala....... Fantastic meat! The soup and puddings are also excellent. A bit like Michelin food in the wild.....
3. The safari drives..... Well, we were lucky to have Patrick as our guide, a welcoming, humorous and unbelievably knowledgable guide with a great sense of humour. Each drive (we did 10 in total) was excellent, and we saw the big 5 on many occasions (so many in fact that it was sometimes a decision to 'move on' rather than watch). The lions, hyena and leopard were plentiful - we even saw a Cheetah from a distance. But it's not just that, the scenery is breathtaking too....... Savannah, hills and koppies. Sunrise and sunsets were stunning - but do bring warm clothes too!
4. Wildlife.... From the large to the small, everything is spotted and discussed (from rhino horn poaching to chameleon health), and the guides do what you suggest - but suggest you listen to them as Patrick's predictions were almost always spot on. Following a leopard to one of the cafe stops at night to find (no more than 10 feet away) a hyena sitting among the benches, through to spotting a baby hyena (they are really sweet) playing, to a male and femal lion (ahem) getting it on.
5. Overall impression..... We will definitely be back, one of the few places we have been to where we have openly cried when we left. We met some lovely people as well and have made some great new friends.
Tips - bring warm clothes, and expandable stomach and the biggest camera card you can find. Also bring some tissues for when you have to wipe your eyes when you leave.
Faultless, amazing and a safari experience everyone should have (but please can you take us with you?) ;-)

Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
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Panama City Beach, Florida
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2014

This is our most memorable vacation to date. My friends and I stayed in both Jock Safari and Little Jock for 3 nights a couple of years back. Our rooms were private and so comfortable. The food was absolutely gourmet for every single meal. The snacks on the hunt were refreshing. The staff is so friendly and hard to forget even till this day. This place was so amazing I drew tears as we drove off to our next destination. I did NOT want to leave this serene and luxurious place.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
61 helpful votes 61 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2014

Jock Safari lodge is a very intimate game lodge located in the Southern part of Kruger National Park. Located at the intersection of the Mitomeni and Biyamiti riverbeds (which are about 90% dry in their summers,) the lodge has unrivalled views of the game life which adds to an already amazing experience. With only 12 luxury rooms, which comprise of 9 King beds and 3 Twin bed rooms, the attention to detail and service here cannot be understated. The rooms are very spacious, and have the old-world luxury feel to them. Every room has a massive veranda with its own plunge pool, outdoor shower and day bed overlooking the riverbeds. When we arrived there were 9 elephants just going for a stroll right outside our room!
Louis, the general manager, and his head chef, do a superb job of ensuring the guests are very well looked after and absolutely never hungry! Pre-dinner drinks after a day of animal spotting at the wonderful outdoor bar located under a 400-year old Jackalberry tree is a must. There are a number of different dining options including fine dining indoors or a gourmet BBQ experience in the Boma under the starry night. From excellent soups to local game meat including Impala, Kudu, Springbok, and Warthog, your taste buds will thank you.
The game drives are superb owing to Jock’s excellent location in its own private concession located within the park. This enables the vehicles to go wherever they want although they do have to stick to the main roads outside of the concession. Our ranger, Jacob, who is from the local Shangani Tribe of that region, was extremely knowledgeable and friendly throughout our entire stay. The vehicles seat a maximum of 9 and are spacious with a canopy roof. You stop every evening for sundowners in very scenic locations, which give you a great appreciation for the vastness and beauty of that area.
I cannot rave enough about this place - I even got an epic neck and foot massage at the spa. I have done camping safari's before and something has to be said for doing it amazing luxury here. Wonderful stay and I better be back sometime! Simply cannot recommend enough.

Room Tip: You can't go wrong with your room type so don't worry.
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
Perth
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2014

We stayed at Jock Safari Lodge from 29th June for 3nights and we had a most wonderful and exciting time.

The Lodge was beautiful, very private, with views of river bed from our suite as well as the outdoor area. The staff were All very attentive and well trained as would be expected. Food was great and plentiful, from early morning before our game drives to evening dinners after our evening game drives and everything in between.

