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“Wonderful Game Reserve”

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Kariega Game Reserve - All Lodges
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 19, 2012

Following a long drive up from Kynsna in the morning, we arrived at Uhkozi Lodge just in time for lunch, which was taken in the timber-framed main lodge. This was the first of many splendid meals taken in the lodge. After lunch we returned to our room to unpack and take in the view from our sundeck overlooking the game reserve below. At 4.00pm we met our park ranger/guide and six fellow guests for the first of our game drives, which was excellent. Indeed we saw most of the 'big five' game on that first evening drive, along with many of the lesser animals on the reserve. A little shaken, but not daunted, by the bumpy drive in our Toyota land cruiser, we sat down with our guide and fellow game drive guests for supper together in the main lodge. Over supper, ordered from the a la carte menu, we chatted about our first experience of seeing animals in the wild and listened to our very knowledgeable guide talk about what we had seen and indeed what we might see on future game drives. Whilst the morning game drives meant getting up before 6.00am, nonetheless it was more than worth it. Our guide would stop during the drive to serve us with coffee and muffins whilst out in the middle of the game reserve, which was quite an experience. None of the animals paid us the slightest bit of attention in this regard, although this would have been different had there been any baboons close by! After breakfast and before lunch we had time to walk one of the pre-determined trails within the protected area of the game reserve, write up our journals, laze by the pool or catch up on sleep missed! Three days and five drives later, we felt we'd experienced a little bit of the African wilderness, despite being able to see the sea from the balcony of our lodge. We had a fabulous stay at Uhkozi Lodge, made especially so by the very friendly and helpful staff who couldn't have been more willing. Would we go back - you better believe it!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Adam47Kingston_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bronwen d, Manager at Kariega Game Reserve - All Lodges, responded to this reviewResponded November 27, 2012

Hi Adam,
Thanks for your super review of your stay with us at Kariega's Ukhozi Lodge. We're glad we made your early morning wake ups worth it and we look forward to welcoming you back again!
Kind regards,
Bronwen and the Kariega team

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Reviewed November 18, 2012

We spent three nights at the Uhkozi Lodge to end our honeymoon in South Africa. Our lodge was beautifully decorated and looked out across the plains, and whilst our private plunge pool was a little on the cold side it was well worth the dip, looking out across the plains and seeing zebra, ostriches ad various antelope. We had a game drive in the morning and afternoon, and our ranger, Matt, was unbelievable - his knowledge was endless and he was always pointing out signs of animals (tracks, dung etc) and bird calls. We saw four of the big five, as well as giraffe, hippo, zebra, ostrich and various antelope.
You take the game drives with the same people and eat together with your ranger and we were part of a fantastic group, it was great to reflect on the game drive with one another after dinner, around the open fire and with the endless supplies of all inclusive wine!
Highlights of our experiences include getting trapped against the fence by the pride of lions and getting stuck in the mood and having to get rescued by another range - by the time we were rescued it was pitch black and we were two hours late for dinner!! Hopefully Matt wasn't ridiculed for too long by his colleagues!!!
The food was fantastic, in particular the eland pie, the kudu steak and the Cape Malva pudding. One night whilst there it was boma evening, where we had an "all you can eat" style buffet of hot food and after dinner the waitresses and cooks started to sing and dance, a great performance and we felt privledged to watch it.
We both had a Swedish massage whilst staying at Kariega, where the staff were welcoming and we both felt very relaxed afterwards.
Without a doubt we will be back - so watch out Matt!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank slwray
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 17, 2012

This was our last stop on our trip and we stayed for 3 nights at the Uhkozi lodge. Our room was large and well appointed with panoramic views from our private deck of the reserve.

The game drives were amazing - two per day lasting 3-4 hours. Our Ranger - Temba - was excellent. Really informative with a relaxed easy going attitude and an amazing knowledge of the reserve which meant we saw all the animals over the course of our stay.

All the meals were excellent and included a choice of wine from an extensive list. All of the staff were extremely friendly and professional and went out of their way to ensure we had a great time.

This was a great way to experience a safari and we would thoroughly recommend this reserve.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank DoloresHampshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2012

We arrived late in the day and were greeted by smiling staff that did all they could to ensure we had a comfortable safe and exciting stay. Our Ranger Gerhard went out of his way to seek out all but one of the big five as well as many other animals from wild cats to huge lizards and many species of birds. When he found the game Gerhard would position his Jeep to get the best possible pictures. There was a bonus as the lodge was on a river with boat trips out to the incredible beaches at Kenton on Sea. Certainly an unforgettable lifetime experience. If you go ask for Gerhard as your Ranger you won’t be disappointed.

Room Tip: Stay at River Lodge you get the bonus of the boat trips
See more room tips
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Tabletopmountain
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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
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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 - All Lodges, responded to this reviewResponded 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

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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
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1  Thank katepittam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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
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1  Thank sek1711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kariega Game Reserve - All Lodges

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 8 Specialty Lodging in Kenton-on-Sea
Price Range: $561 - $796 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Kariega Game Reserve - All Lodges 4*
Number of rooms: 50
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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