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“When God created Paradise.....” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Waterbuck Game Lodge

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Waterbuck Game Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Johannesburg, South Africa
1 review
“When God created Paradise.....”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 22, 2013

Living in Johannesburg, I have been to Waterbuck Game Lodge many times and every time I feel this spot in Africa is truly special. The lodge and staff are amazing, the food superb and the game drives adventurous.
If you want to relax and yet experience the African bush with all its beautiful fauna and flora, this is the place to go to.
Breathtaking sunsets while sipping a sundowner, listening to the mighty lion roar on a night drive, these are just some of the truly amazing experiences you will take home from your visit.
Waterbuck Game Lodge will stay in memory forever and I would highly recommend this piece of Paradise to anyone local and abroad.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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 Nina D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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115 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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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
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (27)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Johannesburg
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 15, 2013

Like all the best holidays leave me, I returned home from Waterbuck Game Lodge with a heavy sense of nostalgia. My favourite moment has to be watching a calm female leopard in the glow of the African sky. Just when I thought it could not be topped, we managed to squeeze in a glass of wine as the orange sun dipped below the horizon. The mix of wildlife and hospitality make it the perfect getaway but what really separates this place from others of its kind is its warm staff. We hope to make it an annual visit.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 Lara T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 15, 2013

Amazing lodge with warm and friendly staff, and a bush experience second to none!! I would highly recommend this little slice of African heaven to any travellers - local and abroad.
Cant wait to go back!

  • Stayed June 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 JMcA1981
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 15, 2013

Best bush holiday i've ever been on... The staff are knowledgeable, the wildlife is incredible, Its all round the most peaceful and relaxing holiday i've been on. Whether you go with family, business or friends, this would be a wonderful place to go.

Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank Hannah S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
38 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 18, 2013

In keeping with the other reviewers, our stay at Waterbuck was truly amazing. We had a real safari experience - where other lodges post spotters for game or simply ferry tourists from one sighting to another using VHF radio to locate 'big fives', Hannes and Vuzy got us involved and excited by really tracking animals using tracks, bush sounds and animal behavior to locate cheetah, leopard, rhino, elephant and lion. The result was an incredibly engaging and sometimes emotional safari every time we left the camp. This, combined with the relaxed, personalized lodge experience with only four independent and very comfortable suites made for an exceptional experience. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed July 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?
Thank Tim R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ian T, Owner at Waterbuck Game Lodge, responded to this review, March 10, 2014
Hi Tim R,

We are thrilled you enjoyed the way we go about the safari experience and glad you got engaged in the process. It really is the most rewarding way to enjoy the 'bush' as we call it.

Thank you for your detailed and excited review, we're very glad you enjoyed your time with us so much.
Looking forward to seeing you again soon!

Kind regards,

The Waterbuck Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Level Contributor
14 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 11, 2013 via mobile

I stayed here recently the last week of June. What an amazing experience! Hannes (the ranger) and lodrick (the tracker) are like batman & robin on the safari, the communication, experience and passion of these 2 is profound and you will see it on every game drive. We traversed southern thorybush reserve and didnt feel like it was ever crowded with too many vehicles. These 2 are alot of fun to be around (lots of jokes and personality!) but will always keep you safe. Nature is nature - unpredictable but we were so lucky to see the big 5 and much more thrilling encounters: black rhino, baby cubs! lion and lioness mating and tracking a leopard eating its kill at night. Kruger is the place of my dreams right now: beautiful sunsets, sunrises & starry nights. The lodge was intimate & wonderful, I'm so glad our original booking at kapama got switched to this place. Comfy beds. Fire and BOMA every night. We felt pampered by all the staff, Antionette (the adorable cook) served us 5 star meals at every course. Everything is home-made down to the biscuits in your room. I really did not want to leave. Til next time Hannes, your wife & staff. Don't think twice book here!!!!!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank AM6143
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ian T, Owner at Waterbuck Game Lodge, responded to this review, March 10, 2014
Hi AM6143,

I really enjoyed reading your review, I like the comparison to batman and robin, we're also glad you got switched from another camp.
Thank you for your detailed and excited review, we're very glad you enjoyed your time with us so much.
Looking forward to seeing you again soon!

