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“Nice Camp” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kings Camp

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Kings Camp
5.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Kruger National Park 1218, South Africa   |  
Hotel amenities
Rio Rancho, New Mexico
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Nice Camp”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2012

This camp is for the higly social person. Nice ammenities and service; however, there was a little too much 'down-time' which could have been used more adequitely viewing wildlife rather than taking siestas. We went as a honemoon package and recieved awsome and personalized service including a candle lit dinner on our private deck. We also got all of the Big Five in One Drive twice!

**Booking your own personal safari vehicle and guide is a must for any true photographer or avid amimal lover of a specific species, otherwise you spend your time with other people from other groups and go by the whim of the groups wants, not yours! Be more than a number and book your own vehicle!**

Room Tip: Honeymoon suite is nice with a personal plunge pool
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  • Stayed July 2012, 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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148 people have reviewed this hotel

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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
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2012

In reviewing such sites, there are really two factors to consider and review. One is the site itself as far as the staff, the amenities, the service, the facilities - the typical "hotel" review, as it were. The other, however, for a site as unique as is this one, is the quality specifically of the nature reserve, their guides, their trackers, their vehicles - the AFRICA that you came to see and experience. I will agree with all those reviewers who found the staff superlative in all ways - who found that they were as service oriented as the highest rated European or American five star luxury hotel. I agree that the facilities are wonderful, and that the experience there is superb.

However.

Even that must pale in comparison to the safari experiences themselves that we experienced with this group. Our guide, Colbert, and our Tracker, Selby, were, well, incomparable. They were not just immensely friendly - they were not just almost eerily knowledgeable - they were not just tremendously capable as trackers and guides at finding game - they were genuinely themselves excited by doing so and by being among the animals each time we found them. The vehicles were more not only comfortable than others we had experienced on safari at other locations we had gone to in several countries in the south of Africa for the preceding few weeks, but the way that Colbert drove, and the care in which he ensured that we were properly positioned relative to the animals yet considering our requests for proper lighting and position of the sun relative to the animals for photographic purposes (with a 400/2.8 lens, there is a lot riding on the photographic success of this photo safari trip), and the patience that he showed in our requests for more - and more - and more yet again, was incomparable. When we found a mother leopard and her cub or a herd of elephants that surrounded us and let us observe from within them or a rare spotting of a honey badger during the daytime - if it meant that we would return back to camp later than what had been "officially advertised", then so be it, they did so without a second's hesitation. They were so concerned that we have the most successful and enjoyable time on our safari experience that this overwhelmed all other considerations except for safety. And the love that Colbert felt for these animals was almost palpable. Going for a brief hour or so walk in the bush with him was the icing on the cake.

There are many ways to go on safari. But if one can afford to do so, going with a guide and a tracker is soooo much more efficient (rather than merely hoping that you find by chance the animals you are seeking). Doing so in a private reserve where you are permitted to follow some of these animals into the bush (and I do mean INTO the bush - over bushes, down hills - these guys are experienced bush drivers!) is the ONLY way to actually find and observe these magnificent creatures from so close that we could absolutely literally just about touch them in most cases. And doing it with Guides and Trackers with this level of knowledge, experience, and customer orientation - well, that's incomparable.

If you can afford this type of safari, look no further, for you have just found THE perfect one. You can count me as another life member of the "Kings Camp Fan Club", as it were - and one who is already dreaming about a return visit...

Room Tip: I believe that there are a total of twelve cottages/rooms and, if you so desire, two honeymoon suite...
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  • Stayed July 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
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Brighton, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2012

We visited Kings Camp on our honeymoon for a 3 day safari and had such a wonderful time. The room we had was absolutley stunning (the honeymoon house - look at the pic attached). Every single detail had been thought of (most importantly all the alcohol and treats!). From the rolling bath, to the huge shower, private pool, lounge area, massive bed and overall style it ticked every box (and 3x over!).The game drives were superb and we saw a leopard on nearly every drive.The staff are also very welcoming, experienced and genuine. It was such a beautiful place to stay and we enjoyed ourselves thoroughly. Thank you for making our honeymoon so special - we'd love to return one day.

  • Stayed May 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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pgh
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2012

we just got back from staying in Kings Camp for 3 nights at the end of our 2 weeks in South Africa. we have NEVER stayed in a place like this! when you pull up to the lodge the staff is waiting at the door to greet you. cold drinks are waiting for you, there is a briefing about safety (after all, you are in the middle of the largest reserve in South Africa!), then they personally escort you to your room and go over all the amenities and services available. their guides and trackers were so informative and knowledgeable, their jeeps more comfortable than the others we were in - and they provide hot water bottles for cold mornings in the jeep! the staff was helpful, friendly and overall incredible. i agree with the other reviewer - we did not want to leave!

