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“Amazing animals”

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andBeyond Phinda Mountain Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Jasper, Georgia
Level Contributor
103 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“Amazing animals”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 March 2012

We love Phinda and this was our second trip to the reserve. The first time we stayed at Forest Lodge and I must say we did prefer Forest. Mountain Lodge has beautiful views, the staff is excellent, the food great. Mountain lodge has more rooms than the other lodges and so feels a bit less personal. The game drives were always magical. However, one of the people on our vehicle wanted to see elephant and they were way up north near Forest Lodge, we spent most of the drive racing up there to see elephants and I would have much preferred a more leisurely pace with time enjoying whatever we saw along the way.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank mountainhomegirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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314 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 (83)
Date | Rating
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English first
Colorado
Level Contributor
51 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 March 2012

We spent 2 nights at the Vlei Lodge before moving to the Mountain Lodge for 2 nights. I thought the staff at both lodges were great but the folks at Vlei seemed a bit more outgoing, the staff at the Mountain lodge were great but perhaps a bit more reserved. I loved the room at the Mountain Lodge but preferred the Vlei Lodge (from a villa perspective), there were little touches that Vlei had like an iPod docking station and mosquito nets that were appreciated that the Mountain Lodge didn't have. The food at both lodges was great but it seemed like the Mountain Lodge had a bigger variety and more full meetings. The drives were equally amazing and the ranger and tracker were fantastic. One favorite memory is that since the Mountain Lodge has more rooms, we met some really great lifelong new friends from around the world. We spent New Year’s Eve at the Lodge and Phinda set up a very special sunset party in the bush and then dinner back at the Lodge (outdoors of course!). I'd absolutely recommend the Mountain Lodge, if you have kids or a larger group I think this is a wonderful option.

Room Tip: All the villas are beautiful and similar but some can be a bit further away from the main lodge (lon...
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Longhini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
29 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 February 2012

We spent 2 nights at the mountain lodge. FANTASTIC! We are a family of 4. Children 8 and 10. It was perfect for us! Great staff! I mean really great. Thank you Thumba for babysitting! :-)
The food is excellent! Breakfast, lunch and dinner! Best food we had on our 10 day trip. The suites are really really 5 star luxury nice! We would not change anything! 10 out of 10.
We had great drives and thank you to Matt and Tom for taking care of us! They really did all they could to show us everything.

We simply fell in love with the Moutain Lodge......
We are going back!

Room Tip: You have very nice privacy in suite 10. And a bit of a view as well.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Dlira
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
10 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 February 2012

I visited Phinda with my family and a friend and her family in December 2011. Teenage kids are not always easy to spend time with - or get off their electronic toys. 4 days of long game drives and thrilling bush experiences was a wonderful way for us to all be together for long periods of time, without any interruptions or stresses.

We all love the bush, and took delight in the large and small animals and birds that we saw. Despite end of year exhaustion, and talk of sleeping late and missing a drive, not one of us missed a game drive. Teenage boys used to getting up well after 11 were on the vehicle and ready to go at 5am - knowing that we would be surprised yet again. As a group of 8, we had our own ranger and tracker, and the laughter and easy banter was great fun for all.

Mealtimes were a treat, with something for everyone in the lavish buffets at each meal. Dinners al fresco under the stars, aroung a large fire in the boma were always a casual affair, and a chance for us to relive the highlights of the day. The spacious rooms with private pools were a treat, and the 4 teenagers loved the family suite that they shared. We were all sad to leave at the end of the long weekend, but the memories will live on.

Room Tip: All the rooms appeared to be great - the family suite a winner for a family, or a group of responsib...
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Lara W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
UK
Level Contributor
19 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2012

