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“Perfect getaway for those that want to getaway” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Thunzi Bush Lodge

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Thunzi Bush Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Newbury, Berkshire
Level Contributor
1 review
“Perfect getaway for those that want to getaway”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 December 2008

We booked Thunzi precisely because of the great reviews that TA has published. For that reason, and of course, because we had such a great stay, I thought it important to return the favor that many of the travellers who post on here provided my wife and I!

We stayed at Thunzi at the start of November. We booked for Three nights at the start of our trip which was second honeymoon/vow renewal, with the second half of our journey comprising of three nights at Eagles Crag at Shamwari Game reserve. I can thoroughly recommend this as an itinerary.

My first impression of Thunzi is just how tranquil it is, tucked away in a valley some 30 minutes from Port Elizabeth. With just three lodges, the very maximum number of guests at any one time would seem to be eight and when we stayed, there were only 4 others (who we only saw one morning at breakfast!)

My wife and i were lucky to be provided the two bedroom Heron lodge and were shown to lodge by one of the hotel managers Greer. Greer is everything you could wish for when you are on a vacation; helpful, polite and caring.

We were amazed at the beauty and seclusion of our lodge, which although close to the facilities within the camp, felt like it was completely alone. We spent most mornings, curled up in the comfortable Bed overlooking the wetlands, and staring across to the monkeys on the feeding station beyond. On the mornings we had chosen to have breakfast served on our balcony, we were delighted at the helpfulness of the staff who were happy to help at any time (even though they often had to walk back and forth between the main lodge and ours)

The food at Thunzi is prepared by Betty, a local woman who provides the best local food and produce. We ate breakfast every morning and had one evening meal. The prices were excellent and the quality (and quantity) superb, we truly realised we had discovered a small piece of paradise! On the one night we decided to eat our, Greer provided us with excellent instructions on getting to a superb local restaurant where we ate a wonderful meal (although, only on a par with Betty's cooking) and returned, happy, yet dissapointed it was our last night.

The other facilities at Thunzi are on a par with the rest of the place. We had the magnificent Lazy lizard pool to ourselves and spent a whole day there, listening to our ipods, relaxing and reading, the only break away from it, was to sample the walk that has been carved from the sides of the valley within the lodge grounds. We were joined by Thunzi's two canine staff (Kira and Niro) who whilst showing you the way, also get a nice walk! It truly felt like home.

We only left Thunzi very rarely on our few days there so cannot comment on the various attractions surrounding the area, however one thing we WOULD reccomend is a trip to the local beach where it is possible to walk without seeing another soul for an hour (we know, we did it) to climb the massive Sand dunes (we tried to climb the biggest but were turned back by "cant be botheredness") and to watch pods of dolphins, whales etc from the cliffs (we sat, we saw, we were amazed)

Leaving Thunzi on our last morning was a mixture of excitement (because we were going to pretty much the best game reserve in Africa) and absolute dissapointment (because we were leaving a small piece of heaven)

We will certainly be back. We have two small children who I believe will absolutely LOVE the place.

Thanks to everyone at thunzi for a wonderful trip.

  • Liked — The tranquil setting and the great staff
  • Disliked — That I couldnt stay longer!
  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Markoncarp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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274 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    189
    60
    17
    8
    0
See reviews for
54
166
5
4
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (16)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Barcelona
Level Contributor
31 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 September 2008

I booked this hotel on recommendation only by TA and was not disappointed.
We arrived after a long flight from London-Cape Town-Port Elizabeth, and found a haven of peace and tranquility. The children immediately headed to the pool which was icey cold, but then this was the South African winter! We relaxed and couldn't believe what a lovely start we had made to our holiday.
The next day, we visited Seaview Lionpark and Kramma Kragga game park, and came back to a fantastic dinner. The staff were excellent, we loved our chalet, we didn't want to go! The children were particularly taken by the two dogs (Nero and Kiera) and were really sad when it was time to leave.

  • Liked — Privacy and beautiful surroundings
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ally CB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bend, Oregon
Level Contributor
47 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 August 2008

Thunzi is a small, quiet collection of chalets near to Port Elizabeth. It was perfect for our small wedding. Coming from the US, we needed help setting up the legalities as well as the ceremony. Greer at Thunzi found a minister, found flowers for the bridal bouquet (on less than a days' notice), and set up a lovely outdoor area, complete with champagne and cake, with virtually no direction from us.
Our chalet was clean and comfortable. Meals were delicious, Betty is an excellent chef. Throughout our stay, the staff were exceptionally helpful and, above all, very nice. The property, next to the Maitland reserve, is full of birds, and the staff are very knowledgeable about all of the wildlife to be found there.
I would definitely recommend Thunzito anyone, and hope to return some day.

