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.

“A ray of light on the dark continent”

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 7 more sites!
Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“A ray of light on the dark continent”
Reviewed March 12, 2012

We arrived at the Royal Madikwe at about noon on a sweltering 34 degree summers day. After having driven some miles on a dirty, dusty rocky road the prospect of any sort of home comforts were exciting but what we found when we entred the luxury game lodge was nothing short of paradise in Africa!

We were met with moist towels to freshen ourselves up in the garden then were escorted down to reception where, after checking in, we were served a delicious three course lunch on the balcony attached to the main lodge overlooking a watering hole where, we were told, wild game often came to drink. It was not long until we were joined for lunch by some thirsty buck making their way down to the water for a drink.

After an invigorating lunch we were shown around our private chalet. To say that the mini-mansion (complete with traditional thatch roof) was the very definition of luxury would be an understatement! The attention to detail was most impressive, from the Royal Madikwe bubble bath to the well stocked minibar, every whim of the guests was catered for. The massive bed complete with six pillows and turned down every night with stepping stools provided for ease of entry was a nice touch but by far the best part about the rooms was the private balcony which sported an outdoor shower, two sun loungers, two seats in the shade of an awning and a secluded plunge-pool for late night dipping under the stars. Also, the wooden roller-blinds could be moved back to allow a view of the sun rising over the jungle while guests enjoyed a cup of french-press coffee in bed.

And then there were the game drives... Obviously, as with so many things in Africa, the experience that we had can never be replicated but I can't help feeling that regardless of what you see or where the game drive takes you the feeling of being SO close to the wild will be an experience of great excitement, wonder and delight. On our trip we managed to see the full big five but the highlight of the game drives for us was stopping in the middle of a clearing populated by 120 zebra and having a refreshment or two in their company.

These events were made all the more memorable by Andrew our guide, driver, spotter, head lodge guide and only defense against the wild animals that surrounded us. His knowledge of the African wild is second to none; from nests made from the saliva of frogs to the hunting habits of individual lion in the park, not only does Andrew make you feel safe in your safari truck but also provides a witty and educational commentary on the game drives. Another attraction of the Madikwe Game Reserve is the caliber and condition of the animals that can be seen there; unlike some other game parks that we have visited the pristine condition of the wildlife that we saw on this trip was an education in its self. It seemed to me that we were in a wildlife documentary; the colours were vibrant the physiques were toned and seeing the beautiful animals thriving in their natural environment made the modern world seem far away.

Upon returning from the game drives we were served breakfast or dinner (depending on whether it was a morning or evening drive), again the food was exquisite and the atmosphere was uncompromisingly relaxing. Words can not adequately convey the level of luxury and service that we experienced during our stay at the Royal Madikwe; from the staff to the amenities to the accommodation to the management every aspect of the establishment seemed tailored to our needs, wants and comfort (also the inspired selection of top shelf liquor was very enjoyable).

I would wholeheartedly, unreservedly and passionately recommend the Royal Madikwe for any one who wants a perfect vacation or a place to make unforgettable memories. Business functions, holidays or honeymoons would all benefit from the experiences that this lodge has to offer, it is truly a slice of paradise in the heart of the dark continent.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Samuel W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalbj, General Manager at Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge, responded to this review, March 19, 2012
Thank you so much for your extremely detailed and passionate review of our
African Home. We genuinely appreciate the time you have taken to tell us of your
experience at Royal Madikwe. We are delighted you have had such a wonderful,
unforgettable holiday that will live on in your memories. It means so much to all
of us here,knowing we are giving our guests the most memorable time when we get
such a wonderful review.We look forward to welcoming you back with open arms in
the future and making the most of the special Friends of Royal Madikwe rates.
With warmest wishes, your Royal Family
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

177 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    167
    10
    0
    0
    0
See reviews for
80
59
2
2
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (52)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed February 13, 2012

Your own paradise in Madikwe Game reseve, the place is just heaven from the day you arive you will feel like royalty its like nature put the place there just for you. I will start with the arrival at the lodge and the staff waiting with amazing smiles and a welcome that makes you forget about everything outside this place. Spacious rooms with everything you need and much more, that shower in the fresh air or just relaxing in you pool looking out on the bush. The food is just amazing the chef will give you options that will make you think about it for a long time after tasting it, preparation, presentation and taste I must say it was just mind blowing, the fact that the chef gets you involved in wat is happening and wat you want makes it even better.

