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ian m
Durban, South Africa

Getting Pricy

4.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed 05 Mar 2018
Although I love visiting Hluhluwe and staying at Hilltop Camp it is beginning to get pricy for your average South African. Fine for the tourists who come with their Euro's and Dollars as it then becomes a cheap holiday.
My wife and I were last their at the end of January and a basic rondavel is now R1200 per night. Taking into consideration that there is no on suite toilets nor cooking facilities in the units to me that is pricy. O.K. I concede that the price includes breakfast but as most game viewers want to get up and out at first light you miss breakfast.
The ablution blocks whilst spotlessly clean could do with a makeover. There is also a lack of pots and pans in the kitchen itself.
The cottages on the other hand are well furnished but at a price. They have been renovated and now include air conditioning in all bedrooms and the lounge. There is also a flat screen T.V. in the unit ? Who wants to watch T.V. in a game reserve, I myself prefer to be outside listening to the night calls and looking up at a lovely star filled sky. The kitchen has also been fitted out with granite tops by the way.
Like I said earlier, I love this place and used to try to get there at least four times per year but cannot afford that anymore when you also have to get there and back at today's petrol prices.
Another piece of advice is to buy a Rhino Card which allows you free access to not only Hluhluwe / Imfolozi but other parks in Kwa Zulu Natal. We bought a Wild Card when visiting Kruger in November and this allows access to all parks in South Africa except private game reserves. After a couple of visits your card is paid for.
Date of stay: January 2018
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7 - 12 of 19 reviews
Reviewed 18 February 2018

This is a good place to stay when you want to spot `Rhino's and other wild animals. The rooms are big and self catering but the restaurant is also reasonable, but nothing special.
It is again a government run lodge, it opens at accretion time and closes at a certain time and then I mean the lobby is closed and no further service. Book your safari trip when you log inn.

Date of stay: January 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Gerardthehague
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.
Reviewed 28 January 2018 via mobile

The location is magnificent. The common areas such as restaurant, bar, reception are good. However, we stayed in a two bed non-self catering unit that was long past it’s best. The fridge was broken, the roof leaked rain onto the bed during an admittedly major storm, the steps were broken, and the light in the bathroom was very poor. At one time I’m sure it all was fine

The food in the restaurant was fine, but somewhat unimaginative. It was also a bit pricey

Such a shame as this place could be the highlight of a trip

We took both the evening and early morning game drives which were excellent. We got very close to lions, rhinos and elephants

Date of stay: January 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Robert A
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.
Reviewed 17 July 2016

Our Hilltop stay was a lovely experience. The main centre held reception area, shop, bar, restaurant and outside seating/eating space with views across to the hills beyond. We had booked two 2 bed, non-selfcatering chalet (36 & 37) which were on the resort boundary, both with great views and outside balcony's. The rooms were spacious, comfortable and had everything we needed for a pleasant stay. Tea and coffee facilities were on hand and the rooms serviced daily.
Breakfast was included in the price and was good and plentiful. The 'juice' is still not fresh and it would have been nice to have the option of water at breakfast but there was also coffee and a range of tea's.
Evening buffet was ok. Soup was good and the salads even better. There was a different roast meat option each night - good but not great quality - but the second option was a meat curry each of our three night stay. The curry was fine but we felt there should be more variety! Vegetables were generally poor. You won't go hungry going for the buffet but we were glad that we were not there longer.
We had a lovely afternoon at the pool chilling and playing frizzbe.
We had hoped to go on a ranger guided walk but these are not held regularly during the SA winter so call beforehand if this is important to you.
We opted for the evening drive with a ranger as it was outside the hours we could self-drive. The vehicle was full but there was still a great view from each seat. The ranger as knowledgeable and we saw a number of animals that we had also seen in the daytime but also a few nocturnal ones. It was our only time we caught sight of lions - just at dusk so they were just visible. We also saw a large herd of elephants with some very young ones too. Worthwhile experience but do wrap up warm as the nights get cold. There are blankets you can put over your knees on the vehicle.

Room tip: The 2 bed non-selfcatering chalets we were allocated had excellent views and even nyala and monkeys going by. We had numbers 36 & 37.
Date of stay: June 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Annabel M
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.
Reviewed 25 April 2016

Wonderful option for accommodation eg. selfcatering houses with breakfast included at them main building, small rondavels too. This was a wonderful thatched accommodation, fully serviced and all provided for, this camp has a swimming pool as well. The "shop" however was not that well stocked so I suggest you buy whatever food items you need before entering the park. The main building did offer reasonably priced meals too - we didn't try them though. Everyone friendly. The only problem was that they ran out of stock of maps for the park - and you had to buy them!

Room tip: Ask for a cottage with a view of the mountains - not the bush!
Date of stay: April 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Karen H
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.
Reviewed 4 August 2015 via mobile

Visited in August 2015 while doing a 3 day safari. We had 2 self catering villas for a family of 5.

The positives are clearly the views from the veranda and the overall location. It was also clean but very rustic which is not surprising given its location and price.

Food was largely traditional South African and while good value was not that enjoyable.

Staff were very friendly and they entertained the guests at dinner with some traditional Zulu dancing.

If you're in the national park and looking for somewhere to stay then consider this for the location - it's worth it for that alone.

Date of stay: August 2015
Trip type: Travelled with family
3  Thank Keith99
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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