  • Stayed July 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
114 helpful votes 114 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2012

We spent a few nights at Kings Camp and were a bit underwhelmed by this property. (We decided to come here after our original lodge we were supposed to stay in the Timbavati got flooded and we were recommended this as a substitute.) Having come from another lodge in the Sabi Sands that had amazing service, warm welcomes and beautiful suites- we walked in to Kings Camp disappointed. We still decided that we were going to go in with a good attitude and enjoy our stay but there was just something lacking here. The welcome was really weak- a smile and a more friendly feel upon check in would have been appreciated. Our suite was ok (honeymoon suite) but we weren't overly impressed by it. The food here was also not really impressive at all! We weren't expecting gourmet but really most of the stuff was not good at all. The best thing we had were the scones and muffins before the game drives in the morning, which is a little sad... There was a Boma Dinner one of the evenings but it didn't come close to the Boma Dinners we had at other places we stayed during our trip.

They do have a nice area with a fireplace near the bar which was a nice spot to have a drink before dinner. The viewing deck we would meet at in the morning before the drives was also nice, but otherwise the property was really more on the average side.

The only great part about our trip to Kings Camp was our drives with Patrick and Albert. I would give them 5 stars any day! Patrick was wonderful, he is so knowledgable and passionate about what he does! We looked forward to our drives and conversations with him!

Before we came here, we stayed at a another place and didn't have to worry about queuing at sightings but there was definitely a little more of that going on at this lodge. The Timbavati was definitely different than the Sabi Sands area in that it felt more wild and rugged. The animals were pretty much the same but there was a different feel to the area. You will see other vehicles and might have to move off of some sightings for other vehicles to come through. Patrick did do a great job though (and while we were with him) on drives we felt like we had good time during our sightings. The ranger you are with can really impact the quality and experience on your drives.

At check out we did finally meet Warren and he seemed very nice and addressed an issue we had from our first night at the lodge, but unfortunately he wasn't there during our stay. The staff seemed a little more "on their toes" with him around and all of a sudden seemed to act a little different. I don't know- maybe when he is around the place has a better feel?

Kings Camp was not a good choice for us after staying at such amazing places from a service and quality perspective before here. I don't think that I would come back to Kings Camp, but if I did, the ONLY reason would be to go on a few drives with Patrick. The lodge itself, the service and the food were average.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ventura, California
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2012

We spent three weeks in Europe and Africa in June, and Kings Camp was our first safari lodge. After three nights there, we were so spoiled that I didn't want to leave! Everything was so carefully taken care of, from our initial greeting by managers Warren and Lisha, Assistant Manager Tristan, and a crew of folks offering us cold washcloths to freshen up and a cool drink as well. When we went to our room, I could not believe how spacious and beautiful it was. Each room is a separate cottage, with a large bed with mosquito netting (dropped in the evening by our housekeeper, who also left a personalized note each evening). There was a large living area, with sofa and chairs, an armoire, lots of storage space, and service for tea or coffee. Our game drives, with ranger, Morne, and tracker, Selby, were fabulous--comfortable open air vehicles which could go anywhere in search of the wildlife. Morne worked hard to find us all the big game, and lots of birds and smaller game as well. He had so much information about the animals, their habits and habitat, and environmental issues. There were never more than 6 of us in the vehicle. The food was absolutely delicious and abundant--fresh fruit, delicious baked goods, and a varied menu. We ate dinner in a different location every night--the beautiful dining room, an outdoor dining room, with candlelight and gorgeous table settings, and a bush dinner with drums playing, fire going, and again candlelight and gorgeous table settings (different from the other ones!). It is apparent that everyone at this lodge takes pride in providing a most special experience. We cannot thank them enough for making my dream come true, and I hope we will be able to return again and again!

Room Tip: Each room is a separate cottage--I can't imagine one that isn't great!
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  • Stayed June 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
glencoe, IL
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2012

We just returned from a trip to South Africa, and the last stop on our vacation was Kings Camp. As you can tell when you read the other reviews, this is a very special place. This is clear from the start when you are greeted by the camp managers Warren and Lishia who have been at the camp for 17 years and are raising their family there. They are invested. But I give high marks as well to our trackers and guides, the dining room staff, the chef, our housekeeper...

We learned a lot on our outings into the bush each day, and had a wonderful time over the three days we spent there. The guide and tracker were not only knowledgeable about the animals we saw but also birds, plants, trees, constellations.

The food was excellent, and it seemed like we were treated to wonderful meals and small treats all day long. It's a good thing that there was a gym to work out in during the middle of the day. I would not hesitate to recommend Kings Camp to all of my friends.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Honeymoon suite and the room was really beautiful and quiet. It had a patio and de...
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  • Stayed June 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
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 Kings Camp

Address: Kruger National Park 1218, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 13 Specialty lodging in Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Kings Camp 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated in the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, Kings Camp reflects the charm and romance of a colonial past in a pristine corner of unspoilt Africa. Kings Camp is situated facing an open savanna plain with a waterhole, which is frequented by a wide variety of wildlife, day and night.Eleven generously spacious colonial suites are luxuriously equipped with air-conditioning, Victorian ball-and-claw bath, indoor and outdoor double shower, fully stocked mini-bar and private verandah. Dark tones of wood and thatch offset the natural colours of the bushveld. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kings Camp Hotel Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Kings Camp South Africa/Timbavati Private Nature Reserve

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