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“Awesome”
Review of Jock Safari Lodge

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Jock Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Wales
Level Contributor
31 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
“Awesome”
Reviewed 1 March 2009

We stayed here for 3 nights as part of our African honeymoon. The location of Jock really made you feel as if you were in the middle of nowhere and in amongst all of the wildlife. Our first game drive was within an hour of arriving and we teamed up with two other couples who had also just arrived - within minutes of exiting the main entrance of the lodge we saw a rhino in the distance and then 3 lionesses hunting impala - just amazing ! We watched them for a while and then, after giving up, they wandered down the road and called for their young. They were suddenly joined by 7 gorgoeus cubs ! We sat for nearly an hour watching them play and feed....

We saw all of the big five and a host of other animals.. our guide - Edgar was truly excellent at spotting animals from a huge distance and even spotted a leopard which must have been half a mile away, asleep in a tree.

The food at Jock was good and very plentiful. In fact you could eat 7 times a day if you wished ... (1) coffee, juice and pastries at wake up call, (2) coffee and biscuits on the morning drive stop, (3) full english and continental breakfast on return (4) 3 course lunch at your leisure, (5) cakes and drinks at high tea before the evening drive, (6) sundowners and biltong, nuts, dried fruit and cheese biscuits on the evening drive, (7) 3 course dinner on return !!!

My highlight (other than the lion cubs) was a sundowner stop with a spectacular sunset, sipping cold wine and watching a herd of elephants grazing nearby. A truly unforgettable experience.

Accommodation was good too - it felt like we were in Africa, but with a bit of luxury thrown in. We used the plunge pool to cool down - not finding any problems with it like other reviewers did, and enjoyed the cool bottles of inclusive South African wine in our mini bar whist lounging on the deck or in the bath with gorgoeus views of the river and surrounding bush. The local monkeys were cute and friendly but they will steal anything edible and will try and get into your room if you leave the door open at all - and they are quite partial to the bread rolls that go with lunch and dinner so keep your wits about you !

All in all - a fantastic experience which we would highly recommend...!

  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank AndrewandSarah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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los angeles
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 February 2009

We just returned from a two week South African honeymoon and we enjoyed five nights at the Jock Safari Lodge. The lodge is stunning, our room was impeccable with an amazing outdoor shower, clawfoot tub, huge comfortable king size bed, and a great viewing deck where we spent many an afternoon reading and watching various animals pass by. The staff is incredibly attentive and the food was amazing. The game drives are done in very comfortable land rovers with only 6 guests in each vehicle. We passed many other safari companies, and each one made us happy we were at jock's. Our ranger, Raymond, was very knowledgeable and we saw all the big five in our first day there. The animals are amazing to behold, and each day was an adventure. Now, a few things we didn't know in advance and wish we had: First, Kruger is a national park and not a private game reserve. As such, the vehicles cannot leave the road and follow the animals. The park is a spiderwed of dirt roads, so that wasn't a problem for spotting game. However, often the game would walk away, and in private reserves you're allowed to follow them through the bush with your vehicle where you might spot lions making a kill, for example. We had an amazing time and saw lions mating, elephants trumpeting, and many other fantastic sights. But because it is a national park, the rules are strict on what the safaris can do. Second, you eat your dinners with your game ranger and the other members of your vehicle. This means that if you're put in a group of people who's company you don't enjoy, that could be a problem. Our fellow travelers were fine, but there were a few evenings we wished we could dine alone. Third, we stayed five nights which was probably 1-2 nights too many. There is nothing to do during the day between game drives other than reading, napping, and staying out of the heat. It was wonderfully relaxing. But by the end, we were getting a bit restless. FInally, we're both in our mid thirties and were the youngest guests at the lodge by a good twenty years. Again, we had an amazing time, but it should be noted. Overall, we cannot imagine a nice place to stay, with a more friendly staff or beautiful location, and we would recommend it without reservation!

  • Stayed February 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mrcartaire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
UK
Level Contributor
74 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 106 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2009

We stayed here for 3 nights in May for our honeymoon. Although expensive (£500/night), it's a once in a lifetime experience. We saw every possible animal within 24 hours of being there, the food was absolutely excellent and the scenery, drives and lodge were breathtaking.

The staff were friendly enough but nothing too special. Our driver was absolutey nuts!! But very knowledgeable - with amazing eye-sight! He could see animals miles off and even in the night.

The best thing about this place is definately the atmosphere of having your own secluded hut in the middle of the African jungle and the meals! The chef was amazing. The only downside was the cleanliness of things like the private pool (too dirty to even dip your toes in) and they don't have basics like an iron - not what I would expect for £500/night. They also struggled with hot water on our first day and so we had to wait an hour for a shower!

If you have a dodgy ticker, stay clear as the animals are only a stone throw away and there are often deer in the complex. They do startle you.