The Game drives was never a dull moment Andrew made sure you will be entertained and even well educated after a drive this was the highlight of everyday, to see wat he would be able to find and show us. Andrew is a highly quilified and more than amazing ranger we would always return to madikwe for and experince in the bush with him.

This experince was put together by one of the most amazing people I ever got the pleasure to meet Drienie the manager of the lodge that made us feel at home and went out of her way to make our stay wat it was " The place on the other side" that we wil never ever forget. Drienie will do the things you want before you think about it just when you think this is as good as it gets she will suprise you and make it even more special.

To the whole team at Royal Madkiwe I will Give 6 stars and personlly one of the best experiences I ever had in my life.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank goose1224
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalbj, General Manager at Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge, responded to this review, February 23, 2012
Thank you for your special words. It means so much to all of us here at
Royal Madikwe and we really appreciate you spending the time to write a
review. We would love to welcome you back to our African Home in the future and
would be delighted to offer you our Friends of Royal Madikwe Rates.

Best Wishes and Warmest Regards, until next time
Your Royal Family
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 12, 2012

WOW! I don’t know how I can put down in words the amazing time we experienced at Royal Madikwe. It has taken some time for me to sit down and write this, but the lodge, its management and staff, deserve praise. From arrival to departure, we felt the warmth and friendliness of the staff, it felt like home from the time we set foot on this piece of heaven.
Our ranger, Andrew was so knowledgeable, he had the answers to all my questions and went out of his way to ensure that we had the best Safari experience. The food was impeccable, Patience, the chef, outdone herself with each and every meal, she introduced herself upon arrival and made sure that we were satisfied with each meal, such a lovely personal touch. The service staff are very attentive and you cannot help but fall in love with each and every one of the Royal Madikwe team members, they are all passionate, warm and always smiling, nothing is ever too much for them and they attended to our every need promptly and effortlessly. The manager, Drienie made sure that our stay was a wonderful one, and her hosting and attention to the lodge, its guests and staff is something else, together with Andrew they make a SUPER team, they have a classy, fun & entertaining touch. We cannot thank all the Royal team members enough for their hospitality and the kindness they have shown us. We will definitely recommend this place to everyone, if you are looking for comfort, relaxation, service excellence, friendliness, effortless service, and a place where you can feel at home while on holiday, this is the place to be.

Room Tip: I am sure, no matter where you are, you will have a wonderful experience "Room 4 - Best View&qu...
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Sian Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalbj, General Manager at Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge, responded to this review, February 23, 2012
Thank you for your wonderful words. It means a lot to all of us here at
Royal Madikwe and we really appreciate you spending the time to write a
review. We would love to welcome you back to our African Home in the future and
would be delighted to offer you our Friends of Royal Madikwe Rates.

Best Wishes and Warmest Regards, until next time
Your Royal Family
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hamilton Parish, Bermuda
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed October 15, 2011

Our group of 8 adults have just stayed at Royal Madikwe on an exclusive use basis and our stay was nothing short of superb. The staff went our of their way to make sure our stay was special. The suites are large with very comfortable beds and equipped with everything you need. The main lodge and suites 4 and 5 (the Royal Suite) overlook a watering hole which attracts a lot of animals day and night. On our arrival we were welcomed by a small herd of elephant who spent a couple of hours at the watering hole whilst we enjoyed lunch. You can enjoy many 'sofa safaris' without leaving the lodge! The food and service was excellent and each mealtime was set up in a different venue - we never ate in the same location whilst we were there. The last night of our stay was a memorable fireside evening in the boma, entirely lit by lanterns and candles and some soulful singing provided by the staff. A big Thank You to the Royal Family for making our stay so special.

Room Tip: Suites 4 and 5 (the Royal Suite) overlook the watering hole
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank MarymacFrance
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalbj, Manager at Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge, responded to this review, October 17, 2011
Dearest Michael & Mary,
We thoroughly enjoyed hosting you and your party and you are truly missed by the whole team!
Thank you for all your kind words and for taking the time to get to know the whole team over some Birthday cake – it meant more than you know!
We hope to welcome you all back to your African home and all the adventures that await you at Royal Madikwe.
Best Wishes & Warmest Regards until next time,
Your Royal Family
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed October 15, 2011

I've been an avid user of tripadvisor in recent years and have valued the reviews but never quite got round to writing one (slack, I know!). On this occasion I feel compelled to write.

