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“Loved Kirkman's Kamp!!”

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andBeyond Kirkman's Kamp
Certificate of Excellence
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
28 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Loved Kirkman's Kamp!!”
Reviewed 15 November 2013

My sister and I just got back from 4 nights at Kirkman's Kamp (KK) and all I can say is WOW! From the moment we arrived, it was clear this place was special. We were welcomed and introduced to the staff, including our ranger Brett, who met with us alone to learn our wishes for safari. This being our first safari, of course we wanted to see the Big 5, especially the big cats. We were not disappointed. On our first evening drive, we saw elephants, lions mating, and a leopard with her cub. It only got better from there. Our tracker Colin (who we nicknamed Eagle Eye) made sure we saw the Big 5 and more; his talent is unbelievable and KK is lucky to have him. We went off-roading on several occasions to get a birds eye view of a leopard in the tree with his kill and a pride of lions who had taken down a giraffe. It was fascinating to be so close to the animals and observe them in their natural habitat. But even besides the animal sightings, KK was just an all-around great experience. The grounds were beautiful and the communal areas were cozy and comfortable. The family-like atmosphere and camaraderie between guests and staff was awesome. The food was plentiful and every single meal was delicious. The included laundry service was wonderful; everything was washed and ironed to a tee (better than I do at home, LOL). The massages and other spa services were reasonably priced and excellent (Thanks Vanessa). And to top it all off, we even had our own personal butler, Friday, to cater to us. His big smile and jokes made my day.

KK was a splurge to celebrate my sister's 40th birthday, but it was definitely worth it. I've gotten hooked and look forward to going back soon. Thanks KK family for a wonderful first safari!

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank T.michelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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479 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (127)
Date | Rating
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
69 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 November 2013

When we booked our safari lodging, we chose two places due to limited availability - one that was slightly cheaper for a couple of nights and Kirkmans for one night. Given the relatively small difference in price, I expected a similar experience at Kirkmans but it surpassed all our expectations.
It does have a very colonial feel to it - large leather armchairs looking over the Sabi Sands hills, iced tea before the afternoon drives, dark oak furniture etc. Small things but certainly adds to the experience.
The safari experience was great, but I think that's largely Sabi Sands rather than the resorts, although the guide was very knowledgeable and friendly. For me, what made Kirkmans stand out as a memorable experience was:

-The high level of service - staff always available to help without being over-bearing
-The level of comfort - high quality bed linen, large, comfortable sofas and armchairs, large well-mixed drinks in the evening before dinner
-The pool - a large pool overlooking the plains was a lovely way to spend the morning and early afternoon
-The food - a selection of dishes were offered (the previous place was a single choice buffet) that were delicious
-The attention to detail - although not a deal-breaker, having a bath and bottle of champagne waiting for us when we returned was a nice touch. There were a couple of other similar things that made a difference.

I left feeling a little gutted that we weren't able to book an extra night here, but definitely an experience to remember

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Tom B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sandton, South Africa
Level Contributor
46 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 November 2013

I went to Kirkmans 3 years ago and extended my stay while I was there, that's how good it was. Having family visiting from overseas I took them to Kirkmans full of confidence. Another amazing stay!
Sightings were excellent, being on a safari at Kirkmans means you don't just look at the animals, you follow them and really get to know how they behave, how they really are in the wild.
Lodge staff is tops, Agnes made our stay really special. Food was more than generous and really tasty. Ranger and tracker displayed great knowledge and were super friendly. The rooms (and lodge in general) are super clean, but starting to show their age (who really cares in the bush...). Bed was very comfortable.
I'm looking forward going back as soon as possible!
Can only recommend and praise this lodge.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Seb7111
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York, New York, United States
Level Contributor
20 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 November 2013

We spent 3 nights in Kirkman's before moving onto another &Beyond property. I must say that had we not used African Safari Consultants run by Jeffrey Ward (US) and Liesl Matthews (South Africa), we would never have even thought of Sabi Sands Game Reserve. Let me explain. Sabi Sands game reserve is a private reserve adjacent to Kruger National Park. The reason one chooses Sabi Sands over Kruger National itself is that the game drives (from what we understand) are so much better. We saw everything, and we do mean everything....UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL. The game rangers and trackers are allowed to take the vehicles incredibly close to these animals, whereas we understand this is not often possible in Kruger National itself. We LOVED Kirkman's Kamp. It was actually our favorite lodge. The property is stunning and the service is off the hook. You have your own butler! The food was incredible, and the setting of course, amazing. I think what sets Kirkman's apart however is its size. Little did we know that it's actually one of the larger lodges in Sabi Sands (16 rooms, 32 guests max). They have 4 game vehicles go out every day. What we found was that this property was simply more social than the others we experienced. After the drives, you socialized with the other guests as well as rangers, and staff. Of course there was plenty of opportunity for solitude and privacy if you would like, but we enjoy being social for part of our day. We were treated incredibly well here. As a gay couple, we questioned how we would be received. We needn't ever question again with any &Beyond property. How can you beat an elephant munching on grass right outside your window, or 3 male lions greeting us for cocktail hour?? This is truly a wonderful way to experience safari.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Darren Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 November 2013

