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“Make lions roarrrrr”

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Tshukudu Game Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Make lions roarrrrr”
Reviewed April 7, 2012

Had a great 2 nights at the Tshukudu bush camp with my 10-year old daughter, absolutely loved the setting, staff and the walks with lions and cheetahs of course. However, we could have done without all the guides revving the engines to get the 12-year old lion to roar for us... and that probably every day they see him. Why not just let him be, if he roars, he roars, if not, he doesn't... that's nature. And by the way, he roared magnificently all by himself at the waterhole close to the camp on the second night in any case.... well, just my opinion.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Liv777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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389 reviews from our community

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Adelaide, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
85 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed March 31, 2012

Spent a fabuolous three days watching rhino, walking lions, stroking cheetahs and marvelling at how a leopard can "run" up a tree. The wildlife is why you come here. The food is also mind numbingly good. Rooms are clean and perfectly well appointed. Superb experience..... Only 2 negatives, wi-fi is a real rip off, only use it if you really have to and carefully check your drinks tab on departure, it got sorted but should have never happened.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Adrian M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sussex
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed March 24, 2012

The title says it all. My partner and I first visited Tshukudu Xmas 2004. The entire visit was such an amazing experience that when we decided to get married, we didn't even need to discuss where it would be. We wanted our friends and family to experience what we had - and have a bush wedding thrown in.

This is the bush, so initially we did have a few problems with communications, but any issues were eventually dealt with. I managed to find a local Hoedspruit wedding planner (http://www.bushwedding.co.za/) who helped immensely with the final months of preparation, and liaised directly with Tshukudu.

We had 28 adult guests and 5 children. Most booked in for 2 nights - some just for the wedding night, others stayed longer.

The rooms are 3 star, but the Tshukudu experience is definitely 5 star.

The wedding planner, Angela, scouted the ceremony location out with Chris Sussens - we were married under an old leadwood tree at the watering hole. Tshukudu arranged for the long bush grass around the tree to be mown. Staff were on hand throughout the ceremony to serve drinks (champagne/beer/water/cold drinks etc), and then took our guests on a mini game drive whilst my new husband and I were taken on a photo shoot around the reserve. One of the highlights of this was a photo shoot with two of their lion cubs (Bhobezi and Sheila - 15 months old at the time). Walking over to the evening reception area, a tame caracal (Karoo) jumped out of the darkness onto my dress. I was startled, but also amazed as I'd never seen a caracal before. Karoo joined us at the evening reception and posed for some photo's by the table layouts. I could go on and on about the experiences and what we saw, did, touched, tasted etc (I haven't even mentioned the walk on the morning of my wedding with three cheetahs, and the rhino's which followed us, or the caracal kitten, or the wildcat kitten, or the hippo which came out to feed on the grass outside our chalet, the rhinos which appeared at the waterhole just after the ceremony, or, or............or - you get the picture.) Hope the photo's get across just how amazing the experience was for us.

Photographs taken by Louise Meyer: http://www.mayflowerphotography.co.za/

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
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1 Thank BrightonWendz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
High Wycombe, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed February 18, 2012

We arrived at Tshukudu Game Lodge and stayed for four nights in February 2012. It is different from other game lodges because they allow 'tame' animals to wander through the camp. They had two beautiful cheetahs who could often be seen lounging by the pool or on the verandah and in the morning you can go for walks with the cheetahs. They also do morning walks with lions, but be ready for their playfulness. Lions can be very feisty with the guests, as I discovered for myself.
These are the things that really attracted us to the place; plus they have a lion breeding compound which we visited once on our stay there. Admittedly, we would like to have seen it twice rather than once. They also house two beautiful leopards in this compound as well.
During our stay, I managed to see most of the Big Five, although I admit that I did miss one or two game drives during my time there.
Our apartment had a 'homely' feel to it, plus excellent air conditioning, and both the windows and the bed were netted againtst mosquitoes.
We had tea and coffee making facilities, plus a mini bar with chocolate treats added for anyone with a sweet tooth.
The food was delicious and well cooked, but be warned; this is definitely not the place to come for anyone watching their waistlines. They do certainly feed you and the portions are very generous.
We had tea and rusks before our morning walk as is usual with other lodges. This was followed by a very hearty breakfast, then lunch, followed by tea with cakes and sandwiches in the late afternoon. There is also the evening meal to look forward to in the boma. So if any guests stay here long enough they will probably put on a few extra pounds .
The catering staff were also very polite and couldn't do enough for us so it is well worth returning their politeness and attentiveness.
There was one problem we had and that was with the water. It cut out at one stage and we had to report it to the lodge staff. Don't expect 'power showers' in a place like this either. Water is very precious in the bush, and there may be occasions when it may not be available in the quantities most guests expect.
However, within moments of reporting the water problem, Richard - one of our rangers - quickly got the problem rectified. He was very 'on the ball' and we felt it was really good service.
Tshukudu's motto is, 'reach out and touch.' That involves in certain cases, very close interaction with some of the animals. You do this at your own risk and guests should be aware that all such interactions may involve an element of danger.
The rangers are very well trained and used to the animals, so all instructions given by the rangers should be strictly adhered to.
Personally I like their motto very much and it was the main reason I decided to stay at Tshukudu.
This lodge is not just about game drives and it doesn't offer luxury; it is a place where orphaned animals are cared for, and I liked their breeding project. We were also informed that they have bred over four hundred lions and introduced them to other private game lodges in Kruger park. It appealed to my aesthetic sense greatly.
The lodge has a three star rating, which really doesn't do it justice. The overall feel and experience of this place was certainly more than a three star one really, as the service, game drives, food and accommodation was really very good indeed.
All-in-all we both enjoyed our stay very much, and I intend to go back, if I can drag my other half back, that is!

