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“Amazing experience”
Review of Camp Jabulani

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Camp Jabulani
Certificate of Excellence
pa
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Amazing experience”
Reviewed 24 July 2007

I stayed at Camp Jabulani for 2 wonderful nights. The rooms are the height of luxury. There are only 6 suites total, each one is far enough away from the others so as to be completely out of sight, giving a feeling of total privacy. A plunge pool on my deck, a clear enclosed glass shower from which I could view wildlife right outside my abode, a soaking tub both deep and long….I can’t say enough about the accommodations…and there is the bed, comfortable and within sight of the lovely in room fireplace that the staff lights for you each night. All food and drinks are included and they stock your in room refrigerator with whatever drinks you want. While there my ranger Armand convinced me to try the Amarula, a delicious cream liquor you HAVE to try made out of a fruit that apparently makes elephants drunk! I know it certainly made me relaxed! Very delicious, sort of like a fruity bailey’s. Upon getting home I went out and bought a bottle!

The staff is super friendly and my ranger was very knowledgeable about the animals, plants and surrounding areas. He was very willing to stop whenever I wanted to (something I appreciated only after staying at another camp) allowing me the freedom to take pictures of just about everything, scenery, birds, and of course the big ones lions, rhinos, elephant etc.

The food is out of this world. I call it the eating safari! Hot and cold breakfast, pretty much whatever you want, if you can think it up they’ll make it. Lunch was always delicious (and don’t say no to desert). For dinner there was a choice of main entrees. I had springbok (tenderloin) with a wine sauce (very much like steak au poivre in flavor, although the texture was more in line with tenderloin). I am not a big fan of venison in the states so I was very surprised to find that the springbok tasted like beef (for real!). I liked it so much I asked for it the next night and the chef made if for me!

The best thing about Camp Jabulani though, is the elephants. I went on three elephant rides, two in the evening and one in the morning. The evening rides end near sunset at a location well away from the Camp. You travel through thick brush with ease (and an occasional nosh by the elephants on some juicy acacia!) The animals part in front of you showing no fear. When you alight from the elephants you find yourself in front of a beautiful bonfire with drinks and appetizers set up, lovely cushy chairs and an incredible view. On top of that, one night the lions had a few things to say very close to where we were drinking our sundowners to add a little bit of excitement and adrenaline to the evening. The morning ride started in a lovely mist which slowly burned off as the sun got stronger, and a mist bow! I’ve never seen anything like it but apparently it doesn’t need to rain for a rainbow. This one was formed as the mist burned off and stretched from one end of the small grasslands we were traveling through, to the other. Riding the elephants is sooo peaceful. They are such huge animals, but unless they are eating, you can barely hear them moving through the brush. Ok, remember the Amarula I told you about??? I rode the elephant that is used as the label on the bottle! While there I rode 2 different elephants. I preferred Joe, his gait was smooth and rolling.

In addition to elephant riding, game drives via vehicle, and bush walks at Camp Jabulani you can also see the endangered Cheetah habitat. It’s not just for Cheetah’s they have wild dog, the vulture restaurant (they feed the wild vultures all the bones left over after the other animals have eaten all the meat). They descend in cloud after cloud.

In the afternoon you can go and watch the elephants play in a pond, spraying each other with the little ones frolicking and rolling in the dirt.

My days were completely full and wonderfully amazing.

If you are traveling to South Africa, you can’t miss this place.

I was going to post pictures as well but I read the trip advisor terms of use, and they get copyright of the pics I would have posted! Not going to happen.

Helen R

  • Liked — everything was awesome!
  • Disliked — There was nothing I did not like
  • Stayed June 2007, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank hmr28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Georgia
Level Contributor
192 reviews
85 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 297 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 April 2007

We have recently returned from South Africa and cannot stop raving about our new safari find. Camp Jabulani, near Kruger National Park, seamlessly combined beautifully appointed private suites, fantastic food, perfect service, and incredible wildlife viewing for a phenomenal safari experience.

