We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Loved it..”
Review of nThambo Tree Camp

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 2 more sites!
nThambo Tree Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Loved it..”
Reviewed December 9, 2011

I stayed for 5 nights in oct/nov 2011 here and loved it. It is rustic and right in the bush, more geared to the wildlife. Game was fantastic and the tree house was a novel experience. Saw two different leopards on kills, a pride of lions on a buffalo kill and the same pride of lions on a porcupine kill. It was a huge pride with two big males , nine lionesses and cubs. Lots of elephant, kudu, giraffee, hyena, wildebeest, wild dogs, buffalo, a giant black mamba with a big chunk of it's body off the ground and moving real fast and rhinos. Saw a territorial male rhino chase another rhino off-well the other rhino just broke through the bush , running at top speed a few metres in front of the vehicle and the big rhino behind, who stopped on seeing our truck. Who knew that rhinos could run that fast?!
The highlight of the trip was my last night at camp. Everyone had left and it was only me and the camp staff. While having dinner, could hear a lion roaring and it slowly started getting louder and coming towards us and then it was almost right out the dining area, but slowly receded. Apparantely it was one of the big males calling and trying to find his pride mates. It was scary to hear a lion so close at night.
Enjoyed the experience. Real in the bush feel . Very interesting to see Isaac's tracking skills.

Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
Helpful?
5 Thank Nomadvagrant
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
aofbrett, Manager at nThambo Tree Camp, responded to this review, December 12, 2011
Hi,

Thanks so much for your review - you have no idea how happy we are when guests enjoy themselves, and are thoroughly delighted that you got to see so much on your stay at the camp.

All the best,
Brett
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

399 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    335
    51
    8
    5
    0
See reviews for
50
225
44
2
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (44)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed December 5, 2011

We stayed at nThambo for two nights in November 2011. The setting is beautiful, you are truly 'in the wild' and the view from the treehouses is great. There are two game drives each day, and they are amazing. The trackers and rangers are very knowledgeable and make sure you get to see everything you came for. The camp is, however, not a luxurious lodge. We are not generally fussy and knew not to expect this beforehand, but have stayed at other lodges in the same price category that were much better value. As stated in some previous reviews, the tracker (Isaac) is also the host and basically the only one in the camp (apart for some ladies that came and went to cook and clean). The food is ok, but there is no choice: you eat what they serve you. A vegetarian couple was staying at nThambo at the same time as we were, and they were served veggieburgers from the deepfreezer all the time. Not what you would expect at this price. Also disappointing was the fact that there were not enough cold drinks available (and in the 40 degree C heat, drinking a bear that has not been cooled is not advisable). We had to ask Isaac for water which was only cold part of the time and which we had to pay for (which is not usually the case at other lodges as you cannot drink from the tap). The (miniature) swimming pool was not fit to swim in as it looked like it had not been cleaned for months. The other couple asked to be moved to the Africa on Foot camp after one night as they did not like nThambo. All in all, if you're looking for a real 'bush' experience and want to see the big five, this is the place to go, but if you want some luxury and a cold drink on your holiday: there are plenty of other lodges that have great game drives as well and that are in the same price class (see my other reviews).

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Marlise S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
aofbrett, Manager at nThambo Tree Camp, responded to this review, December 7, 2011
Hi Marlise

Thanks for your review. We are of course glad that you think the safari experience was great, but are however not pleased with some of your other comments.

There have been a few reviews of late as regards Isaac and his work load, which I would like to address. When Jan (our previous senior ranger left to pursue birding trips) there was a 2-3 week period where Isaac had to manage all the guiding. This was purely because Jan's replacement had personal issues to attend to, and could not start on his original due date.

So just that all future guests know; on your safari at nThambo you will be met and welcomed by a Senior Ranger, Isaac your tracker, and then we have also employed a trainee ranger to assist behind the bar and with other guest requests. Corlia, manages both Africa on Foot and nThambo, and Courteney and Cecilia (owners) often visit the camps to ensure that all is in order, and to chat to our guests.

