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.
Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 3 more sites!
Save
You added Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge to your Saves list
Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge
5.0 of 5 Lodge   |   R62 between Montagu & Barrydale | Die Vlakte, Montagu 6720, South Africa   |  
  |  
Hotel website
  |  
  |  
Hotel amenities
Special Rate
Protect Rhino & Save!
Certificate of Excellence 2014
UK
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Amazing!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2010

Beautiful game reserve, amazing rooms & outstanding service. The sorroundings are georgeous, and the staff think of absolutely everything. The private pool in the Dwyka tented camps are divine. 2 points - Breakfast & Lunch was superb, but I thought dinner could have been better. Also, great location to chill out but probably not the best for seeing loads of wildlife. It's definitely worth going for to see the white lions as I think it's the only game reserve with free white lions.

Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
simonber123, hospitality Manager at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, responded to this review, January 7, 2010
Dear butterfly783

Thank you for your positive review of Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, I'm glad that you where able to "chill" and enjoy the surrondings. I will pass on your kind words to the team at dwyka

Kind Regards
Simon
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

385 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    313
    48
    17
    3
    4
See reviews for
79
230
10
9
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 (105)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Gothenburg
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2009

Gondwana Lodge, very nice setting, big rooms and perfect service. Not cheap, but worth it at least once in a lifetime.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
simonber123, hospitality manager at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, responded to this review, December 9, 2009
Dear Lotusfan

Thank you for your review on Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. I delighted that you enjoyed your time with us and hopefully someday you will be able to return to our Reserve

I have passed on you kind words to the team at Gondwana Family Lodge

Regards
Simon
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AbuDhabi
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2009

We travelled the 3hour drive from Cape Town and left our car at the gate (secure area) as the road inside the reserve was not fit for cars with low suspension and it was nice to relax the last part of the journey.
We were very surprised at the luxury of the resort as we arrived at the tented lodges. Our lunch was just lovely (three courses with wine) although there was no air conditioning in the main lunch area in the heat of the day more fans would be preferable as it was quite hot whilst eating.

We were soon taken out to the first game drive at 4pm. On our first drive we saw a heard of elephants which walked past the six seater car that we were in as did a rhino and its baby. We also saw another four rhino at a distance. The cars do not go off the tracks to avoid harming the shrubland and therefore taking binoculars can be a good thing although I still felt that we were close to the animals as we were very lucky,

The next day we headed out at 5am and saw the white lions, more rhino and giraffes as well as various types of antelope and zebra. We really did feel that we had some good sightings although you do have to cover quite a bit of ground. Apparently the wildlife density is not as good as Kruger but we were more than happy especially avoiding another flight and long drive. Our game driver was also very knowledgable and able to answer any questions that we had.

The dinner was lovely and the accomodation was very spacious and classy with outdoor hot tubs.

All in all I would recommend this resort and although a two night stay would be less hectic - one night was still action packed yet very well managed and we definitely felt spoiled.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
simonber123, hospitality manager at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, responded to this review, December 1, 2009
Dear ExpatscotAbuDhabi

It is with appreciation that I read your review on Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. It’s wonderful to see that you had a great time. Thank you for your kind words I will ensure that they are passed on to the team at Dwyka. It was great that you got to spend some time with us and hopefully one day we can welcome you back to our little piece of paradise in the Western Cape

Kind Regards
Simon
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Essex
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
45 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 31, 2009

What's great about Sanbona is the location - we drove here from Cape Town (3 hours) and then went on to Stellenbosch (about 2.5 hours) - we didn't want to catch a flight to Kruger so this was ideal. We were upgraded to a Dwyka tent - incredibly luxurious - a roll top bath, an indoor and outdoor shower (completely secluded!), a plunge pool, sunbeds, mini bar (all free!), huge bed, large terrace, etc. Game rides were great, but i agree we probably would have seen more animals had we gone to Kruger. We saw elephants, a cheetah eating its prey, hippos, walked with giraffes, etc. We're not massive animal people so we were happy with what we saw. Also loved the morning tea and biccie breaks,and the sundowners and nibbles! it gets really cold so we were given blankets and bottles of water too. The food was sometimes amazing, sometimes just okay, but i liked that they weren't stingy with the wine (it was all included). I think it cost us £950 for two nights which isn't cheap (it was a wedding present) but it really is very luxurious - i don't think I would pay it though!! the staff were all really friendly - the other thing i didn't like was that we had to have dinner and breakfast sometimes with the people we were going on the game drives with - lovely people but we were on our honeymoon and didn't want to have to eat with strangers! (you don't even get a choice which I thought was a bit off). Other than that, i would recommend

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
simonber123, hospitality manager at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, responded to this review, November 1, 2009
Dear travel1028

Thank you for your review on Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, Congratulations on your wedding and thank you for spending part of your honeymoon at Sanbona. As the hospitality manager of the reserve I can assure you if we are aware a couple is on honeymoon on the first night they receive a honeymoon turndown which includes complimentary champagne in the room. We have also done a number of room dinners for newlyweds on the deck of there tents. I just wonder if you booked though a travel agent if this is the case I don’t think they passed on the information to us.
Once again thank you and I wish you all the best in your marriage

Yours in Hospitality
Simon
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2009

We stayed at Gondwana lodge for 2 nights. Without any doubt, the standard of the acomodation is 5* but we felt it was really let down by the quality of the food. We've stayed in several other 5* properties in South Africa and recognise that the standard may not be quite as high as in other countries but this was definitely way down the scale with did warn us about the food.
The housekeeping could also have been better - cobwebs were spotted in several places.
We were very happy with the game drives and the ranger who took us round. We were fortunate enough to be the only guests on the last two drives so we had a very much personalised service and were able to see the captive white lions in their enclosure. Overall a good experience but could be better.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
simonber123, hospitality manager at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, responded to this review, November 1, 2009
Dear Ckitten