Overall, the best holiday ever - but it's expensive (although you don't need any spending money while you are there). Also bear in mind that it's a good hour and a half drive from the airport to Jock - and it's not the most friendly of drives. Try to ensure that you are at least with 2 or more people.

P.S. they only have outdoor showers! Although uncomfortable at first, there was something really envigourating about standing naked in the jungle under a shower with wild monkeys watching you!!

  • Liked — Location, location, location
  • Disliked — Cleanliness and price
  • Stayed May 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Googgsy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Halifax
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviewed 12 January 2009

We stayed here in November for 4 nights at Little Jock. Our stay was luxurious from start to finish. The location is amazing, our room, bathroom and bed were huge. Our private balcony looked out across the shallow river bed, a rhino walked up the river bed in front of us as we sat enjoying a drink on our first afternoon there. It was fantastic.

The game drives were great. (The early morning wakeup call is a shock but always worth getting up for as that is why you are there.) We saw all the Big 5, and much more. My favourites were the giraffes, lovely animals. We also enjoyed stopping for a gin and tonic or beer on the evening game drives.

The quality and choice of food was excellent, the staff were also very good. Our chef was superb and very much a character, we would look forward to him coming out of the kitchen and presenting his choice of deserts. We could also hear lions calling in the evenings whilst we ate dinner - unforgettable!

  • Liked — The closeness to the animals.
  • Disliked — Nothing.
  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DaveGHalifax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 December 2008

We stayed at Jock's for 3 nights in Nov 08 as part of our honeymoon and cannot fault the stay at all.

The room was fantastic, with a great view out onto the riverbed - we saw rhino, elephant and others from our balcony. The food was outstanding - far better than we had expected given the location of the lodge (my wife even had her first steak here after 15 years as a veggie and hasn't looked back!) - we enjoyed all the meals; breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The service was also excellent, but we have to reserve special thanks to Paddy, our ranger / driver. We had 6 game drives, saw all of the big 5 (some on numerous occasions - and a lion whilst on foot with 2 of the rangers), as well as many smaller animals which we suspect some less attentive rangers would have missed (lion cubs, African Wildcat kittens, and camelions). After 3 drives we had seen all of the big 5 and asked Paddy to find us some hippo's which we knew from the other rangers had been hard to find at that time - after driving for miles, Paddy duly found us a group of hippo's and a huge troop of baboon's to boot. Superb.

We had a fantastic time elsewhere in SA and then in Mauritius, but nothing beat our 3 nights at Jocks - we would certainly recommend it

  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Edmanc1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wokingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
112 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 December 2008

We stayed here for three nights in November, the weather was a bit changeable, but that did not spoil the experience. Jock Safari Lodge certainly exceeded our expectations. The rooms were large and well furnished and the food was really very good, plenty of it and a good choice. The game drives were very professionally organised with a maximum of six people in each truck. Our guide was very knowledgeable and showed us many of the smaller inhabitants of the park, like snakes, snails, tortoises and birds alongside the big five. It is marvellous to be so close to the wild and dangerous animals.

Everyone at Jock Safari Lodge does their best to make your stay so special and something you will always remember.

  • Liked — Everything
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Margaret J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cardiff, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
87 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 October 2008

We stayed at Jocks for three nights at the begining of October what a great place. Weather was not too good, overcast and a little cold - could not make full use of the private plunge pool.

Quality accomodation, luxury jeeps for game drives, excellent food with a wide variety including excellent wine list.

You eat breakfast and dinner with your ranger (allocated on arrival) lunch is at your leisure (watch out for the monkeys they pinch anything).

Friendly and helpful staff.

We managed to see the big five (just) but dont be disappointed if you see nothing on one of your drives as this does happen.

We loved it.

  • Liked — Quality and location
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed October 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank Jonahcardiff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Jock Safari Lodge

Property: Jock Safari Lodge
Address: Nearest Town Skukuza | Inside Kruger National Park, Kruger National Park 2060, South Africa
Phone Number:
Region: South Africa > Kruger National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #30 of 171 Speciality Lodging in Kruger National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Jock Safari Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Jock Safari Lodge is nestled where the Mitomeni and Biyamiti rivers flow as one, situated in the South-Western corner of the Kruger National Park. The lodge offers 6,000 hectares of exclusive traversing rights in an area of the park which is celebrated for its big five game viewing. Jock of the Bushveld, the legend that was, served as an inspiration for the aptly namely Jock Safari Lodge. The tale, linked to Sir Percy Fitzpatrick, highlights the canine devotion and stories of African adventures that have excited exploring travellers.Accommodation offered:Main Jock LodgeCarefully screened by lush trees and reed walls, the 12 individual thatched rooms at Jock Safari Lodge, impart a sense of aloneness and oneness with the landscape.Fitzpatrick’s Lodge, offers personal service in an intimate atmosphere. Perfect for small parties and families.The lodge is easily accessible by road, just over 5 hours drive from Johannesburg, or 1 hour Skukuza and 2 hours from Kruger International airports. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Jock Safari Hotel Kruger National Park

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