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“Very good bush camp experience!”

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Shindzela Tented Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 17 June 2011

We stayed here for three nights in May, and enjoyed it very much! The owner Dave and tracker Sam were excellent sources of information, and worked tirelessly to track down animals by observing their tracks, and plotting out their routes, etc. On our last day, Sam and the two of us were in the jeep and Sam tracked a huge herd of elephants sleeping in the bush! It was quite an experience to see babies lying down protected by standing sleeping adults.

We also did exciting bush walks accompanied by Dave and Sam, who held rifles the entire time. I (a woman) felt very safe at all times - and I knew we were with a highly competent tracker and gudie as we tramped through the bush with Dave and Sam. We spotted rhino and cape buffalo from a distance - and it was a thrill to see them outside of the protection of the jeep! We also needed the walk, since we had been sitting in a car driving for days in Kruger prior to coming here.

The Safari tents were comfortable - small but with excellent linens and duvets and very clean. The toilet, sink and shower are in an outdoorsy attached patio with bamboo walls - very nice and comfortable and clean! We were there in autumn, so it was not too hot in the tent. In the heat of the summer, however, it might get hot in the tent, but there is a small plunge pool to cool off in.

We weren't expecting to have down time in the middle of the day - where we could relax and do nothing in the camp - but we got into that rhythm once we realized that it would be unproductive to search for animals in the middle of the day.

When we were there, there weren't too many animals in Timbavati. By chance there had been lots of rain, so water sources were everywhere - therefore, the usual place for sighting animals did not have any animals show up! That was a suprise to us - but no fault of Shindzelas!

Dave and Sam are completely committed to showing you as much of the wildlife as possible - I would recommend this camp without hesitation. We just had bad luck with few sightings on 2 of the 3 days we were there. That was quite unusual.

The food was excellent - they accommodated my vegetarian request easily and we were very well fed! Wonderful kitchen staff.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank ajb6335
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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313 - 319 of 439 reviews

Reviewed 14 June 2011

We loved our stay at Shindzela! Dave, the owner and Sam, our tracker were very knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the whole bush experience and worked very hard to ensure that everyone had a good time. Unfortunately, the animals were a little more scarce than we had hoped due to the amount of rain they got a month earlier...grass taller and shrubs greener than normal in May made it harder to spot them. We still did pretty well seeing a leopard on our first drive and plenty of rhino, buffalo, hippo, zebra, hyenas and more!
Food was very good and there was plenty of it. Our tent was comfortable and the attached bathroom facilities were good.
Overall, a really good bush experience and very attentive and helpful staff made our stay very enjoyable.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank JaneSJC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 May 2011

I stayed at Shindzela with my boyfriend and another couple for 4 days as we were looking to do a safari adventure in South Africa. All of us couldn't be happier with our stay and experience.
The staff is fantastic. Mike and Dave are very knowledgeable rangers who will go above and beyond to make sure that you see the animals that you want to see. Sam is an amazing tracker who lead us to great elephant, rhino and buffalo signings. Finally, Gerdie is one of the best cooks you will ever meet, making each meal delicious with extra 'mmmmm'.
The accommodations are very clean and simple, which we thought was perfect for a true authentic stay in the bush. Our beds were made for us when we came back from the morning safari and again when we came back from our night safari. The meals were always healthy and delicious.
The resort itself is very big and there's plenty of opportunity to see the animals. We saw everything more than once, except for the big cats that seem to have disappeared from the whole area in the period that we were there. The rangers and the trackers are also very experienced at finding the animals.
All in all, we had a fantastic stay and are already making plans to come back in September when there's less vegetation and one can see even more animals. We all would highly recommend!

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled with friends
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1  Thank mp1505
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2011

This non-fenched camp is a must have experience. One we will never forget. Dave and his staff are very professional but sure in for a joke. They threat the guests, each other and all so the wild animals with respect. The camp lies in a private reserve, so Shindzela is the only game driver around. No traffic jams near the wildlife and definitely no chasing wildlife. This we found very appealing. It’s not a zoo you’re in, you’re in their habitat.
Joop & Annet, the Netherlands

The tent is accompanied with basic shower and toilet and is very clean. Nice to have crisp linen in the bush. That’s all you need when you are lying awake during the night because of the bush noises (or wildlife standing next to your tent).

