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Motswari Private Game Reserve

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Traveller (1653)
Room & Suite (159)
Dining (86)
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About

#3 of 3 guest houses in Timbavati Private Nature Reserve
Location
Cleanliness
Service
Value
Travellers' Choice
An African dream beckons – one that is defined by extraordinary scenery, an authentic atmosphere and warm hospitality. This is Motswari Private Game Reserve, a family-owned and operated luxury safari lodge. Here, majestic creatures, including the Big Five, offer incredible viewing opportunities as they bask in their natural habitat. Motswari means “to conserve and protect” in Tswana and that is what the reserve aims to do. Motswari Private Game Reserve, located within the Timbavati and Umbabat Private Nature Reserve, stretches out over 150 square kilometres. It has been in existence for over four decades and its friendly staff members are intrinsic to its success. Great emphasis is placed on personal attention, ensuring that each guest instantly feels at home in this stunning setting. Artworks by owner, Marion Geiger-Orengo, additionally bring the lodge to life and add to its visual appeal. "Arrive as visitor, leave as a friend."
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Property amenities
Free parking
Free internet
Pool
Free breakfast
Entertainment staff
Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Airport transportation
Full body massage
Secured parking
Wifi
Pool / beach towels
Infinity pool
Pool with view
Outdoor pool
Bar / lounge
Restaurant
Breakfast available
Breakfast buffet
Special diet menus
Poolside bar
Massage
Gift shop
Mosquito net
Outdoor fireplace
Outdoor furniture
Shared lounge / TV area
Shops
Sun loungers / beach chairs
Sun terrace
Private check-in / check-out
Laundry service
Ironing service
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Room features
Air conditioning
Desk
Housekeeping
Private balcony
Safe
Coffee / tea maker
Bath / shower
Complimentary toiletries
Seating area
Wardrobe / wardrobe
Private bathrooms
Wake-up service / alarm clock
Hair dryer
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Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Suites
Family rooms
Good to know
HOTEL CLASS
4.5 of 5 stars
HOTEL STYLE
Great View
Charming
Languages Spoken
English, Afrikaans

Location

Argyle Road Enkhulu Gate, Kruger National Park 1380 South Africa
Motswari Private Game Reserve
Getting there
Ngala Airfield
23.5 km
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Phalaborwa Airport
36.5 km
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1,013Review95Q+A100Room tips
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Debbie F wrote a review 12 Apr
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania45 contributions2 helpful votes
+1
From the moment we arrived at Motswari we were made to feel welcome. All staff members introduced themselves with a warm handshake...and it wasn't long until those handshakes turned into hugs! Ofenste made sure that our group of 13 were comfortable, entertained and that every need was accommodated. He could not have been more attentive, flexible and communicative. Motswari is perfect for those who seek time in the bush disconnected from the day-to-day distraction of their regular lives. Initially I felt a little uncomfortable - no wifi except in 'the gallery', not being able to walk at night without a guide (the lodge is not fenced) dark yet beautiful bungalows. But it didn't take me long to appreciate the opportunity to rest and reset in a place that soon came to feel like home. The lodge and bungalows reflect the mission, philosophy and personal attention that is the hallmark of Motswari. Each bungalow is unique and interesting; each piece of furniture has been lovingly chosen by the owner. She is an artist and her art adorns many public areas. While the bungalows may be described as rustic, they are wonderfully comfortable and have every amenity one could need. We loved that our bungalow (Buffalo) had an outdoor shower, an indoor shower, a luxurious bathtub, and hanging basket chair on our patio. As others have mentioned, the rooms are dark and could be enhanced with a little more light for those who prefer. As I prefer an environment with natural light, I did not spend much time in the bungalow between the game rides, but rather chose to enjoy my down time at the pool or at the outdoor patios with other guests. The public spaces are comfortable and welcoming, and there is always a friendly face (such as Trust) nearby to offer drinks or conversation. Our group enjoyed delicious meals and many laughs together in various settings - a private room, the outdoor patio, the serene breakfast area, a boma and even a spectacular breakfast in the bush! While all the food (lovingly prepared by the team led by Head Chef Eugenia Mtungwa) was delicious, we especially enjoyed the variety of dishes served at lunch. And we eagerly anticipated the lunch presentation parade every day from the kitchen - multiple dishes of food presented joyfully with song and dance! The catering team were very attentive to our dietary needs and made sure that the celiac members of our group were treated to delicious gluten-free alternatives when needed. And there were ample choices for the vegetarians! Our game drives were a highlight. We had three knowledgable and personable guides (Jeremy, Owen, and Lola), and two masterful trackers (George and Hendry) who made sure that we saw the big five and lots more! As anyone who has been on game drives knows, part of the excitement and enjoyment is the chase and anticipation of coming across a 'find'. Owen, Jeremy and Lola used this time to teach us about the birds, the vegetation, the insects, and a plethora of other fascinating tidbits about the Timbavati. And they certainly were not scared to go off road and 'bundu bash' to offer us the best views and opportunities for sightings. I have been lucky to visit many lodges and parks (the KNP, the Klasserie, Kapama, Mjejane, Shamwari), and I found Timbavavati to be one of the most beautiful. I highly, highly recommend Motswari for those who are seeking an authentic bush experience. I read some of the three star reviews on Tripadvisor,and realized that some of those who wrote the reviews went with misguided expectations and, as a result, missed the true magic of Motswari. Yes, there may be ants and spiders in the natural environment...yes, there may be a hyena bellowing at night somewhat close by....yes, there is limited wifi...yes, the bungalows are more rustic than modern - but this is exactly why we chose Motswari, and why the people who work there, who are passionate about their jobs and mission, are able to create such a special experience for those who visit.
