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“Excellent start to our 20th Anniversary holiday !!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Lion Sands River Lodge

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Lion Sands River Lodge
5.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Kruger National Park 1240, South Africa   |  
Hotel amenities
Bangalore
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Excellent start to our 20th Anniversary holiday !!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2013

We visited Lion Sands River Lodge as part of our 20th Anniversary holiday around South Africa .
The River Lodge is luxurious , great setting on the Sabie River and wonderful staff.
A typical day begins with 5am wake up call , light refreshments , 5.30 am game drive , 9.30 am sumptuous breakfast , free time to unwind at spa /pool till a hearty lunch , 4pm light refreshment before 4.30 game drive , 8pm dinner in a unique setting !!!
The game drives are the highlight and we had a fantastic passionate ranger (Ferdie) and an excellent tracker ( Rector) ......we saw the Big 5 within a couple of game drives and also saw a leopard kill , a pride of 11 lions , numerous zebras , impalas , various deer , rhinos , hippos , giraffes ,elephants and even the rare wild dogs !!
The short sundowners in the middle of the bush at just the right time and place was magical......amarula with hot chocolate in the morning and gin & tonic at dusk !!
The offroad drives to track leopards and lions was great ....didnt realize the land rovers could do so many things and go over bush , sand rivers and small trees so easily !!!
The rangers are very sensitive to the environment and animals and once they 'closed' the site to a leopard den as the mother had left the cubs alone and gone away.
Most sightings we were the only vehicle and at the most there was another one ....never more than 2 at a time .
Jabulani our butler was ever smiling and happy to make our stay perfect as possible !

The Sabi sand area is game rich , very private and expensive !!!!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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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392 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 (81)
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English first
Callander, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2013

Every expectation was surpassed at our stay at Lion Sands. The only difficulty we had was leaving as were wanted to stay. The accommodation, the food, the pool, the dinners, the vehicles - they were very, very good. But the high point was seeing the wildlife and the flora and that was made sweet by our incredible guide, Ferdie Muller. Outstanding! Knowledgeable! Friendly! Helpful! and always willing to add more! Three cheers for Ferdie.

  • Stayed November 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2013 via mobile

We stayed for two nights in Narina, and then moved on to the sister lodge Tinga. The suite with a pool was lovely and tranquil, the main lodge was great, but where the lodge truly excels is in its attention to detail and the care and professionalism displayed by the wonderful staff. They put a great emphasis on service and it really shows. The food is also fantastic, and last but not least the game viewing is excellent. Honestly we could not fault anything.

One final point is that our ranger and tracker were professional, extremely knowledgable and greatly enhanced our enjoyment of our trip. Also, the treehouse experience was great but watch the weather.

Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Tenby, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
150 reviews 150 reviews
72 hotel reviews
Reviews in 70 cities Reviews in 70 cities
157 helpful votes 157 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2013 via mobile

We have just left lion sands after a 5 night stay. It was a totally amazing experience from the room, to the staff and the animal sightings. Our tracker and ranger Rector & Ferdie totally made our holiday! We saw the big 5 in our first two drives and after that we saw so many animals we were delighted. Jubilani, our butler, was fantastic and very patient with us as we tried to learn some of the local language. No two drives or meals were the same. From sundowners watching local dancing by the staff to BBQs in the bush the food and whole experience was amazing. We were very very sorry to leave and cannot recommend it enough. We will be back!

Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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London, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2013

My girlfriend and i have just returned from a great safari with Ferdie (guide) at Lion sands.
Upon arrival we were introduced to Ferdie, he was very welcoming and very approachable. Little did we know that he was also, in my opinion, the best guide anyone could ever ask for. His vast knowledge of the environment, not only the big 5, but everything including plant life and weather, was absolutely mind blowing. He is also a very good photographer and has sent me all the photos that he had taken, which was a nice touch. He has been doing this a very long time, yet his enthusiasm was incredible. He was like a kid in a sweetshop, pointing out all the interesting things and really making us feel part of the environment.... I could go on forever about how great he was, but best of all he is a great guy.
If you are reading this and thinking about doing a safari, then look no further, Ferdie is your man.
GO TEAM FERDIE !!!!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2013

We hoped that staying at Lion Sands would make our honeymoon special.

We had high expectations from the varying reviews and social media we had read before our trip and were delighted that every single one of these expectations were exceeded!

Our whole experience from start to end was amazing. From the point of check-in, the personal touches were evident and continued for the duration of our stay.

Our Ranger (Ale) and Tracker (Noel) were superb with an amazing depth of knowledge. Both were very personable and an absolute credit to Lion Sands. Every drive was packed with a myriad of amazing animals (large and very small!!), making each trip out unique. We were so very lucky to see leopard, white rhino, lions, elephants and giraffe all with their young on so many occasions.

Back at the lodge all the staff were fantastically friendly, efficient and clearly (and quite rightly) very proud of where they worked. The rooms were very luxurious with huge comfortable bed, rain shower, and freestanding double ended bath overlooking the Sabie river. The food was amazing with a good mix of menus to suit all tastes.

We would certainly recommend Lion Sands to anybody wanted to experience the magic of safari whilst staying in beautiful surroundings in 5* accommodation.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2013

If heaven is anything similar to what we had just experienced.
We stayed at Narina, suite number 9. What a magical place!
The rooms are luxurious, the staff are amazing, and the experience simply unbeatable.
Grant (the lodge manager) was at hand to ensure customer satisfaction was at its highest.
Our guide, Johan (Jo) had such a vast knowledge of the bush with a passion that is rare. Our tracker, Chris had the eyes of a hawk finding us the big 5 with ease. It was so good that I was sure something spectacular would be witnessed and behold i was right as we watched a female lion and her cubs do what the do best- maintaining their place at very top of the food chain. Yes, we got to see a kill unfold. unbelievable, like being in the middle of Nat Geo.

Wow!!!! So looking forward to coming back soon.

Room Tip: Go there hungry, as it is the last human requirement you are going to think about as the feed you wi...
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  • Stayed November 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lion Sands River Lodge

Address: Kruger National Park 1240, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #20 of 41 Specialty Lodging in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Lion Sands River Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Family owned and managed since 1933, this International Award Winning private game reserve is located in the finest territory of the world famous Sabi Sand Game Reserve. It stretches for kilometers along the perennial Sabie River which forms its natural boundary with the Kruger National Park. The land is a place of rarity and carries with it a passion which can only be instilled by a great family history. Lion Sands has three different Lodges, Lion Sands River Lodge; Lion Sands Ivory Lodge and Lion Sands 1933, each with their own unique style and experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lion Sands River Hotel Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Lion Sands River Lodge South Africa/Sabi Sand Game Reserve

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