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“Exceeded all expectations” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve

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Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve
Certificate of Excellence
sydney
Level Contributor
162 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Exceeded all expectations”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 2, 2013

What do you expect at a safari lodge? Well we got more than we asked for. Our excellent trackers Surprise and Howard managed to find every animal except the illusive pangolin. But you must face the facts that Wild Africa is a dog eat dog life and in our 4 nights here we were treated to nature in the raw. We witnessed to saddest but factual side to what goes on here. There are herbivores and consumers. And of course the consumers must eat other consumers. We saw it all.
The accommodation was terrific. Each lodge different to the others and creatively decorated by Maria the artistic eccentric proprietor, who is lovely if you are lucky enough to meet her and her husband Charls. The hosts Claudia and Leon are lovely, helpful, hospitable and professional and contribute to the memorable stay at the lodge. The staff are so helpful. Food is OK.
If you are reading this you are probably researching which lodge to stay at. You won't be disappointed at Chitwa Chitwa.
Thank you Claudia, Leon, Surprise, Howard, Coconut, Victory, Tronic, Dihno.

Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank annesydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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465 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (124)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Dana Point, California
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 28, 2013

I had the most wonderful experience at Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve. After 12 Safaris elsewhere in Africa, I was stunned at the artistic beauty of lodge with its various private villas. Claudia & Leon made it a magical time every day of my 5 days & nights there. I want to have them take care of me again! All of the staff were excellent! The animals were accessible & there were so many leopards...even in the camp on day!!! The food was gourmet, the decor was very artistic, the villas, the various places meals were laid out & the way the tables was set!!! Everything about the experience was totally memorable. Judy MZ

Room Tip: view the lake!
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 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?
Thank JMZTRAVELS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, TX
Level Contributor
51 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 28, 2013

I stayed at Chitwa Chitwa for 3 nights with my wife during our honeymoon trip to South Africa. With the help of a travel agent, I settled on Chitwa after researching a couple of the other lodges in the Sabi Sands. Although I cannot speak to the other lodges in the area, I can attest that you will not be disappointed in the quality and experience that Chitwa provides.

We arrived at the Lodge in the afternoon and were greeted by the Property Managers, Claudia and Leon. Claudia and Leon provided a consistent and welcoming presence through out our stay. They even sent a congratulatory basket of champagne and snacks to our room in celebration of our recent marriage. During the check in process (which was quick and easy) we got our first greeting by the wild animals when one of the hippos in the lake came out of the water to "relieve" himself. We knew from then on this was going to be an authentic experience.

Claudia escorted us to our room, which I can only describe as a small villa. Our room was bigger than my apartment in the US! It was magnificently decorated with "safari chic" art work and ornamental pieces. There were multiple sitting areas with chairs and a sofa and also a long banquet table where we enjoyed lunch in our room one of the days. The bed was huge and each room has a private plunge pool that overlooks the lake. The bathroom is open plan with dual sinks, tub and shower. The toilet is in a separate room for privacy and there is also an outdoor shower.

Our guides during the stay were Rexon and Andres, both delightful in their own way. Rexon was very soft spoken but informative. He had a healthy awareness of the risks involved with tracking wild animals, but was also willing to do what it takes so we could get great views and sightings. Andres always provided us with comedic relief during our refreshment breaks. For most of our stay my wife and I were the only guests in our truck so we would mention a couple of animals that we wanted to see and the guys would focus in on spotting them. More often than not we were successful, with a couple a surprises throughout!

The meals were nice: breakfast and lunch were both served in the canopy overlooking the water and dinner was in a different location each night. On the final night the staff organized a "braai" (BBQ) in the boma. The food options were sufficient, although seemed lacking in the level of decadence and quality that the rest of the lodge provides. Depending on your package alcoholic beverages are included and we also brought two bottles of wine with us from Franschooek that we enjoyed with our dinners.

It has been a couple of months since our trip, but I really cannot think of any negatives worth mentioning. The service of the staff and the proximity to the animals really make this place worth the money. On countless occasions we encountered various animals along the pathways to our room, the hippos and crocodiles are always present in the lake and one afternoon we even had a family of 7-8 elephants march past our room and in to the lake. The view from our deck of the family bathing was unforgettable!