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Date of stay: March 2024
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Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Chris W wrote a review 07 Apr
New York City, New York47 contributions19 helpful votes
Amazingly friendly people, incredible diversity of wildlife, absolutely fantastic food, and just an all around wonderful experience. Big thanks to Owen and George for helping spot all the big 5 and much, much more! We would go back in a second!
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Date of stay: March 2024
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Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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mark s wrote a review Mar 2024
Cape Town Central, South Africa62 contributions56 helpful votes
We spent 3 nights at Motswari & couldnt have been happier with our choice. From the moment we arrived until we left we treated like royalty. The staff were outstanding, remembering our names, the food superb & more than ample, the rooms spacious & very comfortable. The game drives were informative & we saw the Big 5 along with a lot of other animals & birds. I must make special mention of our ranger Eden & Tracker Elly who were a pleasure to spend 7 hours a day with. I cannot recommend Motswari highly enough
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Date of stay: March 2024
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Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Jessica wrote a review Mar 2024
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania3 contributions3 helpful votes
Motswari was incredible! Our guide Owen, and tracker Elly, were the best. We were so bummed to have missed our connecting flight and therefore missed 1 out of our 3 nights here- however we were able to see the big 5 in just our first 2 game drives! On top of helping us see the best of the bush, they made us feel safe. The game drives were so amazing, as was our time back at the lodge. All of the food was delicious, and the presentation of meals was such a great experience. The accommodations were clean, spacious, and safe. Would recommend to couples and families alike!
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Date of stay: February 2024
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Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: There is only wifi/ cell service at the dining areas/ lobby- not in your personal lodge/ room,...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Ken B wrote a review Mar 2024
6 contributions3 helpful votes
Absolutely fantastic place to have your Safari Experience, we were there for 3 days in February 2024, our guide and tracker was Eden and Lot, they were brilliant, did everything they could possibly do to ensure we had a great safari, we saw the big five a few times whilst we were there, these two guys wouldn't rest until they got us to where we needed to be. The support teams at Motswari were also fantastic, again nothing too much trouble, food and accommodation were great. Would highly recommend***********
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Date of stay: February 2024
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Trip type: Travelled with family
Room Tip: Ask for Eden and Lot as your Guide and Tracker, they were great.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Dream797137 wrote a review Feb 2024
Tetbury, United Kingdom43 contributions48 helpful votes
The Big 5 are there waiting to show you their world and the trackers and drivers will guide you to jaw-dropping up-close sights and experiences. You will be fed and watered with quality food served with charm. The GM and his team make you feel very much at home. You will not want to leave - we didn’t!
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Date of stay: February 2024
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Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: Immerse yourself!
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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bartonzip wrote a review Feb 2024
England8 contributions8 helpful votes
+1
My husband and I went to Motswari Lodge in February 2024 for four nights. What a truly amazing experience. We went on all the morning and afternoon drives. We captured the big five and many more animals, that goes out to the expertise of Paul and Release. We'll done guys. The whole team at Motswari Lodge make your stay one that you will never forget. A big thank you to all and we will be back. Robert and Anne Barton
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Date of stay: February 2024
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Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: Don't forget the suncream, hat and a few layers. Most of all get a great camera.