Fortunately on this honeymoon occasion I went into more detail than the norm and traversed all the way through the 21 Madikwe accom listings currently on site and found this one near the bottom of the rankings (20/21). Yet hang on, all 7 reviews gave 100% 5 stars, so the low ranking's a statistical anomally surely ?? The few reviews could hardly be more perfect so we went for it...

We were blown away by our stay. The quality of the lodge, staff, food and game viewing experience were all superb. Truly spectacular. What lifted this stay above the 'merely' superb, was the attention they paid to the fact that this was our honeymoon - I won't share the surprises & personal touches in case it impedes anyone else's fun, but suffice to say they hit the spot every time & were very much appreciated - can there be a more romantic place to stay ?

It was almost enough to forgive the wife for deleting the 'once in a lifetime' fighting elephants scene in error...

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank RichardH228
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalbj, Manager at Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge, responded to this review, October 17, 2011
Dearest Richard & Sarah,
We are so pleased to hear that you have such wonderful memories of your honeymoon at Royal Madikwe. The Royal team takes much satisfaction in creating all these special touches and we are truly warmed by your appreciative words. Thank you kindly for taking the time to post your comments and thank you for not giving away our secrets!

We look forward to your return to your now African home.
Best Wishes & Warmest Regards,
Your Royal Family
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed September 26, 2011

It was my second trip to Madikwe Game reserve but it was all of our first time to Royal Madikwe. Overall it was a very pleasant stay with awesome game viewing (morning and evening game drives), very knowledgeable game rangers and friendly staff, in a fantastic setting.It was a special occassion i.e. my 40th birthday. The food quality was good and a special effort was made on the Saturday night for my birthday with the staff singing and a cake being baked for me. However there was an issue with our accommodation which I feel I need to raise here and hopefully help other visitors to avoide.
Our party consisted of 5 people. 2 couples and a single person (me). The booking was for 3 suites and included a single supplement charge for myself. Naturally our expectations were that everyone would have the same quality suites but that I would be paying extra because it was for only one person and not a couple. Our booking was made via www.bushbreaks.co.za. At no stage during the booking enquiry and confirmation, nor on arrival at Royal Madikwe lodge were we informed that my room would not be one of the 5 luxuary bungalows (with a private wooden deck and plunge pool and a view of the water hole) and was instead a double room located on the first floor of the lodge i.e. no private deck, no plunge pool and no view of the water hole! It was only the next day on checking out one another's accommodation that we as a family realised that there was a very big difference in room quality. I brought this to the attention of the deputy manager (Cheri). Andrew, a ranger and partner of the manager Drienie (who was on leave during our stay) joined Cheri and myself towards the end of our discussion. Cheri was unhelpful, did not want to acknowledge that there was in fact a very significant difference in room quality and did not offer to do anything about it (her response was that the lodge was full). She also said that I should take it up with my booking agent (not sure how the booking agent could be blamed for this - but I have done so anyway and she was horrified). On what was an overall pleasant weekend away, this has left a black mark. More so because it is a 5 star lodge and I expected the staff to handle the situation in a way that was reflective of the that. More than the issue of the room quality, the fact that is was not handled effectively once it was brought to their attention has irked me more. There were several occassions post me raising the matter for something do be done about it i.e. waiving the drinks bill or the gate access charges or something that was an acknowledgement and an attempt to "put things right". So guys, please make sure which suite you will be allocated when booking at Royal Madikwe, whether you are a couple of a single-supplement for that matter.