Room Tip: They have various types of accommodation at Tshukudu. They also have the bush camp not far away, wh...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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1 Thank susan d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
24 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2012

We stayed 2 nights at the lodge as part of a group. The rooms in the chalets are adequate with AC and nice tiled shower. The grounds are well kept with a welcoming pool area. When we visited there were 3 cheetahs and one blind bush pig hanging around the facilities. Especially one cheetah liked to be scratched behind the ear and back and responded by a loud purr. We had a couple of game drives on very bumpy roads but did not see as many animals as expected apparently due to the heavy rains a few weeks earlier. On the other hand we had 2 amazing early morning walks, the first accompanied by the 3 cheetahs and the second by two larger lion cubs and the blind bush pig. We also visited fenced areas and could get close up views of lions and leopards.

Breakfast and lunch buffet were good. Dinner was served in a nice area with bonfire and a 3-cource meal that was good.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Anders52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancashire, England
Level 5 Contributor
55 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed January 20, 2012

Unfortunately our stay here was marred by the worst rain in 30 years - a year's rainfall in 24 hours.
There was not a great deal to do as the rain fell constantly, although one of the three cheetahs walked about the restaurant and pool area and was keen to pose for photos and be stroked.
There is also a hippo that walks around from time to time, although it is truly wild so cannot be approached like the cheetah.
However, shortly after we arrived and before conditions deteriorated beyond redemption we went on a game drive and saw the elephants, three of which treated to us a fantastic show as they rolled about in mud.
When the rain did eventually subside we managed to fit in a walk with the lions, an experience not to be missed as they ran up to us and lay down to have their photos taken. A memorable experience.
Indeed, the interaction with the animals makes this establishment outstanding.
The accommodation, although not luxurious is very good and certainly suitable for the environment.
Food is served mostly buffet style and was adequate without being top quality.
Although our stay was spoilt by the weather that was not the fault of the staff who went out of their way to assist us and I would most certainly return in the future, hopefully with the sun shining.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Rodski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandefjord, Norway
Level 6 Contributor
407 reviews
90 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 196 helpful votes
Reviewed January 8, 2012

We visited the game reservate twice for game drives, but did not in fact stay overnight at the lodge. There is plenty of opportunities to see all sorts of animals, we saw leopard, lions, rhino's and elephants up real close.
The lodge seemed very nice, family run. We had breakfast there one morning. Nice buffet, and you could order eggs cooked to order. The staff was friendly and service oriented.
The lodge has a pet cheeta that was lurking around the breakfast room begging for food. we got to cuddle it, amazing!

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Vestfoldgirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tshukudu Game Lodge

Property: Tshukudu Game Lodge
Address: Tshukudu Game Reserve | KT 207, Portion of Vienna, Hoedspruit 1380, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Limpopo Province > Hoedspruit
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 104 Specialty Lodging in Hoedspruit
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Tshukudu Game Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tshukudu Private Game Reserve borders the world renowned Greater Kruger National Park and combines home comforts with the exciting Big 5 safari experience (Lion, Rhino, Elephant, Leopard and Buffalo). The lodge has magnificent views of the Drakensberg Mountains and offers close encounters with some of the rehabilitated orphaned animals in their natural habitat. Tshukudu Game Lodge where exclusivity is assured, covers 3800ha of prime Bushveld and is situated close to Hoedspruit in the Limpopo Province. The 4 star Lodge offers full board as well as self-catering packages. The list of activities includes an early morning bush walk as well as morning and afternoon game drives in 4 x 4 vehicles with skilled game guides. For a holiday to remember contact us to today! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tshukudu Game Hotel Hoedspruit

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