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“Mixed feelings!”

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Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve
Certificate of Excellence
Stellenbosch, South Africa
Level Contributor
184 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
“Mixed feelings!”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 1, 2013

Kagga kamma.

Well where shall I start?
I know the good bits-
Staff- reception and the Game Rangers were very good.
Ummmm
The bed was very comfortable........
Driving around the Reserve in my own 4x4 was very enjoyable especially during a snow storm.
The area was stunning even in the extreme cold, that just added to the whole experience, snow, sunshine, rain and all the time more snow on the distant Mountains around the Ceres.
Don't expect to see much Game, we saw 2 Wildebeest and that included the same one twice!
Maybe they were hiding because of the snow.


We stayed in a cave!
Well a room with two real rocks in- cooperated and a lot of fibre glass rocks to make a ceiling etc.
Don't get me wrong it was fine, but sold as something different on the website.

We were quite happy with the accommodation, we had aircon for some heat and also brought along a small electric heater to give some warmth to the bathroom (other reviews mentioned how cold the rooms were).
The shower was no more than a trickle, because of low water pressure.

Both swimming pools looked very good, if you are thinking of visiting in the summer.

Now we get to the dodgy bit!
The restaurant was like something from Faulty Towers, I think Manuel was the chef though!
The Bar and restaurant Staff were terrible, it's like we the customer were an in-convenience and had walked uninvited into their front room.
Friday night was a Buffet night, the starters consisted of a terrine, calamari, mussels all in edible they were an embarrassment. The only edible part was the bought in chicken nuggets!
The mains consisted of Nuked Chicken & some sort of game ( I think?) for mains they kept taking the meat from the hot plate and re- heating it!
The desert was OK because it was a bought in Malva Pudding.
All this for R240 per head.
I Would not have fed it to my dog (I don't actually have a dog but you get my gist)!

I did go and mention this to reception after dinner, and apparently it was the first night they had done a Buffett.
I would have gladly paid a 100 Rand more for something decent.
At least with an al a carte menu you can choose not to order and pay for more if you don't like what you see.

The second night was al a carte!
We played it safe and went for beef steak with roast potatoes and veggies.........
Well a very nice steak, with 2 small carrot strips, 2 single green beans, a slice of raw pepper and two hard potatoes
The potatoes got sent back, but never returned!
We were asked if our food was OK, by the serving staff (no) by the Manager ( what Manager), no it was one of the rangers!
He went to ask about the under cooked potatoes, apparently the chef told him "The Whole Bag of Potatoes was Faulty".
Bless Manuel, perhaps he meant Fawlty!!

The restaurant, bar and kitchen staff lack direction & Management, there did not seem to be anybody taking charge or responsibility apart from the Game Ranger, but I don't think even he would have washed the dirty table cloths!

We booked on a Groupon deal, so saved some money.
Would we return?
No not even with another Groupon deal.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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3 Thank Froggy23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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328 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (110)
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English first
Somerset West, South Africa
Level Contributor
32 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 31, 2013

I booked a cave for a night for my husband's birthday. The whole experience was awesome, from the moment we checked in until when we checked out the following morning. I can not fault in any way the service that was provided by the staff - the food at the restaurant was delicious and very prompt in delivery.
Our cave, while smallish, was cosy and very inviting. The lights had been installed in the roof to make it look, from a distance, like natural light coming through the ceiling - a nice touch. The tiles were cold to walk on, but in saying that, there was a rug on the floor beside the bed. There was ample bedding to keep us warm at night, along with an A/C - heater unit. We were quite happy to amuse ourselves, wandering around the grounds, admiring the pool, and doing the 3km loop trail (which took us through great rock formations and along the edge of a small stream to some rock art). Breakfast the following morning was a great affair, with a selection of cereals, fruit, and juices to chose from, along with hot items of your choosing.
There was no tv in the room, but this actually added to the atmosphere, rather than detracting from it. If you're in need of your daily fix, a tv is located in the bar area. Due to my desire to sleep in the outside area (which we were unable to do due to the cold front coming through), I corresponded with management several times over the course of making the booking and arriving, and they were awesome in their correspondence with me. All up, we really rated this place, the location, the food, and the service, and hope to return here when the in-laws come to visit!!!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank TracyO07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 27, 2013

The road is long and hard but that is what 4x4's are for , a wonderful get away you can’t beat the scenery both during the day and the stars at night, I have been all over this wonderful and beautiful country of ours, and am yet to find the peace I find each time I go to Kagga Kamma, put it on your bucket list, a must.

