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“Relaxing Stay”

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Punda Maria Restcamp
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Relaxing Stay”
Reviewed March 6, 2014

.Stayed two nights in a bungalow at Punda Maria. Found it to be dark and small but very clean, in need of an update.The communal kitchen would benefit from being fully covered to keep the flies away from your food. The pool was refreshing although a lot of frogs around at night. We visited the waterhole on both nights and saw buffalo on both occasions,The park itself was fab and saw lots of birds and animals too numerous to mention. Need to be aware not to leave rubbish in the bin outside the bungalow as lots of Vervet Monkeys around early morning rummaging for food. Overall a quiet relaxing restcamp just needs a little TLC.

Room Tip: Bungalows on the front of the road( no.17 we stayed in ) not much terrace to sit out and you have th...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank A C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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159 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (34)
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English first
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
46 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed February 10, 2014

The rooms are small and dark and the BBQ facilities are almost ridiculously limited, while not being sheltered from any rain. The restaurant, which we attended for that reason on the second night, serves decent (not great) meals at a reasonable price.
Service was adequate - SANParks standard, which is by now means bad.
We had two nights at Punda Maria in our one week Kruger Park vacation and I did not regret at all staying there - especially the landscape differs significantly from further South, easily compensating for the greatly lower number of Wildlife, there.
Still, of all the restcamps we stayed at in Kruger park, so far, Punda Maria was easily the worst.

Room Tip: The tents looked much better than the "regular" rooms
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank mh_3041
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hoedspruit
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2014

We always book the safari tents in Punda maria and every time the experience is great. The beds are good, the linen is clean, the bathroom is neat and the kitchen is simple but sufficient. This time we had a problem with the light, but after reporting they took immediate action and when they could not find the problem we were fitted with an temporary light so we could enjoy our dinner.

We would never recommend any of the restaurants in the Kruger Park and always opt for self catering units. Punda Maria only has 7 tents and 2 bungalows with a kitchen. The other accommodation is very basic and only consists of a room with beds. There is no nice place to sit outside, the chairs and table are situated on the road. So if you want to experience Punda Maria in a great way opt for the Safari tents or the camp site.

The S59 to me is the most beautiful loop in the Kruger Park and again we were not disappointed. Beautiful flowers, birds, baobabs and amazing sighting of leopards and elephants.

Punda Maria we will be back in may this year!

Room Tip: Choose the safari tents or the camp site for the best experience and definitely drive the S59 loop...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank KimVM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed January 8, 2014

My wife and I spent 4 nights at Punda Maria Restcamp in the Kruger Park over New Year, in what I can call our annual pilgrimage to this heavenly spot.
We statyed as usual in the little 'hartbeeshuisie' units, which are quaint, if a little small. Although I believe accomodation in the Park run by SANParks is overpriced, these units are still in decent condition.
I would recommend the camp to anyone who wants a unique Northern Kruger experience. Don't come here if you are chasing the big five, this is a camp for the visitor who is loooking for an authentic Kruger experience. The scenery and ambience of this part of the park is incredible, and the birding is phenomenal. When one does see animals, and yes they are around, you inevitably have them to yourself! One gets so much more of a sense of wilderness in this part of the Park, and even at this busiest time you can still feel that you have the Park to yourself. Every drive is menorable, especially the delightful Mahonie Loop and the open grassland with a special magic at Klopperfontein.
One of the best aspects of the camp is the communal cooking / dining area at night where you inevitably join your fellow campmates in preparing and enjoying your respective meal - spent swapping stories of the day gone by in the presence of the cute family of Thick-tiled Bushbabies who come out of the thick hillside bush to begin their nocturnal exploits.
I am almost reluctant to write this review and share such a lovely spot, but it is a place worth visiting on every visit to the Park!

Room Tip: The safari tents are stunning, set amongst the hillside bush, and ask for units fronting onto the co...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Paul d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Knysna, South Africa
Level 6 Contributor
184 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 180 helpful votes
Reviewed January 8, 2014

We enjoyed our stay at Punda Maria, even the game viewing was much better in the southern park. The camp has a old time feel and is very peaceful, everything was clean......we not bird watchers and will rather return to the southern park side....

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Thomas S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
463 reviews
50 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 159 helpful votes
Reviewed January 8, 2014

We stayed in Punda Maria during a week's holiday in KNP and it is one of our favourite. There is something about this camp that takes you back to a different era and completely relaxes you. There is a wonderful bird hide in the tent/caravan section along with the swimming pool. We used both and they were great. We ate breakfast at the restaurant it was more than adequate. Baboons were going through the caravans and tents and anything that wasn't stowed away was fair game. You need to be clever with your food and goods, these animals aren't stupid.

We stayed in the newer Safari tents on the far side of the park. If you can pay the bit extra and have a view or perimeter one it is well worth it - for the privacy alone. The bush is very dense around here, so any view would be an animal strolling past. We had Safari Tent number 16 which I can highly recommend. The decking was amazing which seemed to almost wrap around. It is a larger tent than Lower Sabie and appeared to be in better condition.

The animals are not so easy to see up here but we did spot a few.

Room Tip: Safari Tent with a view/perimeter Number 16
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Jules0131
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cumbria, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
264 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 92 helpful votes
Reviewed November 24, 2013

We stayed 3 nights in one of their luxury tents, with outdoor terrace overlooking trees, very peaceful and game viewing good but not crowded, wonderful lion sighting just north of the camp really close and looking straight at us. One disaster when braii collapsed with burning coals but staff sorted and gave us dinner and the provided temporary braii. We had avoided the restaurants in the park because of previous bad experiences but were pleasantly surprised as the service was good and friendly and food tasty.

Room Tip: Recommend tents
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank CGSFormby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Punda Maria Restcamp

Property: Punda Maria Restcamp
Address: Kruger National Park, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 13 Hotels in Kruger National Park
Number of rooms: 24

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