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“Great game viewing; good food; shows off the best of South Africa” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Tau Game Lodge

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Tau Game Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Stranraer
Level Contributor
67 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Great game viewing; good food; shows off the best of South Africa”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 September 2012

First the game viewing; all accommodation as far as we could see had a direct view of the waterhole, which although artificial feels quite natural. It attracts huge numbers of wildlife, and affords great viewing; in many ways, no need to go out on drives at all. The game drives were quiet with little traffic as the park is private, having limited access to the public. This meant that we had good game viewing, and enhanced by the obvious cooperation of all the guides to ensure good and fair viewing opportunities. We saw plenty of lion and wild dog; even a wild dog kill. Loads of elephant. Grant is a well informed and entertaining guide, who helped us enjoy the park to it's fullest. We went in september and the resort was fairly quiet.

The accommodation was good, and the views of the game from our verandah made up for the relatively cosy accommodation complained about in other reviews, which was in fact more than adequate. The food was excellent and plentiful, with perhaps a little room for more imagination, but hey- this is a rustic safari experience and as such was great. Service was generally excellent.

It is obvious why this park is popular with South Africans; always a good sign when locals recognise quality and value.

The park is being developed, and I sincerely hope that they maintain the feeling that it is a natural wilderness, rather than a highly managed theme park which has often been the result of over-commercialisation in other areas.

Having been to many game parks, I can recommend this as a good experience.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Outremer14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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434 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (108)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
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English first
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 August 2012

I went to Madikwe as part of our corporate offsite in May. As our group was relatively large, I ended up staying in the Matla lodge. Although Matla was about a 10 min drive away from the main lodge, the facilities were fantastic and its certainly a great place if you wanted some more peace and quiet. If you were going as a small group or as a couple, I would certainly recommend the Matla lodge over the Tau lodge. The room was quite nice and roomy. The viewing deck was opposite the watering hole which meant we had some interesting sighting.

The reserve is well set up and we saw most of the big 5 (elephants, lions, rhino etc). The highlight was when we drove up to the pride of lions where there must have been over a dozen!

The main lodge is quite nice as well and has more game viewing opportunities from the lodge itself. Elephants, zebras etc would regularly come up to the watering hole opposite the lodge.

Certainly a good way to experience the African wildlife!

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Live_t0_h0liday
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vryburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 July 2012

I went to Tau Game Lodge with my husband and our 2 year old daughter on my birthday weekend in May it I was such an amzing and relaxing weekend. We arrrived at Tau on a Saturday afternoon and just after we checked in, about 200+ buffalos and a heard of Elephants came to the waterhole which right in front of the lodge and all the room are facing the waterhole. We were so excited. The rooms a very neat and clean, we got a complementary room upgrade because it was my birthday weekend.

On the first evening, we had a bush dinner which was amazing. The lodge provided a babysitter for us and she was great with our child. The spa was great. On my birthday, the staff suprised me with a cake and sang for me. They made my day.

I would recommend Tau Game Lodge to anyone on any day.

Room Tip: All the rooms are facing the waterhole.
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Kgothatso
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
56 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2012

We stayed at Tau Lodge for a weekend in March. This was our first experience on safari and I have to say it was amazing. Tau is marketed as a five-star lodge and it definitely lived up to that. Given that, the price is extremely good since it's all-inclusive and comparable to what you would pay at a mediocre hotel in NYC. Each cottage is situated on one of the few watering holes in the game reserve, so there was no shortage of viewing a variety of animals at any given time of day. We saw elephants up close right from the patio of our cottage! The food was also fantastic and served in the main lodge overlooking the watering hole. There's also a nice pool, and spa services if you have time for that! The staff was extremely courteous and accommodating. The twice-a-day game drives are nothing short of amazing. I couldn't believe we were seeing all these animals up close! Truly an amazing experience. I told my husband it would be worthy of a honeymoon for anyone out there looking for a unique trip idea. I would definitely return to Tau. Thanks for a wonderful experience!

