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“Fantastic Game Drives and a lovely location”

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Elephant Plains Game Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 5 August 2014

This felt like a hidden gem. The journey there (we drove) was a bit arduous but as soon as we arrived I felt it was worth every bump. If you are driving get instructions from the lodge and follow them carefully. Lovely room overlooking the water hole, great food and friendly. We saw several leopards, really this was the experience of a lifetime. The rangers were great, really made the drives enjoyable and the jeeps are great fun. Brilliant experience.

Room Tip: We had the honeymoon suite, large with a lovely deck and plunge pool.
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Alison O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EP2, Owner at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2014

Hi Alison, thank you for the kind feedback and for calling us a hidden gem! Thank you also for the compliments on our staff members, the rooms, food and game drives. Please do visit us again one day! Kind regards, Marlet Swart

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282 - 288 of 871 reviews

Reviewed 2 August 2014

My wife and I had an amazing stay at Elephant Plains. The best part was our game drives. Dawie and Thully were both amazing and did an unbelievable job sighting animals and getting us a great view of the animals. We not only saw the big five, but experienced many quality sightings, including a leopard in a tree with an impala kill, a mother and baby elephant playing, and a pack of lions going after two buffalo.

My wife and I stayed in one of the rondavels. The accommodations were pristine. It was our honeymoon and as added touch the hotel put a complimentary bottle of champagne in our room. We both thought this was so nice and above and beyond what would be expected.

The only reason I'm giving this lodge a 4 out of 5 is that I thought the food was a bit inconsistent. At some meals it was really amazing and other meals it was just average. Overall though, I would definitely recommend this lodge and had a great experience here. A great value for Sabi Sands, lovely rooms, friendly and helpful staff, and amazing game drives. A true once in a lifetime African safari experience!

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank BKTraveler2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EP2, Owner at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2014

Thank you very much for your kind review and all the compliments on our staff, the rooms and the game viewing. Thank you also for recommending us as good value for money. We would love to welcome you back one day! Maybe for an anniversary? Kind regards, Marlet Swart

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Reviewed 2 August 2014

We stated for 4 nights. Everything perfect. The game dives were just so good. Well worth the 5.30 early morning calls!!! Accommodation was spacious and luxurious, even to the fire lit for you in the evening.The Boma Dinners were just wow. We saw so many animals, even Leopard mating and a wild dog kill

Room Tip: They all were fabulous.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank ChrisBuckels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EP2, Owner at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2014

Hi Chris, thank you for your kind review and compliments. I am glad you enjoyed your stay and we would love to welcome you back one day! Kind regards, Marlet Swart

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Reviewed 22 July 2014

My husband and I stayed at Elephant Plains as part or our recent tour of South Africa. We loved it! We had a lovely LARGE cabin (we stayed in the Rhino room) with private deck. The place is family owned and operated and you could definitely tell that from the attention to detail and the service provided. All of the staff were wonderful and helpful. The food was very good and we enjoyed meals in the company of other travellers. The game drives were the best ever (we have stayed at other lodges in South Africa, Kenya and Tanzania and this was definitely the best for game viewing). We highly recommend staying in Sabi Sands rather than Kruger. While both share an unfenced border so the animals move freely between them, in Kruger you have to stick to the roads and everything is much more crowded. At Elephant Plains the rangers literally would take you through trees to get close to the animals. Our Ranger, Dawie, and our Tracker, Tewy (sp?) were fabulous. It is still a mystery as to how they could locate a leopard in a tree with a kill based on a few scrapes in the sand miles away! We got so close to animals that you could feel their breath. The staff, however, are all very careful and protective of the animals and are clearly very highly trained. We never ever felt unsafe. The night drives, which I initially thought might be uninteresting, provided some of our best moments. I can still sense the eerie feeling of being surrounded by the glowing eyes of laughing hyena (the really do laugh!) in the dark. The only reason we didn't give this place a five stars is that the safari vehicles seemed slightly crowded. There were three seats in each row and all seats were occupied throughout our stay. Hence, someone had to have the middle seat on every drive which isn't great for taking photographs. Also, our room was the closest one to the main lodge. When we were trying to rest (after 5am game drives), we could hear a lot of noise from the main lodge (other guests and staff preparing for lunch). It didn't give us the "away from it all" feeling we had hoped for.

Otherwise it was a fantastic stay and we highly recommend it. We also love the weekly email updates we still receive on the sightings for each week. We will definitely be back!

