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Serenity at best

Visited with a group of friends. It was an amazing stay. All of us were so impressed. In the... read more

Review collected in partnership with this attraction

Reviewed 8 November 2020
sekokotlale
Excellent

Rudi and Vasti were really great, Frans was amazing setting perfect really enjoyed our stay and... read more

Review collected in partnership with this attraction

Reviewed 3 November 2020
N7366QCchrisg
,
Clarens, South Africa
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Reviewed 21 August 2019

We spent three comfortable nights at Leadwood Lodge on this Nature Reserve. We found it to be a great self catering bushveld venue that ideally suited our family group of seven adults. Good cooking amenities, including outdoor fire lit for us every night with firewood provided. Spotlessly clean and very comfortable two-bedroom houses with lovely views of a watering hole and salt-lick that attracted good wild-life, including a stunning pair of Sable antelope - rare treat to see them so close up. Quiet, fenced camp-site that maximises the back to nature experience. No wifi coverage suited me perfectly, but was less popular with our children. Good bird life despite being middle of winter. Warm bedrooms with comfortable beds. Well laid out camp with a good-sized pool and lapa that would be well used outside of the winter months when we were there. Delightful hosts, conservation-enthusiast couple Adrian & Chloe were extremely helpful and knowledgeable. Adrian led us on a very engaging morning bush-walk (modest extra cost) identifying flora, creepy crawlies, birds and mammal spoor, dung and burrows. He also took us on a night-drive (modest extra cost) with some good sightings of birds, antelope, buffalo and rare African Wildcat. This was a great, well-priced, peaceful, authentic, comfortable Bushveld experience and rewarding start to our family holiday. Would definitely recommend it and would definitely visit again, perhaps also trying to spend a few nights at the Baobab tented camp next time.

Pros: Hospitable, helpful hosts & support staff.
Well equipped for peaceful, authentic, self-catering Bushveld experience at excellent value for money.
No need to take anti-malaria prophylaxis.
Ambitious plans for future development - catch it before it becomes expensive and over-popular.

Cons: Currently only two out of the Big Five (Leopard and Buffalo), so not ideal if you're looking to tick off the Big Five in one trip. But beautiful Sable, Roan and other antelope close-up with ambitious plans to expand wild-life, including potentially introducing elephants.
Final leg of the journey is on imperfect gravel roads. We managed these alright in a 2 wheel-drive vehicle, but had to travel quite slowly (averaging around 35km/h for the last hour) to minimise risk of puncture. Recommend you check your spare wheel before setting off, and ensure your tyre pressures are optimal for the journey.
Car travel within Zingela Nature Reserve isn't really possible in a 2WD vehicle, and there are no road maps of the Reserve, so this is not like a Kruger National Park safari. But there are ambitious plans to improve roads and provide maps in future. Check progress with Chloe when booking.

Don't let any of the above put you off - Zingela is definitely worth a visit, and our experience showed that it can comfortably and rewardingly be included on the first leg of a two-week trip from Johannesburg to the Kruger National Park and back.

Date of experience: July 2019
Thank WdP_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 23 April 2019

Fabulous time in the bush. Great facilities and friendly, helpful hosts. The amazing peacefulness will make us come back. Thank you!!!

Date of experience: April 2019
Review collected in partnership with this attraction
Thank toosthuizen
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 9 September 2018

This is a awesome resort and a beautiful place. We were there for a short visit but will definitely come back and reccomend Zingela to others.

Date of experience: August 2018
Review collected in partnership with this attraction
1  Thank moutonsj
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 16 July 2018

It was an unexpected delight spending the weekend among the most helpful staff and the beauty of nature. If you want to unwind and enjoy nature this is definitely a destination. Our hosts went five extra miles for us and everything was organised and done with a smile. The accommodation is very well equipped and clean.

Surita and Armand were so friendly and helpful and the game drive was amazing.

Date of experience: July 2018
Review collected in partnership with this attraction
1  Thank Lorna B
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ZNR1990, Eco Tourism Manager at Zingela Nature Reserve, responded to this reviewResponded 30 July 2018

Lorna,

I was such a delight to accomodate you. We hope to see you soon :)

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Reviewed 22 January 2017

The constantly expanding Zingela Nature reserve is an impressive expanse of bushland and forest stretched out across the plains of South of the Limpopo river. Its a bit of a drive from Jo'burg but worth it for that genuine back to nature experience. There are no artificial big five glorified zoo experiences here. This is a landscape that is being responsibly restored to the way it would have looked two thousand years ago. There are a number of lodges that afford a decent range of accommodation from posh thatched villas to tented camps overlooking the wilderness. Many of these have views across to waterholes, which meant we could sit with our sundowner and watch the animals having theirs. You can also perch in one of Zingela's cunningly position hides for the chance to see leopards stalking empala or a buffalo grazing on grassy knoll. We managed to be in one of the taller wooden hides, built on stilts next to a large waterhole when two male giraffes began sparring over a female with us caught in the middle!!
Food-wise Zingela is a fusion of South African cuisine and European fare. With lots of local fruit and veg you can also have fun self-catering, as we did, enjoying fresh mangos each morning for breakfast. What made our stay special was seeing the effort being spent on restoration and conservation work. While the reintroduction of elephants and lions is next on the agenda already the bewildering variety of antelope left me scratching my head trying to remember all the names. Zingela is a place that's going to grow and become an important and clearly defined jigsaw piece in the only too often unreliable map of South African wilderness conservation. We will definitely be back to see how things develop. It was great to spend our time and contribute to a place that's dedicated to protecting and promoting nature and biodiversity, not one that exploits it!

Date of experience: January 2017
3  Thank Charlie O
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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