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“Amazing trip!”

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Kambaku Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 17, 2013

We did two safari's in South Africa and were lucky enough to start with Kambaku for a two-night stay. We had David and Ranius as our guide and tracker, respectively, and you would be hard pressed to find two more energetic, passionate and knowledgable people at any job anywhere! Absolutely made our experience something that we will never forget and couldn't say enough great things about the rest of the staff and how at home they made us feel. If you go on a safari, make sure to have Kambaku on your list!

Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
Thank PorterBig5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kambaku2007, Manager at Kambaku Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded December 23, 2013

I am delighted that we had such a positive impact on you and that you had an 'amazing trip' We look forward to welcoming you back before too long

Kind regards

David

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Reviewed November 7, 2013

My husband and I spent 4 nights at Kambaku. We were treated with excellent service from start to end. The management and staffs were very friendly and we felt very comfortable throughout the stay.

The room was very nice and comfortable. Our room's shower was a little weak but the tub worked fine so we weren't too bothered by it. We were also impressed by quality and variety of food that was served. I had a dietary requirement and they catered to it.

Our safari experience was simply amazing. It started a bit slow but we had some pretty amazing viewing towards the last 2-3 days. I won't name what we saw as it is purely mother nature's will that certain animals are in the Timbavati reserve at a certain time. What I'd like to say is that our ranger, Neil and our tracker, Albert, were really committed in looking for the animals. Neil always checked with us (the guests on his jeep) what we wanted to see and Albert and himself will try their best to get to them. It was a very educational trip for us as Neil explained a lot about the animals and birds that we saw. I also liked the good naturedness between Albert and Neil. Made the trip so much more enjoyable. Only 2 jeeps are allowed at any time to view a particular animal and that made the experience so much exclusive.

Not sure when's our next trip back to the safari but if we do, we'll definitely want to go back to Kambaku.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank JayL0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kambaku2007, Manager at Kambaku Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded December 23, 2013

We would be delighted to welcome you back in the future after your previous stay - returning guests are treated like family!

Kind regards

David

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Reviewed November 5, 2013

You have found the place you are looking for if you want a top-notch, safari experience in a family atmosphere, surrounded by great people, wonderful staff, encyclopedic guides, eagle-eyed trackers, and wrapped up in an experience of a lifetime. My reviews are often critical and straightforward. This review is praiseworthy and straightforward.

The Kambaku crew, under Dave's tutelage, has successfully combined a luxury hotel experience with a true animal-centric focus, wrapped it in an eco-friendly wrapper and topped it off with wonderful service and staff whe define the words 'friendly service.'

Make no mistake, this is a place that does not lose its focus -- the game drive. The guides are Neil, Dave, and Anijka, and all possess a knowledge of animals that would rival any of the people you see on TV. Their training, dedication to animals, and focus on client satisfaction is paramount. Every day they would ask us on the Land rover what we would like to see -- and every day they found it. We wanted to identify a certain type of flower we had seen on the trail, and Neil found it, checked it out (on foot while lions were active) and identified it later in the day. You just can't find that type of service everywhere. Neil was also apologetic when we had to go by the 'normal' animals (impala, kudus, etc) so we could get to the sighting of the famous Timbavati White lions. these lions are the only two that are wild in Africa and thanks to the dedication of our guides and trackers, Eric and Albert, we were able to see them, not once, but twice. We also saw the 'Big Five,' not from afar but up close and very personal (sitting 2 meters from a Leopard as it walks by stalking Impala is something to remember).

FYI -- the Land Roivers were in top-notch condition. As a retired Army officer, i take maintenance of vehicles seriously and these Rovers are in top notch condition -- they are clean, no rust, and run like clockwork. I wish all the vehicles I was responsible for were this trustworthy and comfortable.

After the game drives, we would return to gas lamps lighting the way to our rooms (very authentic and also very calming) as well as nice glass of sherry to begin the evening. The office staff, Candice, Dave and Bongee were there to meet us every evening and every morning (at 0445 in the AM). They were the first up with the guides and the last to sleep, after making sure everything was topnotch for the next day.

FYI -- for those of you who know how much I hate internet that does not work, the best internet I have experienced in South Africa was in the middle of the Timbavati Nature reserve and it was driven by solar power-- that is dedication and also a focus on what is important to guests.
There is so much more to tell, but we were only there for two days.

In my entire time on TripAdvisor, only on other place has received this rating from me and only one hotel -- this one.

If you do not book at the Kambaku lodge, or its new sister property, the Kambaku River Sands, you are wasting your money.

Go authentic, go eco-friendly, go with great people, guides and trackers, go with Kambaku.
We are already planning our return trip next summer with our family. I hope that I get to see you there.

