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“Incredible view, but units need updating” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Thendele Hutted camp

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Thendele Hutted camp
Certificate of Excellence
Olympia, Washington
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Incredible view, but units need updating”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 10, 2014

Our 2-bed chalet at Thendele had the most incredible view of the Amphitheater. If there hadn't been baboons wandering around, the patio would have been a spectacular setting for cocktails and dinner. It was wonderful to have so much space - a full kitchen, living room, bedroom, and bathroom - and you can't beat the proximity to the trailheads.

That said, the units desperately need renovating. There were cigarette burns in the upholstered chairs, the linens had yellow stains on them, the bathroom was a little grungy, and the counter stools were too high to be able to sit at the counter. I would stay here again, but would recommend that KZN Wildlife invest in some updates.

Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank OlySilver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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181 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
Date | Rating
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English first
Durban, South Africa
Level Contributor
45 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 10, 2014

You can almost feel the silence here - nestled in the Amphitheatre in the Drakensberg. This place is incredible. From amazing views, to incredible hikes (ranging from very easy to very difficult) Thendele has it all. The rooms are really comfortable and clean. I will be going back soon! This place is magical! Absolutely magical! You won't be disappointed!

Room Tip: The upper camp is a little further away from reception - so less likely to have cars driving passed...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank JodySimpson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
106 reviews
70 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 9, 2014

I hadn't been to Thendele for about 20 years and after spending the weekend there I am blown away about how wonderful the place still is. Highlights:
- The view is spectacular, I doubt where many other camps in the world can match it
- I have always loved the hiking trails in the RNNP and they are still lovely - nice variety and well maintained and properly marked
- We stayed in the Lodge which was much bigger and better equipped than we expected, and very well maintained (although some slightly dated elements)

Bear in mind that this is a self catering option and you need to bring all your own supplies (although there is a small shop for the basics like wood). The lodge comes with a cook who will cook your meals for you as well as lighting fires, doing dishes etc which adds a hint of luxury.

The road which goes past Sterkfontein damn and then down the Oliviershoek pass is in a bad state of repair so expect to go slowly. If you are driving a car with poor ground clearance, its worth going down Van Reenen's pass rather and coming in from the Bergville side.

Room Tip: The lodge is great option for a group of 3 couples
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  • Stayed June 2014, 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
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank MakiGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pretoria, South Africa
Level Contributor
83 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 6, 2014

This was my third trip to Thendele - and each time I ask why I don't go more often. The views from the Upper Camp (right hand side of the road) overlook the Amphitheatre - a 1,000 metre cliff wall into Lesotho.

The chates are spacious, clean and well equipped - now with satellite TV if you need it. They look a little worn in places but this is essentially a nature reserve for hiking in - rather than a resort hotel.

The road up is a little scary (single track) and the views are spectacular as you drive into the park. The Upper camp chalets all have microwaves, fridges, freezers and a cooker and the braai stand and are well equipped. Most sleep 4 people in comfort and the living & dining area has a nice woof burning fireplace to keep you cosy in the cooler months. Staff are all friendly and clean the place spotlessly whilst you are out trying to watch where you are going and the scenery which is awesome.

The shop offers basic supplies and there's no restaurant but that's also part of it's charm.

Beware the road from Harrismith towards Putabijaba and Sterkfontein dam - it is under reconstruction and will take the edge off your arrival /departure to the camp (as well as the odd tyre or sump in low slung saloons)

Room Tip: Try and stay in the upper camp chalets on the right of the road for uninterrupted views of the Amphi...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank PookeyPretoria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steyning, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
32 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 4, 2014

Majestic, spectacular, breath-taking? Others have tried to describe this world heritage site, but it's impossible to do justice to this extraordinary setting. (I can see now why Stanley Baker chose this back drop to his masterpiece, Zulu [directed by Cy Endfield]. The real Rorke's Drift is some 60 miles away and understandably less dramatic as a film setting)

Thendele Camp is at the end of a very long winding road which narrows to a track and then simply stops! But for 20 miles after catching our first glimpse of the Amphitheatre we had watched it grow larger and larger. Our sense of anticipation is impossible to describe. When we finally arrived at our lodge we sat down on our verandah looking up in awe, completely speechless. I've heard of residents from Cape Town comparing it with Table Mountain if that helps to give you an idea of just how impressive this site is.

Opt for the upper camp if you can (slightly more expensive) and ask for lodge no 20. You can only see the roofs of two other lodges and your view of the mountain before you is ... well, words fail me.

The walks and scenery are stunning. I found myself humming the music score to Zulu more often than I care to admit to.

The lodge itself is secondary and almost irrelevant, but in order for this to be useful, it was as well-equipped as many places I have stayed in. It contained all essentials, had a working shower, bath & jacuzzi, stove, toaster and kettle. The bedroom was clean and comfortable. You must bring all foodstuffs with you for the duration of your stay. A trip in your car to the local store and back will take you an hour!

I've travelled to many countries and only Askja Caldera in the centre of Iceland has left as big an impression on me.

Room Tip: Select the upper camp.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank GMH66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
31 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 30, 2014

Good accommodations for the price. Unbeatable location. Hikes & sights within walking distance. Choose upper camp if you can. Newer chalets. Although lower camp doesn't lack anything. One of the best national park venues in South Africa. No airconditioning though.

  • Stayed March 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Zack D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2014

We stayed at Thendele Hutted Camp this April for three nights. We had been a bit worried about the state of the accommodation based on the reviews on tripadvisor. Needless to say, we needn't have worried.

We were assigned a hut in the upper camp with glorious views of the Amphitheater. Both, the porch and the bedroom had wonderful views but did not get any direct sunlight throughout the day due to the built of the hut.

The hut itself was great. Furniture was basic but either, all huts were recently redecorated or other reviewers tend to stay in high-end resorts, but there was nothing we needed that wasn't available. All kitchen utensils one could possibly want were available, the kitchen was laid out nicely and everything was very spacious. The shop was doing stock-taking and really did not have very many things to buy so visitors should bring their own food.

The hiking routes we were recommended were all spectacular and the rangers were very knowledgeable about the area.

  • Stayed April 2014, 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?
3 Thank AresQui
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Thendele Hutted camp

Property: Thendele Hutted camp
Address: Royal Natal National Park, uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park, South Africa
Location: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park
Number of rooms: 132
Also Known As:
Thendele Hutted Camp Hotel Ukhahlamba-Drakensberg Park

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