I came to live in Africa from Europe 2 months before my wife, and when she arrived, also being her birthday, i wanted to provide her with a memorable experience. By that time (Jan2011) i had no experience with lodges in Africa, and by the time i'm writing this review (Aug2012) we have visit dozens on lodges around kruger, so i'm writing this review having had many other experiences in the Mpumalanga region.
Despite that, Elephant Plains remains our top African Lodge experience, which is to say a lot as there are many options to consider when booking a lodge in the kruger region and competition is fierce.
Elephant Plains outstands from every other lodge i have experienced for it's wild luxury style, accomodation, service, staff friendliness and overall experience. If you want to live a remarkable experience, in a romantic and luxury atmosphere, this option wont disappoint you, on the contrary. The rooms are amazing, very well decorated breeding wildlife on every corner. The bathroom is very very nice, and the outdoor shower is a must do. Our room had a very large veranda from where you could lay back in a chair and loose yourself watching the wildlife in the plains just in front of you. From our balcony we saw two large water buffalos just staring back at us for hours, some zebras on the horizon doing their thing, beautiful scenery.
Dinner is around a bonfire under the starry sky and listening to the wild just outside the fences, great ambient. Food is varied and very tasteful, you get to taste several local dishes and game meat, everyone is very nice, and try to attend to all your requests (we had a birthday cake with an elephant on top as i specifically asked for).
Morning game drive are one of the best i have witnessed. First time ever saw a leopard. Brand new landrovers, guides and trackers are extremely knowledgeable, they know almost every animal on the reserve, what they did in the past days, who they fought with, what they ate, which animal they hunted, their names, their families, impressive. They even keep a log on the sitting room with everyday activities of all animals they spotted on that day, so they can track their history and every guest can also get a grasp of what has happened the days before. Very common to see all the big five, hyenas, giraffes, zebras, wild dogs, and many others on a single game drive.
Staff is extremely polite and nice, which makes the experience even better. The living room is top, you feel like you're living a scene from Out of Africa, the movie, with that african romantic atmosphere mixed with adventure and wilderness.
Although we have by now gone to several game lodges in the area, Elephant plains still remains our benchmark as "the" top experience.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Elephant Plains Game Lodge is situated in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, which forms part of the Greater Kruger National Park. This owner-run lodge caters for the discerning traveller, with a variety of accommodation options including 5 Rondavels, 6 Luxury Suites and a Honeymoon Suite. Activities include two daily game drives and a bush walk. The lodge also offers a spa, gym, conference facility / TV room, games room, small library and two swimming pools. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Elephant Plains Game Hotel Sabi Sand Game Reserve
- Elephant Plains Game Nelspruit
- Elephant Plains Game Lodge Sabi Sand Game Reserve, South Africa