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.

“Wonderful Place”
Review of Jackalberry Lodge

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 5 more sites!
Jackalberry Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 29 February 2012

This lodge may not be as well-known as some others in various private reserves near Kruger but it is spectacularly serene and comfortable. The managers (husband and wife) are very hospitable, the food excellent, the ranger and tracker (Floris) (Lawrence) who drove us were unusually helpful. Come hell or high water they were going to show us the Big 5 and they did - several times. Our room was something out of a Ralph Lauren magazine spread. If the place weren't so far away we'd vacation there once a year.

Forget about "understated elegance". The place is elegant, restful and fascinating.

Room Tip: We stayed at the very end of the path that led to all the accommodations. Our room (Room 14) faced...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank crisismanager6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review
Reviews (276)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

187 - 193 of 276 reviews

Reviewed 22 January 2012

This place is amazing, we went as a 3day stop between the soccer matches during the world cup. The reserve is small, private with wonderful staff and food. The have multiple villas on the property with a very comfortable bed and gorgeous full bath, the large bay windows allow you the bath and look out on the grass lands, we saw several wild bore while brushing our teeth in the morning. The game viewing was top notch! We saw a giraffe fight, leopard hunting prey, a cheetah, hyena, honey badgers, hippos in the lakes during drink stops, and the highlight of our trip was 3 8week old lions cubs with their mother, we saw the large male lions. We also were engulfed by a heard of elephants, it was magnificent. The weather was lovely and while my mom was reading by the pool a large giraffe was feeding right on the other side of the fence.
The food is the best I have ever had, in the morning you have a light pastry and coffee but then come back to have a proper breakfast with fresh fruit and hot eggs and meat. The lunch is a great spread. The best was dinner where you had a choice of 3 entrees, everything was hot and cooked onsight, one night we have dinner around a fire pit with stars twinkling overhead, I will never forget this place. The staff was so friendly, the other guests were just as friendly and excited to be there. The game viewing was unbelievable. BEST PLACE EVER!

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank ash1eigh23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 January 2012

Jackalberry is an excellent place to stay, so good in fact that it will ruin the rest of your vacation as any other place you're going to will be less!
If you have a choice of rooms pick either 6 or 7 as there are build partially outside the electric fence surrounding the lodge. You can sit on the veranda outside of the fence i.e. no protection from passing game!
Multiple big 5 viewings a day, excellent food and service.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank fvunen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2012

We stayed in Jackalberry Lodge for 3 days during the last week of 2011 and the only word to describe our whole experience is "amazing".

The lodge contains a limited number of thatched roof rooms and has a maximum capacity of 16 individuals which is good because it doesn't get crowded and doesn't feel like a big hotel. We heard from other guests who had stayed at other lodges prior to Jackalberry that some of the big lodges can get quite busy and some safari tend to resemble traffic jams. This lodge seems remote and quite which is exactly what we were looking for.

Jackalberry is managed by a very nice couple: Tom and Colleen. Tom was also our guide during the Safari excursions throughout entire stay. Both of them were very informative, knowledgeable, and helpful. They went out of their way to help guests in every way.

The Safaris were also amazing. There's a wide variety of wildlife in the reserve. Within a few minutes of our arrival, we saw a Giraffe drinking from a watering hole near the dining room. We went on 6 safaris during our stay and saw Lions, Cheetahs, Leopards, Giraffes, Wildebeasts, Buffaloes, Elephants, Hippos, Baboons, Monkeys and various different antelope. Some antelope also roamed around our room on a regular basis. There's also a large variety of birds on the reserve. We also saw a huge cobra, a monitor lizard, vultures, and falcons of various kinds. The guests are taken on two safaris everyday. Tom put in extra effort to find leopards as they are quite elusive. We managed to find two separate pairs of leopards during our last two safari trips thanks to Tom and our tracker Themba.

Finally, I must say that the food in this lodge is excusitve. I would go back just for the food itself. They had absolutely delicous dishes every single day and all our meals from breakfast to dinner were amazing.

All in all, we had a great experience and would love to go back again.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank ga80
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 January 2012

I recently spent 3 days at Jackalberry in early December. From personal greetings on arrival by Karlien (Manager), her husband Tom and Nico (my guide for the game drives) to the wonderful attentive staff who served the plentiful tasty food, it was service with a smile!