Room Tip: Chalet 10 what a view and close to the pool
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank John R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Somerset West, South Africa
Level Contributor
343 reviews
329 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 325 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 21, 2013

We unfortunately only had one night to stay at this wonderful camp, our biggest disappointment. Our stay was pretty much perfect in every way and can’t really make any complaints. From check-in the check-out we were very well looked after by the great staff.

The natural setting of the resort is fantastic, nestled in amongst weird and wild rock formations of the southern Cederberg mountains. The drive into the resort from Ceres, about 1 hour, is very scenic and increases in beauty as you approach the resort. The place is very much in tune with the natural surroundings, with many of the rooms (cave rooms) actually built into the rock formations and made to look like part of the landscape. The reception/restaurant/bar area comprises one building and is very tastefully decorated. The ambience inside is very cozy, especially with the open fireplaces in action (in winter). The pool area was really interesting – a small pool nestled amongst some cool sandstone pillars – very attractive. Too bad the water wasn’t hot, as it would’ve been a nice place to soak on a cool winter day.

We had a “cave” room which, as described above, was built to resemble a cave. From the outside it looks just like the surrounding sandstone cliffs and pillars. The inside is decorated to look like the inside of a cave, with lots of well-placed lighting giving it a nice ambience. A large plate glass sliding door lets in the afternoon sunlight and provides outstanding views of the sun setting over the Cederberg. The room is nicely decorated with high-quality fittings and with all the normal luxuries you’d expect in a resort room – really nice and comfortable, with a good AC/heater mounted on the wall. The shower was hot and felt extremely luxurious in this remote desert camp. The room was spotlessly clean and well-maintained. Needless to say, we had a wonderfully refreshing and undisturbed sleep as the full moon shone through the glass doors. The cave rooms are located only a short walk from the main facilities, maybe 100m at the most, so not far at all.

As for things to do, there is definitely no shortage. There are several nice hiking trails of differing lengths, tons of 4WD tracks, mountains biking trails, game viewing trails, etc. The resort rents out quad bikes as well if you want to get out and do some riding. Great trails for running or walking. The resort also offers opportunities for game drives – morning and evening. There are no predators around so it is safe to go out walking.

We were very impressed with the quality of the food at the restaurant. I ordered the chicken while my wife ordered the beef fillet. Both were excellent, as were all the starters and desserts. Likewise the breakfast, with eggs made to order, was mouthwatering delicious. The service was very attentive, prompt, friendly, and professional. After dinner we went into the bar and there were a few locals playing guitar and singing – quite a good evening, very enjoyable.

Overall we had a great stay at this resort. We would definitely recommend it to other travelers and we definitely plan to stay here again. Great stay and reasonably good value for money.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DanO68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 19, 2013

The staff were really very attentive and friendly. It was the best part of the trip. The property is very interesting and beautiful but lacks décor. The cave rooms in winter are cold - and when you turn the air con onto heat you are left with humidity as opposed to warmth - i think a rug on the tiled floor would help. The quad biking was excellent and the star gazing tour is well worth the R80 p/p charged. The food was good but portions small and over priced for the standard. The special touches like the sparkling wine in the room, flower petals on the table were very special on my birthday. I would go back in the spring or autumn.

Room Tip: The cave room at the top is best for a view and pricacy
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank fromCapetown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 18, 2013

The isolation and rugged beauty of the landscape is breathtaking. However the reserve is let down by the low quality of the accommodation facilities combined with enthusiastic but poorly trained staff. The cave rooms are interesting but lack the necessary finishing touches to make them truly special. The stunning scenery and rock formations make up for the low numbers of game in this arid region, meaning game drives are a must, however the standard of the guides seems below par. All in all, I wouldn't rush back to Kagga Kamma other than for the remote location and amazing scenery.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank MatthewVass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level Contributor
46 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 6, 2013

