- Traditional, unpretentious camp
- Comfortable accommodation
- Abundant wildlife including Big 5
Tangala Safari Camp is a traditional, intimate bush camp within the Thornybush Game Reserve in the Kruger area of northeast South Africa. Right in the heart of the reserve and framed by the imposing Drakensberg mountain range, the property boasts extensive views over the surrounding plains and a waterhole popular with wildlife. Rustic and unpretentious, Tangala offers friendly and intimate hosting and strong guiding in a game rich area which is home to over 140 mammals, including the famed Big 5. With just four chalets and six safari tents plus an inviting plunge pool, the camp will appeal to wildlife lovers seeking an authentic safari experience and a relaxing, comfortable base.
Communal areas in the thatched, open-sided main lodge include a bar, dining room, ‘boma’, and comfy lounge, all with views of the action at the waterhole. Outside is a spacious decked area with tables for alfresco dining, and a refreshing plunge pool flanked by loungers. The camp promotes an eco-friendly ethos, operating solely on natural gas and solar power.
Activities focus on morning and afternoon game drives in the Thornybush Game Reserve, led by informed and enthusiastic guides. Besides the big 5 (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, and cape buffalo) the reserve is also home to cheetah, wild dog, giraffe, zebra, hippo, kudu, crocodile, and wildebeest, along with prolific birdlife.
The accommodation comprises four pristine stone and thatch chalets and six safari tents, all simply and traditionally furnished. Each unit has king or twin beds draped with mosquito nets, and an ensuite bathroom with shower, twin basins, and WC. Fans and solar lighting are provided. Outside there’s a private patio with seating, ideal for wildlife spotting.
Children aged 12 years and over are warmly welcome. Younger guests may be accommodated but this is solely at the management’s discretion, or if the camp is booked on an exclusive basis. Whilst the lodge is fenced and it’s rare for wildlife to approach tents or humans, parents are reminded nonetheless that children should be supervised at all times.
We had a fantastic time and all the arrangements worked perfectly.
We were very impressed with the quality and service levels of all 4 locations visited and it was truly a holiday of a lifetime.
Thank you to you and to Lisa for giving us this experience.
Particular highlights for us – really the whole experience, but of particular impact:
Breathtaking scenery at Cathedral Peak Hotel
Rhino Ridge game drives incredible, thanks to guide (we had their head guide, Hala, who’s knowledge, enthusiasm, kindness, interaction, ability to spot wildlife was out of this world)
Luxury of Rhino Ridge (shower, food, views, service)
Immersion in nature, torch lit meal on last night and beach trip at Kosi Forest Lodge
Level of service, quality of food throughout
Catherine F reviewing South Africa Safari, Beach and Wetlands on 04 September 2019
We had a fantastic time. Thank you and it went smoothly in the main except for British Airways!
The trip had the right degree of luxury and relaxation (for me) and adventure (all of us).
A few points:
Driving directions to Umlunghi Lodge were slightly wrong. The driving directions should read at the 4th roundabout take the first exit and turn right over the railway. We loved it there. Anton, Bianca and her son and Harriet were very informative and entertaining. The snake talk and handling, night walks and seeing scorpions and the walk in the bush and "bumping" into a giraffe were really special. The kayak trip to Makuzi pan that the lodge organised was good and Tomaz was very informative and kept a respectful distance from the hippos.3 nights was plenty.
Rhino River Lodge game reserve was incredibly luxurious and we felt very looked after. The lion siting in camp the day we arrived sent an extra frisson of excitement down our spines. It was easy to forget there were predators that could attack us with all that luxury. The staff and guides (Karl) were knowledgeable and invested in their set up. We saw rhinos with baby, cheetahs with young, porcupine, Genet, wildebeast, Impala, Lion with young, buffalo, a puff adder, ostrich, zebra and giraffes. 4 nights was also plenty.
They all served great food but I felt Ghost Mountain Inn topped the lot. The variety was amazing. We arrived at 10.30 but could not get into our room until 2 ish. The service was not so personal I guess because it is larger (far more than 50 rooms). We had been a bit spoilt at Rhino River! My daughter and I had some treatments at the Spa and loved it. We also went on a large boat trip on Jonzi and had a closer encounter with a large bull hippo and also a hike up Ghost Mountain with Patrick who was very informative and passionate about his people and his country. Isaac the other guide there took us on the boat trip and pointed out the sugar cane harvest on the way. he was very informative also.
Lastly, Lalaria Lodge was fabulous and we all piled into the surf of the Indian Ocean. There was hardly anyone on the beach. It was "too cold" according to the landlady. The view from her terrace was of the ocean and whales breaching in the distance. I could have sat there all day. She very kindly provided us with a Scrabble board of her own for us to play. We took a Microlight ride from Ballito over the coastline in the hope of seeing whales and dolphins but no luck. If we had stayed longer we might have gone on a boat trip from Durban. We had a meal at a restaurant called Mozambique which was great fun with vast portions, plenty of carbs and fresh seafood!
The value of the Rand to the Pound was excellent and therefore we felt that we got excellent value which also played a large part!
Katrina P reviewing South Africa Bush & Beach Safari For Families on 02 September 2019
Hi, just back home now as stayed in London last night. It was fab! We loved it! Amazing all round- Thankyou. Best holiday ever!!!
Accommodation great at both places, guides lovely, staff great. We saw more animals than ever expected: giraffes, lion, elephants, water hog, wilder beast, impala, white rhino, crocodiles, hippos in lake Sybia, monkeys in trees at Tonga.
Beach beautiful, but a bit windy, waves v rough but didn’t deter my boys. We snorkeled which was fab but too rough on day we booked to do ocean experience.
My boys swam in all pools!!!
Weather better than we expected!
Must go and do some laundry, but hope that helps?
Nicola B reviewing South Africa Luxury Safari & Beach Holiday on 24 July 2019