Room Tip: The larger suites are amazing, however, Rhino room is the closest to the main lodge and can be noisy...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank CAM1202
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EP2, Owner at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Thank you very much for your kind and thorough feedback. I am glad that you enjoyed your stay with us. Thank you also for the compliments on attention to detail, helpful staff members, good food and the best ever game drives, seeing that you've been on safari elsewhere in South Africa as well as in the rest of Africa. What a nice compliment! As we run on a fairly high occupancy (we take 24 guests and have 3 game drive vehicles to lessen the impact on the environment) our vehicles can sometimes carry 8 guests per vehicle, if the camp is fully booked. We have, however, found that guests do not generally mind swapping seats so that everyone can get the opportunity of having a side seat when the vehicles are full. Guests also have the option of hiring a private vehicle for the duration of their stay, which would mean that you have the entire vehicle for yourself, obviously subject to availability and booking well in advance. Maybe you should consider doing this when you return for your next safari? We would love to welcome you back to the lodge! Kind regards, Marlet Swart

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Reviewed 22 July 2014

We visited elephant plains as a family in mid July. We stayed in the family villa. Luxury accommodation, top quality food and an unforgettable safari experience. We saw many animals, unfortunately just not rhino of the big five. Highlights would have been seeing a pair of mating leopards, a pride of lions with cubs and a second group of four big males on the same day, and watching wild dogs hunting (they chased a leopard up a tree and at the same time a hippo was caught in the commotion and came running across in front of the vehicle, bellowing - it was hilarious!). Our only regret is we didn't stay longer. We drove in to the lodge, a very long and bumpy drive. I would recommend flying in. Reasonably priced compared to other lodges in this premium game reserve but as with the other private game lodges you need to book well in advance.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
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Thank NZcowcocky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EP2, Owner at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Thank you very much for your kind review. I am glad to read that you enjoyed your stay with us! Wow, it sounds like you truly had some amazing sightings, even though you missed out on seeing some rhino. Thank you also for mentioning that we are reasonably priced, in comparison with surrounding lodges. Please do visit us again one day - per charter flight if you prefer. As you have seen, our gravel airstrip is a two minute drive from the lodge, making transfers via Johannesburg etc. a whole lot easier. Kind regards, Marlet Swart

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Reviewed 21 July 2014

This lodge is if a reasonable size with a great team in both the lodge and the rangers / trackers. Rooms are great, both rondavels and suites with great view on the river.
Food is excellent with great service.
Game drives are nice with high quality explanations and ability on spotting all the animals. In twos days (4 game drives), we saw all the Big Five with and many more.

Room Tip: Suites are definitely the best. Having his shower outside in front of the river is a must!
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
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    • Rooms
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Thank XavierCh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EP2, Owner at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Dear Xavier, thank you for your kind feedback and compliments on our great team of staff members, the excellent food and great service as well as the informative game drives. Please do visit us again one day! Kind regards, Marlet Swart

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Reviewed 14 July 2014

Pool on our private deck with elephants grazing down below. 4 out of the 5 big game animals within 2 hours. Greated by special employees that are very knowledgeable. Most memorible dinning expierence. I am a chef and eating outside with the full moon, fire pit and table for 26 in a horseshoe gave it that special feeling. Wine cellar and bar to match. They gave us the key to go down into the wine room to select some very reasonable priced South African wines to round out our dinning experience.

Room Tip: July is a cooler month, no mosquito's and still lots of wildlife.Ask for the fireplace.
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
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Thank martial123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EP2, Owner at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Thank you very much for your kind feedback. I am delighted to read that you enjoyed the stay with us. Getting compliments from a professional chef regarding our dinner is a huge privilege. Thank you for that. We would love to welcome you back one day. Kind regards, Marlet Swart

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Additional Information about Elephant Plains Game Lodge

Address: Kruger National Park 1380, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 42 Speciality Lodging in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Price Range: £354 - £603 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Elephant Plains Game Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Elephant Plains Game Lodge is situated in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, which forms part of the Greater Kruger National Park. This owner-run lodge caters for the discerning traveller, with a variety of accommodation options including 5 Rondavels, 6 Luxury Suites and a Honeymoon Suite. Activities include two daily game drives and a bush walk. The lodge also offers a spa, gym, conference facility / TV room, games room, small library and two swimming pools. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Elephant Plains Game Hotel Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Elephant Plains Game Nelspruit
Elephant Plains Game Lodge South Africa/Sabi Sand Game Reserve

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