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“Fantastic , superb destination”
Review of Tenahead Lodge

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Tenahead Lodge
Ranked #1 of 4 Rhodes B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Fantastic , superb destination”
Reviewed 3 July 2013

We decided to end our honeymoon with a winter holiday at tenahead the food , rooms , crackling fireplaces absolutely everything was out of this world and felt like a winter holiday in another country , well done to the friendly staff at tenahead we will be back next winter

Room Tip: All rooms similar and great views over the valley at top of mountain
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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1 Thank DanielKruger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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180 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • English first
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English first
Somerset West, South Africa
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 June 2013

What an amazing lodge well worth the long dirt road to get to it. Tenahead is beautiful with amazing rooms not to mention the views from the showers. We visited in winter so the underfloor heating and fire places in each room were a welcome sight.

The lodge is situated on a small cliff over looking the famous Bell River high up in the Drakensberg. We had a chance to look at all the rooms and each one had amazing views. The dining room and lounges also have amazing views and you find yourself often just staring out the windows.

The staff were also great they immediately felt like old friends and Tena the staff dog was always ready for a walk or just there to keep you company.

The meals at Tenahead were amazing and the chef was accommodating to our dietary requirements.

I did not get a chance to fish the famous Bell river(next time). My friend got to do some out rides on the resident horses she said that was an amazing experience. We also managed to do the big 4x4 route which affords you with amazing views of the mountains also some great views of Lesotho.

We left the lodge after 2 nights with heavy harts and hoping for snow so we could get stuck up there. We are already planning another visit soon.

A special thanks to Nolan and Shauna for making or stay so special..

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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2 Thank Gary H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Grahamstown, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 June 2013

What a beautiful setting! It is like another world up there. The lodge is beautifully done and is just the right balance between comfort and style. The rooms are very spacious with every amenity and indulgence you could ask for (see pics)!

The managers were wonderful, super friendly and helpful and when we were there a little lodge Jack Russel named Tena was there who joined us on a walk and was a lovely addition!

Lovely food, rooms and truly has everything one could hope for.

BEWARE the drive up is not for sissies, we followed our GPS blindly as it calculated the shortest route, well that route was through incredibly worn farm roads and mountain. Not for our BMW 3 series, but three agonising hours later we made it up (without a tow). So ensure you go through Rhodes for the easiest route! But at the top we were greeted by welcoming faces, drinks and could laugh at our misadventure in comfort.

On the expensive side and far out but what a pleasure, can't wait to go back!

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Lauren L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Potchefstroom, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 April 2013

We spent 4 amazing nights at Tenahead Mountain Lodge during the Easter break, and already dreaming of going back soon. Firstly, the lodge is pure isolation from the hustle and bustle of normal life, and the surroundings are simply fantastic. When I made the booking I had no idea it was situated so high up in the Drakensberg (actually the lodge is officially the highest hotel/lodge in South Africa at 2505m above sea level). The rugged mountainsides and small, crystal-clear Bell river are so different from anything else in SA.

The weather was starting to get quite cold, but the lodge made up for it, with crackling fireplaces in each room and big comfy beds. The food was fantastic, especially the 5-course dinners that were absolutely 5-star! Chef Josh, together with Shauna, must be commended. On this note both Shauna and Nolan, the managers, were always super helpful and made our stay all the more enjoyable. Tenahead is lucky to have them! And with Tena the Jack Russell assisting as our "mountain guide" on our walks and fishing expeditions, we could not have asked for better service. This stay was perfect for us as a couple, but we got the impression from other guests that the lodge was very accommodating of their young kids as well.

We shall definitely be going back to Tenahead, hopefully sooner rather than later, and would recommend it to anyone who is willing to go off the beaten track a little.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Andre B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Durban, South Africa
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 January 2013

We decided to travel the Naude's Neck pass this past December and as such wanted to stay overnight somewhere in the vicinity. Our choice was Tenahead Lodge - and what a good choice this turned out to be! The lodge itself is situated within the mountains at the top of the pass within a nature reserve - when travelling all the way up the pass and then on the road through the nature reserve - the sudden view of the lodge as it nestles amongst the hills is something that I will remember for a very long time. It had been raining heavily the entire week before our arrival - so the road was not in the best condition and it was icily cold when we arrived. Upon arrival we were immediately made to feel welcome by both Nolan and Shauna. When I walked into our room I was absolutely awe-struck! The hotel gives an ''old time'' impression with it's high ceilings and stone walls - but the rooms were cosily furnished and the outside wall is a huge window with the most beautiful view of your outside surroundings. We were fortunate in as much that our room overlooked the Bell river at a point where it seemed to rush over a rock section - almost being a rapid - the running water was almost hypnotising. After dinner at night when you return to your room - a fire has been lit to give even further soothing ambience! Furthermore the rest of the hotel layout is done beautifully with view of the surrounding nature foremost in the planning.

Now - for the catering side! The meals are advertised as a 5 course evening dinner - and it was exactly that and beautifully presented. Our stay was for only one night - which I could easily have extended as I enjoyed my self tremendously.

Anyone who wants to go via Naude's Neck must do the stopover at Tenahead - even if it is only to experience the lodge and it's hospitality!

