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Chapungu Tented Bush Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 15, 2013

Going on Safari in Thorny bush game reserve is one of the greatest holiday experiences I have had. I stayed as a single person (on the back of a work trip) at Chapungu Luxury Tented Camp and it was like nothing else I have experienced. I wanted a bush, as opposed to a hotel experience, and that is what I got. The rest of the guests were couples but it did not worry me because I wanted to hang out in my divine room/verandah in between morning and evening safari's. Dinners were lovely as we all ate together. Food was great. Kilmon was out guide and he is amazing. A delightful and knowledgable guide who took me on a wonderful bush walk one afternoon where we discussed the flora and forna of Sth Africa. He really made my trip - what a great guy. Daniel , Aubrey and Sandra were also super nice and helpful. Thanks. Can't recommend Chapungu enough.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled solo
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4  Thank lizcckenn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 15, 2013

There are 8 well spread out tents in the camp and each one is large with an outside bath. They are well furnished. The staff are very friendly and efficient. Dining is good and at various outdoor locations (weather permitting) including a lovely Boma with a roaring log fire. The game drives are over a large area, first class and varied often very close to the animals ... on one occasion a little too close when we encontered a charging white rhino! We had a friendly and knowledgeable guide and tracker. The Lodge provided us a guidelines for gratuities for the guide and tracker and the "butler" and the staff generally, accepting of course that this was voluntary. This was very high by refernce to other safaris we had been on. The guidelines were on a per tent/per night basis and would have been £120 for 4 nights. We tipped rather less, which still seemed to be accptable. The drinks are not inclusive but were sensibly priced. If you are looking for a safari on the edge of the Kruger this is a great place to go.

Room Tip: Tents well spaced out and all are excellant
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Robin G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2013

Chapungu met or exceeded all of our expectations. From our property manager Kirsty to the guides Sipps and Oscar- we had a fantastic 3 days in the Thornybush Reserve. The tented camp layout and design makes for an ideal romantic getaway for couples. The tents are a perfect mix of rustic charm and luxury. Loved the shower overlooking the bush and the outdoor bath. The game drives were excellent and informative. Sipps extensive experience and knowledge of the flora and fauna was truly impressive. The setting for the camp is peaceful and the meals were all of top quality. We particularly enjoyed the lack of WiFI or good cell service- a rare opportunity to be unplugged and in the moment. (Internet is available if required). I hope management retains the quiet, couples friendly nature of the property. Great time for a very reasonable price.

Room Tip: Ask for tents #1, 8, or 9 for the utmost in privacy.
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Geoff Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 16, 2013

Worth every penny! All the staff were very attentive, with special call outs to Gerhardt (ranger) and Lucas (tracker). 3 days and 2 nights; 4 game drives; 1 bush walk. We saw lions (twice), Leopard with cubs, cheetahs, Rhinos (3 times), crocodile, hippo, and multiple sightings of elephant, giraffe, buffalo, nyala, impala, bushbuck, warthog, zebra... The list goes on an on! The big 5, as well as the little 5.
The breaks in the morning drives for coffee and rusks, and the evening drives for gin and tonics were bonuses.
The drives are relaxed, the rangers are in radio contact and they manage the traffic very well - this means that there is only one vehicle at a time viewing the animals, and its unhurried. We spent 90 minutes watching a lion and 3 lionesses. The king of the jungle mated one of the lionesses 3 times during this. The animals are accustomed to the vehicles, so you get really, really close - within a few meters.
The camp is exactly what we wanted only 8 tents, so no crowds. The tents are luxury, air-conditioned, and you cannot see any other tents from yours. The complimentary carafe of sherry is a nice touch.
Food was very good, as expected, with a good selection of wines.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Collin D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2013

We stayed 2 nights at Chapungu. Every single person who works there is lovely, the game drives with Kilmon and Aubrey were so incredible getting right up to the animals. The tented rooms were luxurious and the fan/air-con combination was just what you needed for a good nights sleep. The food was delicious with amazing service by Daniel. The highlight weas the animal viewing combined with sundowners in the bush, combined with the bush walk on day 2. We would definitely go back in a heartbeat.

Room Tip: We stayed in tent 6. Was a great room.
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank VancouverVacationers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2013

Our experience was absolutely stunning. The game drives were great. Our ranger Gerhard was very knowledgeable and showed us around the reserve with a lot of patience. The sightings we had were brilliant. Have to mention one of the episodes when our land rover would not start and a Lion just beside our car. It was already 7 pm local time and the sun had set by then. The scene of spotting a lion in just moon light was incredible and an unforgettable experience. After a lot of bravery shown by our tracker and ranger, our car restarted and we reached back safely.
The tents are great and spacious.
The food is freshly prepared and is scrumptious. We had a different experience for dinner on all the 3 nights we stayed there. One night was Braai. That was simply great.
The staff is really courteous and very helpful.
I strongly recommend this place for experiencing a wonderful safari.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Piyusht04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 22, 2012

We were at Changungu 8-10 Dec 2012. The tents are hot and stuffy when the weather is hot. The air-con is not strong enough. The tent is pretty small but it is clean. The experience of really being in the bush strikes you when you open your door and see a warthog grazing just in front of your tent!

The safari is great. Sipps our ranger and his tracker are excellent. They were able to track the animals effectively - we saw all the big 5 animals and more. Sipps has a great sense of humour and is great company. We enjoyed our rides very much.

Thorny Bush is a great game reserve with many animals there. We saw animals in herds - herds of elephants and buffalos, three lioness and a lion, a cheetah, a leapard and many more.

Room Tip: Ask for Sipps to be your ranger.
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank OrchidSpore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chapungu Tented Bush Camp

Address: Kruger National Park, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 12 Specialty Lodging in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Price Range: $348 - $893 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Chapungu Tented Bush Camp 4*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the heart of the Thornybush Nature Reserve the nostalgic guest will find Chapungu Tented Bush Camp. Tastefully furnished in old world colonial splendour, in a style and class of a bygone era. Eight comfortable air-conditioned en-suite tents offer private and exclusive accommodation. Boma dinners are an occasion and an opportunity to select a bottle from the stock of fine wines and to savour the finest fare. Settle around a log fire to recount the days’ game experiences before retiring to the lounge for a night-cap, or the comfort of your tent. Our passion for hospitality and the excitement of dawn and dusk safaris in an open safari vehicle, ensuring close and unrestricted encounters with the wild. The more adventurous are encouraged to join an experienced game ranger on a walk as he interprets and discusses Africa's footprint. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Chapungu Camp Hotel Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Chapungu Tented Bush Camp South Africa/Thornybush Private Game Reserve

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