Today I am starting a new series of posts on Travel Yourself called “Where She Stayed” which can easily be found under the “Blog” drop down menu at the top of the page. Here you can find reviews on every place I stay on my travels. From Hostels to Luxury Hotels I hope to give you honest reviews that you can trust on your travels.
While on Safari in South Africa I stayed at the And Beyond Luxury Safari’s Ngala Private Game Reserve which is part of Kruger National Park, one of the largest Game Reserves in all of Africa. At Ngala I spent two nights at their Lodge and one night at their tented camp.
Here is a video tour of each property:
When I first arrived at the Ngala I was told my first night would be spent at the Ngala Safari Lodge. We arrived and were given a big warm welcome by the staff and one of the managers who greeted us with a warm hug saying to us “Welcome home!” and instantly suggested we call her Momma.
A tasty Welcome drink given to us upon our arrival at the Ngala Safari Lodge.
Our bags were taken to our rooms where we had a few moments to unwind. At the lodge there was a gift shop and main office area, an eating area and lounge/bar and swimming pool and there were many small buildings with each one containing two rooms.
The outside of my room at the Ngala Safari lodge
I was told that the lodge property was open with no walls surrounding it so I would have to be on the look out for animals when walking around and was told not to walk alone at night. Thankfully security was always around to walk with you if needed. While there in the camp I saw warthogs, baboons and elephants at the watering hole near the pool.
My room at the Ngala Safari Lodge
Each day we were served delicious meals, in one of two eating areas at the lodge. There was also a tea and coffee service before each game drive. (Note however that there aren’t any toilets while out in the wild on safari, so don’t have too much tea or coffee before your drive).
Biltong pizza with butternut squash and feta some of the great food we were served.
On the second night I stayed at the Ngala Tented Camp located on the near by river which was dry at the time of my visit. However the year before in the “Wet” season it had flooded washing out the majority of the tented camp so everything here had just recently been rebuilt and was all brand new. At the moment there are only 6 tents at the tented camp so there were less people around than at the lodge however they are in the process of building more tents.
My room at the Ngala Tented Camp
These tents were not your typical fabric and a few metal poles these puppies were large and high class. The ceiling was all tent and the majority of the walls were made of tent material or mesh. At night fabric flaps covered the mesh for privacy and on a windy evening they moved in the wind almost as if the whole tent was breathing, a very soothing sound and feeling. That is about where it ends being a tent because then you also have a desk and working area, a mini bar, a toilet, a tub, an outdoor shower, two double sinks and a closet. This is the kind of tent that if you could live in it you would and you might never want to leave.
At the tented camp you also had to walk at night with security guards for your own safety and the tents did not have telephones in them so you needed to either plan ahead and schedule times for security to come get you or you could use a whistle that was provided.
The food was just as tasty at the tented camp as it was at the lodge.
Part of breakfast, cheese, bread and honey.
And the views over the dry river bed were great as well.
Friends over looking the dry river bed.
If I had to choose between staying at the lodge or tented camp I think I would choose the tented camp ( the more expensive option) specifically for the uniqueness of “glamping”(glamourous camping). However each property had its own “je ne sais quoi” about it that made it great. The Ngala Private Game Reserve is one of those places you stay that you want to visit again and again. A place that you think of so fondly that you probably over describe it to friends and fear it may be different if you were to visit again. If I had a chance to go back I would definitely stay longer because not only were the accommodations awesome but the safari’s (the whole reason I was there to begin with) were fantastic.
If you are looking for a game reserve to stay at in Kruger National Park and you can fit it into your budget I definitely recommend staying here.
Special thanks to Visit South Africa, South African Airways and And Beyond Luxury Safaris. All opinions and views expressed are my own.