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“Honeymoon in a beautiful hut”

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Gondwana Game Reserve
Certificate of Excellence
Gaithersburg, Maryland
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Honeymoon in a beautiful hut”
Reviewed November 6, 2012

My wife and I spent half our honeymoon at Gondwana in one of their Kwena Lodge huts. It was a fantastic experience all around! The hut is amazing, the property is breathtaking, the animals are out and about, and the people are very nice and hospitable.

We had an especially exciting introduction to the reserve. After checking in, we went to our hut for a quick look and then out on a game drive. About a half mile down the road we ran into a pair of elephants. We hung out with them for a bit, took some pictures, and then moved on. Our guide, PG, told us all about the animals on the reserve as we drove around checking them out. As the sun set he decided to take us by one more spot before heading back to the lodge, and lucky for us, we ran into a male lion. We took a bunch of pictures and observed him for a bit and then went back to the lodge. When we got back they told us they normally let folks go back to their huts for a bit before dinner, but the two elephants we ran into earlier on the game drive decided to hang out in the front yard of our hut, so they sent us directly to dinner (about 30 yards from our hut). They served us some wine and a fabulous meal, and we spent a very relaxing evening by a fire in the dining area, popping our heads out the front door from time to time to check out the elephants playing by our hut. They left by the time we finished dinner and we were able to return to our hut.

What a great experience! Both my wife and I can't wait to go back sometime.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Nick W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GondwanaGameReserve, General Manager at Gondwana Game Reserve, responded to this review, November 13, 2012
Dear Nick and Carly. Congratulations again from the Gondwana team. It was our pleasure to host you on the Reserve and we would be delighted to have you return for your first wedding anniversary! All the best for the Festive Season! Kind regards
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801 reviews from our community

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Glenview, Illinois
Level Contributor
11 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2012

This reserve is a straight shot four-hour drive on the N2 from Cape Town. Then drive 9 miles on dirt roads to its round-domed thatched roofed huts. The huts look like flying saucers that have landed in the middle of South-African nowhere but are very comfortable. Each one has a skylight on the dome. Sink fixtures are copper piping and the shower runs right on the floor with a drain alongside the bathtub. Amenities abound.Chocolates on the pillows at night, mugs and hot chocolate mix, electric blankets--yes it can get pretty cold at night--fresh flowers and a full-length mirror-not that you want to look at yourself all windblown from a game drive. Antelope skin rugs decorate on the floor. You are never in need of food or drink because there is always something in the public rooms to eat. And it's good, too.

Game drives are in open Land Rovers with blankets if the evening or morning chill gets to your bones. Guides are friendly and knowledgeable. Since the reserve just opened in 2010, it is still being stock so there is not the abundance of wildlife that you would see at Krueger National Park. But there are plenty of animals around.

Room Tip: Get one closest to the dining room.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank rads_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berlin, Germany
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2012

I did a lot of research on game reserves in the western Cape - many of them have the animals caged and just don't have the feel of a proper reserve, but Gondwana was amazing from start to finish. True luxury accommodation in beautiful huts, attention to detail at every turn and wonderful staff. Although the reserve is small, the encounters we had with the animals we saw (lion, elephant, giraffe, zebra, buck, hippos) was very much up close and personal. The one thing that could do with improvement is the food - not quite in line with the rest of the experience but everything else more than made up for it - including the gorgeous surroundings. I have done many safaris but this was a unique and truly memorable experience, and I would highly recommend the place to anyone looking for a 'safari light' experience in a Malaria-free reserve.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank shamboks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town Central, South Africa
1 review
Reviewed November 4, 2012

I had a fantastic weekend at Gondwana, They get all the little things right. The food, service accomadation Game Drive everything. In this day and age where we easily become accustomed to 5 star service so often places don't measure up to our expectations. Gondwana will exceed your expectations and you should at least stay longer or return. At least to see the Lion cubs just born last week. Truly a wonderfull experiance that I would highly recomend.

