7 independent reviews for Three Reserve safari in South Africa

Reviews for Three Reserve safari in South Africa

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review 12 Oct 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

It was amazing to be so close to animals like elephants, lions, leopards, buffalo, cheetah ...

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Make sure you have warm clothes for the early morning drives. Layers are best.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

It supported conservation.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was absolutely amazing, the holiday of a lifetime!

review 10 Oct 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

It was amazing to be so close to animals like elephants, lions, leopards, buffalo, cheetah ...

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Make sure you have warm clothes for the early morning drives. Layers are best.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

It supported conservation.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was absolutely amazing, the holiday of a lifetime!

review 23 Jul 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

As this was our first trip to South Africa, and our first safari, we didn't know what to expect but were delighted by different things at all the lodges. As a vegetarian I had concerns as getting good food while travelling isn't always easy. Carol assured me this wouldn't be a problem and she was so right! At Rukiya Safari Camp the staff were very friendly and welcoming. Lily and Conraad were wonderful hosts and Elliott and Donovan were fantastic guides and trackers. It felt like they all did that little bit extra to try and get us the best game sightings. I believe I'm correct in saying they are the only lodge who go game viewing in their neighbours reserve so you won't be running into other vehicles. Having breakfast while out on the morning game drive was great fun. The camp staff were lovely and there was a relaxed and inclusive atmosphere because of the communal dinner arrangements. The tents were more than comfortable and we loved the hot water bottles at night (we were there in the middle of their winter) Overall I think this was our favourite place out of the 3 lodges. Raptor Retreat is absolutely fabulous but a totally different experience. Its like staying in a tiny and very exclusive 5* hotel that happens to be in the middle of a game reserve. This is definitely luxury living. You are quite literally surrounded by the wildlife and will encounter impala and warthogs on the short walk from your private lodge to the main lodge house. Keith is passionate and knowledgeable and Sharmaine is a fantastic hostess. All the food here was outstanding and the camp staff were lovely and very helpful. Tangala Camp is totally different again. The bungalows here are comfortable if slightly dated, but when you see all of the big 5 on your very first game drive, within a couple of hours of arriving, then the fact that the bathrooms could do with updating suddenly seems less important ! Our guide, JD, was friendly and funny and made us feel incredibly welcome. Our tracker, Joe, was very knowledgable. There is a watering hole directly in front of the main lodge and most days we sat on our sun loungers and watched impala, zebra and even elephants wander in for a drink which was amazing. In this reserve they use inter-lodge radio communications in the game vehicles to alert everyone to good sightings. This means you will see more of other vehicles and people but it also means you will get to see more and the best possible wildlife sightings. Its strictly controlled so you don't have more then 2 vehicles at any sighting, and it works. This is the lodge/reserve where we saw more variety and quantity of wildlife than the other places we stayed.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If you're going during their winter it gets very cold early and late. It may seem silly taking hats and gloves to Africa but you will need them. If you have a choice, take the flight rather than the minibus from Johannesburg to Hoedspruit. The first 3 or 4 hours we enjoyed looking at the countryside but inside hours 5 and 6 we wished we'd paid extra and taken the 45 minute flight instead. And don't forget you have to do it all again on your return journey. If you think you have enough batteries and memory cards for your camera's, you don't ! Take extra. We used a 75-300 mm zoom lens and even with a 1.4 times converter it wasn't always enough. Think about your priorities and do your research when choosing what time of year to go. We went Late June/early July and loved it. The day time temperatures were perfect for us but we were told the game viewing is better in their spring and summer but its much much hotter then.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The Rukiya main lodge was built using "green" building practices and the tents obviously have a greener footprint than brick buildings. The Leopard conservation and education programme and camera traps run by Elliott here are doing valuable and important work. At Raptor you are encouraged to use the fabulous toiletries provided because they use a grey water system to reduce the environmental impact of their waste water Tangala runs mostly on solar power so they are doing their best to reduce their environmental footprint.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Absolutely fantastic ! As first time visitors we were excited and it didn't disappoint in any way. Would heartily recommend it. We're already saving up to go back.

review 16 Feb 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Every game drive was incredible but made all the more so by the knowledge shared by the guide at Rukiya lodge - he taught us things on drives that enhanced every other drive of the holiday.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared for early mornings, take decent binoculars and a good camera with a decent zoom lens

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We felt that all of the game reserves took the welfare and protection of animals seriously and limited the environmental impact of the lodge itself seriously, which we appreciated.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

The most magical experience of our lives. Can't recommend it enough.

review 18 Sep 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Amazing animal encounters, such as hyenas feasting on a carcass, a late evening drive seeing a pride of lions in the moonlight, and spotting rare species. Relaxing moments around the boma, enjoying the braai and hearing other people's stories. Not to mention the wonderful and helpful staff of the camps and INGWE.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Make sure to read all of the information given to you, you get a really good information pack to about what items and clothing to bring, and what to expect. Prior to arrival you get day-by-day instructions for your trip that are really helpful and easy to read.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I learned a lot about the work INGWE has been doing in the area, for example the volunteers teaching at their local orphanage and promoting conservation through that teaching.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Wonderful holiday overall. As a solo female traveller who had never been to Africa I was not sure what to expect, but this trip exceeded my expectations. Very safe and relaxing trip.

review 19 Nov 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The abundance of wild life

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Don't concentrate on the big 5. There are plenty of other animals, birds and plant life to see and learn about.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


review 12 Aug 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The holiday company offer a brilliant small group tour which is then personalised within. The staff are amazingly friendly and knowledgeable. They go above and beyond to make your trip remarkable.Not only do you get to see a variety of animals over the 3 reserves, from the Big 5 to the birds and insects, but you also learn how to predict what you might see. The experiences about how to use your senses efficiently and track animal spurs and dropping is essential to becoming fully engrossed in the experience. The staff at all 3 reserves were efficient, friendly, knowledgeable and approachable, while the varying accommodation gives you different insights into South Africa. From the hot water bottles at Black Leopard to the electric blankets at Thornybush, nothing was too much (it was winter). The outside bathroom at Black Leopard was a unique experience and the animals roaming by your door at Thornybush never got old. The food at all locations was tailored to individuals and believe me you never went hungry! Delicious. There was a lot of driving but even in this time you learnt a lot and the transport was always very comfortable. Traveling was tailor around the group.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Pack for every occasion!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The project at Black Leopard is much needed to save Leopards and all Volunteer based. The camp also employs local people so that is brilliant.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

This was the perfect safari for anyone who wanted to experience a variety within South Africa and didnít have time to set it up! The consistent staff made you feel safe (particularly as a solo traveller, although in the group I never felt alone) and the fantastic communication from Carol could not be faulted. Willís knowledge was endless and you could tell Becky and Jo had taken on board his passion for communicating information.A big thank you to Carol, Will, Becky, Jo and Stefan.

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