We bought a groupon to visit this game reserve in mid July. We spent two nights there. Firstly remember that if you visit in winter it freezes in the Cederberg. In the summer it is sweltering hot. Kagga kamma is a privately owned game reserve. They offer cave rooms, hit rooms and self catering( of which only one house belongs to the reserve ) and the rest owned on a time share basis, which the reserve up keeps. We stayed in a cave room. It's an unusual room that is designed to give you that " cave" feel. However part of the room is actually rock, which makes it very very cold in winter. There are no fireplaces in cave rooms, but there are air conditioners. It was so cold the two nights we were there that we ran our airconditioner on hear all night long. The reserve offers you various activities, - two game drives, one very early in the morning, and one in the night. My choice- go for the one in the morning. You may spot one or two wildebeest. The other two activities are the rock art painting tour, which is quite nice and the last is the sunset drive, which is very nice indeed. They do offer star gazing, but their telescope was out of order when we were there. Food is above average, and well presented. Staff was friendly, informative and pleasant. Some things to take note of before you visit kagga kamma. You will require a 4x4 to get there. There is about 37 kms of gravel road that will tax the average car. Even more challenging for a car is if it rained there recently. There is no cell phone reception there at all. If you want to make calls, you will have to use the phone in the bar. There is no wifi there as well. Take a pair of slippers with you. The floor freezes. Beware that sometimes they switch off the electricity after 10 pm. This didn't happen while we were there, but they refer to it in the brochure. I shuddered to think how we would have managed without the aircon heater had they done that.

Some other things we really enjoyed. The landscape is amazing. It is truly soul rejuvenating. We went on our own rock art hiking trail, which was about 10 kms of hiking in the Rocky Mountains. My husband and I are rock art fanatics so we thoroughly enjoyed the hike. We saw lots of bushman paintings, much much more than on the official rock art tour the reserve does. Of you want to see amazing bushmen paintings you will have to do the hike. But beware, it's not for the faint hearted. It's rough terrain, and you do have to fit yourself through some pretty small crevices in the rocks to stay on the trail. Then start early at about 8 or so as you will barely complete the trail by 5 pm and you absolutely don't want to get stuck in the mountains at night. So give yourself enough lead time. The trail was fabulous though.

One last suggestion. Go there with a groupon as you will pay almost half price. Personally I think the normal price is overpriced and not great value for money. Buy a groupon and ou will get value for money

Room Tip: As a couple I would chose either the hut room or the cave room. The hut rooms are bigger and can acc...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Quartershark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve

Property: Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve
Address: Off R303 | Southern Cederberg Mountains, Kagga Kamma Private Game Reserve 6836, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Kagga Kamma Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Kagga Kamma Private Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve 4*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kagga Kamma is an absolute treat for travellers seeking a unique and inspiring experience. On your visit you will see a part of Africa that is unlike any other. The Cederberg Mountain’s otherworldly rock formations, a crisp sky stretching endlessly overhead and beautiful rock art from an ancient culture, is the backdrop to a wonderful adventure. Kagga Kamma’s accommodation options are as unique as the landscape it is set in. The Bushman Lodge offers spacious en-suite thatched rondavels/huts. The famous 'cave suites' built against the sandstone rock formations will take you back to a prehistoric time without taking away any modern-day luxuries. Kagga Kamma also offers a one of a kind Outcrop open-air “room” where guests can sleep under the stars in sheer luxury - definitely a not-to-be-missed experience.Speaking of the stars...Take a tour into the milky way when you visit our mini-observatory. It promises to be an inspirational experience when you view the Karoo night skies through our 10-inch telescope. While the sun is out you can opt for a journey back in time with our popular rock art tours. Our expert ranger will interpret the 6000 year old Bushmen paintings and living sites scattered all across the nature reserve.Other activities to be enjoyed at Kagga Kamma include relaxing nature drives with our knowledgeable guides, hiking trails, quad bike safaris, mountain bike trails, a 4x4 route and our Kagga Kamma Relax Spa. Even eating out at Kagga Kamma will be a matchless experience when you visit the restaurant for breakfast and lunch, and an outdoor lapa surrounded by beautiful rock formations for dinner under the starlit night skies in summer time. There is also a pub and lounge area with Wi-Fi internet, as well as satellite television for watching sports events. GPS co-ordinates:Latitude: S 32 44 45Longitude: E 19 33 46 ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kagga Kamma Private Game Reserve Hotel Kagga Kamma Private Game Reserve

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