Room Tip: Gondwan has only 12 huts at Kwena Lodge and they are all fantastic
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Wayne B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GondwanaGameReserve, General Manager at Gondwana Game Reserve, responded to this review, November 8, 2012
Dear Mr Bengston, thank you for the wonderful feedback on your recent 'brief' stay with us over the past weekend. We look forward to hosting you on the Reserve again soon. Kind regards.
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Johannesburg
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 30, 2012

We had the most perfect weekend experience, from arrival to departure.
The Staff at Gondwana are very special, with everybody showing care and attention for our every need - nothing was too much trouble!
Our sincere thanks to Neil, Renee, Edson and the Team at Gondwana for making us feel special during our stay.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled on business
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Helpful?
Thank tonyrJohannesburg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GondwanaGameReserve, General Manager at Gondwana Game Reserve, responded to this review, October 31, 2012
Good Day,
Thank you for your wonderful feedback on your recent weekend stay with us at Gondwana Game Reserve. It was an absolute pleasure hosting you and Denise and we hope to see you on the Garden Route again soon. All the best for the Festive Season ahead!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Accra, Ghana
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2012

We joined Gondwana for an am game drive, to show my family from the uk hopefully the big five. The reserve was gorgeous but Delicious our guide did not deliver. His driving was dubious, descending steep slopes with the land rover in neutral and the clutch in! He engaged low range once on the entire drive to travel through a muddy puddle. He got the land rover stuck four times on the drive due to poor judgement and driving skills. Luckily we were following another landie that had to pull us out each time! He was so busy getting the vehicle unstuck that he failed to hear the herd of elephants trumpeting near by and drive off in the opposite direction. Speed was excessive throughout the drive with sharp braking when he needed to stop. We saw lions from a distance and one elephant bull that he drove the vehicle right up to, in an interfering manner. Did not stop for tea break as he trying to find the elephants that he drove by! Hugely disappointed, especially for the money paid.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lauren H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GondwanaGameReserve, General Manager at Gondwana Game Reserve, responded to this review, October 26, 2012
Good afternoon
Thank you for your valubale feedback on your recent day excursion with us at Gondwana Game Reserve. We strive to ensure that the safety and comfort of our guests on Game Drive is of the highest standard and the vehicles and guides go through strict inspections regularly in order for us to be certain this is the case. Understandably we have had excessive rain over the past feww weeks and this has hampered the experience on drive and limited the guides to certain areas of the Reserve. In his attempts to ensure you were not inconvenienced by the weather, he unfortunately managed the opposite in getting you stuck and missing out on valuable game viewing time. Your experience with us I can assure you is not the norm and we will be investigating this further. Delicious is a wonderful guide and has received fantastic comments in the past, so we are naturally disaapointed you were not able to experience this with your time spent with him on Drive. We will be conducting a review training on this matter to ensure future experiences you may have on the reserve will not be a repeat of the last visit. Services such as this are invaluable to us, as we cannot monitor and improve without the feedback of our loyal patrons. Thank you.
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Cape Town Central, South Africa
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 12, 2012

Gondwana is most definitely a brilliant place to take kids. The staff are absolutely amazing with them and make them feel extra special. It was our sons birthday while we were there and he was surprised with a delicious chocolate cake and a present! The food was lovely and Forget our game ranger was totally unforgetable. We had never met anyone with so much knowledge of collective nouns. He really is remarkable. Unfortunately housekeeping let the experience down a bit. We had to ask for more toilet paper, for the bin to be emptied and for the tea and coffee to be replenished. We were also rather surprised when we found our wet towels folded up and put back on the towel racks and face cloths taken away and not replaced. Hopefully on our next visit it will be a 10 out of 10 experience.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank hcspan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Gondwana Game Reserve

Property: Gondwana Game Reserve
Address: Garden Route | 4 hr drive from Cape Town, Mossel Bay 6500, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Mossel Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 34 Specialty Lodging in Mossel Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Gondwana Game Reserve 5*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Gondwana Game Reserve provides the perfect safari break less than 4 hours drive from Cape Town and 45 minutes from George airport along South Africa’s popular Garden Route. The 11,000 hectare private game reserve offers a distinctive malaria-free safari experience in a spectacular mountain and Fynbos landscape adding vivid colour and interest to a Big Five wilderness experience. This exclusive reserve offers guests attentive service, superb cuisine, inspiring interiors, expert game rangers and a fun Junior Ranger Program for the kids. Kwena Lodge boasts 14 Khoi-San inspired Kwena Rooms. Each open plan suite is nestled into its spectacular surrounds with 180-degree views of the spectacular surrounds overlooking 2 waterholes where elephant frequent. The rooms offer sky lights for star gazing, clay pot fireplaces and deep baths to keep you warm upon return from an evening game drive. The spacious lodge facilities include a large infinity pool, chic open-plan lounge and bar, with food and beverage services offered in an elegant dining room set around 2 open fireplaces or in the outdoor boma. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gondwana Game Reserve Hotel Mossel Bay

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