Help with These Lodge Choices

Old Jan 25th, 2022, 05:35 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 686
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Help with These Lodge Choices

I had thought about skipping Kruger but the option I liked best, KZN seemed a bit more difficult to get to as the lodges were a haul from Durban Airport (Richard's Bay is closed).
I have five days to fill. We want an accommodation that will allow three of us under one roof (our 19 Year old daughter is with us). First trip to Africa- we love off the beaten path, no crowds (prefer no kids on the safari), friendly employees (we like making connections with guides/locals), do not want a place that feels like we are outsiders at an exclusive club; must have great food, clean and comfortable room, something unique but don't need over the top luxury (ie no butlers, chandeliers, spas, etc). After Kruger we are headed to Uganda for gorillas, chimps, hippos and crocs.
Our daughter loves Parsons luxury tents (they will put an extra bed for her and she is good with that) but we are also considering Naledi (they have a two bed/2bath). So we want to do a 2/3 split for the five days. We arrive JNB at 4:30 AM on July 28 (we will be in good shape as we are traveling J class on Qatar) and depart to EBB on August 2 at 8:00PM.
That leaves us with the other lodges that have availability for three in one accommodation that fit our budget (max $650pppn-prefer $550) and grab our fancy.
I think I touched on all the points you experts are always asking people to give you in order for you to help.
I Was hoping I could get some advice on the split between Balule and :
Umkumbe; Elephant Plains; Simbavita; Jackalberry; Kambaku; Siviti (formerly Thornberry River Lodge); nDzuti (but I think it is too near Parsons/Naledi).
PLEASE give me your input...I am exhausted from all the research and choices! THANK YOU
odie1 is offline  
Old Jan 26th, 2022, 03:38 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 8,634
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Can’t help with the lodges, as I go to Cape Town for 3 weeks at a time. Will you really be in South Africa for only 4 days, not counting arrival and departure days?

Suggest you post your detailed questions on the TripAdvisor South Africa forum. There are many experienced safari goers on the forum.
Heimdall is offline  
Old Jan 26th, 2022, 07:33 AM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 686
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Heimdall- I have posted on TA as well, thank you. The answer to your question is yes. We booked our flights with miles for arrival in JNB for July 28, departure out of EBB on Aug 11 at 11:00 at night. I have just learned that we have been rebooked on flights that depart on Aug 8 at 6:00, essentially taking 3 1/2 days off of our trip so everything got shortened. AA has been of little help as the flights were booked on QR metal. Not ideal but it is what it is.
odie1 is offline  
Old Jan 26th, 2022, 08:33 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 8,634
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Looks like you’ve had some good advice on TripAdvisor. My safari experience has been in Kenya,Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Botswana (Chobe NP), but not in South Africa. My daughter and SIL took their Land Rover from Cairo to Cape Town, using the rooftop tent in game reserves. They trekked gorillas and chimps in Uganda, and had some good sightings.

I tracked gorillas in Rwanda while there volunteering. Been to Cape Town four times now staying with SIL’s family, but always stick to the Western Cape.

Bad luck on your shortened trip, but even one day tracking gorillas is a memorable experience, and my daughter says the chimps were more fun than the gorillas. Best wishes for a wonderful trip! Africa gets in your blood, so you will no doubt be back again.
Heimdall is offline  
Old Jan 26th, 2022, 08:36 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,765
Received 79 Likes on 8 Posts
Of the list, the only one we've stayed at was Elephant Plains, mainly because it was (usually) the least expensive choice within the Sabi Sand reserve. That's not to say it wasn't fine; the accommodations were perfectly okay and the game viewing on a par (i.e. terrific) with other Sabi Sand lodges where we stayed before. (Much has to do with the lodges' traversing rights across other lodges' territories, and Elephant Plains seemed to have more than adequate touring routes on that front.)

It's not on your list and I hesitate to complicate things further, but you might have a look at Pondoro within the Balule reserve. Safari Lodge South Africa | African Safaris | Pondoro Game Lodge This was a terrific experience if you're interested in one of the northern reserves near Kruger NP. No idea if they could accommodate your needs, but thought I'd give them a plug anyway. The owner/guide Robbie is a marvel.
Gardyloo is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
AirBalloon
Europe
29
Apr 22nd, 2016 02:29 PM
europeannovice
Europe
11
May 5th, 2013 11:03 AM
lynn
United States
10
Feb 9th, 2003 11:25 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information