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“Wow”
Review of Giraffe Lodge

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Giraffe Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 19, 2013 via mobile

Totally agree with Ollie 2970 who we met on the experience - lovely meeting with new people - planned this for anniversary as a complete surprise - totally amazing and food and staff wonderful - put this on ur bucket list !!!!!!

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank NJS_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HowlettsPortLympne, Manager at Giraffe Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded September 24, 2013

Thanks for the great review and we are happy that you had an amazing experience with us for your anniversary. All the team pride themselves on delivering an excellent experience and highlighting our ongoing projects so that not only do you go away and tell your friends and family about us, but you come back and stay.

With new accommodation being added next year there is no need to wait for a bucket list before you visit us again. We hope to see you all again soon.

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172 - 178 of 235 reviews

Reviewed September 19, 2013

We've just returned home from the overnight 'Safari Experience' and I couldn't wait to write this review just to let people know how wonderful it was.
We arrived at the park at 4pm and after a welcome drink and a quick chat from the Rangers we were shown to our accommodation for the night which was a very upmarket tent (think Glamping) lovely beds, pillows and fresh clean bedding, complimentary bath robes, toiletries and water. Each tent is on a viewing platform from where you have fantastic views of the watering hole which the wildebeest, zebras, and various other wild animals come to take a drink during the day. We then went on the Safari Bus and had a guided tour of one half of the park, getting very up close and personal to all of the wild animals. Our Ranger Chloe was incredibly knowledgeable and encouraged us to ask questions and take lots of pictures. We then had time to have a drink/chill out and just relax for an hour or so before our buffet style African themed dinner. The food was superb, freshly cooked to our liking. Alcohol and soft drinks were available and we all had a great time sitting around a very large table having a chat and getting to know the other guests. Most of us decided to get an early night as we were told that the animals gather at about 5-30 in the morning, so we all wanted to be up early enough to see them. It was an experience sleeping in a tent but not altogether an unpleasant one. You could hear the animals with their various calls as it was deathly quiet........ At 7am we got a call from the Ranger and we all met for breakfast (buffet style, eat as much as you like) at 8am - at 9 we all boarded the Safari Bus for a trip to the other side of the park. After checking out and collecting our bags we were told by the Rangers that we were entitled to free admission to Howletts which is about 25 minutes away, of which we took full advantage of and had a lovely afternoon and a great end to a brilliant overnight trip away.
Brilliant customer service throughout, nothing was too much trouble and it's certainly an experience we will never forget. We've told everyone in our family that they have to do this as in our opinion it's wonderful value for money and something a little out of the ordinary

2  Thank Caroline B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 13, 2013

My husband bought me this for my birthday and it was a fantastic present! We stayed in Eland, one of the "glamping" tents which are spacious and set upon a wooden verandah, so more like a lodge than a tent. Set high above the watering hole it provided excellent views of the park and animals. The tent was comfortable with two "proper" single beds, a heater, lights, towelling robes, slippers, bedding and somewhere to hang your clothes.

The safaris themselves - you go on two: one longer on the evening of arrival and a shorter one in the morning - were both excellent and the guides very knowledgable. All of the guides have spent some years working in Africa and were able to answer pretty much any question that was thrown at them. The guides are with you in the evening before and after the 5 course meal (which was excellent) and happily chat about the animals and the conservation work that the Aspinall foundation does. All were fabulous, but special mention goes to Tim who was with us for the longest part of the stay.

Everything was very smoothly run from start to finish. From checking in and having your complementary drink (champagne or amarula) to the meal and breakfast in the morning. Despite being cold outside, once the heater was on the tent was surprisingly cosy.

Too many highlights to decide on what was the best - giraffes curiously examining our safari van, wandering out onto the balcony in the morning to watch zebras grazing just feet away, or just seeing a severely endangered species like the rhino close up.

All in all, the experience isn't cheap (we were lucky and got a good deal through Living Social) but it was worth every penny and knowing that your money is helping the conservation work that they do leaves you with a nice warm feeling inside :-)

Room Tip: Not sure whether or not it was just a fluke when we went, but the best view of the animals on the sa...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Sarah P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2013

We stayed at Livingtstone lodge - overnight in a great tent!! What can I say - from the moment the staff welcome you, to the wonderful enthusiastic ranger safaris, it's all in all a most wonderful special set of memories that we will never forget. Tim & Ellie great guides, passionate and enthusiastic about both the animals along with our experience. We were really lucky and had proper close encounters with the giraffe!!
The food was outstanding - our chef was brilliant and we couldn't ask for a more varied, authentic meal. Plenty for all, well stocked bar, and a really homely place to eat of an evening.
My one and only tiny gripe was the disabled toilets were somewhat lacking in cleanliness? Which is strange as all the other facilities were great?
Overall I couldn't recommend this experience highly enough - and look forward to going again in a year or two!

