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“Not quite what I'd expected.” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Sani Mountain Lodge

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Sani Mountain Lodge
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Sani Pass, Sani Pass, Lesotho (Formerly Sani Top Chalet)   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Sani Pass
Gauteng
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Not quite what I'd expected.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2010

We stayed there in June (winter), and there was no water. The rooms are equipped with a fire place, but that was not enough to heat the rooms. The view was awesome, though. If you want to do some skiing, you need to bring your own stuff. Only at Afriski (Oxbow area) you can hire all the equipment. Afriski is about 3.5 hours from Sani Pass.
All in all, if you go there during wintertime, please be prepared for some 'camping'. And don't be afraid of some mice and rats.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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92 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    18
    38
    23
    9
    4
See reviews for
16
38
4
2
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
165 reviews 165 reviews
92 hotel reviews
Reviews in 99 cities Reviews in 99 cities
113 helpful votes 113 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2010

Stayed here on a week-long tour of Lesotho - it seems that many who come do so from up the Sani Pass from ZA and so stay only for lunch or maybe for the night. For us it was a nice break in the journey from Mokhotlong to Katse. We had not planned on doing the Sani Pass but when we realised what a big deal it was, and that we ideally needed more fuel, we went down to Underberg and back in an afternoon - WHAT an experience. The hotel - well, they are expanding a little at the moment, so some building work is going on, the positioning on the cliff is pretty bleak and it is as they say, the Highest PUB in Africa (not boutique hotel etc) so it's a little scruffy round the edges, but in a good way - and the host, Roger, was great. The atmosphere in the bar before the evening meal (it's served at one set time, family style) was very friendly and chatty and there are lots of pictures and news clippings around with the history of the Pass. Food was quite basic but home-cooked, generous and good. There's electricity most of the time, but again, you have to remember where you are. We stayed in a rondavel which was very nice and cosy with a decent enough bathroom and a log stove that seemed to be a bit feeble. This place gets four stars because although it is in no way "manicured" it is friendly, clean, welcoming and good value, and is set in some of the most extraordinarily beautiful scenery you will ever see.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
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Copenhagen, Denmark
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2010

Thanks Gisela - this was an amazing place to stay! Contact our very organized and brilliant tour organizer: (--) for any trips in SA! This place was litteraly placed above the clouds - so eventhough the clouds came in the afternoon it just added to the charm of staying in such a natural spot of beauty! The staff was as friendly as can be, the food very well prepared and plenty, the atmosphere relaxed and cosy, evenings with guitar and locals singing infront of the fireplace, nice trekking, horseriding and quadbiking trips. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Norway
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2009

Sani Top Chalet is home to Africas Highest pub, with accommodation of different standards. It has luxery chalets, simple double rooms and backpacker accomodation. We stayed at the luxery chalets which was a very enjoyable experience. The beds were nice and warm with several blankes (which was very much needed as the temperature dropped to around 4-5 degrees during the night - and this was in the middle of summer). We even had own gas heater in each room.

The pub itself, with the restaurant was very cozy, here it was a nice blend of local Lesotho people, day tourists and backpackers. Anything from the local Maluti beer to Gluwein was severed, at very affordable prices. The food was simple but very good, plenty of food for the money. And cant forget to mention what i found to be the best bread Ive ever tasted, homemade by the locals working there, severed together with every meal.

Will definitley come back here at some point.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
England
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2009

This place is a gem, forget about accommodation, food etc which was all great - the location is so so beautiful you just have to visit - we drove ourselves up the Sani Pass which was a bit of a nightmare in a Nissan X Trail - if you're driving yourself leave 2-3 hours to get up there just in case and get a proper 4 x 4. We drove up late afternoon and didn't get to the SA border crossing till 17.00 (and found out the Lesotho crossing shut at 17.00 !!) We were told that with a possible bribe needed we'd probably be ok!!! and carried on - the next part of the road was atrocious to put it mildly - the cloud was coming down and it seemed to take hours (actually about 40 minutes) we were worried about damaging the vehicle as some of the rocks were so big and deep fissures in the road meant having to get perilously close to the edge now and again. However, when we got to the Lesotho border, all was just "welcome, welcome, no problem" and no bribe required! We got to the Sani Top Chalet and had a great welcome also and we were blown away by the location. Go for a long walk here and marvel at the views and panorama - it's mind blowing and after travelling much of the world and being lucky enough to see many beautiful places I have to say this has to rank right up there at the top. Totally unspoilt. We were lucky to get a beautiful day for walking, but you could be disappointed if the cloud stays around - but hey enjoy the highest pub in Africa whilst you wait for it to clear!

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Boksburg, South Africa
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2009

We drove north from Natal, South Africa, and had lunch at Underberg. After refueling (no nearby unleaded fuel in Lesotho), we took the Road P318-2 which becomes the Sani Pass. Although misty and wet, it was full of waterfalls crossing the gravel and rocky road (4 wheel drive vehicles only, or accompany one). Near the top are some sharp corners on the edge of the cliff, but the Forester managed fine. The 43 km trip took about 2 hours.

Sunshine at the Top! We went through the Lesotho border post and paid about USD1 toll fee. then off to the "Highest Pub in Africa". Its one of those "have to do, guy things". Simphiwe was manager and barman and looked after us well. The accommodation is actually called Sani Top Chalets. They are cosy, with everything one could want.

Next morning, we got up at dawn to witness a splendid sunrise. The unique ice rats, and the birds, forage happily with little fear of people. After a full breakfast, we continued north to exit Lesotho some 6 hours later. The latter trip contained roads with continuous potholes which were almost as challenging as the Sani Pass itself!

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
60 hotel reviews
Reviews in 58 cities Reviews in 58 cities
115 helpful votes 115 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2008

My husband, some friends and I spent the day here in August. It's very rugged and isolated. The rooms ( I peeked in a couple ) were basic but very clean. The bar and restaurant were fine and the views are quite good up there. We got there in the morning and other tourists really hadn't shown up yet so it was really nice being by ourselves on the terrace. It took a 4 wheel drive to get there. It's a very rough road. You can go here in a day trip from Durban if you like.

  • Stayed August 2008, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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 Sani Mountain Lodge

Address: Sani Pass, Sani Pass, Lesotho (Formerly Sani Top Chalet)
Phone Number:
Location: Lesotho > Mokhotlong District > Sani Pass
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Sani Pass
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A one of kind Lodge located at the top of Sani Pass,2874m above sea level,located on the border line of Lesotho and South Africa some 300m from the entry border post of Sani Pass, Lesotho.The lodge has a 48 seater restaurant, serving breakfast, lunch & dinner daily.The Highest Pub in Africa stocks a wide varity of beverages accompanied with a varst selection of great wines, satisfying all ones needs.Satilite TV and free WiFi is available in the lodge area ,enabling one to keep in contact with the outside world and family.The lodge has 9 rooms, made up of double & twin bedded rooms, on suite, togther with 6 & 4 sleeper family rooms.We also have a 22 sleeper Backpackers and Camping Area located next to the backpackers. Both the main Lodge & Backpackers are run on generator power.Activities available-guided hikes,fishing, bird watching and horse riding. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Sani Top Chalet Hotel Sani Pass
Sani Top Chalet Pass

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