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“Wow”

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Ulusaba Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Corpus Christi, Texas
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Wow”
Reviewed 25 August 2014

if you want to go on a Photo Safari in South Africa with 5 star service and accommodations go to Ulusaba. It is Richard Branson's private game reserve. It is not cheap but it is also not as expensive as you would imagine, especially for the experience. They made all the arrangements from Johannesberg to the private landing strip at Ulusaba and back. It was effortless. It was all inclusive and met every expectation i had. We saw all of the big animals up close and personal and then some. the people were great. The accommodations were unreal and the food was fabulous. Ask for Johnny to be your guide. He is an endless repository of african animal knowledge.

Room Tip: I did not see all the rooms at the rock lodge but since it sits on a high hill overlooking the count...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank 60927John_H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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384 reviews from our community

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  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (122)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
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English first
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 August 2014

Just stayed 4 nights at the Safari lodge...I cannot praise it highly enough. All the staff are very professional and friendly in equal measure. The attention to detail by all concerned is just perfect....I sincerely hope to return.....utterly fantastic. I know all these superlatives are used liberally these days....but the whole experience from Jo'berg and back to Jo'berg and everything in-between is right...just simply right....As for the animals...beautiful and humbling....

Room Tip: You cant go wrong with any room...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Paul S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alice, Texas
Level 4 Contributor
22 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 August 2014

I knew this would be a wonderful trip but I could never have expected how great it would be. The attention to every detail made it the most enjoyable vacation we have ever had. From the moment we arrived until we sadly got on the plane to leave, we were in heaven. We were told upon arrival that it was the goal of the staff for us to feel at home during our stay. They treated us like family and we felt so welcomed. Our ranger Ryan was so knowledgeable and did such a wonderful job of sharing his love of nature and desire for conservation. I could go on and on but there is no true way to describe this to anyone. One must experience this to truly understand what a special place Ulusaba is.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TexasAggie83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2014

Quite simply one of the best experiences we've ever had, we travelled in 2012 (although I can't enter that now).
We spent 4 days in the safari lodge and 4 days in the rock lodge, both equally amazing, both have their positives, i'd recommend either although the Safari lodge felt a little more laid back, which suits us.
Some amazing times
woken by an elephant right at our balcony, literally within feet of her
staff at the hotel every day
our tracker and guide amazing
cheetahs everywhere
education on local life in the area

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Dantgriffin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Essex
Level 6 Contributor
85 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 126 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 August 2014

My husband and I spent four nights in a Safari room at Safari lodge enjoying what was probably one of the best experiences of our lives. It's all already been said in the other reviews, this place is out of this world. I never stopped saying 'wow' the whole time we were there, from viewing Saturn through the bush telescope, to watching a male and female leopard work together to kill a warthog, to being surprised to find the chef out in the bush preparing pancakes and champagne for breakfast. Awesome doesn't come close!

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank NikkifEssex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Austin
Level 4 Contributor
22 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 August 2014 via mobile

If you are looking for a first-class Safari w top notch service and lodging, Ulusaba is it. From the moment you land at their private airstrip and they pop open the champagne to the moment you are taking off as your guide and tracker wave you off, they provide a aa around first class experience you will never forget. The accommodations are all unique and they escort you to and from your rooms to the main lodge so the lions, leopards and hyenas that all walked through the camp the nights we were there don't get any ideas. The Safaris were incredible - amazing animals up close while still respecting the animal's space, blankets, hot water bottles, and ponchos along w teas and coffees for a break if you want to (we only did it once as we were mesmerized by all if the wildlife). The staff were all very friendly and accommodating! Our three kids are Celiac and the chef and his team went out if their way to accommodate them. Can't wait until our next visit.

Stayed July 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Goldreyer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wyckoff, New Jersey
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 August 2014

Ulasaba is the ultimate for luxurious rusticity... accommodations, staff and food/wine are all excellent. I hope I have good photos to share!

We stayed at the safari lodge. (I found this a bit confusing when planning... Ulusaba has two properties; safari and rock lodges. They are a quick jeep away from one another and both magnificent. So check them both out.) (from what I can tell, the main difference is that Rock lodge is up high and offers amazing vista views, while Safari Lodge is down in the bush amongst the animals.)

Game drives were AMAZING. (There are two daily: 6am and 4pm) On our trip to Africa we did another game safari in Zambia and the wildlife viewing was far superior at Ulusaba. The staff at Ulusaba and other safari outfits in the sabi-sands region work in partnership on radio to track animals to ensure a once in a lifetime wildlife viewing experience. We saw "the big five" all in one day! Jeeps are comfortable and outfitted with warm fleece-lined ponchos, blankets and a water bottle for each guest. (We were there in "winter" -July. It was quite cold, maybe in the 40's fahrenheit, in the early morning and later evening...but warmed to mid 70's maybe 80 by mid-day.) So pack layers.

Rangers are very knowledgeable on a wide range of nature/science beyond typical safari animals. Including birds, plants, geology and astronomy. (They also carry guidebooks for curious guest like us.)

A wonderful surprise was to wake from an afternoon nap to find an elephant drinking from the pool on our deck (right outside our door)!

I also loved the heated beds!! (this was a surprise the first night and got too hot for my hubby, which caused a little confusion and scrambling in the middle of the night. so you may want to locate the controls before hopping into bed.)

I should mention too, we were traveling with our extended family with ages 8-80 and every one of us had an amazing time. So no need to worry about older or younger guests in your party. (I guess the only thing to consider is room assignment. We had our older and younger guests stay closer to the main lodge so as to avoid having to use the long wobbly rope bridges. Fun for most, but maybe tough for older people who's balance/knees may be a bit off.) (Closer rooms would be elephant and safari rooms. "River one" is also not over bridge.) (I stayed in River 2 which has its own private mini pool -where the elephant visited for a drink.) (All of the teens and 20somethings were happy to have wifi so we could keep up with our email, Facebook and Instagram. :-))

Food and wine were wonderful and the family enjoyed learning about south african wines. They feature a different south african wine each night and teach you a bit about it and compare/contrast to better known varieties. (I really do not drink, so this was a bit boring to me, but I'm sure this is a big hit for many, as I'm one of the only people I know who doesn't enjoy wine.)

Oh would like to add too, that in a party of 19, no one had any stomach upset. (and we enjoyed all foods, water and ice offered at Ulusaba.)

We are from NewJersey, USA

Room Tip: "Tree House" (tho amazing) is a solid 5-10 minute walk to the main lodge over two large ro...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Helen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ulusaba Safari Lodge

Property: Ulusaba Safari Lodge
Address: Sabi Sand, Kruger National Park, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Kruger National Park > Sabi Sand Game Reserve > Ulusaba Private Game Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Speciality Lodging in Ulusaba Private Game Reserve
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Ulusaba Safari Lodge 4.5*
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Safari Lodge is built along the banks of the dry Mabrak riverbed. The 11 rooms at Safari Lodge include a Treehouse Suite overlooking the nearby Xikwenga Dam as well as three other room types: Safari, Elephant and River Rooms, some of which have private plunge pools. Kids over the age of 12 are welcome to stay at Safari Lodge. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ulusaba Safari Hotel Ulusaba Private Game Reserve

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