As regards the warm drinks, there is no excuse for that. No one likes a warm beer! We have sufficient fridges to ensure cold drinks and have pointed out to the staff that under no circumstances should warm drinks be served. Our sincere apologies.

As regards the pool, we really are at a loss - because Frederik (Camp Maintenance) takes extreme pride in ensuring that the pool is cleaned daily. Sometimes the elephants come to drink from the pool, and post that the pool is definately not as clean as it should be, but we do everything in our power to get it as clean as possible for our guests thereafter.

We value your feedback, and are working hard to make improvements all the time - most of the issues you and other reviewers have brought up, have been addressed.

Kind Regards
Brett Thomson
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alameda, California
Level 5 Contributor
66 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed December 1, 2011

5 nights, more than usual but we had more experiences, all good. Lion roaring under our tent at 3 am unnerving but excused by mating activity. Shower could benefit from privacy curtain. Guides, trackers and staff all a pleasure. Fun and wonderful.

  • Stayed October 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank teddybeeear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maitland, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed December 1, 2011

Just been to Nthambo tree camp for 3 days. Wished we'd stayed longer! It was the best!

We were met at the airport by Isaac. He was heading off on holidays this day, so in the afternoon he was the tracker while Ryan took over the reins of being our guide throughout our stay. It turned out that Ryan was an excellent tracker as well. Ryan and the rest of the staff exceded all expectations. Everything was very well organised with no fuss - almost by magic it seemed. By the end of our three days, we had seen all of the Big 5 and countless other amazing animals thanks to Ryan's dedication and extensive knowledge.

The ladies in the kitchen had delicious home-style meals all ready for when we arrived back at camp after hours of excitement and experiences in the open modified land drover (complete with rugs). I especially loved walking back into camp at night to find the lanterns on the table lit, the campfire crackling away and the earthen floor meticulously raked of any footprints. It truely was the perfect setting for relaxing and chatting about the day's adventures and sightings and of course listening to the many stories that Ryan had to share.
The accommodation in the tree-house was romantic and authentic (in a safari sense), with very comfy beds and lovely linen and a mosquito net - which really set the scene for an african safari. Oh, and there was a toilet and shower inside the huts so you didn't have to venture out at night.

All in all, we had a wonderful experience - the trip of a life-time. Thanks to Isaac, Ryan, the Management and the kitchen ladies for making our African Safari such a wonderful experience. We would recommend it to anyone who wants a 'real holiday' and has an appreciation for nature.

Maxine and Geoff.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Maxine D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 27, 2011

Nthambo Tree Camp is located in the private Klaserie game reserve. It is a small establishment - about 6 huts in total - and is aimed at those who want to stay in individual huts actually in the reserve (there are no fences to keep the animals out and you have to be escorted to your hut at night in case there are animals nearby) but in a reasonable degree of comfort. The huts aren't luxurious but, given where they are located, they are about as well equipped as can be reasonably expected. If you're after 24hr electricity and air-con then go elsewhere as the huts are basically very luxurious tents (with proper toilets, showers, etc.) on stilts. For us, the balance of feeling you were right in the reserve with a small group of people combined with a very comfortable, if not luxurious, place to stay was just right.
The staff were fantastic. They were perhaps slightly undermanned and the guides in particular seemed to work from sunrise until the last person went to bed. However, aside from a slight feeling of guilt at their level of work while we were relaxing, this did not detract from our stay. Personally, I don't think a dedicated on-site manager is required but we did not have any particular demands which the staff could not readily meet. As such, we were more than happy with the service provided.
Game drives are always a lottery and we were very lucky. The traker and guide were excellent although I have never before seen a tracker just disappear on his own into the bush to be picked up 15 minutes later! He seemed happy enough about it and nearly always reported back where the lion / leopard was heading.
The experience is nothing like other safaris I have been on in Kenya or Tanzania. This is mainly due to the landscape - the lack of open plains means you can rarely see more than 50-100 yards in any direction. This makes it more difficult to spot animals but, conversely, there seem to be fewer 4WDs (and certainly no mini-buses!) and there is no requirement to stick to the trails. There are pros and cons of such an approach.
Overall, we had a fantastic time. I should like to particularly thank the chef who I never met but managed to make every meal individual and of high quality.

