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“Nice lodge very close to Pretoria” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Mabula Game Lodge

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Mabula Game Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Pretoria, South Africa
Level Contributor
35 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Nice lodge very close to Pretoria”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 22, 2014

I went to this lodge 3 times bringing relatives and friends and it was always a pleasure. I believe is one of the better lodge close to Pretoria and the price is reasonable. Well organised, nice rooms with animals coming around. You can surely see the big five. So if you don't have a lot of time and money to go in the north it's the perfect place

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Claudio C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LBucceri, Marketing representative at Mabula Game Lodge, responded to this review, March 13, 2014
Dear Claudio,

Thank you for your lovely review on Tripadvisor. We are delighted that you had a good holiday and hope to welcome you back a fourth time.

Regards,
The Mabula Game Lodge team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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498 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (85)
Date | Rating
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  • Danish first
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  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Port Pirie, Australia
Level Contributor
139 reviews
75 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 19, 2014

Mabula Timeshare and Mabula Lodge are independent, but linked operations on the Mabula game farm. The lodge operates as a high-end hotel and the timeshare/rental units are self-catering, ranging from four-sleepers to twelve sleepers. Situated approximately 30kms from Bela-Bela on the road to Thabazimbi, the resort is well-known and established, offering big five viewing and a wide variety of wild game and birds. We stayed in two units forming part of the Bush Lodge (timeshare self-catering) camp for a week over New Year. An eight-sleeper bush house was occupied by our adult kids and their friends and we inhabited the two-bedroom six-sleeper bush bungalow close by. The facilities of the main lodge are available to all and include a small shop for basic necessities, curio shop, restaurant, bar, gym, spa, tennis courts and swimming pools.

The units have recently undergone a softs refurbishment and are much better for it. Granite counter tops and flat-screen TV with satellite are welcome features of the large living area. The units are well provisioned with excellent quality cutlery, crockery and kitchen utensils. There is a bathroom for every four guests with bath/shower combination. The housekeeping is excellent and the units are serviced twice a day. We were really happy with the chalets and the few minor maintenance issues were resolved fairly quickly, although a reminder request was required. It was wonderful to have various game and bird species wander around the bungalow at all times of day and night, quite unperturbed by our presence. Surely one of the few places where one can get so close to wild game.

On New Year’s Eve braai (barbeque) fires were provided at another camp – Modjadji – as well as a disco, all of which contributed to a very festive occasion.

On the downside – the vervet monkeys and baboons were daily visitors to the chalet and we were forced to keep windows and doors closed even when inside the unit to thwart their ingenious thieving of anything and everything edible. In the summer heat, this was not comfortable, but we limited our losses to a Christmas cake and some fruit. There is no air-conditioning, only a fan in the bedrooms and lounge.

We were disappointed in the poor availability of the game drives. Most of the popular times were fully booked and the rangers were very inexperienced. There was only one bird drive the whole week - on New Year’s day at 6am. Seriously?! We had barely gone to bed by then. We also found some of the common areas a little unkempt and tired – particularly the pool areas. Be sure to take sun block and insect-repellent too. We suffered multiple bites from a variety of tireless terrorists - nothing serious, but uncomfortable.

Despite these disappointments, this is a fine place for a relaxing holiday, whether as a couple, family & friends or conference.

Room Tip: Shareblock camp is right next to the Main Lodge and Bush Camp is next closest, but not within walkin...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ratfink
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LBucceri, Marketing representative at Mabula Game Lodge, responded to this review, March 13, 2014
Dear Ratfink,

Thank you for your review. We are glad that you had a good holiday overall, and will look into your other comments so that we can improve.

We hope to see you and your family again soon.

Regards,
The Mabula Game Lodge team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
258 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 9, 2014 via mobile

We stayed at Mabula Game Lodge for a week with our family from Canada. Our two self-catering units were comfortable and the chalets were serviced twice a day. We had lots of animals visiting us during the day like squirrels, warthogs and beautiful birds. Many interesting nocturnal animals were also seen from our patio like bush pigs, a bush baby and a porcupine!We went on a game drive everyday with a very knowledgeable game ranger. We saw some lovely game, including rhino, elephant, buffalo, hippos, numerous species of antelope and amazing birds. The only downside was that the rangers REALLY tried to avoid showing us the elephants and every single ranger offered every excuse in the book not to drive on that side of the reserve. On day 4 of our stay we insisted going to the other side of the reserve. Finally we spotted an elephant bull! It comes highly recommended as a destination, but your expectations need to be managed if you are interested in seeing the big 5.

Stayed January 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank Dia_Carstens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CSWalker71, Director of Sales at Mabula Game Lodge, responded to this review, January 13, 2014
Dear Dia,

Thank you for taking the time to review Mabula Game Lodge. We are delighted that you enjoyed your visit and look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.

