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Thornybush Waterside Lodge

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

Highlights

- Family friendly accommodation
- Inter-connecting rooms
- Good value safari experience

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Overview

Situated within a 14,000 hectare private game reserve, Waterside lodge is one of 11 lodges in the Thornybush portfolio. Catering in particular to families. there are 20 comfortable rooms, some of which are inter-connecting, making it a great choice for families travelling together. Whilst the rooms do have a patio and seating area, they don't have any views to speak of, but the main lodge has a lovely view of a waterhole. As well as a spacious and relaxing communal area, there is a good sized pool which children will enjoy cooling off in after a long game drive. Food is served either in the communal area or around the fire in the boma. Children's tastes and dietary requirements can be catered for.

Of all of the lodges that we have visited in the Kruger area, this one had put the most effort into being child friendly. As well as tick lists, water beaker and back pack, kids are also given snacks and sweets to munch on during the game drives, which can be very welcome. In between game drives, there are also several activities arranged for the children, such as bush walks with a ranger and treasure hunts. This is a larger property, so does have a slightly more commercial air, but, as a consequence, you won't be worried about your children disturbing other guests and honeymooners. If your children are quite active and in the 6 - 10 years bracket, then this is an excellent choice.

Thornybush is one of the smaller reserves and is fenced. Because it is that bit smaller, you have good chances of seeing the Big 5 and other animals and birds of interest. Safaris are with a ranger and tracker in open top vehicles which you will probably share with other guests, depending on the number of people staying at the time.

Nearby Alternatives

Thornybush Lodge

Thornybush Game Reserve

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

- Exclusive family suites
- Big 5
- Gorgeous communal areas

Elandela Private Game Reserve

Thornybush Game Reserve

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

- Sumptuous lodge in private reserve
- Tranquil setting with superb views
- White lion protection area
- Guided walks, day and night game drives

Thornybush NKaya Game Lodge

Thornybush Game Reserve

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

- Private lodge for no more than eight people
- Excellent game drives and optional guided walks
- Scenic location in the reserve

Tangala Safari Camp

Thornybush Game Reserve

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 2

- Traditional, unpretentious camp
- Comfortable accommodation
- Abundant wildlife including Big 5

Thornybush Jackalberry Lodge

Thornybush Game Reserve

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

- Small, friendly bushcamp
- Superb year-round Big 5 game viewing
- Excellent guiding in private reserve
- Night drives and off-road wildlife viewing

What customers are saying after travelling with Tourdust

Average Rating

based on 504 reviews

(5.00/5)

  • Hi Lisa,

    The safari trip was excellent! The stay, the food and the people were all very nice. We were happy to have Ryan and Stanley as our game drive guides they brought us up close to the animals and Ryan gave very good information throughout.

    Would definitely recommend to friends who are interested in safaris :)

    Also, thanks much for your help, particularly keeping the room for my Brother and his wife they’ve enjoyed the safari very much too!

    Best regards,
    Woan Chyi

    MissingWoan Chyi L reviewing Cape Town & Kruger Safari on 16 October 2019

  • 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

    MissingCatherine 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!

    MissingKatrina P reviewing South Africa Bush & Beach Safari For Families on 02 September 2019

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