Room Tip: Choose room 1 or 2 , with great views towards the waterhole.
  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Tanksmon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kambaku2007, Manager at Kambaku Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded December 23, 2013

We are delighted that you regarded your stay as the 'authentic safari experience' with 'wonderful and friendly service'. wE are looking forwarded to welcoming you back next year with the rest of your family

Kind regards

David

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Reviewed November 2, 2013

Spent three nights here at the beginning of our game Safari in October. We even saw the leopard cubs the first day. The big five sightings were done by the end of two days. Our experience was flawless. Accommodations were perfect and done with taste and elegance. Phani and Eric N were the perfect team to lead us through a wonderland of game and food. The welcome notes were charming. Others told us not to expect as much at other lodges and they were right. The food was really the best we've had and the premises are consummate. It is a special experience with special people. This place is a must for your South Africa experience.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Zlato50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kambaku2007, Owner at Kambaku Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded December 25, 2013

Thank you so much fro your review on your stay at Kambaku. we really do try and go the extra mile to make your experience here stand out from other lodges, and value the impact of the personal touch. I think you have hit the nail on the head with your comment about it being a very special place - many you have many happy memories of your holiday with us.

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Reviewed October 24, 2013

What a highlight to experience a safari at Kambaku Safari Lodge. The staff were incredible and very hospitable.The game viewing was excellent, first game drive we saw lion sightings with cubs, rhino, elephant, huge herd of about 500 buffalo, and all the general game. We heard a leopard call but did not manage to find it. Next morning we saw two leopard cubs, more rhino, caught up with the buffalo herd and lions and other general game. We also saw hyena which was great. Anke was our guide and Albert was our tracker - they were both excellent and added to a memorable safari. We left Kambaku with a warmth in our heart and realizing that it is a special magical place in the bush. The other guests we were with were also great and entertaining.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Gavin021
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kambaku2007, Owner at Kambaku Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded December 25, 2013

What amazing sightings.. just goes to show they are all out there somewhere and the passion and dedication of the rangers allows them to provide and exceptionally high class game viewing experience. The focus on not only finding the big five, but making every moment out in the bush one to remember. I am so glad that we have touched your heart, and hopefully enriched your life. Once the bush bug has bitten.... you will always be addicted !

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Reviewed October 23, 2013

Wonderful people, service, tasteful and simple decoration, solar powered facility, eco-minded ...and fantastic guide and tracker! Phani and Eric N lead to see so much wildlife, from so close. I was not expecting to need a wide angle on a safari :) The staff at the lodge was very friendly, and the day is peppered with very thoughtful attentions: from hand-made welcome notes to bedtime stories passing by welcome comity when coming back from a drive... What an experience. I spent 3 nights, really 2 full days there and yet, it was truly disconnecting. I highly highly recommend Kambaku lodge!

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled solo
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Thank MGSF2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kambaku2007, Owner at Kambaku Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded December 25, 2013

Thank you for your review - I am so pleased to hear that your stay allowed you to switch off and disconnect from the world for a few short days. I am also glad to hear that the attention to the small details are not overlooked. Looking forwards to hosting you again some time in the future.

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Reviewed October 10, 2013

I can't recommend Kambaku highly enough. We were booked for two nights at this lodge and would have stayed 2 more but they didn't have room. In chatting with the guides, they told us there were a lot of mediocre lodges and we got to experience one on our second two nights. But our time at Kambaku was magical. The staff was incredibly friendly and made an effort to engage with us guests. They ate with us and all meals were communal -- unless otherwise asked for. We did see they made arrangements one night for a private meal for a couple celebrating their anniversary. Conversations over meals were great. The guides were especially good and great at communicating what was happening, what animals they were trying to track, keeping track of how many of the big 5 you'd seen and trying to make sure you saw them all. Dave and Ankia were outstanding. The benefit of a place like Kambaku is it's not crowded at the lodge (16 guests max) or on the drives (only 4 cars are allowed on their land), so you get to spend time with the animals. The food was abundant and delicious. The extra touches were impressive -- bed time stories each night, notes at check in and check out, everyone remembering your name, and an e-mail at the end with photos from your stay. Bravo, Kambaku!

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank letsgoseestuff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kambaku2007, Owner at Kambaku Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded December 25, 2013

Wow - what a wonderful review on your stay at Kambaku. such a pity you couldn't have stayed 4 nights - two is definitely too short ! And yes - unfortunately there are many mediocre lodges out there promising the world and not delivering. Thank you for highlighting some of the camp aspects as well as the game drive aspects for potential guests to read. small touches, we believe, are what count !

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Additional Information about Kambaku Safari Lodge

Address: Kruger National Park 1380, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 17 Specialty Lodging in Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Price Range: $425 - $1,230 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Kambaku Safari Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kambaku Safari Lodge is nestled in the heart of the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, which can be found within the world renowned Greater Kruger National Park.The camp is well situated in this unspoilt natural wilderness area, home to an astonishing array of animals including the Big 5. Kambaku provides the ultimate escape from busy schedules, with eight well appointed thatched chalets overlooking our own private waterhole.Attracting guests from around the world, Kambaku offers superior standards in all of our facilities yet always maintaining a high level of environmental consciousness. Our dedicated staff will cater to the individual needs of our guests making for a truly memorable stay. With scrumptious bush cuisine in a relaxed, rustic setting our guests can truly unwind and immerse themselves in the restorative powers of nature. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kambaku Safari Hotel Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Kambaku Safari Lodge South Africa/Timbavati Private Nature Reserve

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