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Trefor D wrote a review Feb 2024
Lincoln, United Kingdom196 contributions58 helpful votes
+1
I find it difficult to truly express how fantastic an experience was our four night stay in the Motswari lodge. We arrived shortly before 3pm, had lunch and by four were off on our first game drive. In the first couple of hours we had already seen a leopard up a tree with its kill, a mother and calf rhino and a male lion. By the end of the fourth day we had added multiple sightings of all the big five including three different prides of lions, a very rare pack of African wild dogs (only 450 left in the Kruger National Park, a place the size of Wales, Hippos, crocs, zebras, hyenas, various types of antelopes, a family of warthogs trotting along in front of the verandah of the lodge, a troupe of elephants in a column just to the right of the lodge, African wild cat, a honey badger. Most of these sightings were at a range of between five and ten metres. Just mind blowing. We came across a pride of ten lions eating a recently killed buffalo - we were less than 10m away from them. At one stage we found ourselves slap bang in the middle of a herd of elephants chomping away at the foliage. We just sat there watching. I'm missed out lots of sightings. So many it really was fantastic. On our last evening we even stopped by the grassless football pitch to watch the Motswari staff football team the "Zebras" playing a game against a visiting team. Two of the visitors shared a pair of trainers - one wearing the left show and the other the right. Even the evening where we had to abandon the drive because of a thunderstorm and rain of biblical proportions turned out ot be great as we got to the bar early, the staff lit a fire and we sat watching England v Wales rugby match before dinner. Oh and that was the night the elephant strolled by across the lawn in front of us! The whole stay was made better by the knowledge and friendliness of our guide Jeremy and tracker Hendry and indeed by all the other staff in the lodge. They were all great. The lodge facilities themselves were perfect for the purpose. They even have an infinity pool where you can just sit watching the animals stroll by. I didn't think I'd use it much thinking there would be a lot of insects around it, this being "the jungle" and all. If there was one area they could improve on I can't think of it. It was one of the best holidays of my life and I'm already looking at when we might be able to return. Thank you Motswari
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Date of stay: February 2024
Value
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Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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calajoncols wrote a review Feb 2024
Roses, Spain2 contributions
I was in that paradise 5 days in the last February and it was very nice!!!!!! You feel at your home from the first minute, staff very attentive and good people. Special attention with the food you find the love which they put to cook......at the end all the staff " chapeau ", one night a Elefant break the boiler from the shower and in the same early morning they repare. I was going to the safari game with Henry and Jeremy and they have an incredible knowledge and passion for the Nature!!!incredible trips and you saw many animals of course the big five....... No words for the experience in Motswari!!! I hardly recomen if you like the peace and love!!!!
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Date of stay: February 2024
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Trip type: Travelled solo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Pathfinder388193 wrote a review Jan 2024
2 contributions
We spent two nights at Motswari, and I must say, it would have been even better to stay for at least one more. My wife and I traveled to Motswari after a research meeting in Cape Town. We flew to JNB airport and rented a car; it was quite easy to reach the lodge. Although I was a bit worried about arriving in time for the evening game drive, we made it 45 minutes before the 4 PM deadline. The staff assured us that they would wait for us to start the game drive and suggested we have lunch before heading out. The food and accommodation were fantastic. We stayed in the Roan bungalow, considered one of the top accommodations, very close to the pool and bar. For 24 hours, we had the entire lodge at our disposal since we were the only guests in the entire lodge during the low season. We had three fantastic game drives with a very skilled tracker, Hendrik, and guide, Paul. My wife wanted to see lions, and they tracked a lion pride within 5 minutes of starting the game drive. I had a list of animals to see, and Paul and Hendrik managed to find almost all of them, including lions, elephants, rhinos, buffalos, wild dogs, etc., despite the rainy weather. We missed the leopard, and the entire fourth game drive was dedicated to finding it. Paul and Hendrik located it and saw it on foot, but it was tricky to reach with the car. I asked to see it on foot too, but they explained it was very dangerous. Regardless, I understand that it's not a zoo. I'm sure that with an extra day (and better weather), we would have seen the leopard. It was really hard to leave such a nice place with fantastic people! On the way back from the lodge to the airport, we had an additional game drive as we saw buffalos, kudus, and other animals. Finally, 5-10 km before exiting the Timbavati reserve, a huge herd of elephants crossed the road, and one even came close to our car (2-3m). In summary, this was the best trip I have ever taken! Hopefully, we will manage to come back. Thanks to all Motswari staff, and special thanks to Paul and Hendrik.
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Date of stay: December 2023
Value
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Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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There are more places to choose from in the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve area.
PRICE RANGE
R 12,381 - R 17,207 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
ALSO KNOWN AS
motswari private game reserve hotel timbavati private nature reserve
LOCATION
South AfricaKruger National ParkTimbavati Private Nature Reserve
NUMBER OF ROOMS
15
Prices are provided by our partners, and reflect average nightly room rates, including taxes and fees that are fixed, known to our partners, and due at time of booking. Please see our partners for more details.
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MOTSWARI PRIVATE GAME RESERVE - Guesthouse Reviews & Price Comparison (Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, South Africa) - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Motswari Private Game Reserve
What are some of the property amenities at Motswari Private Game Reserve?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free breakfast, a pool, and an on-site restaurant.
Which room amenities are available at Motswari Private Game Reserve?
Top room amenities include air conditioning, a desk, and a mosquito net.
What food & drink options are available at Motswari Private Game Reserve?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast, an on-site restaurant, and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Motswari Private Game Reserve?
Yes, free parking and secured parking are available to guests.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Motswari Private Game Reserve?
Yes, guests have access to a pool during their stay.
Does Motswari Private Game Reserve have airport transportation?
Yes, Motswari Private Game Reserve offers airport transportation for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Are pets allowed at Motswari Private Game Reserve?
Yes, pets are typically allowed, but it's always best to call ahead to confirm.
Which languages are spoken by the staff at Motswari Private Game Reserve?
The staff speaks multiple languages, including English and Afrikaans.
Is Motswari Private Game Reserve accessible?
Yes, it offers wheelchair access and facilities for disabled guests. For specific enquiries, we recommend calling ahead to confirm.