I had booked the tour with Lion World Tours - South Africa in Style and I was delighted with my beautifully appointed accommodations in this intimate, well designed Lodge. I loved the evening touches of a sweet note on the bed telling some of the animal legends!

But of course the highlight was the game viewing. Each drive was so well planned by Nico and Themba (our tracker) that we saw different animals each time - black and white rhino, leopards, lions, giraffe and a cheetah family, zebra, wildebeest along with many of the other wonderful creatures that populate this private reserve.

I would love to return and enjoy their hospitality again in the future. I highly recommend this very personalized experience to anyone contemplating a safari in South Africa.

Room Tip: This is a small lodge and caters to singles, couples, honeymooners and a family hut.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Lynehol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 December 2011

We stayed in South Africa for a month and this was one of our favorite places to stay. The service was excellent. Our room was stunning. Our tracker Lawrence and guide Matt were both great. We saw a lion kill, leopards, cheetahs and a very special 2-week old white water buffalo. The food was great and the atmosphere was wonderful.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank ElaineLisa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 December 2011

Jackelberry was our first hobeymoon stop on our 12 day S. African tour.
The lodge is beautiful, the rooms are stunning and the food is divine. The BEST part tho ( compared to the other safari lodge we stayed at later) was the game viewing. Our ranger Dumey is the most incredible person. He knew Everything. Our first viewing was a fresh Cheetah kill! Of course there is a little luck involved in animal sightings but Dumay was fearless and he went out of his way to track animals down for us!! The Big 5 were seen in two drives! Dumay also spent a lot of time talking about the smaller animals and little critters and if you like birds he knows how to spot one from a 100 yards away. I can easily continue gushing about the most incredible ranger ever, but he may read this one day and Colleen will never hear the end of it. Colleen, is the manager and she is incredible. We were only there for 2 nights but we felt like family. A new guest thought we had been there for weeks given how relaxed and at home we felt.

Ok, the only thing that I have to suggest is that maybe the lodge cld include water as part of the package. The welcome book in room said it was included but the price list on mini fridge said it wasn't. Also u do get really thirsty on the drives and I think if they stayed with their old policy about water it wld go a long way. Otherwise it feels a little bit of nickel and diming.

With that said water isn't expensive 2.00 US a bottle

All in all best safari experience and I would choose thornybush over Kruger ( which is not private) any day of the week.


We def left with Kahki fever. :-). We love you Dumay!!! No other Ranger will do!!

  • Stayed: November 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Viktoriatedrow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Thornybush Private Game Reserve
4.0 mi away
Kapama Southern Camp
Kapama Southern Camp
#4 of 4 in Kapama Private Game Reserve
639 reviews
7.7 mi away
Kapama River Lodge
Kapama River Lodge
#3 of 4 in Kapama Private Game Reserve
1,816 reviews
3.0 mi away
Thornybush Waterside Lodge
Thornybush Waterside Lodge
#2 of 12 in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
272 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
7.4 mi away
Thornybush Game Lodge
Thornybush Game Lodge
#1 of 12 in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
378 reviews
6.6 mi away
Chapungu Tented Bush Camp
Chapungu Tented Bush Camp
#7 of 12 in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
190 reviews
5.3 mi away
Monwana Game Lodge
Monwana Game Lodge
#5 of 12 in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
246 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Jackalberry Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Jackalberry Lodge

Address: Guernsey Road | Thornybush Private Nature Reserve, Kruger National Park 1380, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 12 Speciality Lodging in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Price Range: £519 - £645 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Jackalberry Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Jackalberry Lodge is a small, intimate establishment set deep in the Thornybush Nature Reserve, on the edge of the Kruger National Park. With just 7 rooms, all en-suite and tastefully furnished - you are guaranteed peace and tranquility during your stay. Locally sourced and expertly made meals are served outside under the stars, or pool-side depending on how you feel that day. Morning and evening game drives take you exploring in open vehicles with professional rangers and trackers, as you experience the abundance in wildlife, fauna and flora that that the African bush has to offer. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Booking.com, Expedia, Agoda, Ebookers and Cancelon so you can book your Jackalberry 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:
Jackalberry Hotel Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Jackalberry Lodge Thornybush Private Game Reserve, South Africa

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