Room Tip: The huts are identical.
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank chewey709
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Frome, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed November 21, 2011

We stayed here for two nights Oct 2011. Two adults and two kids 14 and 12. I'd partially agree with other reviewers that the camp could do with an experienced Manager on site. The nearby sister lodge, Africa on Foot, is where the senior manager / owner stays but we only saw him when we needed our solar powered lighting to be fixed (which was done quickly and with a friendly team). Food was at not great, take some biscuits and snacks of your own, but the rooms on stilts were wonderful - clean, comfortable, mosi-nets, hot water and nice towels. Consider it as glamcamping rather than a hotel and your expectations will be met.

We went for the game and were not disappointed. The big 5 were seen in the first 24 hours. The on-site camp manager / tracker / ranger / driver was Isaac and I'd recommend you make sure he's on duty when you go; he was brilliant and worked his socks off for us. Up at 4.30am and last to bed after escorting us safely to our rooms around 10pm. Together with his brother-in-law Enoch they made the game drives exciting and successful. In the morning, Enoch was dropped off on foot in search of leopard. We'd drive off to get right in amongst a 50+ herd of elephant or buffalo or whatever was around and then get a radio call to tell us where the leopard had been found. We would drive off-road through tough bush in pursuit of a good sighting and there is a rule shared by neighbouring reserves who agree to share their land that no more than 2 vehicles can watch an animal at any one time. It all worked really well.

Room Tip: There are only 5 'chalets' - all identical. If you want a twin not a double ask in advance a...
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Sherald
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
golden, colorado
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 20, 2011

Just back from several days at nThanbo and were a bit disappointed. Like other recent travelers there, we found this camp in serious need of on-site management and supervision, and there is a serious lack of personnel to meet the needs of guests. We never met the camp director and were not welcomed or thanked by anyone in management for our business. In all, there were 3 cleaning/cooking staff and our Guide, Isaac, for all 7 guests...they worked their tails off trying to please and did a good job. But one could see that they were totally overwhelmed and exhausted. The rooms were basic and without charm, and hot water was barely adequate. Food was simple and served cafeteria style; nothing fancy, but adequate. Game viewing is good...we saw a lot of animals. In general, this might be a good camp with some enthusiatic on-site management, more staff and more attention to maintaining its facilities and vehicles. However, overall, we would not go back and would not recommend this camp to anyone else. If this is your only time going to Africa, try some other camp with enought staff and management on site to make it a memorable experience.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank guthrierj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Klaserie Private Game Reserve
16.6 mi away
Kapama Buffalo Camp
Kapama Buffalo Camp
#2 of 4 in Kapama Private Game Reserve
398 reviews
0.8 mi away
Africa on Foot Camp
Africa on Foot Camp
#3 of 14 in Klaserie Private Game Reserve
340 reviews
1.9 mi away
Baobab Ridge
Baobab Ridge
#2 of 14 in Klaserie Private Game Reserve
189 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
1.6 mi away
Gomo Gomo Game Lodge
Gomo Gomo Game Lodge
#6 of 14 in Klaserie Private Game Reserve
430 reviews
12.5 mi away
Motswari Private Game Reserve
Motswari Private Game Reserve
#2 of 17 in Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
688 reviews
21.8 mi away
Sausage Tree Safari Camp
Sausage Tree Safari Camp
#2 of 21 in Balule Nature Reserve
652 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to nThambo Tree Camp? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about nThambo Tree Camp

Property: nThambo Tree Camp
Address: Kruger National Park, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Klaserie Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 14 Specialty Lodging in Klaserie Private Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
nThambo Tree Camp is a safari camp located in the Klaserie area of the Kruger Park. The camp offers daily morning and afternoon game drives to view the Big Five. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, South African Hotels, Agoda and Priceline so you can book your nThambo Tree Camp reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Nthambo Tree Camp Hotel Klaserie Private Game Reserve
nThambo Tree Camp South Africa/Klaserie Private Game Reserve

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing