We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Wow big 5 loads”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 4 more sites!
Elephant Plains Game Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Dubai
Level Contributor
77 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
“Wow big 5 loads”
Reviewed 3 June 2010

Stayed for my girlfriends 30th birthday. Loved the drive from Nelspruit in the big truck we hired. Had a lovely room over looking the river. Amazed to see giraffes, elephants etc all drinking the moment we arrived. Fantastic. The game drives were superb. Saw the big 5 more than once and id be shocked if anyone stayed here and didnt see everything.

Rangers are fantastic and loved every minute of it. I was here three days two nights and would say 2 or 3 days is enough. The rooms were beautiful and spacious. Hotel did a cake for my gfs birthday at lunch and brought out sparklers and sang happy birthday round the camp fire at night. Food is good. Not out of this world but good enough and you are in the bush. Enjoyed toasting marshmellos after dinner.

Overall after travelling all round the world the whole Africa experience is out of this world. Best trip ive ever done from Cape town to Elephant Plains. Amazing.

  • Stayed September 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Evickage
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

820 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    701
    93
    18
    5
    3
See reviews for
195
455
17
6
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (184)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Portland
Level Contributor
25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 May 2010

We stayed at Elephant Plains and had an excellent experience. We had one Rondavel and one luxury room overlooking the water. The Rondavel by the spa had a very nice view and the luxury room had a deck overlooking the water. We watched elephant and cape buffalo visit the watering hole. Our safari trips were excellent - the most game we saw while on vacation at any place. Our guide was extremely knowledgeable and asked what we'd like to see. He delivered on all fronts, and we watched many leopard, lions, and even saw a cute pair of hyena cubs. Very awesome game experience! The extra touches like the warm water bottles and tea for the morning drives were quite nice. The food was very good and we enjoyed eating by the campfire and making marshmallows after dinner. The staff was very friendly and the accomodations lovely. I'd highly recommend Elephant Plains, and wish we would have stayed longer here and less in other areas!

  • Stayed May 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank EventRider
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Deventer, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 26 May 2010

We stayed here for 2 nights in May as part of our honeymoon and had the most amazing time there. It begun with them organising a private meal for us on the first evening (as requested by out travel company) and a complementary bottle of wine in our room. The rondavel where we stayed was pure luxury although it did give the feeling that you were out in the wild. Our ranger (Louie) and tracker (Michael) were outstanding. They seemed genuinely happy and willing to go that extra mile explaining things about all the animals and not just driving round. We were lucky enough to see the Big 5 more than once in the 2 days we were there. The small extra's they provide like the hot water battles for the morning drive make it that bit more luxurious and well worth another visit. I would definitely recommend Elephant Plains to a friend. Thank you all.

  • Stayed May 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JessieK-T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
198 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 May 2010

Checking and comparing all prices for Private Game lodges that include two game drives, this is a great one! It does not include all drinks you take (even water bottles should be paid, but then at reasonable and normal prices). The entrance gate is quiet a long drive from i.e. Hazyview and the road is 'challenging', but once you're there...you really are there. Great place, nice people, and game drives were a celebration. We saw the big five. Had a good Game drive team (ranger: Louis; tracker: Michael). Meals were good, rooms fine with small details (bed time story, candy etc.).

  • Stayed May 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank hagenbas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cinnaminson, New Jersey
Level Contributor
33 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 April 2010

We loved the Elephant Plains. It was a tremendous value for the money. We stayed in a rondavel, and we thought that it was a great value. (I'm used to three star hotels, so this was a considerable upgrade.)

The pool was great. Nice and refreshing for in-between game drives.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner are always buffet. (With breakfast you can also choose any style of eggs.) The girls are very picky eaters, so they were glad to eat American food after six days at the lodge. Our travel doctor recommended that we not drink the local water or eat any uncooked fruits or vegetables that could have been washed in water. (We were starving at the end, because they always had fresh fruits and salads at the buffet that we had to avoid.) I don't know if the water is safe or not for Americans...we always stuck with bottled water. I'm sure that it's safe for the locals who live in the area and are used to it, but who knows how it can affect a non-local. Better safe than sorry.