The suites were very large and absolutely beautiful. The furnishings were of the highest quality and created the perfect retreat at the end of the day. The camp was designed so that every suite feels completely private but you are very close to the main lodge.

We love great food. So, while preparing to visit South Africa, we researched dining options extensively. While in Cape Town, we had the opportunity to dine at three of the Top Ten 2006 Johnnie Walker award-winning restaurants in South Africa. We were completely disappointed with all three restaurants. Upon arriving at Camp Jabulani, we were blown away by the quality of the meals…just superb and exponentially surpassed our experiences at the other “Top Ten” restaurants in South Africa. The meals were beautifully prepared but more importantly…delicious. With no hesitation, these were the best meals of our South African vacation. The executive chef, Rudolf van den Berg, is extremely talented and very friendly too.

As you can see from some of the pictures, the wildlife viewing was terrific. We had the opportunity to get close to animals for great photos. With that being said, there is no need to worry and you will feel completely safe. Also, the elephant back safari was one of the most amazing experiences of our lives.

The staff was amazing. The service was comparable to other luxury 5 star properties…just better. The staff was completely professional but personable as well. There was a complete lack of pretentiousness which can be prevalent at other lodgings of this stature.

We did not want to leave and cannot wait to return to this exquisite property. This is the new standard by which all of our future lodging stays will be compared. With no hesitation, this was the most memorable vacation of our lives. Thank you to the Camp Jabulani staff for creating memories that will last a lifetime.

  • Liked — Suites, Food, and Wildlife Viewing
  • Disliked — Having to leave!
  • Stayed March 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank Luxury1Georgia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, England
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 September 2006

From the moment you arrive until the moment you leave jabulani - everything is perfect!
The accomodation is so luxurious you would find it hard to believe that you are sleeping under canvas.
Our guide Riaan is the most fantastic ranger I have ever had the pleasure in meeting - he done everything in his power to make our stay memorable.
The elephant back safaris are out of this world! and as guests at Jabulani you are allowed an up close (cuddle) with the cheetahs at the nearby cheetah sanctuary.. something the day visitors are not allowed to do! (and we even gor to meet the 11 day old baby elephant called Limpopo!)
I really cannot express how wonderful this place and the staff are, and the food... well girls forget about the diets while you are here as Rudolph the chef is fantastic and his culinary delights are to die for!
FANTASTIC 10/10

  • Liked — Everything
  • Disliked — leaving...:-((
  • Stayed September 2006, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank KarrieP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The Woodlands, Texas
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 September 2005

You could not stay at a better lodge. The staff, facilities and ameneties are the very best. We were there for three nights and wish we had arranged for more. Our cabin was overlooking the river bed. The linens are the finest. Everyone from the management to the housekeepers are always there to do nothing but take care of your wishes.

While we were there, the owner was in residence and gave us private tours of the protected areas.

We will definitely be going back. If a 10 star status was awarded, Camp Jabulani would qualify.

  • Stayed September 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
18 Thank Stetzel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Camp Jabulani

Property: Camp Jabulani
Address: Kapama Game Reserve | Maruleng, Hoedspruit 1380, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Limpopo Province > Hoedspruit
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 104 Speciality Lodging in Hoedspruit
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Camp Jabulani 5*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Camp Jabulani, a family-owned private safari lodge, is guaranteed to offer first class accommodation, cuisine, facilities and personalised service. But its most notable feature is the herd of trained African elephants, which were rescued by the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre. Over and above its once-in-a-lifetime close-up and personal elephant interaction experience, guests are also able to join experienced rangers in safari vehicles as they head out in search of The Big 5, and the smaller creatures that are part of an African Safari; visits to the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre or simple relaxation around the camp or in the "Bush Spa". The exclusive Zindoga Villa is ideally suited to family travellers, or the client who prefers a more private, luxury experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Camp Jabulani Hotel Hoedspruit
Camp Jabulani South Africa/Hoedspruit

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