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All reviews tinga plunge pool sabie river game drives tauck tour huge bathroom rooms are amazing mini bar absolute luxury skukuza airport out of this world our honeymoon off road once in a lifetime herd of elephants memorable stay land rover
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Reviewed August 17, 2012

First time we tried the South African "Ubuntu" was in late December 2010. Our new South African family gave us Tinga as a part of "Ubuntu".
The adventure started in Johannesburg Airport. A small airplane was waiting for us just to bring us to an airstrip near Skukuza, where a Tinga ranger was waiting for us. After a short ride to Tinga, 3 days adventure was waiting ahead.

Tinga has got more to tell than the fascinating nature and game drives - the place can tell stories of South African leaders making decisions of the country after apartheid. Read about that and get the spirit of South African history.

Super friendly staff was waiting for us in the reception. We had the houses - and short after we were ready fir the first game drive. The scout and the driver made a pro team - giving us the best service and great views when we passed the river. Both Elephant and Rhino were seen.

We experienced that rangers and scouts are "hunted" by Tinga because they are supposed to be the best in business.
They gave us the feeling that we were chosen guests. Special interests were respected and the time was given - not only to the "Big Five", but also to the Birding interested in the group.

We appreciate that we had the space for alternative interests!

We had the same feeling in the Tinga Legends with the friendly and sweet staff all around the building - ready to give you a unique experiences with Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

The surroundings are outstanding, the peace unbelievable, the stars just waiting to be seen in the nighttime.

We loved our house - though the male Baboon gave us some early morning dramatic noise at the roof.

Maybe Tinga can be described with few words as a place with a unique history, unique nature, super friendly and pro staff, who with joined efforts gives you the feeling of being someone special.

And to be honest, who don´t like the the feeling of being someone special.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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Thank johnrisskov
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 12, 2012

From Poppy on reception, to Emmanuel to my life long friend who was my tour guide it was the most magical experience of my life! Since being at Tinga Chris has been to visit me in Scotland and I am back to SA next year, also staying at Tinga again.

The big five tick! The people tick! The food tick! The accommodation tick! The lifetime friendships with my boet Chris De Villier tick! Thank you and see you all soon.

I was here in August 08

Stayed: September 2011, traveled with family
Thank Greg H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2012

We booked Tinga as part of a special package offer with Cybele Forest Lodge and Spa at Whiteriver. Tinga Legends was the third game lodge that we had visited on this trip. As part of our package, the Park entrance fee was included in our tariff. On leaving Cybele we had the staff check with Tinga to ensure we could enter through Phabeni Gate and we were assured that this was in fact preferable. When we arrived at that gate we were not allowed admittance as they had no record of our entrance fee having been paid, nor the correct date of our check-in. After a couple of stressful calls, we were then gained admittance on payment of the Park fee. When we arrived at Tinga Legends, staff insisted that all was in order but nothing was offered as compensation nor any apology for the confusion. This property is well appointed and the location on it's own concession in Kruger National Park, is excellent. The rooms are large, well decorated with little touches like under floor heating around the bed, a big bath tub, deck and a plunge pool overlooking the Sabie River. The rooms are in need of a little maintenance e.g. doors difficult to slide, paint work needs refreshing. The game drives were good, only six to a vehicle. Our guide was Ismael and the tracker Reckson. Both of these gentlemen were very passionate about their job. Ismael has so much knowledge to share on the bush and wildlife. The animals from Kruger can traverse this property freely and on our game drives, we saw the Big Five including a late afternoon glimpse of the rare Black Rhino. The food at Tinga Legends was excellent and we thought their Boma was by far the best buffet food we had experienced on our trip. This was further enhanced by the trumpeting of a herd of elephants playing nearby whilst we were eating our dinner. Tinga is located close to the local Airport. We had read previously that it can be noisy at night time. We did hear planes during the night on one occasion but we were told the following day that these planes are patrolling for poachers in the Park. On that basis we would not complain about noise, as they are doing a much needed job to save the animals from destruction. The one area that we believed detracted from our stay at this property was customer service. For example, during induction we were told we could walk from our room to dinner without an escort. The first night we did this, the waiting staff were horrified that we had walked to dinner by ourselves and insisted this should not be repeated. Our package included non premium wines and laundry. Again, at the briefing, we were told alcohol and laundry had to be paid for. After clarification with management,we found our laundry and one variety of red or white house wine was indeed included.The wine offered was of a reasonable standard. However, in other lodges we had stayed we were entitled to any variety of local wines. Admin staff generally were quick to respond to any request but were not pro active in anticipating guests needs. The property is a good commercial lodge but it lacks some intimacy that we had experienced at other lodges.
Overall, a very good location to experience Kruger Park and the African wildlife, especially if it's your first visit.

Room Tip: We were allocated to Room number five which was very convenient to the main lodge. We also noted that is was a room with some disabled facilities.
  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank kayw49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2012

Tinga Narina Lodge, on the banks of the Sabie River, is a little bit of heaven. The accommodation is not quite as luxurious as Tinga Legends, but the little touches make this lodge special - cold towels when you return from a dusty game drive, sparkling wine on the evening drive, marshmallows for the kids (and adults!) around the boma fire, and hot water bottles on your seats for those chilly morning drives. Chef Cecelia's food was superb (especially the sumptuus breakfasts), with special care taken to provide a meal for our vegetarian daughter. And there's nothing quite like an outdoor shower while watching a herd of elephants. And yes, we saw the big 5 in just three drives!

Room Tip: Room 4 has sun on the verandah all day, and a great view of the river.
  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Charmane R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2012

My husband and I scheduled a last minute safari trip to Lion Sands River Lodge (continue reading for information about TINGA LODGE) without knowing what to expect except from reading the reviews and looking at pictures on their website. There is no way to describe how wonderful the trip turned out to be! From the minute we arrived at Skukuza Airport until the minute we left, we received first class treatment from Lion Sands. We saw 3 of the big 5 on our drive from the airport to the lodge! Then on every drive, 2 times a day, we experienced the big 5 over and over again! We were told that leopard sightings could be rare but we saw at least 8 different leopards while we were there. The staff at Lion Sands are exceptional, the accommodations beautiful and our Ranger and Tracker were intent on showing us animals constantly. The meals were prepared beautifully and were delicious; almost like eating at a 5 star restaurant for every meal. We were only able to spend 4 days/3 nights at Lion Sands River Lodge then transferred to TINGA LODGE for our last night and 2 safari drives. Again we were treated as if we were royalty and the suite we had at TINGA was even more amazing than Lion Sands - we didn't think it was possible. They are both owned by the same family so the entire, though short, stay at TINGA was even more perfect than Lion Sands. Our Ranger and Tracker had amazing knowledge of the animals, birds, trees, etc. We learned many things from them that would be impossible to get by reading a book. We are already planning the safari for next year and we will make sure that we spend most of our days/nights at TINGA LODGE! Both lodges have few rooms but they both are constantly fully booked. We will recommend these lodges to everyone we know. Jean P.

Room Tip: No need to worry about what room you get. There are only 9 suites but all are marvelous!
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Jean P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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