Anyway, previous post stated no TVs...true. There was a TV near the fitness room, but we couldn't figure out how to get it to work with the satellite dish. Just as well. There was a game room near the rondavels with a ping pong and pool table. There was also a library, but the girls said that there were not many books, and probably not for kids. There was a small gift shop with a few local crafts and some items (shirts, hats, postcards) with the Elephant Plains logo.

There was a bar on the premises well stocked with different varieties of standard liquor, but the more "exotic" liquor might be limited. The bartender had to look in the book for the recipe for a cosmopolitan. They didn't have the liquor for other more exotic drinks.

The staff was very friendly and helpful. On the day that we arrived, it was our friend's 18th birthday. Without asking, a staff member approached me after dinner and asked whose birthday it was. They turned out the lights in the boma and brought out her dessert with a sparkler. (What a neat birthday for her!)

After dinners and desserts in the boma, the staff will pass out poles and marshmallows for roasting on the fire. (neat stuff for kids and adults)

If you are women travelling without men, one word of caution....bugs and frogs. The spiders are big, but if you stay away from them, they'll leave you alone as well. We only ever saw them outside. Never in the rooms. Every night when we came back to the rondavel, there was a frog on our sliding glass door. The first night, we were scared out of our wits, because it was a small frog with yellow stripes on its back. (We thought that it might have been a poisonous dart frog. We didn't know where they live.) After spending about 10 minutes trying to shoo it away, it jumped on my leg and touched my bare skin while jumping away. We called my husband in the states and asked him to look up on the internet if there are any poisonous frogs in South Africa. (There aren't, but we didn't know that!)

Spekaing of which...phones. There are no phones in the room. but the office told me that we could use one in the office. (The office wasn't open after the evening game drive, so if you're planning to call at that time, go with plan B.) Vodacom does has service in the rondavels, but very faint. When we got a signal, we had to keep extremely still, or we'd lose the signal. I had rented a satellite phone just in case Vodacom didn't work, but we never needed it. (I left my hubby and three other kids back home in the states.)

The rondavels have a safe in the bathroom, but it is pretty small. I brought a netbook, and it barely fit in, with my DSLR camera and lenses. I don't think that a bigger laptop computer would fit.

Bugs were never a problem in the room. We had a triple room, with a king size bed and a single bed, and both had mosquito nets. We never saw any bugs on it, even in the middle of the night. (I don't think that I was bitten by a mosquito at all during our stay, but we still took Malarone as a precaution.)

All in all, we had a fabulous time at this hotel. If you are traveling with young children who are picky eaters, I would recommend bringing some dry food with you just in case, like crackers or granola bars or cereal. I was lucky that my daughter likes hard-boiled eggs. We would order extra at breakfast, and keep them in the refridgerator in the room for later.

I would definitely love to come back here again, and bring my (less adventerous) husband next time.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank WorldTravlingNJMom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
2 reviews
Reviewed 26 April 2010

My wife and I recently stayed at the Elephant Plains Game Lodge for 4 nights. It was an overwhelmingly positive experience. Reading past reviews of this lodge got us more and more excited, and the actual experience undoubtedly lived up to the hype. The safari drives where amazing. Morne and Prince, our ranger and tracker, did a great job of finding all the game. They were informative, friendly, and simply made the experience fun. The animals were amazing, and we saw each of the big 5 at least twice. We stayed in a rondavel that was clean and provided nice amenities such as an outside shower, fridge, and coffee maker. In the spirit of full disclosure, I felt our room smelled a bit like a barn. I'm not sure what the other rooms smelled like, but I had to remind myself that we were in the bush in the middle of Kruger National Park. Nonetheless, it didn't limit my enjoyment at all. We felt that all of the food was very good, there was a nice variety of options at each meal. Also, past reviewers commented on the poor dessert quality, however I felt all of the desserts were good, and I'm a fan of sweets. Just one tip: the bottled water is not included in the cost of the rooms. It's not a substantial additional charge by any means, but we were a bit surprised to see it on our bill.. Overall, we would certainly comeback here. The quality and quanity of the drives, the services, and the food is exceptional, and it is unmatched when you take cost into account.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank dbs902
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canada
Level Contributor
22 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 April 2010

