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“Wonderful experience” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Gooderson Bushlands Game Lodge

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Gooderson Bushlands Game Lodge
Ranked #4 of 7 Hotels in Hluhluwe
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
65 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Wonderful experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 September 2012

I've given this 5 stars rather than 4 because of the excellent service and attention to detail of the staff working here. I only stayed for one night while touring Zululand with my tour guide. Bushlands was an excellent choice on her part and an unforgettable experience. Rooms are evelvated log cabin style units connected by walkways through the bush. They feed the bushbaby population in the evening which is a joy to behold. Food and service very good.
On the downside my room was a little basic, although I think they have more luxury rooms as well. Although I guess this is the bush and to be honest I have stayed in much much worse in so-called hotels in the UK. Would like to return sometime.

Stayed September 2012, travelled solo
Helpful?
1 Thank N_Young47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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82 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    37
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    3
    7
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Shelly Beach, South Africa
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 January 2012

My husband and I spent the weekend at Bushlands Game Lodge in Janauary 2012.

Bushlands is made up of individual log-cabin style units. Our particular unit (No.6) was set right in the sand forest.

The units are connected to one another and to the dining-room and reception area etc by raised board-walks.

Our room was very comfortable and the lodge was well laid out and pleasant, with a swimming pool, a bar area, a dining-room, deck and viewing deck, all easily accessible. There are walks mapped out through the reserve, which has no dangerous game on it, so is ideal for walking.


Meals are served in a central dining-room that, while not overly fancy, is quite atmospheric. The rate includes dinner and breakfast. We found the food really nice, with dinner including a starter, salads, and a choice of about 3 mains, vegetables and desserts. Breakfast consisted of a buffet with cereals, fruits, yoghurts and pastries and eggs, bacon, sausages, mushrooms,tomatoes etc available to order hot. The staff were all extremely friendly and eager to please.


A highlight for me was the bushbaby buffet that happens each night during dinner - there is a table outside the dining-room (i.e the Bushbaby Buffet) and one of the waiters would take a dish of fresh fruit out to the table, no sooner would the plate be put out and a greedy little bush baby would arrive to feast. Apparently there are normally 3-4 bush babies out there each night, but unfortunately we only saw the one little fella.

My only gripe with the lodge was the fact that we had issues with water supply to our unit on both Saturday and Sunday mornings. The lodge gets their water from a near-by river and it would seem that there have been some problems pumping the water from the filtration plant to the area that our unit was situated in. On Saturday the problem was resolved quite quickly after we alerted them to it, but Sunday's problem was more serious and we were eventually given the keys to another unit in order to use the bathroom facilities there.


All in all, we had a fantastic week-end. We saw lots of game at the lodge: giraffe (always my favourite) lots of different buck, Wildebeest, zebra and the cutest little croc who has a home at the reception area

Room Tip: If you ask for a room near the pool you will be centrally located, close to the dining-room, bar etc...
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank GillRichardson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 January 2012

We stayed here for two nights self catering, and the rooms were just fantastic. Tastefully decorated with air con in both bedrooms which get serviced daily. The lodges are clustered togethor but there is enough privacy, with sturdy boardwalks linking them all. The pool is a godsend in the hot weather! We had the buffet for one night which was fantastic - the food had plenty of choice (4 main courses) and you could tell it was all cooked fresh, and staff were extremely accomodating and friendly. The manager David made a point of greeting everyone, and explained that he has only recently taken over and had ideas to improve it. There is a wonderful viewing deck that looks straight over the plain and you can see ostrich and various buck milling around. There were some problems getting into the lodge with the electric gate but im sure they will fix it. The lodge is about 40 mins drive to Hluhluewe Game Reserve where you can see the 'big 5'.
I hope that aircon will be installed into the kitchen/lounge area as the nights we stayed it was unbearably hot. Oh, and the beds are extremely comfortable too!

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Kay M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LONDON
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 December 2011

Cabins/lodges much as described by others - quiet, comfortable, well serviced but a little tire looking. Self guided walks very enjoyable. Saw giraffe, impala, kyala, wildebeest, zebra, vervet monkeys and thick tailed bush babies plus many birds. Game warden escorted trip to Hluhluwe game reserve itself well worthwhile. Saw buffalo, rhino, elephant, warthog, zebra, and many antelope types. Take warm, windproof clothing as vehicle covered but open to the air. Restaurant pleasant but menu limited. Staff very helpful. Nice pool area,

Road from Hluhluwe village rough/unmetalled and about half hours drive.

Room Tip: Ask for room reasonable close to the restaurant
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank POPPYFRODO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bedfordshire, England
Level Contributor
51 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 95 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 November 2011

The accommodation is in comfortable cabins spread over a wide area and accessed by raised walkways. The bathroom in our cabin had seen better days, but was acceptable for the 2 nights we were at Bushlands. The staff here were fantastically friendly and helpful, and the chef made special gluten-free meals for my wife.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank John6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Falmouth
Level Contributor
99 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 September 2011

The main lodges are built of wood and connected to each other, the reception, dining room and bar by raised wooden walkways. These are a bit rickety in parts as are the lodges - walk across the floor and things shake. The walkways are about 1.5m high and animals and birds walk underneath. Vervet monkeys can be heard clambering over the roof and you might see a useful house gecko walking on the walls.

So, this is a taste of real Africa rather than what you'd get in a sanitised chain hotel. If you can live with a few creapy crawlies in your bedroom then you could really like this place because you do feel close to the wildlife. Perhaps because of the proximity to the outside, it wasn't spotless - a few leaves etc tended to get blown in. But we think you have to consider this type of place as a softies version of camping! You can't expect it to be like a normal city hotel.

The bedroom was of a reasonable size but not huge and the bathroom was decidedly on the small size. There was a small balcony from which you can look at the wildlife.

We were told not to drink the water - we understand more because of the colour than because it is unsafe but you need to check this yourself.

The food was only OK - it was a buffet at breakfast and dinner but the choice was somewhat limited. This is probably because it is a relatively small enterprise. It was also not peak season and there weren't many there.

We enjoyed our stay but probably investigate alternatives in the area if we came back to the nearby reserve.

ps take a torch - the walkways are lit but not particularly well and are a bit uneven in parts.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Livingwhilewecan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 August 2011

We had a self-catering family unit, situated close to the entrance. The unit was very spacious and luxurious. The garden with pool was very nice. However, there were not many animals to be seen. The reception and the restaurant were quite far from our unit. There were few other guests during our stay. When we dined in the restaurant we were the only guests. The bushbabies were not fed. Food was okay, but not special. Service was fine.
The lodge is not difficult to find when you take the Bushlands offturn on the N2 10km south of Hluhluwe.

  • Stayed July 2011
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank AudryWim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Gooderson Bushlands Game Lodge

Property: Gooderson Bushlands Game Lodge
Address: Lot H99, Bushlands Road, Hluhluwe 3960, South Africa
Region: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Zululand > Hluhluwe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 7 Hotels in Hluhluwe
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Gooderson Bushlands Game Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 36
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Also Known As:
Bushlands Game Hotel Hluhluwe
Gooderson Bushlands Game Lodge Hluhluwe, South Africa - Zululand

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