Thank you for your review on Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, I'm glad that you enjoyed your lodging that you stayed in and the game viewing experience that you had. I have noted your comments on the food and for your information all the chefs in the group are currently on retreat to look at standard of the food and new menu idea’s. We have acknowledged that our food needs to improve and all efforts to do this are now in place. I’m sure that the food standard will improve and we will be serving a 5* meals very soon
Once again thank you for the review

Yours in Hospitality
Simon
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salford
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2009

We stayed at the Dwyka tented lodges. The reserve is brilliant, excellent accommodation veryy comfortable and modern. We saw all the big 5 in our 2 night stay which included 4 game drives and all very close up. It is a massive reserve where you do need to go and look for the animals which sometimes only provide distant sightings but that was part of the fun. Our ranger Andrew was excellent, very knowledgable. This is very small compared to Kruger but as we were limiting our travel time and wanted to stay in the Western Cape then this was an amazing alternative.

If there was one small negative the food was good but not excellent but the game drives more than made up for this.

We would definatly recommend a visit and if you can affordit stay two nights minimum to give you the best chance of seeing all the big 5.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
simonber123, Hospitality Manger at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, responded to this review, October 12, 2009
Dear Paul and Laura

Many thanks for taking the time to review Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. I’m glad that you had a great time and enjoyed the game drives; I have passed on your positive comments to Andrew and the Ranger Manager.
I have noted your comments on the food and will be addressing this with the relevant Chefs. I assure you this is an area that we are constantly striving to improve. Thank you once again for coming to share in the magic of Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

Regards
Simon
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pretoria, South Africa
Top Contributor
110 reviews 110 reviews
71 hotel reviews
Reviews in 53 cities Reviews in 53 cities
113 helpful votes 113 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2009

This was our third stay at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve and our first at the new Dwyka Tented Lodge. We went back to Sanbona, because of the Karoo and the surroundings as we love it and also love to do it in 5star luxury. Our previous stays at Tilney Manor & Khanni Lodge were so wonderful that everytime we went we booked an additional night at the lodge. Thus we went to Dwyka with much excitement.

Dwyka Tented Lodge is quite a drive from the main gate (about 60-70 minutes). The lodge is absolutely wonderfully set in a ravine and below a mountain in the middle of nowhere. The tented structure of the lodge suits the whole camp wonderfully. The inside of the lodge and the suites are all rustic, unpretentious, modern furnishings and it’s refreshing to stay in a modern uncluttered lodge for a change. The tented suites were much bigger than expected and also wonderfully furnished with everything you need and want in the suite. The suites features a massive king-size bed (if not bigger) with dressing room and coffee station, with double basin area overlooking the view and on to your freestanding bath and shower overlooking the ravine with doors that can open up onto the outside. Outside your suite is completed with expansive deck wrapping around the whole front of the suite with private plunge pool, outdoor shower, loungers, and table and chairs. Really something to behold. Walls of the tent consist of wood, canvas, expanses of glass and a sweeping freeform dry-packed stone wall at the back, lit up at night, while the roof is a complete tent structure. The silence is quite something (as per usual) and what was also special about our specific suite is that a nest of the rare Black Eagle was located above our suite and from the deck you could see the chick in the nest playing and waiting for the parents.

Our game drive was exciting as we managed to see the white lions for the first time outside of the boma in which they were rehabilitated and since they’ve been set free to roam the reserve. We also managed to see the giraffes for the first time since our stays on the reserve. We saw a rhino calf drinking from the mother, which seemed a bit difficult. But otherwise, the other wild was a bit sparse, but it did not bother us. The usual game drive drink stopped was thoroughly enjoyed.

The food at the lodge was two-sided. Between our party and the meals that we had, some dishes were of 5 star quality and others were not really up to standard at all. I’m not going to go into detail, but we all felt that there were some dishes severely lacking in 5 star standard. Our service was also two-sided, as at certain points everything was perfect and at other stages the service was slow, non-existent and lacking in professionalism. This also is not how it should be for a 5 star establishment of this calibre.

We enjoyed our stay immensely and loved the lodge and location and suites, and to a certain extent the food and service. But due to the lacking in aspects of the lodge I’m not able to give it 5 stars, although with a few small things they’ll be top-notch.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
simonber123, Hospitality manager at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, responded to this review, October 15, 2009
Dear Mitxcoac

Thank you for your constructive critic of Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. I’m pleased to see that you enjoyed our new tented camp, and found the accommodation to be top class. It also great to see that you also enjoyed our sheer vastness and beauty of our land. With regard to the food and service it is with reviews like yours, that then allows me to see our short comings and address these points. As a new lodge we are currently doing extensive training with the lodge staff to ensure that the problems you experienced are ironed out and at all times we deliver a professional service. We have also just employed a new lodge chef he started with us in the beginning of October for the very reasons you have pointed out, the food standard was not consistent we hope with appointment of a lodge chef this will be rectified. I would like to thank you for honest review of our property and look forward to welcoming you and your family back at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

Yours in Hospitality
Simon
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge

Address: R62 between Montagu & Barrydale | Die Vlakte, Montagu 6720, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Montagu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 26 Specialty Lodging in Montagu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 27
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Travelocity, Expedia, Hotels.com, TripOnline SA and Despegar.com so you can book your Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Hotel

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Sanbona Wildlife Reserve - Tilney Manor, Dwyka Tented Lodge, Gondwana Lodge, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.