Let's not forget Gertie's food! After the excellent game drivers or walks, Gertie is waiting with a big smile to tell you about all the mmmmmm she and Melita cooked. And we must say: mmmmm it is!

Dave and staff, thumbs up! Keep up the good work. We had all the faith in you guys when it came to encounters with wildlife! We enjoyed our stay at camp and the story about the walk to the sleeping lioness will be told for many years to come.

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank JK_en_AU
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2011

Schindzela is a true African safari experience. This is what the real bush is about. We were the only vehicle on this large piece of land and yet we saw the Bg Five in a matter of 5 hours. This of course was thanks to the passion of our game ranger, Mike, who woke us at 3h30 in the morning for a game drive because he could hear a leopard in the midst. Our expectation of this two night stay was way above our wildest dreams. Sam our other ranger was phenomenal in his knowledge of the bush. This is a highly recommended destination-a place to share witrh the rest of the world . This is what we as South Africans call a "bush experience."

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Jenny312583
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 March 2011

Wow - what a great experience we had at Shindzela! I had a fair amount of trepidation booking a safari halfway around the world, but my boyfriend, parents, and I couldn't have been more pleased with our experience at Shindzela. Dave put us right at ease and showed us amazing animals (zebras, giraffe, rhino, elephant, leopard, lions, water buffalo, etc.), around the reserve. The open Land Rover was comfortable and the experience was great with unobstructed views and the ability to take in the whole environment, such as sounds and scents of the area. The opportunity to have a walking safari was quite memorable as well. (Thankfully we didn't wake the sleeping lions!) The tents were perfect - clean, comfortable, and had flush toilets and private showers. The food was plentiful and appetizing. I'd recommend Dave's camp to absolutely anyone wanting a safe, rustic bush safari experience.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank KJHUSA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 March 2011

I chose this destination camp from their website. Having never been on safari before I was unsure as to what to expect.I knew I wanted rustic but with private toileting facilities!.I knew I wanted to get right up close to animals and feel truly in the bush, in their territory. We got exactly that!
Mike ( ranger) and Sam's ( tracker) professionalism,enthusiasm and friendly attitude enabled you to feel completely welcomed and looked after. Mike could answer bird watchers questions to flora and fauna questions and on a night drive we even had an astronomy lesson!
Eating Gertie's suppers in a candlelit open tent was magical then around the camp fire after dinner before being escorted back to our tents by Mike or Sam ( armed with rifle) .
Being woken in the middle of the night with munching outside the tent was a bit unnerving but then the camp had no fences and some luscious grass so why wouldn't the elephants and buffalo take advantage?
Dave and Laura have created a special place ( seasoned tourists arriving by the day, told us it was the best).
They keep their pricing competitive, small groups, large open Landrover drives for best vsiibility, and offer a welcome second to none.I can thoroughly reccomend this experience to anyone who wants to feel like they are on a private safari organised just for them.

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank MaxHull
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shindzela Tented Camp

Address: Johnniesdale Farm | Hoedspruit, Kruger National Park 1380, South Africa
Phone Number:
Region: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 17 Speciality Lodging in Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Price Range: £198 - £558 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Shindzela Tented Camp 3*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Shindzela is an authentic tented bush camp situated in the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, greater Kruger National Park. The camp accommodates a maximum of 16 guests and is unfenced, making it very much part of the wilderness. Shindzela is not built by an award winning architect, nor is it furnished by an interior designer. What you will find though, is a comfy bed, freshly laundered linen, and décor from local crafters and artists. Shindzela is a comfortable/rustic tented bush camp, where you can relax, enjoy our warm hospitality and immerse yourself in the African wilderness. We love our informal, relaxed atmosphere. Each safari tent is built on wooden decks, and has their own en-suite shower/toilet and hand basin. The camp also has a swimming pool and overlooks our little watering hole, from where you can watch animals come down to drink. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Shindzela Tented Safari Camp Hotel Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Shindzela Tented Camp South Africa/Kruger National Park

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