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“Up close with the Elephants” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Knysna Elephant Park Lodge

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Knysna Elephant Park Lodge
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National Road (N2), Knysna 6570, South Africa   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 80 Specialty Lodging in Knysna
UAE
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Up close with the Elephants”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2011

This is an amazing experience with the Elephants. The rooms are beautiful, and they are all located off a common lounge that looks out over the elephants sleeping pens. We walked with the elephants in the evening and again in the morning, watched them be ridden, and fed them. We also enjoyed a galls of wine in the lounge while we watched them sleep. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

We drove to Knysna for dinner (20kms) and enjoyed some of the increible local seafood, however we have breakfast at the lodge. The food was delicious, and very very reasonbly priced.

The staff were very helpful, and very knowledgeable. A must stay in Knysna.

  • Stayed November 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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57 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
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English first
Staffordshire
Top Contributor
110 reviews 110 reviews
58 hotel reviews
Reviews in 67 cities Reviews in 67 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 14, 2011

Spending a night with the Ellies was a dream come true. The rooms in the lodge are extremely comfortable and set around the Elephant's Boma where they come in to sleep at night. The main lounger overlooks this area and our room (Harry's Room) also had a window where we could watch the Ellies from. We also booked a sunset ride and the pleasure of riding on Clyde and Shaka followed by a lovely 3 course meal in the restaurant.

We were up again next morning to take the Ellies out at 6.30 and spent another hour or so with them before breakfast. This was one of the highlights of our holiday and we highly recommend that if you can you must spend at least one night sleeping with the Ellies. You might not get much sleep but it is an amazing experience. The guys at KEP do an amazing job in looking after these wonderful creatures and educating the public about them.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Top Contributor
131 reviews 131 reviews
64 hotel reviews
Reviews in 65 cities Reviews in 65 cities
122 helpful votes 122 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2011

A stunning experience. A night in the elephant boma should be on everyone's bucket list. The time with the elephants was the highlight of the Garden Route.

The lodge is great, rooms large and tidy...but it's all about the boma here. Guests have 24 hour access to the lounge to watch the elephants come in and feed each evening and bed down. Your room is just outside and the sounds of the elephants shuffling about outside is cathartic..

Enjoy morning strolls with (or on!) the elephants and take a great deal of comfort being with expert handlers. If you have any attraction to these amazing animals, do not miss this.

Room Tip: The lodge is large but pay for the boma experience...a MUST
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  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Cardiff, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 2, 2011

The highlight of our trip to South Africa was most definately our overnight stay at Knysna Elephant Sanctuary. From arriving in the mid afternoon and the childrens delight in finding elephant shaped chocolates on their beds, to hand feeding the elephants it was magical.
After dinner at a nearby restaurant, ZinZi, we returned to have hot chocolate while sitting wrapped in blankets on the sofas in the lounge area above the elephants overnight indoor accommodation.
An early morning start, 630hrs, which wasn't a problem as the elephants are not quiet eaters and we rode on the elephants for their early morning walk. Words cannot describe it, the coolness of the morning sitting on an elephant and the sun coming up.
Afterwards, breakfast in the cafe.....excellent value and we purchased the video of the Elephant Walk, brilliant. Cousins from Cape Town accompanied us and did not know the Sanctuary existed... it is now on their Must Do List for future guests.

Room Tip: Just stay there
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  • Stayed April 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gordon's Bay, South Africa
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2011

Everything about the Elephant Park is amazing. The staff are brilliant, the location is stunning, accommodation spotless and comfortable - not to mention the fascinating stars of the show - the elephants. The experience of staying in the lodge is one not to be missed because you can visit the elephants' sleeping quarters as often as you like at night and you enjoy the wonderful thrill of walking out with them at sunrise and witnessing their training session with the guides. I never thought I'd get so close to an African elephant and feel so safe. It was a real eye-opener and a huge learning experience.

  • Stayed May 2011, 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
    • 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.
Vancouver, Canada
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2011

Had the pleasure of staying here for 3 nights. The room was modern and lovely and you must stay in room 1 as we had 3 windows looking down directly where the elephants sleep at night in the boma. (even our bathroom) There is also a beautiful communal lounge where you can go and see them sleeping at night, (coffee & tea and sofas provided), but our room 1 was an even better view! The most noise the elephants made was when they were eating, but their noise didn't keep us awake (wouldn't care if it did); were awoken at 5:30 by a truck of workers coming in and all talking. Was so wonderful to sit out on the verandah during the day and watch the elephants out grazing in the lovely surroundings. Taking the tram out to see them was amazing. You get to pet them and feed them a bucket of fruit and it is so worth the price to take an elephant ride. These elephants have all been rescued or were abandoned and they are treated with the UTMOST CARE. You can tell the elephants love the handlers and the handlers love the elephants. The ride on the elephant was something we'll never forget. Definitely worth every dollar!! There's a tall platform that the elephants come to as to make it easier for you to get on, but the handlers will always give you further assistance should you need it. Almost an hour's ride around the lovely property at a nice pace (there was a group of 3 elephants on our tour) with a handler on the front and you sit behind him centering yourself; no threat of falling off if you keep yourself in the middle! Having the elephants stop for a drink of water was cool. The handlers are truly caring and wonderful with these amazing creatures. (Buy the video they take of you on the ride; so, so worth it)

The one thing that is very important to know if you stay overnight here, and certainly hope you do, is that the restaurant closes by 5:30pm so having transportation is a must as there are no eateries, etc. within walking distance . A not too far drive to a place called Zinzi's was very nice on lovely grounds, for dinner. (As there is no mini-market or anywhere close by where you can get a sandwich or snacks/juice/soft drinks etc., we thought by them having 1 or 2 vending machines would be a great idea.) Also, on the first night we were there, we were the only guests staying overnight and as reception closes at 5:30 as well as the restaurant, we were pretty sure there were no other staff members at the place as we sure never saw anyone (except for the elephant's workers - 24 hours there were always a few guys down below cleaning, feeding, and taking good care of the elephants.) The staff that we met during the day were really wonderful.

Except for a few glitches that I mentioned, I would absolutely, positively 100% recommend staying here and experiencing the elephants . I guarantee it will be one of the highlights of your life!!!!

Room Tip: Room # 1 is a must!!!!
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  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Durban, South Africa
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2011

Stayed 2 nights. The idea of this Lodge is to experience the elephants and I can't imagine it being better anywhere else. Being able to watch the elephants from the lounge that is a few meters from the elephants is awesome, watch all night if you like. The life and care given to these huge animals is 5 star therefore anyone staying here has a 10 star experience.

  • Stayed November 2010, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Knysna Elephant Park Lodge

Address: National Road (N2), Knysna 6570, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Knysna
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 80 Specialty Lodging in Knysna
Number of rooms: 6

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