Room Tip: Make sure of your suite allocation at the time of booking to avoide being allocated the room upstair...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank niccigubb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalbj, Manager at Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
Royal Madikwe welcomes feedback from our guests and we appreciate the review from Ms Gubb.
It is unfortunate that Ms Gubb did not enjoy her accommodation. The property has different room types and rates are applicable to the quality and standard of accommodation available.
Should the lodge not have been fully booked during their stay, another unit would have been offered to her at the same rate. Royal Madikwe rectified this immediately when guest feedback was received and Ms Gubb was issued with a complimentary stay at Royal in the future. The property corresponded with both the agent and the client immediately as Royal Madikwe prides themselves in professional and outstanding service to all clients.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed September 6, 2011

The service at Madikwi was second to none. The staff are all friendly and welcoming. The accommodation is very stylish and comfortable with a warm and almost dreamlike feeling to it, especially in the evening. The staff went out of their way to get anything we asked for; they made us feel like it was our home.
The Game Drives are exciting, taking in the picturesque South African landscapes and also seeing the incredible animals in their own environment is something I will never forget. We saw all of the animals we wanted to see and the ranger was very knowledgeable.
The food was delicious and they also accommodated for my vegetarianism. The food was of a very high quality and they also have a well-stocked bar. After going for an evening game drive, a beautiful meal you return back to your lodge and find the bed prepared for sleep and a beautiful roaring fire.
There is no place like South Africa and the Royal Madikwi is a Lodge does it justice, me and my family did not want to leave! And plan to go back there as soon as we can! It was the best holiday experience I personally have ever had. Amazing!!

Room Tip: All rooms have beautiful views and are very comfortable.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank 86Laura86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalbj, Manager at Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge, responded to this review, September 16, 2011
Guests like yourselves are the reason behind our passion - your sheer appreciation for the African bush and its surroundings is what drives us! We enjoyed every moment of your fun and excitement as much as you all did. The Royal team look forward to welcoming you back to your African home very soon. We are so warmed by your wonderful message and thank you for taking the time to reiterate your fond memories.
Best wishes from your Royal Family
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Madikwe Game Reserve hotels
13.3 mi away
Madikwe Safari Lodge
Madikwe Safari Lodge
#7 of 23 in Madikwe Game Reserve
5.0 of 5 bubbles 566 reviews
10.9 mi away
Etali Safari Lodge
Etali Safari Lodge
#4 of 23 in Madikwe Game Reserve
5.0 of 5 bubbles 445 reviews
10.8 mi away
Madikwe Hills Private Game Lodge
Madikwe Hills Private Game Lodge
#3 of 23 in Madikwe Game Reserve
5.0 of 5 bubbles 413 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
1.1 mi away
Impodimo Game Lodge
Impodimo Game Lodge
#6 of 23 in Madikwe Game Reserve
5.0 of 5 bubbles 341 reviews
0.4 mi away
Rhulani Safari Lodge
Rhulani Safari Lodge
#13 of 23 in Madikwe Game Reserve
5.0 of 5 bubbles 276 reviews
13.9 mi away
Jamala Madikwe
Jamala Madikwe
#1 of 23 in Madikwe Game Reserve
5.0 of 5 bubbles 282 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge

Property: Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge
Address: R 49 Wonderboom Gate, Madikwe Game Reserve 2874, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > North-West Province > Madikwe Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 23 Specialty Lodging in Madikwe Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Where 5 star service, lavish accommodation and adventurous Game Drives come standard, Royal Madikwe offers an unforgettable luxury safari experience for families, groups of friends or couples, seeking to soak up the splendour of the African Bush. Situated in the Malaria free Madikwe Game Reserve, just a 1 hour flight or 4 1/2 hour drive from Johannesburg International Airport, this is the ideal safari destination teeming with encounters of Southern Africa's famous Big Five as well as the endangered Wild dogs and Cheetah! Children of all ages are welcome at Royal Madikwe where they can play and learn about their natural surroundings in a safe environment with an exciting kiddies program while parents relax by the poolside, or join in on the fun! Winners of the "World Luxury Hotel Awards" in 2010, 2011 & 2013 in the Luxury Game Lodge category, Royal Madikwe offers accommodation on a per person shared basis to a maximum of 12 guests in 3 free standing Luxury Suites and 1 Royal Villa with spacious interiors, organic textures and beautiful views giving our guests the opportunity to lose themselves in the sights, sounds and smells of the African Bush. Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge also offers the option of exclusive use of the whole lodge, providing a more personal and intimate experience ideal for small groups or families which is available on request. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Orbitz, Booking.com, Hotwire, Travelocity, Priceline, Agoda, Hotels.com and South African Hotels so you can book your Royal Madikwe Luxury Safari Lodge 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.

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