We stayed at the beautiful mountain lodge for four nights in October 11 and it was the most fantastic experience in every way. The individual lodges set among the bush were well appointed with some great views, some looked directly into the bush and it was nothing to see impala drinking from your plunge pool or monkeys scurrying over the roof trying to get in the door. Every walk to breakfast was like an African adventure in itself. Nothing is too much trouble for the brilliant staff a large number being native to the area, the Zulu's love of life is infectious and our ranger Dumi brought a whole new meaning to the word "safari". He and his brilliant spotter left no stone unturned in pursuit of the big five, sometimes taking us on hair raising escapades across the very bumpy terrain, stamping on the floor of the jeep to wake a sleeping lion (not recommended), he seemed to get closer to, take more chances and be more tenacious than most of the others!!!! He pointed out big five,little five and anything else that moved but the pinnacle of his skill,together with that of his eagle eyed spotter, was when we were coming back in from the evening safari and the torch picked out two eyes in the gloom, leopard, what a fantastic creature, we watched in awe as this beautiful cat walked along the ridge and than crossed over in front of us dumbstruck by it's magnificence. The food at the lodge was normally served outside in the boma in the evening and was delicious, the cooks were very proud to come to the table and explain their individual specialities , we tried most things including warthog and kudu, which I must say was very tasty but I did feel somewhat guilty about having been thoroughly amused by the warthog's antics during the day. The most amazing thing was after driving about in the dark one night we pulled up in the middle of nowhere to find a table set up for champagne and petit fours, thankfully we found it before any of the wild life. Dumi then played a trump card, a jeep was in trouble and needed our help, did we mind if we went over to them before going back, he then proceeded to drive us to the "jeep" which turned out to be a barbeque in the forest ablaze with fairy lights, candles and fires and all the other guests who had also been "conned" into helping the jeep in distress, a truly magical evening. I could write so much more about our experiences but you need to go to this brilliant place, eat the great food, meet the fabulous staff and experience this for yourself

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank algidaUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South Africa
Level Contributor
203 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 January 2012

We had been going to Phinda on a regular basis in the early 90s.Our last visit was in 1996!This year to celebrate our 23rd wedding anniversary,my husband surprised us with a 1 night stay at Mountain Lodge.He was disappointed that he was unable to get the Friday night as well!Just confirms how popular this game lodge is in KZN.

We were treated as 5 star guests should be.The attention to detail ,the beautifully thought out chalets,the private plunge pools!Wow this was definitely the place to be on such a special occasion.Our daughters who are well travelled & normally prefer new destinations,have placed Phinda on a Lodge to visit again.
The ranger and tracker were fantastic.The game viewing exhilarating.We witnessed 2 buffaloes fight over a calf.Really heartbreaking.In their chase they disturbed a cheetah cub which had been separated from its mother the previous night.Crocodiles,new lion cubs feeding off a recent warthog kill under the watchful eye of their mother,the list is endless...Really gets the adrenalin pumping!our early morning wake up was rewarded with a herd of elephants.We tracked them down and then followed them for a while.There was a very young one which rhe older elephants tried to hide from us.They had a cooling down session by tossing sand over themselves,then nature called and that created a chain reaction.The next thing they heard a chopper in the air and within seconds they had disappeared into the thickets.Throughout this our knowledgable ranger & tracker in whispers gave us info on ellies and their habits.

The food was delicious.The staff attentive and hospitable.Our rate included the in room bar .Well we were too well fed and rehydrated to even have the Amarula from the bar!
& Beyond certainly take care of their guest.

We will certainly be returning soon.Perhaps to try out one of the other lodges as the different lodges afford guests different experiences.
Well done to Phinda,You make us proud.
PS we live in a town just an hour away from Phinda.

Room Tip: Chalet no 14 a long walk away but worth the privacy!
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank SonoraSouthAfrica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Geneva, Switzerland
Level Contributor
9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2012

Out of this world experience. Staff were amazing, could not do enough to assist us and the food was excelelnt. The accomodation was superb complete with outside shower and plunge pool. We had some fantastic safari and experienced a wonderful thunder storm. Big thanks to the staff for putting on extra trip so we could take a family trip and take our 4 year old out for game viewing. We will be back. Cannot recommend it enough.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank fudgebobo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about andBeyond Phinda Mountain Lodge

Property: andBeyond Phinda Mountain Lodge
Address: Phinda Private Game Reserve, Phinda Private Game Reserve 3960, South Africa
Region: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Phinda Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Speciality Lodging in Phinda Private Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
With wraparound views of the ancient Ubombo mountain range, Mountain Lodge balances itself majestically above its panoramic surroundings. The 24 suites scattered along the mountainside offer complete privacy and luxury. There's no end to the choice of taking in the view - spacious verandas with private plunge pools and layered guest areas each provide their own magnificent outlook. Delicious Pan African meals are enjoyed in the dramatic stone and reed boma, lit by the warm glow of dozens of candles and lanterns. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Phinda Mountain Hotel Phinda Private Game Reserve

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