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“A Christmas unlike any other!”

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HillsNek Safaris, Amakhala Game Reserve
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 11, 2012

Wow! The weirdest and most wonderful Christmas ever. This was the trip of a lifetime and boy, did it live up to expectations! Absolutely everything about Hillsnek is fantastic; the food (so beautifully presented), the game drives (even in the pouring rain!), the hot water bottles in the truck first thing in the morning, the lodge, the staff, our wonderful and knowledgeable guide, the stops for food in the most incredible spots with views to die for, the fabulous 5 star tents, waking in the morning to a tray of tea and panoramic views of the surrounding area, the list goes on and on. We cannot praise Hillsnek highly enough. Having just three tents made it a very personal experience. Thank you all for making our trip so wonderful!

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank candj23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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282 - 288 of 397 reviews

Reviewed January 7, 2012

We spent Christmas at Hillsneck this year, and cannot fault the stay, even heavy rain on Christmas night couldn't dappen our stay.

The whole experience was fantastic, the attention to detail makes such a difference from the pre hetaed beds to the little gift with the wake up drinks.

The food is fabulous, but make sure you're not on a diet as there is no shortage of it!!

As for the game drives we've visited Etosha, The Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater and Okavango Delta and I cannot fault Amakhala the animals are all there but the people aren't it was amazing to be sat just a few feet from 6 Cheetah and be the only vehicle there, at the other parks you'd often be one of 10 plus groups! Granted there is probably fewer animals here but we saw everything we wanted close up and all the animals looked so healthy, and our guides knowledge and enthusiasm was fantastic

As experiences go having your christmas dinner interrupted by a family of elephants drinking from the swimming pool about 10 feet from where you are sat will take some beating!!

Our host David was a very genuine guy and with the team around him made our 2 night stay the absolute highlight of our trip to South Africa

Room Tip: There are only 3 tents but try and get number 3 (I think) its the highest one up but the view over t...
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank BandHH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2012

We went to Hillsnek to finish off our honeymoon and to say it was perfect was an UNDERSTATEMENT. Brent and Chantelle do such a wonderful job of making you feel at home thousands and thousands of miles away from home. This is PARADISE in the Bush. Thank you guys for an amazing time-- Justin and Lindsey

  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Justin P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 7, 2011

I spent 3 nights at Hillsnek and had a wonderful experience. The staff were helpful, my "tent" luxurious, the food amazing and the game viewing great - we saw cheetah, rhino, lion, elephant, buffalo plus the normal antelope, giraffe, zebra etc - game will be even better when they have a few more animals. The guide was very knowledgeable and made all our game viewing interesting and fun. Came away having had a really awesome experience and having been thoroughly spoilt. Would definitely recommend Hillsnek.

  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled solo
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1  Thank Jacqueline B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2011

Its rare that you go anywhere and cant stop talking about the experience. This is what happened at Hillsnek. Brent and his team have created something very special and totally unique. This is not just a safari, its a total experience. The attention to detail is what makes it. The team are focussed on you, and very quietly everything is perfect. There is total flexibility, the highest quality of every aspect of the stay, the food, the rooms, the preparation for the trips. Oh and dont forget the wildlife and the scenery and Davids skills in tracking, locating and sharing great knowledge.
Hillsnek is great value too, frankly too cheap, but dont tell Brent that!
Rarely have we been anywhere and given 5 stars for everything. It could take 7.
When you are looking for a safari experience that will exceed every conceivable expectation, Hillsnek delivers. Thanks Brent and team, be very proud of yourselves, you deserve it!

Room Tip: 3 tents, (luxury rooms so do not think canvass!!) all the same ,all perfect
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  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled with friends
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2  Thank beckybluecar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 31, 2011

This was my 5th safari in South Africa and I always thought that real game drives can only be done in Sabi Sands. Now I know better. Hillsnek is just a 45 min. drive from Port Elisabeth, malaria free and as exciting as or even more existing than all my previous games drives before. David, the ranger, was incredible. His enthusiasm and patience to find the right place in the right moment was outstanding. His knowledge of the bush unbelievable….. Unforgettable: his spotting for the sundowners during the game drives….the lodge himself: a small paradise, everywhere you find the personal touch of the owner (Chantal and Brent) with the special eye for so many details, really unique! The staff always smiling, making sure, that you feel at home, the food simply excellent….2 days were not enough at all; it was really more than tough to leave the paradise….Chantal & Brent, I love to come back next year!
Sincerely Gabi

Room Tip: There are only 3 tents and all of them are situated in an intimate and private surrounding. So you j...
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  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank G_Haupt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BrentChantelle, Owner at HillsNek Safaris, Amakhala Game Reserve, responded to this reviewResponded November 2, 2011

Thank-you so much for your feedback, we truely appreciate the compliments and we are thrilled your safari lived up to your expectations and more, it was a pleasure hosting you and we look forward to your future visits. Keep well and Kind Regards from the team at Hillsnek Safaris.

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Reviewed October 19, 2011

We echo very loudly the words of other guests who have been privileged enough to experience Hillsnek. To Brent, David, Maggie & Susan we thank you with all our hearts for a simply magical end to our holiday in SA - undoubtedly the highlight of our mini tour.

Words are not enough really, we would just urge anyone with the will, the means and enough spirit to be able to truly appreciate this place to go and stay, for as long as possible! Yes, there are bigger, flashier, more luxurious private lodges but you can't buy heart and soul. To Brent and the team we hope to be back to share it with you very soon. Rob & Angela.

  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank rob_log
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BrentChantelle, Owner at HillsNek Safaris, Amakhala Game Reserve, responded to this reviewResponded November 2, 2011

Guys it was an absolute pleasure having you stay at Hillsnek Safaris, we thoroughly enjoyed your days spent with us, only wish it could have been longer! Thanks for the great feedback we all really appreciate it , the memorable laughs are still referred to here at the lodge!! Keep in touch and Best Regards, from all of us here at Hillsnek Safaris.

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Additional Information about HillsNek Safaris, Amakhala Game Reserve

Address: N2 | Greater Addo, Eastern Cape, Amakhala Game Reserve 6011, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Amakhala Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 8 Specialty Lodging in Amakhala Game Reserve
Price Range: $646 - $995 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — HillsNek Safaris, Amakhala Game Reserve 4*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
HillsNek Safaris is an intimate, luxury tented camp positioned on the banks of the Bushmans River. Situated in a tucked away corner of the Amakhala Big 5 Game Reserve, the lodge is 70km's from Port Elizabeth in the malaria-free Eastern Cape. An abundant variety of wildlife includes lion,rhino, elephant, giraffe, cheetah, buffalo, zebra and a myriad of plains game. The stone, canvas and thatched main lodge is at the heart of the camp, with four private safari tents elevated on wooden decks that enhance the spectacular views of surrounding plains and bush. All tents have panoramic views of the African plains, and game viewing can often be enjoyed from the comfort of your bed. Personalized service and outstanding hospitality is the hallmark of every stay. ... more   less 
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