From our suite we saw a big herd of elephants with their babies walking along the side of the riverbed, as well as Rhino.

We saw all the Big Fives on our first Drive and wondered what else our guide Ben could Offer. But rest assured it got better and better each day! We saw big herds of buffaloes, elephants galore, plenty of rhinos, prides of lions and couple of leopards, all of these up close. Plus lots and lots of Girrafes, Zebras, Impalas and just about every other animal present in Kruger including three bush babies.

On our second evening drive, Ben delivered us a most exciting and from what we were told a rare experience. We witness a leopard kill, starting from the Leopard walking beside our safari vehicle, and then sitting at the side of the road waiting to pounce, to the finish of a Warthog. The screaming of the warthog attracted a laughing Hyena trying to get itself a share of the kill, but was promptly given a smack on its face by the leopard and so ran away.

Not giving up on a good feed so easily the hyena called in a reinforcement of about ten. The leopard knowing its in no position to fend off this many hyenas, decided to retreat with a chunk of warthog to a nearby Tree.

The following evening we followed two lions on its way to hunt an impala, which eventually had a very lucky escape.

Our walking tour one afternoon, brought us close to a huge rhino, but we felt very save in the very experience hands of our three guides. They tried very hard to impart to us their extensive knowledge of the Bush and we even saw a honey Beaver's hole, told us some incredible stories and managed to persuade us (or was it tricked Patrick? :) ) into a dung spitting competition.


A most remarkable and memorable experience in Kruger professionally and cheerfully delivered by everyone at Jock Safari Lodge. Thank you!!!

Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
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Durban, South Africa
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014

We stayed at Fitzpatrick's at Jock Safari Lodge from 16 to 19 July 2014 as a family of four.

This is truly a great experience - we have previously stayed at the Kruger Park in the park facilities but this time decided to treat ourselves...and it really was just that.

Estian our guide was incredible considering that this is not a private game reserve but a concession inside the massive Kruger Park he does a superb job. Showing us "game" from the small - chameleon - to the large - elephant - and with knowledge to boot. He also took the time to share some of the unique viewing spots. Unlike other game lodges he is happy to spend as much time on a viewing as the client likes - there are not another 15 vehicles trying to get on a sighting.

The Jock concession includes some river beds that can be driven in the wet season, so that was another unique experience.

They also consider the children and on occasion entertained them with the likes of baking cookies in the kitchen.

A lodge like this does come at a price but this is exceptional value for money based on what you get out. The service is prompt, subtle and excellent. The food is bountiful and tasty as expected of a 5 star establishment. The rooms are all well appointed. The could however do with a little bit of general maintenance of the buildings.

We went prepared knowing what the early morning and evening game drives entail - so make sure you pack additional warm clothing if you go during the winter months as particularly the mornings a bitterly cold.

Room Tip: There are only 3 rooms at Fitzpatricks, all of them have a deck that overlooks the river and have th...
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Jock Safari Lodge

Address: Nearest Town Skukuza | Inside Kruger National Park, Kruger National Park 2060, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park
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 Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #17 of 144 Specialty Lodging in Kruger National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Jock Safari Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Jock Safari Lodge is nestled where the Mitomeni and Biyamiti rivers flow as one, situated in the South-Western corner of the Kruger National Park. The lodge offers 6,000 hectares of exclusive traversing rights in an area of the park which is celebrated for its big five game viewing. Jock of the Bushveld, the legend that was, served as an inspiration for the aptly namely Jock Safari Lodge. The tale, linked to Sir Percy Fitzpatrick, highlights the canine devotion and stories of African adventures that have excited exploring travellers.Accommodation offered:Main Jock LodgeCarefully screened by lush trees and reed walls, the 12 individual thatched rooms at Jock Safari Lodge, impart a sense of aloneness and oneness with the landscape.Fitzpatrick’s Lodge, offers personal service in an intimate atmosphere. Perfect for small parties and families.The lodge is easily accessible by road, just over 5 hours drive from Johannesburg, or 1 hour Skukuza and 2 hours from Kruger International airports. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Jock Safari Hotel Kruger National Park

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