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“Incredible location; value for money”

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Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Knysna, South Africa
Level Contributor
16 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Incredible location; value for money”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 October 2014

If you wish to experience the Drakensberg but only have a short time, or want to do the Amphitheatre hike, I can't imagine a better place than Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge. This location is incredible. We stayed in 2 of the new Sentinel chalets and found them to be warm and comfortable, with breath-taking views. The lodge restaurant serves wholesome South African food, and the staff are helpful and very friendly.

Room Tip: The new Sentinel chalets are warm and comfortable, with breath-taking views.
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  • Stayed October 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank KHaupt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EleanorMuller, Management Operator at Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, 6 November 2014
Thanks for the great write-up and understanding of the essential essence of what makes Witsieshoek a great place to visit. Hope to see you again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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80 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (30)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Brisbane
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 October 2014

After hiking in the Natal Drakensberg many times more than 20 year ago it was an adventure to take my three daughters to experience the beauty and the wildness of the region.

The Drakensberg did it's thing - all weather, breathtaking views, a little scary on the hike at times. If you find in the morning you are in the cloud take a short drive to the sentinel car park and you will be "On Top"

Witsiehoek Mountain Lodge chalets were our safe haven - with views of the sentinel, keeping the wind and rain out, excellent food and service. Witsiehoek is close enough to be there already but just far enough away from the amphitheatre to be able to aprpeciate the grandeur.

  • Stayed September 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank James G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EleanorMuller, Management Operator at Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, 7 October 2014
Thank you for the lovely feedback. It's great to know that the Berg worked it's charm, and that Witsieshoek delivered. We do love your very accurate observation about Witsieshoek being not too near, and not too far, from the mountain. It reminds us of Golilocks and the Three Bears!

We look forward to your next visit.
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Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 September 2014

As one of a large group of people who all but took over most of Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge for a weekend, I was able to peep into the hikers cabin, the renovated Soutspan rooms, the older bungalows and was lucky enough to sleep in one of the newly built Sentinel rooms. These are lovely, with incredible views to the Drakensberg mountains, large supe- comfy beds with electric blankets and crisp linen, en suite bath with large shower, plenty of cupboard space and easy chairs to curl up and read in. The Hikers Cabins are clean and basic with comfortable single beds (2 to a room),and good common kitchen space with a large central table and a magnificent view to the valley and river below. Hikers cabins are perfect for families and close friends to hang out together. The older bungalows are great for a family, more private than the Hiker's cabins, although the bath was a bit small. The Soutspan rooms are not quite as luxurious as the Sentinel's, but are well appointed and spacious. If you want a view to the valley and river, mention it to Barbara, the lodge's number one asset. She is a star, and made our stay a great success. The food was very tasty, home cooked fare - just the ticket after a day in the Berg.

Room Tip: To avoid any problems with your bill, make sure to note the name of your bungalow, the number of you...
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  • Stayed September 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank trenig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EleanorMuller, Management Operator at Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, 7 October 2014
It was a real pleasure having you and your group to stay at Witsieshoek. We do appreciate the time you have taken to explain the different accommodation options, and we hope that the Implementing Agent will soon complete the renovations of the last old bungalows. (Yes - those old bungalows do have the oddest small baths. Rest assured, they will be converted to nice showers once renovated.)

We look forward to welcoming you and your friends back again some time soon. We've had some rain over the past week and the mountain is starting to put on her green summer coat.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 August 2014

Excellent for a quiet getaway. For couples, family, friends and all of the above! The all day hike transports you to views that are only touched by nature. Lovely comfort food and great accommodation Looking forward to the next visit.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank DuaneSampson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EleanorMuller, Management Operator at Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, 8 September 2014
As we too are looking forward to welcoming you back! So pleased that Witsieshoek worked its charm and that you had a happy time in the mountains.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gauteng, South Africa
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 August 2014

I have been visiting Witsieshoek Hotel for a weekend in Winter every year for the past 6 years, I realise it is a "basic" hotel and have always enjoyed the stay despite the limitations of the accommodation in the old rondavels. This year a group of us decided to go together and stay in the new revamped chalets.