  • Stayed: September 2013
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Thank Doodab
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 11, 2013

What a fantastic Experience!! I highly recommend it. We stayed in the cottage which was lovely and comfortable and very spacious with your own lounge and two bedrooms with en-suites and private garden. Greeted By Andrew our guide who was a fantastic addition to the holiday bringing his great knowledge of the Animals with him. We did a "Safari" as dusk and then had a fantastic four course meal prepared by Karl we enjoyed our starters outside watching the sun set and after dinner we returned for some star gazing it was great to be able to see all the star consolations. The VIP experience did not stop in the morning a full English and another game drive, viewing the animals up close and having our own personal ranger Andrew and then our own personal chef Darryl cooking superb meals especially loved his Lamb rump. It was also lovely to try different foods you would not normally get to try(wood pigeon with Papaya). ( They send you the menu in advance so you can make your choice) Slept in Comfort and woke up to the animal sounds and looked over the waterhole and watched the Black Rhino grazing and the Eland, Giraffe and other animals. My children loved it and the weather was amazing sunny and hot, really felt you were back in Africa, I never new such a place existed. Andrew was passionate about all the animals and their conservation and was so easy to talk to and get along with. They told us that DHL courier the animals back to the wild which is fantastic! Good value for money as the package also included entry to Port Lympne Animal Park as well as Howletts wild animal park and dinner and breakfast both nights. Fantastic experience

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Jaccaranda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2013

We arrive to a champagne reception and met all the other guests. We then went off on safari, what an experience, we could have been in Africa. Our ranger Ellie was so knowledgable about all the animals, and so passionate about her job.
We were then dropped at our tents, which were filled with great surprises, dressing gowns, slippers, an array of toiletries and even a heater( which we didn't need).
Then we took a few steps to the Lappa restaurant for per-dinner drinks, whilst watching all the different animals at the watering hole.
Hard to describe the food cooked over an enormous fire pit, it was truly amazing and a wonderful experience. The chef Clive certainly knows his ingredients well, better than a lot of top restaurants I have eaten in.
We sat on comfy seats to enjoy cheese and port, then Tim and Ellie the 2 rangers answered numerous questions we were firing at them. The passion they had really made the trip more enjoyable as they were excited by new things some of the animals were doing. They both deserve a special mention, thank you both.
Great nights sleep in the tents, very comfortable, the only sounds were from the animals.
The morning started with more lovely food, what a breakfast spread, they covered everything. Cereal, toast, fry up, croissants and fruit. What more could you ask for.
We then went on Safari again.
It was great to hear about all the Conservation work the wildlife park does.
I would recommend this EXPERIENCE to anybody. My only regret is that we didn't take our 2 grown up kids with us, because they would have loved it.
I'm going to book again though. Best night away ever.

Room Tip: Ask for a lower tent, then you are right by the watering hole.
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  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank kinger21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HowlettsPortLympne, Manager at Giraffe Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded September 16, 2013

Thank you very much for your positive feedback. It is always good to hear positive comments about members of staff and we will pass this onto the team. I am glad that your experience lived up to your expectations and we hope to welcome you all back again soon.

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Reviewed August 31, 2013 via mobile

Did the overnight safari stay last night and had a fab time!! The rangers were fab hosts and was extremely passionate and knowledgeable about her work. Had champagne/ amarula on arrival and met fellow guests and then off on the safari, saw all the animals you would expect to see on the African savannah and the ranger obviously enjoyed informing us about all the different species, it was then off to the tents which were fab and had everything you could possibly need, and then down to the Lappa for pre dinner drinks. Food was absolutely fab and plentiful and the chef deserves a special mention as the food was better that some top hotels we have stayed in! Then we mingled chatted and drank whilst the ranger answered any questions we had, poor girl we kept her up till gone 11pm, then off to the cosy tent for a good nights sleep, was lucky enough to see the giraffes browsing the trees at 6.30am then off for a superb cooked breakfast and another shorter safari. Would definitely recommend that you go, best night away ever!!

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank Ollie2870
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Giraffe Lodge

Address: Aldington Road, Lympne CT21 4PD, England (Formerly Livingstone Lodge)
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > Kent > Lympne
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Specialty Lodging in Lympne
Price Range: $252 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Voted the UK's best tourism experience in 2012, Giraffe Lodge Safari Experience at Port Lympne, Kent, is the UK's only overnight safari lodge perfect for a romantic break, engagement, celebrations and Hen Parties and has to be the answer to those who would love to visit the wilds of Africa on safari. Enjoy a multi award winning safari experience and a totally magical night under the stars. ... more   less 

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