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“Would love to go back!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Lion Sands Kruger National Park

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Lion Sands Kruger National Park
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Paul Kruger Gate, Kruger National Park, South Africa (Formerly Tinga Private Game Lodge)   |  
Hotel amenities
Battersea, Canada
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Would love to go back!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2012

My wife and I stayed at Tinga Lodge (Legends) from Oct. 10/12 to Oct. 13/12. From the moment we checked in we were impressed. The rooms are spacious and beautifully decorated. A wall of sliding glass doors and windows allows you to view the Sabie River. There is also a large deck area with a plunge pool. The main lodge has two huge double-sided fireplaces with plenty of comfortable sitting areas. The meals were excellent in terms of quality and variety. In addition, the staff are exceptional. Now, for the important part, the game drives were unforgettable. Our ranger, Joe, was very knowledgeable and every drive was a learning experience. Not only did we see the “Big 5” but with the help of tracker, Chris, we also saw animals we had never heard of. The lodge was amazing and, thanks to Joe and Chris, the game drives were the experience of a lifetime!

  • Stayed October 2012, 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.
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143 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    125
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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 (35)
Date | Rating
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English first
Charlottesville, VA
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2012 via mobile

Stayed at both Narina and Legends lodges. Comparable to one another and both are very nice. Service was excellent. Disappointing game drive because, unlike truly private reserves (e.g., Mala Mala, Lion Sands), we had to stay on Kruger roads. The only game we could see we're those that came to us. Never saw a single lion, but saw elephants, leopards, etc.

Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nick_Leuenberger, Manager at Lion Sands Kruger National Park, responded to this review, October 2, 2012
Hi There

First thank you very much for your honest feedback! We appreciate the comments and hoped you enjoyed your time with us at Tinga!

I apologize that you had the experience of driving on the public roads. During March we were still recoverig from the massive flood damage we had earlier in the year. The connecting Tinga bridge in the concession was damaged and our road network on the concession was seriously affected.

We have managed to repair all damage cause by the natural disaster.

Our regular game drives take place on the private concession exclusively and we do not drive into the public part of the Kruger National Park unless guest request a day trip into the park. Our vehicles have non roofs or sides and we are also able to go off road for key species.

Once again, thank you for your comments, it helps us deliver a better product to our guests.

Sincerely

Nick Leuenberger
Tinga Management
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ponte vedra beach, fl
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2012

Did not see a mosquito but lots of animals. Our ranger was Alfred, a celebrity of sorts, who was most informative. We got very close to the animals, within 25 feet in many cases which I found frightening (I hit the floor of the jeep on one occasion) although everyone else was okay with the closeness.This is a small game lodge, not bustling with people. Greeted with washclothes, hot water bottles and blankets in the morning. Antelope in back yard, splash pool. Good amenities, service. Lodges were spacious. Completely stocked bar included (how can they make money with that?) although I found the food lacking. Just a personal preference. I don't drink, but enjoy good food.

Room Tip: Ones closes to the main lodge are better. A ranger has to walk you to and from your room after dark
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  • Stayed August 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Burleigh Heads, Australia
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2012

I can't think of one thing that is not absolutely right about this place! We stayed in the Narina Lodge & it was slightly better than Legends. The food was fantastic, the Staff wonderful & obliging, the Game Drivers excellent. As for the "rooms" ... Superb...HUGE beds, ENORMOUS Bathrooms (with heated floors & baths by the window where you watch the animals pass right by), a very private Plunge Pool on your deck as well as an outdoor shower. The Lodge is literally in the Riverbed - you can throw the curtains open, lie in bed & watch the Elephants lumber past. Saw the Big Five on our first Game Drive. The Sundowner Cocktails & morning Coffee on the Drives were a hit! Hope to go back!