Room Tip: I don't think there's a bad cottage on the property.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Bosley02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
134 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2012

I have been to game lodges in 3 sub-saharan countries and this is one of the best. Upon arrival, we walked out on the viewing deck to see 2 elephants feeding within 20 feet of the deck and 3 lions resting under some thorn bushes on the other side of the water hole. A great start. The chalets, while small, were comfortable and private. Each had a fun outdoor shower and a viewing deck. The lodge itself is large, but has many comfy rooms that make it feel more intimate. Food was excellent. Try the Eland for dinner!

The game drives were also top notch, and our driver, Garth, was very knowledgeable.

Room Tip: Make sure you get a room close to the main watering hole.
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled on business
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank HummerBob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Worongary, Australia
Level Contributor
175 reviews
85 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 184 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 June 2012

We really enjoyed our three nights at Tau Game Lodge, and especially liked Madikwe Reserve. We have stayed at many game lodges and reserves in Africa and we found the staff here particularly welcoming and on the ball. When we arrived, the car keys were taken from us, the vehicle was parked and everything was removed from the vehicle and taken to our 'rooms'. They even put petrol in our car as we underestimated the drive and the number of petrol stations (usually plenty in S.A.) and the vehicle was near empty.

I say 'rooms' because we only booked one of the larger rooms for three adults as we had one mother-in-law with us. As the lodge was not full, the management ever so kindly gave us an additional double room - at no cost - and we didn't ask either! This is a rare thing, and shows ample generosity and foresight. The rooms are well decked out, the grounds are lovely, and although the waterhole was a bit dry (winter is the dry season after all) this didn't stop the many creatures including elephants, kudu, waterbuck, a white rhino and, of course, crocs from stopping by. There was ample birdlife, too.

We also know that game viewing is very much about being in the right place at the right time, as well as game rangers sharing sightings and a dash of luck. Our ranger, Grant, was fantastic. We have no doubt all the rangers are top stuff but we were more than impressed with Grant. As we particularly wanted to see the rare and endangered wild dogs, he zoomed all over the reserve tracking their movements from recent sightings - and on our last day finally found them on the opposite side of this beautiful reserve. We sat with them by ourselves for at least 15 minutes before the long road back. Grant also shared interesting and different information about the animals (we usually hear the same old same old about many of the creatures) as well as interesting personal anecdotes. And he was fun! We saw a lot of game including four of the big five - leopard was the only creature we didn't see although others had seen and photographed leopard here. We even saw the magnificent gemsbok which is apparently rare to see in Madikwe.

The only thing we found a little of a let down was the food at the buffet on the one evening in the magnificent boma. It was very basic, and the meat was dry and tough. Not the standard we would have expected for Tau, but other than that, the a la carte meals were superb.

We would definitely recommend Tau Game Lodge, and we shall definitely return in the future.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank HappyTravelsQld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2012

We spent two nights here last week which we enjoyed very much. We saw plenty of game and our ranger was very good. Having visited many other such lodges in the past, we thought the food was not quite up to scratch .... but the staff were all very friendly and helpful and we had a good time.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank jilly13_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Tau Game Lodge

Property: Tau Game Lodge
Address: Madikwe Game Reserve 2581, South Africa
Phone Number:
Region: South Africa > North-West Province > Madikwe Game Reserve
Amenities:
Free Breakfast
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 23 Speciality Lodging in Madikwe Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Tau Game Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tau Game Lodge is a 5 star Game lodge Situated in “Big 5”- Malaria Free Madikwe Reserve. Accessible by scheduled flights, or a 4 hour drive from Johannesburg. Each of the chalets ensures privacy with its own viewing deck, the main lodge offers a Curio shop, Swimming pool as well as a lounge, bar, and dining area, all partially outdoors.The convention centre offers state-of- the-Art meeting facilities. At The Spa Oasis, guests are offered rejuvenating spa treatments, surrounded by the beauty of the African Bush. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tau Game Hotel Madikwe Game Reserve

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