When we arrived at Reception at Witsieshoek for a weekend in August, Nelson was confused with our booking and it transpired that Magdeline had not booked a chalet for our single friend. I had received a mail from Magdeline confirming this arrangement. Four of the others in our party had already arrived and booked in by the time we got there and faced this same confusion from Reception. They were asked to pay the wrong amounts and there was much confusion - not a great start to our weekend. I had made this booking months in advanced and confirmed all arrangements so this was a disappointing start.

On arrival in the chalets we discovered that the radiator type heaters in the chalet rooms 6,7 & 8 were not working so only one of our party had a decent heater for her stay, the rest of us had to make do with an air heater which dries the air and really was not good enough. No. 8 didn’t even have this and had to specially ask for one. I asked the Manager why our heaters were not working and was told a part was needed from Bethlehem and of course they would not be fixed until after we were gone. We later discovered that the shower pressure in chalets 1, 6, 7 & 8 was pathetic, the water took at least 5 minutes to get hot – a huge waste of water – and then the pressure was so low I shivered thru both showers I took.

Unfortunately our experience continued to be tainted with disappointment - the food supplied in the restaurant far outweighed any problems we had with Reception or the chalets. On both nights many of our party were very disappointed with the poor quality and portion size of the food ordered. On the second night we sent food back as we were just not prepared to accept such poor quality. Two of our party were actually sick with gastro on Sunday morning from the chicken and chicken livers specifically. The Manageress did try to replace food and not charge for some of it but it was very upsetting and I, having suggested staying at this establishment, was embarrassed that my friends had to go through such an experience and also even get sick from it!

On my previous stays there was always a buffet so I wasn’t even aware the restaurant did A La Carte for dinner, I was told that only when the hotel is full does this happen. We had always enjoyed the simple food in the form of casseroles, stews and soups that had been supplied but those were not available this time.

On a positive note, the chalets are looking great after the revamp, they have been well decorated and of course the views are fabulous. The Staff at the Lodge are all very helpful, polite and friendly. The lounge, TV and bar area and the wonderful fire all are fantastic plusses at Witsieshoek.

This lodge is in such a unique and stunning setting, you have such an amazing opportunity if they could only get the details right.

I did send a mail to the Manager at Witsieshoek, Jan van Niekerk and he has replied but I feel he has not taken the complaint seriously and am concerned nothing will be done about the problems.

Room Tip: Definitely the chalets
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Tamsamay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EleanorMuller, Management Operator at Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, 8 September 2014
Thank you for your review, and at the outset, please accept our apologies that things did not go as smoothly as they should have when you visited us.

We have looked carefully at the details of the confusion around your booking, and will be addressing this issue in training for the reception staff.

In reply to the problem of the broken circulation pump, the challenging reality of our remote location is that suppliers are not able to turn around repairs at the same speed that you’d experience in the city. Your visit coincided with the components being repaired offsite. They have subsequently been returned, and are now fully operational.

We were most distressed to hear your unhappiness about the food, especially given that most guests see this as an area of strength of the Lodge. We know there was an error is taking your order on one item, and the one dish had to be replaced because it was poorly cooked. We are addressing those issues in training.

We are pleased that you and your guests did have a solid day out in the Berg, hiking the area, and we sincerely hope that you enjoyed your time in the mountains. I understand that you are in communication with the manager, and he’s looking forward to your return visit to Witsieshoek.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge

Property: Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge
Address: Road's End R57, Phuthaditjhaba, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Free State > Phuthaditjhaba
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Speciality Lodging in Phuthaditjhaba
Price range (per night): R1 318 - R1 529
Hotel Class:3 star — Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Witsieshoek Mountain Lodge is situated at the base of the Drakensberg’s spectacular Sentinel Peak, and offers peaceful and affordable accommodation for families, hikers, large or small groups. Whatever your choice of accommodation, the mountain lodge boasts spectacular views on all sides and comfortable beds to welcome you home from a long day exploring the incredible and wild surrounding scenery of the Central Drakensberg. ... more   less 
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