Kind Regards

Cindy
Director of Sales
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
17 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 9, 2014 via mobile

My girlfriend and I went there for 2 nights. In the beggining it looked like it would be great...but the, problems:
1- game drives too short and our ranger did not seem to be experienced. We spotted few (common) animals only and he di not have plenty of information regarding the animals.
2- no lions!! There is a specific field woth lions amd the ranger stayed only 1 hour there looking for the lions and couldnt find in none of our 4 game drives!! (Remember that the property is not that big...shouldnt be that difficult to spot them)
3- we asked how many lions and cheetahs they have: frustrating, only 2 male lions, 5 females and 3 cheetahs.
4- we had only one kind recepcionist that tried to help (cant remember the name - white brunette), the others were pretty bad, and non respectful.
5- we had a problem with the shower in the 1st day: was not draining so the eater was flooding. We asked for tecnhical repair 3 times and nobody appeared...the recepcionist simply did not do anything!!
6- bad food! Only breakfast was reasonable.
7- no free internet
8- no fridge in the room
9- scarce water during the day

The positive things:
1- The brunettecrecepcionistvthat wa the only one who tried to help.
2- the shuttle driver that pickes us up in an to joburg. Very professional and gentle.
3- the guy who received us at the reptile center.

In general, was far below my expectations. Do not recommend!

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
7 Thank Eduardo T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CSWalker71, Director of Sales at Mabula Game Lodge, responded to this review, January 13, 2014
Dear Sir,

It is with great regret that I read of your disappointing stay with us. I would like to reassure you that this is certainly not the norm at our property and we apologize for any inconvenience you experienced. We strive to ensure that all our guests have great experiences with us and can reassure you that we will take all your constructive feedback positively.

Kind Regards
Cindy
Director of Sales
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Secunda, South Africa
Level Contributor
32 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 6, 2014

We stayed at Mabula Lodge for 1 week and were treated like VIP's. We stayed in a beautiful chalets with everything and more we needed. We went on two game drives which was wonderful. ( Book the moment you arrive otherwise you might not get the times you want )The other times we lay around playing games reading swimming or playing tennis. Wonderful relaxing holiday. Staff very friendly and helpful, would recommend to any animal lovers or those who just want to relax.

Room Tip: Rooms/ chalets in main complex are easier to get to activities. If you just want to relax all the ot...
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 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?
2 Thank JokeDeK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CSWalker71, Director of Sales at Mabula Game Lodge, responded to this review, January 13, 2014
Thank you for your delightful feedback on Mabula Game Lodge. We look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.

Kind Regards

Cindy
Director of Sales
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rustenburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
17 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2013

My wife and have been going to Mabula for over twenty years, firstly through RCI, where we stayed in Modjadji and then we purchased a week in Bush Lodge which we take ten friends with every year and have a great party. We have found a planned maintenance and refurbishment program in place, together with prompt response to minor maintenance probelms. I suggest that on the day of arrival to have your drives and outings planned and book as you arrive. We arrive just before 14h00 check in time and do this at the Game Rangers office and have seldom had to adjust our plans for the week.

We always join the Monday evening bring and braai to meet others and Management. I can recommend Mabula as a good three star establishment, where you will will relax and enjoy yourself.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Derek B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 23, 2013

Stayed there for 2 nights in December 2013 and absolutely loved it. Friendly staff, clean cottages, well maintained property... The food was great (home-cooked Indian food). There were a lot of vegetarian items on the menu. The only flaw was the restaurant timing. It was open only for 2 hours every morning, noon and evening.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank PortKeyBearer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mabula Game Lodge

Property: Mabula Game Lodge
Address: Rhenosterhoek Spruit Road, Mabula Private Game Reserve 0480, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Limpopo Province > Waterberg > Mabula Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Mabula Private Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Mabula Game Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 48
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set against a backdrop of lush green mountainous vegetation, Mabula Game Lodge is set in one of South Africa's finest private game reserves. Only two hours north of Johannesburg, this 12000ha reserve is home to an abundance of animal and birdlife, including the "Big 5." All 47 rooms are air-conditioned, contain LCD flat-screen television, en-suite bathroom, telephone, hair dryer, safe and tea/coffee making facilities. Dining venues, outdoor cocktail and whiskey bar, swimming pools, tennis court, children's programme, safaris in open 4x4 vehicles, horseback safaris, archery, paintball, star gazing, eco adventure safaris, guided bush walks, crocodile feeding demonstrations, snake demonstrations and the Ground Hornbill Project and reptile centre. Mabula can assist with all conference requirements, including venues, informal breakaway rooms, private dining facilities and team building activities. Children 0-5 stay complimentary when sharing with parent; 6-11 years pay 50% of the adult sharing rate. 12 years and older pay full adult rate and occupy their own rooms. The lodge is situated in a malaria-free area. Gate entry fees are applicable. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mabula Game Hotel Mabula Private Game Reserve
Mabula Game Lodge Mabula Private Game Reserve, Limpopo, South Africa

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