- High end lodge, excellent facilities
- Remote, 'stand-alone' location
- 2 pools, jacuzzi, gym, spa
- Rock art, game drives, fishing, archery
Pamushana Lodge is one of several properties in the luxurious and highly respected Singita portfolio. This lodge is set well apart from any other properties in a particularly remote location within the Gonarezhou National Park, a huge protected reserve known for its rugged landscapes and abundant population of elephants. The best way to access this upmarket and wonderfully secluded retreat is to fly from Johannesburg to Buffalo Ridge International Airport, which is just a 45-minute drive away. Conservation is a key part of Singita’s ethos and as such, a portion of the lodge’s revenue goes towards maintaining local conservation efforts, as well as supporting various community projects.
There are six spacious suites, along with a much larger villa with a total of five bedrooms. All suites have a private plunge pool, as well as panoramic views of the surrounding area. The accommodation design is inspired by the stone ruins of Great Zimbabwe which date back to the 11th century. In keeping with this, stonework is prevalent throughout all of the rooms, all of which are extremely well presented and handsomely furnished.
There are plenty of activities to choose from. During the day, exhilarating game drives take in vast swathes of the park and informative visits to nearby villages are possible. Safari walks led by expert guides are also on offer, along with trips to nearby stone paintings, fishing expeditions and archery. Sunset cruises are quite magical and by nightfall, stargazing is a real delight.
There are plenty of top notch facilities to make use of when not out exploring the park’s wilderness and wildlife. There are two swimming pools affording spectacular views along with a jacuzzi and a well-equipped fitness centre. For those looking to relax and unwind, the lodge offers an array of spa treatments; these are available either in guest rooms or out on a private deck overlooking the lake.
Children are welcome and are very well catered for. A babysitting service is available and there’s a range of child-friendly activities such as bush walks and fishing on offer. Two of the suites are big enough to accommodate families - one can sleep up to four, while the other can sleep up to six. For much larger families or groups, the villa is also an option. Note that children can only participate in game drives at the discretion of the guide, and parents are reminded that, due to the lodge’s wilderness location, children must remain under adult supervision 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
We had the most incredible time thank you. We loved Karen Blixen camp and felt part of a family there, it was incredibly special. And Breezes was very relaxing.
We can't fault all the transfers and the moment we were greeted on the tarmac at Nairobi airport we knew we were going to be well cared for.
Thank you so much to you and all the Tourdust team for making it such a happy and memorable trip.
Zoe A reviewing Masai Mara Safari & Beach on 27 August 2019