Kind regards,

The Waterbuck Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
19 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 6, 2013

Ok so this is my first safari so I can't say ever but this experience surpassed my expectations. After 5 days in Cape Town and loving our experience and our guides there, we were off to Hoedspruit for our first safari. Me and a group of 5 other friends were supposed to stay at Kapama Buffalo Camp, but due to some error by our agent, he set us up at Waterbuck Game Lodge of Thornybush at the last minute. I was disappointed because Kapama is nice; at least from all the pictures we saw on the website, and when our agent informed us that Waterbuck had 4 rooms and that it would be a "private" area, I was disappointed. We landed in Hoedspruit, and the first thing I see is this fancy Land Rover to pick up the people for no other than "Kapama". However, this turned out to be the best mistake ever. We got to Waterbuck and I felt like I was welcomed into someone's home. The managers, Haanes and Anita met us when we got there. We got a tour of the lodge, and then were shown to our rooms which are nice, clean, and comfortable. Each room has a private deck that opens up into the reserve area (protected by a fence) and it was serene. Cozy and romantic, but again I was with girlfriends so a little lost on us. At about 3pm we met in the welcome area, and were greeted with a nice afternoon snack (it was more like a meal though and they definitely fed us beyond well the whole time there, so thank you to Antoinette the cook there). We filled up and onto our first safari. Haanes was our ranger, and Lodrick our trekker. This was all of our first time ever safariing and it was the best experience. One of the first things we saw was a group of 3 lionesses along with 3-4 cubs that we ended up seeing every day of our time there. It took a little bit before we got comfortable being in this open vehicle with wildlife, but Haanes and Lodrick quickly made us feel at ease. By the end of the first trek we saw 4 of the big 5. The next 2 days were just as amazing if not more. We saw the 5th of our big 5, a cheetah, and a black rhino. After our 2nd day the only thing we felt we were missing were a herd of elephants and a male lion. On day 3 sure enough, they found us exactly what we asked for. I know it's luck to find all these animals, but I was so impressed by how they were actually looking for animals for us, and we were definitely feeling a rush of how exciting safaris can be. They would trek the animals by their foot prints and their sounds and I was blown away. At one point, Lodrick and Haanes trekked a leopard who had killed prey, another night, they saw a chameleon in the dark and Haanes grabbed it from the tree and brought it over to show us before he took it back to the same spot he found it. We loved how passionate they seemed to be about finding the animals even if they've done this and seen them a thousand times before, and that definitely enhanced the experience and I also appreciated how much respect they have for the animals and the environment there. Haanes you kept us laughing . As for the rest of staff there, they were amazing. They accommodated to some dietary concerns that we didn't mention until we got there on day 1 and so thank you Anita for accommodating us. Each meal was a treat and thank you all so so much for making us feel at home and giving us the best experience on our very first safari. Will definitely recommend you to family and friends that go there in the future.

  • Stayed June 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 kina p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ian T, Owner at Waterbuck Game Lodge, responded to this review, March 10, 2014
Hi Kina P,

Thank you for your enthusiastic review, we're very glad you enjoyed your time with us so much. Looking forward to seeing you again soon!

Kind regards,

The Waterbuck Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Waterbuck Game Lodge

Property: Waterbuck Game Lodge
Address: Guernsey Road, Kruger National Park, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 12 Specialty Lodging in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Waterbuck Game Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautifully set on a large watering hole deep in the African bush this amazing lodge awaits your arrival. There are 4 individually set rooms spaced generously apart with a welcoming central lodge area. This area has a bar, lounge, swimming pool and a deck overlooking the waterhole. It is truly a little piece of paradise.Safari's (Game drives) are conducted morning and evening giving our guests a good chance of seeing Africa's famous "Big 5" as well as numerous other species of fauna and floura. These are conducted by extremely knowledgeable and friendly guides anxious to make your experience unforgettable.Please read the comments of our guests below, their words are the best reflection we can give on the experience. Look forward to hosting your African safari experience soon! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Waterbuck Game Lodge South Africa/Thornybush Private Game Reserve

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