My husband and I stayed here for 4 days, 3 nights. We had such a great time. Staying at Elephant Plains was the highlight of our 2.5 weeks vacation!!!

A few examples of things we experienced during our stay:
1. Breakfasts: there were fruits, yogurt, toasts, and cereal, amongst other things. Coffee and tea were good. We especially enjoyed the made-to-order hot breakfast where we can get eggs, bacon, mushrooms and tomatoes.
2. Lunch and Dinners: While we really enjoyed fish, tuna pies, chicken pot pies, vegetable medley, chili chicken wings (so good!!!) and sweet potatoes, some of the other selections were average. For example, the desserts were ok, beef sometimes was a little over cooked and dishes like cucumber mousse was interesting. Nevertheless, there is a pretty good selection of food for lunch and dinner that if you do not like a few, you can always pick the other dishes. Plus, the staff always helps you with a friendly smile on their faces.
3. Game Drives: Our guide and tracker were very good. We saw the Big 5 quite quickly. We also saw a pride of lions, leopards (with their babies), hippos, zebras, giraffes, turtle, rabbit, baboons, owl, hyena, and impala, along with others. It was great. Sometimes we drove for 30 minutes without seeing a lot, but then all of a sudden, we would see a number of animals. It was exciting!
4. Room: Our luxury room was beautiful and nicely decorated. The bed was extremely comfortable and our large bathroom and deck were great. We booked the luxury room because the rondovels were full. However, I am glad we did stay at the luxury room instead of going somewhere else or changing our vacation dates to stay at the rondovels. It is beautiful and still excellent value compared to other lodges.
5. Service: The staff was great. They helped coordinate the road transfer from Hoedspruit airport to Elephants Plains. The road was bumpy, but the lady who picked us up was so nice and knowledgeable about the area. Housing cleaning was very good too.
6. Pool: It was incredible. I swam and hang out at the pool deck and saw a group of impalas walk by. They were so cute!
7. Massages: We also tried massages (very reasonable prices!). We had the African Massage and Hot Stone Massage. The Hot Stone Massage in particular was very soothing and it was neat to look out the window and see a buffalo drinking from a pond.
8. Connectivity: There are no TVs in the rooms and it was nice to just relax. There is a TV in the commons. The wireline internet was down for two days or more at the lodge. However, our blackberry coverage was still good.

In summary: highly recommend this place. Hope this helps!

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ms30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Sabi Sand Game Reserve hotels
7.5 mi away
Nkorho Bush Lodge
Nkorho Bush Lodge
#12 of 42 in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
384 reviews
6.1 mi away
Inyati Game Lodge, Sabi Sand Reserve
Inyati Game Lodge, Sabi Sand Res...
#1 of 1 in Inyati Private Game Reserve
397 reviews
9.8 mi away
Umkumbe Safari Lodge
Umkumbe Safari Lodge
#1 of 1 in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
308 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
1.2 mi away
Simbambili Game Lodge
Simbambili Game Lodge
#13 of 42 in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
329 reviews
6.7 mi away
Dulini Lodge
Dulini Lodge
#1 of 42 in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
385 reviews
11.0 mi away
Notten's Bush Camp
Notten's Bush Camp
#5 of 42 in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
538 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Elephant Plains Game Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Elephant Plains Game Lodge

Property: 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 #14 of 42 Speciality Lodging in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
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 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Booking.com, Odigeo, Agoda and Priceline so you can book your Elephant Plains Game Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
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

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing