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“Outstanding Guides Make this Reserve Worth Visiting” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Kariega Game Reserve

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Kariega Game Reserve
Certificate of Excellence
Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
25 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Outstanding Guides Make this Reserve Worth Visiting”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 24, 2012

Earlier this month we had the unique experience of visiting the Kariega Game Reserve. The diversity of wild mammals and birds found on the ~35 square mile preserve is truly amazing

While the lodging and food provided are commensurate with their 4-star rating, the quality of the guides make this a 5-star experience. Even though we didn't see everything the preserve has on offer, we did see enough to take away some great memories. For example, the lion and lioness walking by our open vehicle as they searched for their evening meal.

Not having visited other game preserves, we can not say the Kariega reserve is the best. But we can say without equivocation the experience was a top highlight of our 17 day holiday in South Africa.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TravelingM55711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bronwen d, Manager at Kariega Game Reserve, responded to this review, October 25, 2012
Thank you so much for taking the time to write about your experience at Kariega.

We are really pleased that you had a superb stay and enjoyed your first safari experience in Africa. Hopefully this will be the first of many more!

Kind regards and hope that all is well in Texas.

Bronwen and the Kariega team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,415 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (114)
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English first
London
Level Contributor
9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 17, 2012

We spent 3 nights at Kariega towards the end of our trip in SA and we absolutely loved it. The staff were friendly, the food was great and the wine menu was extensive! We stayed in Ukhozi lodge and it was nice to chill out and relax during the day after an early start for the morning game drive. The rooms don't have a tv but this wasn't a sticking point for us, it was lovely to read a book and have some quiet time and, for those people who wish to be more active, there are opportunities to canoe and also guided walks.

We have nothing to compare the game drives to having never been before, but got very close to lions, elephants, white rhino and also saw the elusive black rhino. One small tip, if you suffer from a bad back do not sit on the back of the truck, its very bumpy!

A truly wonderful holiday which we have recommended to others! Thank you!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank katepittam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester
Level Contributor
62 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 10, 2012

This was the final stop on our 15 day South Africa trip and we were here for 3 nights. Every minute of it was amazing, our hosts were friendly and knowledgeable and the game viewing was superb.

Our guide Themba was so skilled and really informative on each drive and the lodge was such a welcoming, warm place to come back to.

We stayed in Ukhozi lodge and our accommodation was wonderful with epic views over the reserve. Beware the plunge pool in September which was pretty chilly even on very hot days! Very peaceful and we were happy to spend the time between drives just pottering around and reading. Take warm clothes if you go in Sep. 3 hours sitting in a land rover gets very cold.

Food was really very good in the evenings but lunch wasn't great, especially for vegetarians. Having said that I would go back immediately given the chance. It's a brilliant introduction to safari and worth splashing out to stay in Ukhozi.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sek1711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
summerhill
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 8, 2012

We stayed for 3 days and we had a gerat time. The staff couln not do enough for us and our game driver (Louis) was just the best. Thanks for a wonderful time. Everyonew should have a few days in Kariega.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank patriciagiles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Torquay, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 6, 2012

There may be bigger and/or better game reserves around. I don't know but my wife and I enjoyed our stay there so much. Two three hour drives a day. Lovely food (breakfast, lunch and dinner). Great staff. We stayed in the Ukhosi Lodge. Awesome. You should go!!

Room Tip: No. 7 Ukhozi Lodge. Brilliant views. 8 foot wide bed, jaccuzzi bath and plunge pool.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Gary C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bronwen d, Manager at Kariega Game Reserve, responded to this review, October 10, 2012
Hi Gary,
We are so pleased that you enjoyed your stay with us at Ukhozi Lodge.
Thanks so much for posting your review.
Kind regards,
Bronwen and the Kariega team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 3, 2012

This was the highlight of a truly wonderful trip to South Africa. The game Drives are out of this world, the hospitality is fantastic, the food is very good and if you like nature you will have the best time.
Your time is almost completely occupied from dawn til dusk.
As a tip, make sure you pack a scarf, coat and hat fro the early morning and late evening when you are on the drives. It can be chilly.
This is not a holiday for anyone who can't clamber into a truck about four feet off the ground!
If you are diabled check what facilities they have before you go.

Room Tip: Ask for a chalet with more than one bedroom and a living room
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Morgana49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Worcestershire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
514 reviews
177 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 272 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 29, 2012 via mobile

We stayed at the main lodge and the chalets do vary, ours was smaller, had no pool, no views due to overgrown trees, no wood burner an no bath. It did have an excellent shower and an effective heater/aircom unit, but you do not spend much time in the chalet.
We found all the staff to be exceptionally helpful and polite, especially the dining room staff, the food was very good and varied and they catered well for specific diets.
Our ranger Tembas was excellent, very knowledgable and happy to share this with us. He provided refreshments on the game drives, a hot drink in the morning and a sundowner on the evening trip, he also organised canoeing for us which we enjoyed.
What let it down for us is that the number of big animals is very limited, there is no leopard, we did not find the black rhino and only one small pride of lions, the other was the chalet which could have been improved by clearing the view.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Warks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bronwen d, Manager at Kariega Game Reserve, responded to this review, October 10, 2012
Thank you so much for your review of your stay at Kariega.

We have noted your comments about the overgrown trees and have had our maintenance team give these a trim. Thank you for letting us know.

We are so pleased that you found our team helpful and have passed on your compliments to the dining room staff and Thembas.

We hope that you had a sighting of our super-girl white rhino Thandi and we are sorry that you didn't find the black rhino. They are more difficult to find than the white rhino. Our reserve is 9000 hectares and can support a particular number of big game.

Thanks again for your comments.

Kind regards,
Bronwen and the Kariega team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kariega Game Reserve

Property: Kariega Game Reserve
Address: R343 | Between Kenton On Sea and Grahamstown, Kenton-on-Sea 6191, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Greater Addo > Kenton-on-Sea
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Kenton-on-Sea
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Kariega Game Reserve 4*
Number of rooms: 21
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kariega Game Reserve is a 10,000 hectare Big 5 malaria-free private game reserve in the Eastern Cape region of South Africa. The safari experience combines close up Big 5 game viewing, an expansive variety of fauna, flora and birdlife, a landscape spanning 5 eco-systems and dramatic views and vistas. Kariega Game Reserve has five safari lodges. Main Lodge consists of 21 separate log chalets, each with en-suite bathrooms, lounge and private balcony; River Lodge has 10 suites and is located on the Bushman's River; Ukhozi Lodge has 10 spacious suites, each with private pools and great views; Settlers Drift Tented Lodge has 9 modern but intimate suites surrounded by natural bush and overlooking the Bushman's River wilderness area and lastly the Homestead private lodge is perfectly suited for families or groups of friends of up to 14 people. Rates include accommodation, meals, morning and evening game drives with your experienced guide, walking safaris and a river trip. Fishing, canoeing and other activities can be arranged. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kariega Game Reserve Hotel Kenton-On-Sea
Kariega Lodge

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