  • Liked — Privacy, the bathroom, the size of the chalet
  • Disliked — Nothing--very pleased with the accomodation.
  • Stayed July 2006, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank bend395
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philadelphia,PA
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 April 2008

We stayed 3 nights at Thunzi during Easter week. My wife and I and our 2 teenage children really enjoyed Thunzi. We scheduled
our stay at the end of our trip and it was the perfect place to wind down and rest up. The local town of Seaview has a beautiful
beach and is only 10 minutes away. Try Barnacles for dinner
in Seaview. With only 3 units you feel like the restaurant and staff
are there just for you. We thought the food,dinner and breakfast
was great. Near Thunzi,only 20 minutes away is a small game
reserve,Kamma Kragga that only cost us $20US to drive through
ourselves. The kids really enjoyed it. The best deal we had the
whole trip. Staying at Thunzi was the perfect place to finish our trip to South Africa. We will try to get back there!

  • Liked — location and view
  • Disliked — expensive
  • Stayed March 2008, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank richardt53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
16 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 February 2008

we booked Thunzi Bush lodge through Safari Now website. We arrived to find a beautiful two bedroom lodge on stilts in the bush an hour outside PE. It was so quiet and relaxing. the rooms are beautiful and well equipped. The only thing missing was air con. this may prove a problem in the height of summer. we woke up to the sound of bird song looking out over the mountains. you are not overlooked so you can do what you like. it was great just to sit out on the balcony and sup a glass of wine. there is a full fridge which you can use to store your stuff. the only down side is that there are no self catering facilities..... it would have been good to be able to rustle up a sarnie! Thunzi Bush is driving distance from restaurants so we tended to eat in the restaurant. there are only three lodges so you would have a max of 6 people on site at any one time! The food rustled up by the chef was tasty and healthy. the people that worked at the lodge could have been a little more helpful. it would have been good to be given an idea of what we could do in the area.
the pool area is lovely. we were the only ones in it! All in all a great place to stay.

  • Liked — lovely lodges
  • Disliked — no air con
  • Stayed February 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank bettybooLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newton Abbot, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
127 reviews
76 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 October 2007

We booked Thunzi as somewhere different from the modern hotels of Port Elizabeth to rest after the long flight from the UK and before starting our safari north of Grahamstown. What a wonderful place we found, the welcome from the staff was really great, the accommodation was of a really high standard and the surrounding environment couldn't be better for rest and relaxation. The evening meal was really good and the friendly service very much appreciated. We were very glad that we booked a second night at Thunzi for after our safari and before starting our journey down the Garden Route to Cape Town. The second night at Thunzi was every bit as good as the first and proved that the friendly and welcoming service from the staff was natural and genuine. We would go back to Thunzi without question and thoroughly recommend the lodge to anyone wanting high standard accommodation with really good service.

  • Liked — very high standard and position in natural environment
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed September 2007, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank wickens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South Africa
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 September 2007

We had our Wedding in Port Elizabeth in August and wanted to stay somewhere special for our Wedding night before going on honeymoon. Thunzi was the best choice we could have made!! The short drive after the wedding was well planned and once you got there you felt like you were far away from the city, even though it was just around the corner. The luxury cabin was beautiful and inviting and each cabin is separated from the next by some dense bush, making you feel as if you were in your own private getaway! The next morning we had a beautiful and delicious private breakfast on our balcony where the food rivaled the view. The staff is very friendly and accommodating and the setting is idyllic. We stayed there when we got engaged and married and we will definitely be going back soon.

  • Liked — Privicy of cabins
  • Disliked — nothing, it was excellent
  • Stayed August 2007, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank PEtraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Thunzi Bush Lodge

Property: Thunzi Bush Lodge
Address: Maitland Road | Maitland, Port Elizabeth 6018, South Africa
Phone Number:
Region: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Port Elizabeth
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 66 Speciality Lodging in Port Elizabeth
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Thunzi Bush Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Thunzi in isiXhosa means "in the shade," describing a typical lazy afternoon in the forest valley. This tranquil sanctuary of coastal forest can be found 20 minutes West of Port Elizabeth and is nestled at the base of a 44 hectare private valley overlooking a pristine and lush river wetland. Luxury 4* Self-catering Chalets are fully equipped and have their own private boma's nestled under a milkwood/acacia tree in the indigenous forest where family and friends can gather and enjoy a few drinks and braai (barbeque). Added extras for your convenience include various DSTV select, dressing gowns, air-conditioning, tea/coffee amenities, mini chocolates, heating, hair dryer, daily housekeeping service and laundry facilities. There is a free Wi-Fi hotspot at the reception area and cellphone reception throughout the estate. Guests can enjoy bird watching, bass fishing, forest walks, spa treatments as well as beach walks and sand boarding at the Maitland Beach only 3km from Thunzi. Gourmet picnics are on offer Tuesdays to Sundays and you don't have to be an overnight guest to enjoy this - day visitors more than are welcome! ... more   less 
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