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.

“The best days ever!!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Toro Yaka Bush Lodge

We can't find prices for this hotel
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this hotel, but we can search other options in Balule Private Game Reserve
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Toro Yaka Bush Lodge
Save Saved
You added Toro Yaka Bush Lodge to your Saves list
Sable Road, Kruger National Park, South Africa   |  
Hotel website
  |  
  |  
  |  
Hotel amenities
Bristol, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“The best days ever!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2011

This was our first ever trip to a game reserve so we chose with great care and came up trumps! Toro Yaka is the most amazing place, Steve and Nicole are wonderful hosts and the only disappointment was that we had to leave after four nights! We have completely fallen in love with Balule. To be honest, travelling around with Steve morning and night was more like having private tuition in nature and animal conservation and not at all like a 'tourist trip'. We don't normally do 'tourist trips' and most of the time simply backpack with our three teenagers, so this was an extraordinary experience for us. The accommodation at Toro Yaka is outstanding, the hospitality incredible, the food to die for, and to top it all - if possible - the beauty of the Balule nature reserve is simply breathtaking. We loved the tranquility and in just four simple days we felt totally restored, revitalised and calmer than we had been for many months. I now carry a mental picture of Toro Yaka with me everywhere - it's my new 'happy place'. Thank you Steve and Nicole, Christina and Victor, for making our stay so very special. We are already busy planning a return visit!! Love from Annemieke and Tim, xx

  • Stayed September 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

171 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
    167
    4
    0
    0
    0
See reviews for
24
110
14
1
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (32)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Australia
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2011

We stayed for three nights and really wished we stayed longer. Nicole and Steve are wonderful hosts. The lodge is very intimate with only six rooms. The rooms are clean and comfortable and the lodge grounds are lovely. Steve has an abundance of knowledge and a great respect for the animals and the environment. He also has many great entertaining stories to tell. On the game drives we saw so many animals including lions, giraffes, white rhino, crocodiles and hippos, the list goes on. Steve includes walks as part of the game drives so to have seen white rhino on foot was exhilarating. At all times we felt completely safe in Steve's presence. Nicole is a killer cook, all the meals were great. There were many small details that made our stay even more special. We were so sad to leave and felt like we had just been staying with good friends. We'll definitely be back one day.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belfast, NI
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2011

Superb hospitality, game drives, accommodation and food. A family trip with two daughters (10 & 12) and whilst we had high expecations with previous reviews, we were not let down! The knowledge of Steve was superb and along with Vusi the game drives were excellent and always rewarding. Over 4 days we had great views of Lion, Hyena, Buffalo and Elephant along with many other animals. We do hope to be back!

Room Tip: All rooms are good. We did have two rooms with an interconnecting door which was perfect for a famil...
See more room tips
  • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bridport, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2011

The photos don't do it justice. Nicole is very stylish and the rooms, decks, bar and dining room reflect this. The infinity pool overlooking the watering hole is a delight. We saw elephants there on our first day.
Steve is a very experienced and knowledgeable guide and knows his birds - plenty of fascinating ones big and small to see.
Relaxed atmosphere, good food, good wine, good company.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
breda
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2011

We have been here for 2 times and in August we go back to Nicole and Steve.
The plays is great, the food is excellent, the room is beautiful and very clean, every night a surprise and Steve and Vusi give us cool walking en gamedrives. Steve nows a lot from the animals, the plants and birds and he tells a lot about it. We learn a lot from him.
Steve and Vusi are good track finders , every time it is a pleasure to be there. Ngwedi is a very nice and beautiful dog.

See you in august/ september.

Kind regards Jan and Denise

  • Stayed February 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.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2011

Our first safari and our top family trip - ever. Steve along with Vusi are excellent game drivers and we saw Cheetahs, Hippo, Giraffe, Birds, Wildebeest, Warthog, Lions, Zebra, Mongoose, Monkeys, and Elephants - all right around where we stayed. Nicole worries about everything so every detail is covered - she is also a great Massage therapist. The food was fantastic and the rooms large and very nice. Up at 5:30 for a game drive then back for breakfast at 9:30 - down time for swimming, napping, reading or games until lunch then off for evening game drive at 4:30 followed by dinner around a campfire. With only 6 rooms it is a very personal experience - and Nicole and her team do an amazing job of making you feel at home. You can easily pay twice as much - but you won't find a better place to spend your time or money - you will not want to leave!

Room Tip: 2 sleep houses w 3 rooms each all ground level
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • 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.
Nancy, France
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2011

We had a wonderful time there and during the game drives with steve and wusi. It was our first nights in South Africa and being in the middle of the bush was just incredible! The place is very nice, the people as well and the food was great! Thank you again.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.

Been to Toro Yaka Bush Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Toro Yaka Bush Lodge

Address: Sable Road, Kruger National Park, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Balule Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 hotels in Balule Private Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Owner/Manager team Steve & Nicole Baillie would like to invite you to visit Toro Yaka Bush Lodge. This special lodge is nestled in the heart of the Balule Nature Reserve, a 38 000 hectare conservancy, which forms part of the Greater Kruger National Park area. ToroYaka means “My Dream” in Northern Sotho, one of South Africa’s local languages, and the creation of Toro Yaka Bush Lodge has fulfilled the dreams of Steve and Nicole, by establishing a haven of peace and tranquility from which to share their passion for nature. The lodge has been designed in a modern elegant style, with a relaxed atmosphere, allowing guests to sit back, relax and feel at home. The six en-suite double rooms ensure tranquility and comfort at all times. Steve has spent more than a decade sharing his knowledge and love for the bush with clients from all over the world at luxury game lodges throughout South Africa. Nicole is a qualified holistic massage therapist and takes care of all the tiny details. Together with the Toro Yaka Staff, they will ensure your stay to be a memorable one. Balule is home to a large variety of plants and animals. From the smallest spider to the largest elephant, from the tiniest flower to a 1000 year old Leadwood tree, owls at night and eagles by day, every aspect of the ecosystem is explored. The Olifants River, which flows year round through the Balule, is home to hippos and crocodiles, and the whole area is one of scenic splendor, with the northern tip of the Drakensberg mountain range being visible from many points. Together with all of this, Toro Yaka Bush Lodge offers you good home cooked food, friendly service, warm South African Hospitality and loads of enthusiasm. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Toro Yaka Bush Lodge South Africa/Balule Private Game Reserve

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Toro Yaka Bush Lodge, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.