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“Was the highlight of my study abroad trip!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Timbavati Safari Lodge

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Timbavati Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Fredericksburg, Virginia
1 review
“Was the highlight of my study abroad trip!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 5, 2014

This lodge was a great stop on our study abroad trip. The staff was so helpful and friendly! It was truly an experience months later I still treasure! The food, drinks, and bed accommodations were amazing. The staff makes you feel right at home, and safe for inexperienced travelers, like myself. The close proximity to Kruger National Park is definitely a huge perk. Our group was fortunate enough to see things in the park that day that people don't see in years and years (like lions taking down zebras!) I would highly, highly, recommend this stop on anyones trip through South Africa. Wish I could go back! Thanks again!

  • Stayed May 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
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Lindsey A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ryan M, General Manager at Timbavati Safari Lodge, responded to this review, March 10, 2014
Hi Lindsey,

Thank you for taking the time to review your stay at Timbavati Safari Lodge. It is great to hear months after your visit you are still remembering your enjoyable stay with us. We often talk about how lucky you guys were with that Lion Kill. We do hope you are able to return and have another great stay with us.
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198 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    102
    73
    17
    4
    2
See reviews for
37
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14
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (28)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2014

We were so spoiled when we went to see you in October and I really hope that we will be able to come back soon! Wonderful food, drinks, beds, smiles and atmosphere! The service was great and we really felt so welcome there! I loved how you can buy your Amarula products there - I am alsomst out of the jam, and have to come back for more shampoo, soap etc - I love it!

  • Stayed October 2013, 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 Frida C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ryan M, General Manager at Timbavati Safari Lodge, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Hi Frida,

Thank you for your review on your recent stay with us. We are glad to hear you enjoyed yourself and managed to head home with some great African Souvenirs. We look forward to seeing you back to restock soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rio de Janeiro, RJ
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 27, 2013

Excellent location, 20km out of Kruger´s Orpen Gate. Probably one of the best services ever. The place is run by the owners, who are always very helpfull with guests needs. They are also very knowledgeable of other activities in the region. The property includes a reserve and animals can be seen in the outskirts and close to the rondavels. They offer morning safari drives in Krueger and afternoon drives in a private game reserve close by (Manyeleti if not mistaken). This is superb, since you get the experience of a more authentic safari experience (if compared to Krueger), without paying a small fortune to stay in a private game reserve lodge.

Room Tip: Get the rondavels close to the bush for more authentic experience.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BRUNO D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ryan M, General Manager at Timbavati Safari Lodge, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Hi Bruno,

Thank you for taking the time to review your stay with us. The team are all very proud to work as a close knit family and I believe from your comments, this is what you experienced. We look forward to hosting you again in the future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
57 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 11, 2013

We spend two nights in a semi-rondawel in Timbavati. The room was very big and very nice. It was also nice to have a mosquito net in a Malaria area. The food was not very special but reasonably okay. The staff is very helpfull and friendly. The location of the timabavati safari lodge is close to the krugerpark so that is very convenient. The game drive we got was nice, but the guides could have been more enthousiastic and more informative. Nonetheless we enjoyed our stay and would recomend it to anyone going to the Kruger area.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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?
1 Thank Clips S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ryan M, General Manager at Timbavati Safari Lodge, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Hi Clips,

Thank you for your review on your stay with us in November. We are glad you enjoyed your stay and have taken careful note of your comments. We enjoy constructive criticism as it is the best way to improve. We do hope you will return in the future :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 6, 2013

We were 2 friends who stayed here for 4 nights and we would recommend this place to singles, friends and family with kids. Price was very attractive for which I was a little skeptical about the kind of service but we were pleasantly surprised by what we experienced here.

We stayed in a rondawel (read rooms) that had 3 beds (though we used just 2 beds). Rooms were basic but functional. All windows had mosquito nets and bathrooms were clean.

We went on safari every day we stayed here and Kylie planned it very well for us. We wanted some changes in our plans which she readily agreed to. My experience in planning the trip and making the booking was excellent. They were very flexible and accommodated almost all our requests (including several date changes).

Food is basic but tasty.

They have 3 adorable dogs on the property who kept us busy when we were not on safari. If you have kids who love dogs, they will adore this place.

Important things to note:

1. This lodge has nothing to do with the Timbawati private game reserve. At first, I thought since they share the same name, this lodge must be inside the Timbavati private game serve but I this lodge is not inside any private reserve for which do not expect to see big animals from the lodge. However, spotting deer and wart hog inside the lodge (from your room) is very common but spotting big 5 is rare.