If you have a chance to experience the Sabi Sands, I recommend placing Chitwa Chitwa at the top of your list.

  • Stayed March 2013, 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?
1 Thank rocketsfan007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Murwillumbah, Australia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 23, 2013

Our main focus on safari trips are the animals. To this end Chitwa Chitwa is outstanding. We were fortunate enough to have a guide, Rexon, whose family have lived in the area for generations. His knowledge not only of the animals but also the history of the reserve was superb. We arrived just in time for the afternoon safari and by dusk had already witnessed the Big 5 close up.. Over the next the next three days the sitings were spectacular culminating in a herd of 120 buffalo being stampeded by two lionesses only to be turned back by the two old male buffalo in the herd
The lodge itself is jaw-dropping. Our particular lodge was set on the lake, with a huge deck and plunge pool, from which we enjoyed the 20 hippos that are resident in the lake and a passing parade of Impala, Kudu and a staggering variety of birds and other wild animals.
The managers, Leon and Claudia, operate under the " your wish is my command" maxim and the lodge staff and food were exceptional.
Chitwa Chitwa is the benchmark by which we will judge all past and future holidays.
Chitwa Chitwa is truly an unforgettable experience

Lori and Tony. Dum Dum, New South Wales, Australia

Room Tip: All the lodges are spectacular.
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  • Stayed May 2013, 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?
1 Thank Dummies_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Banbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
36 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 19, 2013

Just returned from a trip to ZA having stayed 3 nights at Chitwa Chitwa. We have stayed at several game lodges before and our expectations were high but Chitwa Chitwa surpassed everything. The best game viewing we have experienced, the lodge is wonderful and the staff couldn't be better.
I also managed to leave my jacket on the jeep before catching the flight home and the team at Chitwa are arranging to have it shipped back....superb.
Highly recommended.

  • Stayed May 2013, 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
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Norman G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
18 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 19, 2013 via mobile

After much research to find the right game lodge for our holiday, we selected Chitwa Chitwa. I am speechless to describe our experience adequately. As a world traveler, I have never experienced anything quite like this. Leon and Claudia ensured the very best customer service available. Their attention to every detail and the personalisation of the service left us in awe!

Hali and Moses were our Ranger and Tracker. Their skill to find animals was amazing. They were extremely knowledgable and most of all we felt safe with them. Many times we were face to face with some very dangerous animals, we even went for a bush walk with Hali, and at no time did I feel our safety was jeopardised.

I rarely go back to a place that I've visited simply because I want to see and experience different adventures; however, this is one that we will do again. Thank you Leon, Claudia and team for the most memorable holiday we have ever had.

Stayed May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Joanne G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Asker, Norway
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 17, 2013

We celebrated our good friend's 50th birthday (cheers Per Gunnar!) by going on a safari trip to Chitwa Chitwa, and arrived in the afternoon of May 1st. We were welcomed by Leon at the airstrip and immediately met a road block in the form of a Rhino! And the Wild life experience just continued during our stay. What a magnificent place and hospitable management and staff! Claudia and Leon are the perfect hosts, and to make our game drives a memory for life we got Surprise as ranger and Howard as tracker. They are the best team in their job, no doubt. Being 6 people in our group we got our own Land Rover, and each of us got the best possible view from the car. And what a view! We saw the big seven, and many more. We even got to witness a lion kill an Impala, and heard the sound of it eating the poor thing. Awesome!
The food on Chitwa Chitwa is gourmet style and very good, and Dinho (the sommelier) gave excellent advice regarding wines.

Once again we have to thank Claudia and Leon and their team for making this a true memory for life.

  • Stayed May 2013, 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
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Arne O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve

Property: Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve
Address: P O Box 781854 | Steiltes, Kruger National Park 1213, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 42 Specialty Lodging in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve 5*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Originally a private retreat of the Brink family, Chitwa Chitwa was transformed by Charl into an oasis of conservation and harmony. His dedicated holistic approach and wise land management are aimed at the handing of an uncontaminated African paradise to the future generations. In 1991 Charl and Maria Brink created Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Lodge, today a jewel of South African hospitality and an emblem of the savannas most authentic and refined luxury. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve Hotel Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Reserve South Africa/Sabi Sand Game Reserve

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