We loved Kirkmans Kamp. We were very lucky with our awesome tracker Collin and Ranger Gareth. They really went above and beyond to deliver on our daily animal requests. From multiple leopards in trees, elephants crossing the river whilst the sun goes down, hippos, rhinos, hyenas and all of their babies. Also a bird watchers delight. Loved the ranger special every morning, made the 5am starts much easier. We were also lucky enough to see lions mating! Great sightings everyday thanks so much guys. All round staff were fantastic were had a great social time as well. Will definitely return.

  • Stayed October 2013
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Helpful?
Thank Salcorns
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brooklyn, New York
Level Contributor
4 reviews
Reviewed 1 November 2013

Our stay at andBeyond Kirkman's Kamp in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve in South Africa was a perfect Safari experience. The lodge is an old homestead that is inviting, informal, and provides every comfort. The staff are outstanding. Every need is not only met but anticipated in a low key way. You are assigned a specific staff person to be your "butler" -- we had Agnes, who was delightful --to be sure that your are well cared for. What could be better than being met with a warm washcloth when you arrive after your long travels -- or an ice cold washcloth after a trip to the local community in 100 degree heat! The food was delicious and there were meals in wonderful surprise locations ( won't tell you to give away the surprise). Our safari guide, JP Joubert, and Eckson our tracker made our game rides very special. Their enthusiasm and respect for the animals was palpable. And we saw a fantastic array of animals. There is a comradship that develops among the guests and the guides as we meet for drinks before dinner and compete for the best tally of the day's animal sightings on a black board in the bar. The whole experience could not have been better. Other places we stayed in were wonderful lodges -- but Kirkman's had a special feel that can't be beat.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Elaine G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
31 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 October 2013

The location looks like how you'd imagine a safari lodge should look. Most of the other resorts in the area simply look like resorts so they lack that charm and history.

The staff, every one of them, makes an extreme effort to cater to you. It's quite special when you have flowers on your bed, or food made specially for you, or having people know your name and speaking with you with interest.

Food was phenomenal. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, the sundowners, the teas and coffee. All of it was fantastic. They accommodated our vegetarian restrictions amazingly.

It's all so friendly. People gather before dinner for drinks and every other night you sit communally. We thought we wouldn't enjoy this since it was our honeymoon but it was perfect. I am so happy for this experience.

In terms of viewing animals, I think you want to be in Sabi Sand. We saw cars from a few other places but nothing too busy. Lots of animals. Unfortunately, no wild dogs (next time perhaps). We stayed away from Timbavati area because we heard the animal viewing wasn't as good and there is hunting allowed so Sabi Sand was quite nice.

Getting there was a little much though. We drove from Joburg. Blew out a tire on the way home in the most massive rain storm ever. But we got to do the panoramic route, see God's window, eat pancakes all on the advice of the Brendan at Kirkman's.

Everyone lines up to hug you when you go home. How cool is that?

Thank you all for an amazing trip.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank BillyMays
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about andBeyond Kirkman's Kamp

Property: andBeyond Kirkman's Kamp
Address: Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Kruger National Park, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 42 Speciality Lodging in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — andBeyond Kirkman's Kamp 5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The spirit of safari comes alive at historic Kirkman’s Kamp. Step back in time into the gracious early settler atmosphere of this original 1920s homestead and marvel at the spectacular views of the unspoiled wilderness from each of the 18 guest cottages and the lodge’s rim-flow swimming pool. Rolling lawns carve out a niche in a wild and tumbling wilderness that hosts memorable game viewing in one of the most renowned Big Five wildlife regions in the world. Spacious sitting, dining and bar guest areas contain original mementos of a time long past. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kirkman`s Kamp Hotel Sabi Sand Game Reserve
AndBeyond Kirkman's Kamp South Africa/Sabi Sand Game Reserve

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