2. Drive from the lodge to Kruger national park gate is 20 minutes. There is jungle on both sides of the road to Kruger national park gate and the truth is we saw leopard (the only one we saw in our trip) from the main road while on our way to Kruger gate so keep your eyes open even if you are in the main road.

3. We did one full-day safari inside Kruger. The drive was nice (we drove about 250 KM from 6 AM to 5 PM) and we saw a lots of elephants, wild buffalo, hippos, zebras, giraffes, some crocodiles and loads of deer. However, we did not see any rhinos or cats. Those who saw cats in Kruger saw them from distance because in Kruger, vehicles are not allowed to go off roads. All tourist vehicles must stay on road at all times. I will not recommend more than one full-day safari to Kruger park.

4. We spent most of our safaris in Manyeliti private game reserve which is again a 20 minutes drive from the lodge and most of our cat sightings happened here. We saw 2 prides of lions (includes a lioness with a cub) and solitary male lion. We saw 2 groups of cheetah which is very rare. Since, it is a private reserve, we were allowed to go off-road which allowed us to see animals more closely. I would highly recommend that you spend most of your safaris in this park. Note, that there are not many elephants and wild buffalo in this park but you will see plenty of them if you do Kruger.

5. There are many other private game reserves in the vicinity (like Sabi Sand, Timbavati etc.) where game viewing is even better than Manyeliti but this lodge does not arrange safaris to any other private game reserves (other than Manyeliti). If you need to go to other private game reserves (I will recommend at least one safari to Sabi Sand / Phinda), please do not assume that this lodge could arrange it. You will need to arrange it yourself in advance.

Overall, very satisfied with our experience and hope to come back to this place with my family.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank pkhare
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ryan M, General Manager at Timbavati Safari Lodge, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Hi PKHare,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review on your recent stay with us. The team are glad to hear you enjoyed all aspects of your stay. We also appreciate how informative your review is, as it will help many other visitors get a good idea on what we are about and our set up. We all really look forward to you and your family visiting.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Level Contributor
93 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 30, 2013

We stayed in a 3 bedroomed chalet, each room has its own bathroom en suite. Rooms have ceiling fans and insect nets on opening windows. Unfortunately with the heat in Hoedspruit the ceiling fans were not sufficient or did not work particularly well and we had to request an additional fan. Staff were friendly and helpful, particularly the housekeeping ladies. A couple of the over bed mosquito nets need replacing as they have holes in them and towels need replacing as some are wearing thin. The swimming pool and recreation area is well equipped and whilst walking from our room for a swim we encountered wart hog and a number of buck, a truly great adventure!

Room Tip: Ensure your ceiling fan works well particularly in summer months, this also assists in keeping mosqu...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Jennifer196807
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ryan M, General Manager at Timbavati Safari Lodge, responded to this review, October 17, 2013
Hi Jennifer,
Thank you for your feedback on your recent stay with us. We are glad to hear you enjoyed your stay and found the staff welcoming. We are now checking all mosquito nets, ceiling fans and will do a quality check on the towels. Again thank you for the feedback and we hope to see you back soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 19, 2013

Timbavati Safari Lodge is Absolutely amazing. From the Immaculate Location to the Divine Food to the always friendly Staff. From the moment you step in you will fall in love with it and the colorful accommodation. There is NO better way to experience the bush in South Africa than at Timbavati Safari Lodge with everything right on your doorstep. Wide Range of animals can be seen without much effort and the bird life there is amazing, so peaceful just sitting there listening to the wide range of bird life within the lodge and i especially miss the Purple Crested Louries that live in the lodge. No Doubt a 5 star Rating and miss it everyday.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 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 Sheldon R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ryan M, General Manager at Timbavati Safari Lodge, responded to this review, September 29, 2013
Hi Sheldon,
Thank you for taking the time to review your stay with us. It is great to hear you enjoyed your stay and managed to experience some of the exciting encounters with not only animals but the many birds we get on the property. We hope you are back soon to visit.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Timbavati Safari Lodge

Property: Timbavati Safari Lodge
Address: (R 531) Orpen Road | Klaserie, Hoedspruit 1380, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Limpopo Province > Hoedspruit
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 99 Specialty Lodging in Hoedspruit
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Timbavati Safari Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 35
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Timbavati Safari Hotel Hoedspruit

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