Room Tip: Room 4 had a spectacular view of the Bell river
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with family
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Thank Inkie4u
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Austin, Texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 3 January 2013

I am 29 years old from Texas and was traveling by myself through South Africa in mid-late December 2012. I spent four nights over Christmas at Tenahead. Coming from America and having spent time in Scotland, Tenahead reminded me of a mixture of Colorado and Scotland. The surrounding mountain ranges enclose the lodge and nestle it in a unbelievably lush setting. If you are looking to lower your stress-level or blood pressure and get "off the map", this is the place to be. It's also a place where you are given the autonomy to seize the day. There are spa treatments, but I would highly recommend people who are adventurous and outdoorsy to stay here. It's a 5-Star Lodge for a reason: because it's a lodge in the mountains! It's not the equivalent of a 5-Star hotel in Paris, but that was attractive to me when I booked my stay. My expectations were exceeded during my stay and I think the 5-Star designation is completely deserved.

Upon my arrival, I was greet by one of the General Managers, Nolan. I had blown a tire on the way up out of Barkley East in an Audi sedan. The drive up is surreal and breath-taking. I would suggest having an SUV/4x4. My rental company gave away my SUV, but I was undeterred despite having to put on a spare by myself at 2000 meters. Nolan immediately put me at ease and toured me around the lodge when I arrived. After only a couple of minutes, the tire was forgotten and I immersed myself in the peaceful and tranquil setting. The other GM, Shauna, had prepared my meal and I felt at home in no time. With regards to comments on the cooking, they had their head chef quit recently, so Shauna filled in while I was there. She did an admirable job, especially given the preparation that went in to the Christmas feast when 40 of the local farming families came up to celebrate with us over lunch. The chicken, mustard sauce, butternut soup, broccoli/cauliflower casserole and, especially, the turdunken were memorable. If you are looking for some of the world's finest dining, the food will probably not meet those expectations. However, the dining room setting with the roaring fire next to the tables and all the guests sitting together in a convivial atmosphere to gather around good food enjoying a long dinner after an active day is a memorable. The other families you will encounter there are just as awe-struck and inspired as you are by Tenahead and the beauty surrounding it. Dinner provides the opportunity to share these experiences with others, if you are so inclined.

The setting is rustic and this is a place where you make your own fun and relaxation. I spent my days hiking, horseback riding, and fishing. Once I tired, I would return to one of the four living room areas in the lodge, reading near one of the many fireplaces with a beverage by my side (self-poured from the only "honesty" bar I have encountered in a hotel/lodge). The general living room areas are spacious with lots of comfy seating framed by tall windows displaying the spectacular scenery around you. Bookcases line the first seating area giving it an abiding, relaxed feel. The Belle River (more of a creek I would say) weaves around the lodge and its gentle stream can be heard from the large deck attached to the dining room. The fishing there was fun and we caught a lot of trout with a normal cast and rod using spinner bait--albeit the fish were small and we would catch & release. Hiking is the key activity, I would say. I did a couple of the hikes and during the longer one I ventured so far I just turned around with seemingly an endless road ahead. I felt like the only person on earth during this hike; except, Nolan's trusty Jack Russell Terrier guide dog, appropriately named Tena, led the way for me. Horseback riding was a blast and we rode to the southern border with Lesotho, passing through old ruins on the way to the border. A young woman who was working there seasonally, Monya, guided me during the ride and did an exceptional job. Again, no matter the weather (and it changes frequently), I cannot stress enough getting outside during your stay and taking full advantage. A number of the other families would go off-roading too, as an alternative activity.

I slept in room 7 at the very end of the hallway in the main lodge. The room was enormous with cavernous ceilings and windows looking out on the mountains and Belle River. The bed was king-sized with electric blankets and every night I had a roaring fire by my bedside. After the long hikes and rides, retiring to the room a was welcomed sight. Good design judgement went in to the decoration and furniture. The bathroom was massive, as well. Separate bathtub and rainfall shower both outlined by large windows with the lush scenery ahead made bathing a true joy! The sink space is large with two separate sinks and the toilet operated well. In my opinion, the rooms themselves designate Tenahead as a 5-Star Lodge alone.

All in all, I cannot say enough about this place. If you love travel, adventure and beautiful settings, Tenahead is a must. Getting up there is the hard part, but half the fun, in my opinion. There is no doubt I will be returning. The staff was cordial, gracious and kind. Nolan went so far as to secure my tire replacement in Maclear and I was able to get a new tire with no issues once I left the lodge. The stay was extremely affordable in my estimation, around $1,300R a night with the third night free. Well worth the price of admission to a slice of Heaven here on Earth.

Room Tip: I slept in room 7 at the very end of the hallway in the main lodge. When I return, I will be request...
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank wsharpeuga
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
KZN
2 reviews
Reviewed 11 December 2012

Absolutely stunning place to relax and unwind in this piece of heaven on earth. Outdoor activities are awesome for running/cycling/walking and fishing. Staff were all brilliant and very helpful. Food was super great and hotel has thee most brilliant views of the mountains and river from every single room. Just loved this place. 2 nights away felt like a week. Highly recommended for outdoor people who want to be a long way away from shopping malls and noise. Thanks to Shauna and staff. Loved it.

Room Tip: All rooms have fantastic views
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Joshhack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Tenahead Lodge

Property: Tenahead Lodge
Address: Naudes Nek Pass | 30km From Rhodes, Rhodes 6170, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Rhodes
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in Rhodes
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Tenahead Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 7
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