  • Stayed October 2011, 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.
Hillsborough, New Jersey
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2012

We stayed at the Narina lodge. Amazing "rooms" (more like palaces) with views of the river and occasional animals. The food is outstanding too, but this is all overshadowed by the great guides, trackers, and game viewing. In 3 days of drives, we saw lions and tigers twice each, rhinos and giraffes a few times, and countless elephants and buffalo. Also we had great sightings of baboons, antelope, crocs, and hippos. The rangers really go all out to help you get up close. If you can afford it, I would absolutely recommend it. In the winter, it seemed to us that 3 nights was the perfect amount of time.

Room Tip: They're all amazing
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 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.
Belo Horizonte, MG
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2012 via mobile

Only point that I consider negative is ausence of fences to protect the rooms
Animais come very close to rooms and is dangerous mainly during night
Át.this dry seazon it hás not mosquitos
minimizing the risk of malária
The Iskukuza AirPort is very close to the LODGE , nearly 15 minutes by car
The ranger Raimond make the best to show the animals .

  • Stayed August 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
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Michigan, USA
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
37 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
126 helpful votes 126 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2012

We stayed at the Tinga Legends Lodge in August 2011 (Apologies for the tardy review!) as part of a tour with Lions World Tours. Traveling with another couple, we had high hopes for Tinga Legends Lodge...and we were not disappointed.

Having spent several days in cosmopolitan Cape Town, we were anxious to experience the bush. The arrival at Kruger Mpalanga/Nelspruitt Airport was a hint of what was to come....an intimate airport with a definite South African flare - quite a difference from the ultra modern airports in Jo’berg and Cape Town!

The ride to Kruger Park was just under two hours - with beautiful sites along the way. (Hint: make sure you make use of the airport rest room prior to departure.) We arrived at the Paul Kruger gate and were treated to a variety of animals en route to Tinga. Again, a preview of coming events.

The Experience: We were quickly given cold towels upon arrival (a repeated treat each time we returned from each game drive) - a refreshing way to begin. We had but an hour or so before the afternoon game drive. We were show to our luxurious bungalow (more on that later), and then quickly met back at the main lodge for tea, and off to the afternoon game drive. The vehicles used at Tinga are great - six seats at three different levels, with a cushioned storage box (complete with warm hooded blankets for early morning game drives) between each seat. Everyone has a great view. The same six people were in the truck each day. To make sure everyone got an opportunity at each seat, we would rotate on each game drive. Our first game drive, we chanced upon a leopard!

Each day we had game drives in the morning, and late afternoon/evening. One day we left at 5:30, returning around 12:30 p.m. A day to remember - with changing topography, new watering holes, etc. A welcome tradition each afternoon was “Sundowners” in the bush - sparkling wine or your drink of choice, a few hors d’oeuvres, and a chance to stretch your legs and enjoy nature with your traveling mates.

The Food: The food was quite good, but not fabulous. Some dishes better than others. However, the setting was exquisite and the conversation good. Wine was flowing, and we certainly didn’t leave any meal hungry! One evening, we were treated to dinner at the Bomba - eating by candles and torches - wonderful fresh grilled meats and vegetables. One person in the party was celebrating her birthday, so cake was provided for all!

The Room: Great room - spacious with a king bed (with netting), private plunge pool - which we used twice, deck with two lounge chairs and a table with additional seating, sofa and and easy chair. All very comfortable. Bathroom was sparkling clean - great shower - plenty of hot water and good water pressure. Beautiful bath tub, but alas no time.

All in all, I give the Tinga Legends two thumbs up, and would return in a heart beat.

Room Tip: I think all rooms were the same. Some had different views, but all situated to maximize privacy.
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  • Stayed September 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lion Sands Kruger National Park

Address: Paul Kruger Gate, Kruger National Park, South Africa (Formerly Tinga Private Game Lodge)
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 14 Hotels in Kruger National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Lion Sands Kruger National Park 5*
Number of rooms: 18
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Tinga Private Game Hotel Skukuza
Tinga Private Game Skukuza

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