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“Glad we made the effort!!”

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Shumbalala Game Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
katonah, ny
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Glad we made the effort!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 April 2009

We had a passport issue in the United States and almost skipped our safari at Shumbalala on order to head directly to Capetown for a famiy wedding. Thank goodness we didn't do that because our safari experience was fantastic. The "cabin" was really beautiful - we loved the outdoor shower and the very comfortable bed (with the mosquito netting!) Imagine my surprise to open my cabin door to see nyalas roaming around the front yard! Our ranger, Luke and our tracker made sure we saw the Big Five and many more animals and insects, including huge spider webs and spiders!

The chef, Denise, made fabulous meals. All the selections were interesting and plentiful. My husband and I enjoyed a candlelit meal on the patio and I tried ostrich! The manager, Natalie, was always helpful and bent over backwards to meet our every need.


All in all, it was a vacation we will never forget!!

  • Stayed March 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank auntbee2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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241 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    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 (66)
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English first
Aberdeen
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 November 2008

My husband and I spent three nights at Shumbalala in September 2008. The experience was fabulous and I would highly recommend it.

We saw all of the big five on more than one occasion, plus many more animals. As well as the larger animals, things like birds, snakes etc were pointed out to us, which added to the experience.

The ranger, Gerhard, and the tracker, Raymond, were both excellent. Whenever we asked to see a specific animal they always managed to find it for us and they were so helpful and informative.

On the game drives we were provided with jackets, blankets and hot water bottles when required. This was my first safari, but I was told by other guests who had been on other safari trips that it is not usual to have these provided. And they were needed!

The lodge itself is gorgeous and our room was out of this world - more like a suite than just a standard hotel room. All rooms also have a decking area which overlooks the watering hole. When we first arrived, we were greeted by the sight of two giraffes having a drink!

Our rooms were serviced three times a day. The rooms all came with insect repellant, sun cream etc as well as the usual complimentary toiletries.

The service at the lodge was fabulous. I'm not sure how many rooms there are, but I think only 4 or 5, so there are never too many guests around and the service is very personal. Nothing is too much trouble.

Then the food!!! All the food is fabulous and there was always plenty of it. There was a good selection also. I can be quite fussy but I always found something I wanted to try.

The only slight downside is that the pool isn't that big. But going for a dip in the pool was the last thing on our mind and I honestly think it doesn't matter. After all the eating and the game drives all we wanted to do in our down time was sleep.

I really would thoroughly recommend Shumbalala and would love to go back for a visit myself sometime.

  • Liked — The luxury and the staff
  • Disliked — The pool was quite small (but the animals more than made up for it!)
  • Stayed September 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank abkar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 October 2008

We spent two nights at the Lodge as part of our honeymoon and on the second night we came back from the safari drive to find that the staff had prepared a special dinner for two on our private balcony. There were petals on the bed and the floor and champagne on ice next to the bathtub. Up to that, the stay had been fantastic but the honeymoon special just pushed it up another level.

  • Liked — The wine cellar.
  • Disliked — The ban on smoking in the room
  • Stayed October 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ColandCi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Aylesbury
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 September 2008

We stayed here for my husbands 50th and the staff made this a birthday he will never forget. The place was just wonderful with every attention to detail. If you are going on safari and you want a very special place with very special people then this is the place for you. We saw all the big 5 and close up!!!

  • Liked — The fantastic venue and staff
  • Disliked — N/A
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank clairelouise_8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Letsitele, South Africa
Level Contributor
39 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 August 2008

We were so spoilt by the staff at Shumbalala. It was a real treat for our 10th wedding anniversary. The lodge is so tranquil and beautifully decorated. The rooms have not been skimped on and are huge. From Champagne bubble baths with flower petals done for us by the staff whilst we were on a game drive, to the hotwater bottles on the game drives, the devine snacks and high tea and incredible venue for dinner - it was fantastic! I would recommend going to Shumbalala to any one wanting to indulge in a very special treat!

  • Liked — It was spacious and beautifully decorated and had an amazing view.
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank NPreece
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
county clare
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 August 2008

have returned from 6 nights in shumbalala game reserve - saw the big 5 and more. Staff always available to make your stay and knowledgeable and comfortable as possible. a wizard chef with delicious menus. did the panorama tour, blyde canon, God's window, etc. wonderful vista. other tours we didnt have time to do.
highly recommend shumbalala. Joan and Anthony, Co. Clare

  • Liked — attended to 3 to 4 times a day, bed turned down with hot water bottle, tea/coffee facilites and snacks
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank JEMCountyClare
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 January 2008

we went back to shumbalala for the second time, taking with us, our close friends, everything was superb, the staff, the guides, accomodation, and the superb food, we saw all the big 5, and cannot wait to go back, to this superb game lodge.we would like to thank Jeandra, and all the fab team, for a wonderful time


R Cimerman
London

Stayed December 2007
Helpful?
Thank wcimerman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shumbalala Game Lodge

Property: Shumbalala Game Lodge
Address: Thornybush Game Reserve | Greater Kruger, Kruger National Park 1380, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 12 Speciality Lodging in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Shumbalala Game Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
It’s a vast, wild place where the lions roam at Shumbalala Game Lodge, deep in the Thornybush GameReserve, one of the country’s great tracts of untamed game-viewing.Set as it is in a dry, singeing savanna of Mopane, Acacias and Umbrella thorns, quartered by easterly-flowing rivers densely shrouded in giant figs, fever trees and phoenix palms, the land is an ancient tapestry of natural wonder.Over-head the Loeries call their sharp warning while horn-bills swoop in an ungainly ballet between trees whilst vultures elevate on thermals portending an electric storm.As you push on through the bush it is the serendipity of nature that amazes most as your vehicle skirts art deco zebra, dozy giraffe, bright eyed bush babies, wildebeest (made, it is said, by the committee of left-over parts) and the rest Africa has to offer.It is even more of an adventure when you stumble upon a leopard lazing in the V of a Jackalberry tree or; a hyena giving you a lazy yellow eye in the gathering dusk; a majestic bull elephant crashing its way through the riverine thicket in search of sweet reeds or; a surprise sunrise encounter with a lion pride on the prowl.This is the world of Shumbalala. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Shumbalala Game Hotel Thornybush Private Game Reserve
Shumbalala Game Lodge Thornybush Private Game Reserve, South Africa

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