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Dan C
Asheville, North Carolina

Perfect place for Safari

Review of Monwana Lodge
5.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed 06 Jun 2024
I don't even know where to start. Your first experience is being greeted by the friendliest staff washing your hands with fresh hot water and herbs... Just gets better from there. Cottages are beautiful, elegant, understated and include all the amenities (including an outdoor shower to go along with the indoor shower). We watched giraffes and elephants only a few meters away from our livingroom multiple days. The lodge and food are just over the top. They feed you constantly! We had four dinners, all different, all in different places including the wine cellar and the dry riverbed. Every meal was amazing, using local ingredients and lots of creativity. Bar was awesome too, with many great wine choices for each meal. And then there was the safari (the reason you're there). U.N.R.E.A.L. We saw the big 5 on multiple days along with so many other amazing animals. Our guide Taya and our tracker Ismael were absolutely amazing - completely made the experience so much more fun and rewarding. Literally could not imagine a better experience.

End of day - I don't know how you could find a better place, experience or staff on any other safari lodge. We will be back.
Date of stay: May 2024
Room Tip: Come hungry...
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
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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.
MORE Family Collection Lodges and Hotels, Marketing at Monwana Lodge, responded to this review
Responded 4 weeks ago
Thank you for your wonderful review! We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed your stay, from our warm welcome to the unforgettable safari experiences. Your kind words mean the world to us. We’re thrilled you found our lodge exceptional and can’t wait to welcome you back for another amazing adventure.

All the best,
Your Monwana Family
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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View more hotels in Thornybush Private Game Reserve
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Reviewed 4 June 2024

It was our first visit to Thornybush Nature Reserve - which itself proved to be a reserve of breathtaking surroundings. From the moment we arrived at Monwana lodge we were enveloped in a dual universe of total luxury and raw natural beauty.

The warm welcome we received upon arrival, the personalised attention throughout our stay, the friendly smiles and engaging conversations… It felt like every single team member went above and beyond to ensure that we not only felt like royalty, but family.

It truly felt like “coming home.”

During our (far too short :) two night stay we had a romantic dinner under the stars, a ‘bush breakfast’ in a riverbed, watched elephants drink from the waterhole as we lounged by the pool, ate like kings (the food! the flavours!) and while we did not make time to visit the gym (which overlooks a dry riverbed often frequented by wild animals) we did go on a bush walk - something we highly recommend if you are visiting during the cooler months, as it is an opportunity to experience and learn about the African bush on a whole different level.

Our game viewing was outstanding. We saw three different leopards, witnessed incredible leopard – hyena interaction, a herd of what must have been almost 500 buffalo, a lion pride hunting said buffalo, the famous ‘Mapoza’ male lion who’s reign we learnt is sadly coming to an end, a wake of vultures feeding of an elephant carcass (an old female who had died from natural causes), a pack of wild dogs playing in the water and so much more. But it was our guide and tracker team (Dan and Fanoti) whose knowledge, passion and great sense of humour made the drives unforgettable.

We hope to return soon 😊

Alice and Gino

Date of stay: May 2024
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Safari03320322031
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.
MORE Family Collection Lodges and Hotels, Marketing at Monwana Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 6 June 2024

Thank you for your glowing review! We're glad you enjoyed your first visit to Thornybush Nature Reserve and Monwana Lodge. We're delighted that you enjoyed the personalised attention from our team and had unforgettable experiences on the game drives with the team. We can't wait to welcome you back soon!
All the best,
Your Monwana Family

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 June 2024

Where does one start?
* Most stunning location located in one of the most beautiful places in South Africa.
* Amazingly beautiful new/renovated lodge with the most beautifully equipped rooms
* Quiet and Private rooms
* Amazing, delicious food and drinks
* Game drives are done safely with the finest attention to detail
* 5 stars might be an understatement
* So nice to see friendly smiles the entire day coming from all staff members
You will not be disappointed when visiting

Date of stay: June 2024
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Waldo K
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.
MORE Family Collection Lodges and Hotels, Marketing at Monwana Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 6 June 2024

Thank you for your amazing review! We're thrilled you enjoyed our stunning location, beautifully equipped rooms, delicious food, and safe game drives. Your kind words about our staff are greatly appreciated. We can't wait to welcome you back for another fantastic stay!
All the best,
Your Monwana Family

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2024

From the moment we arrived we felt part of the Monwana family. The genuinely friendly staff, without exception, ensured our every need was anticipated, making us feel completely at home. Our guide and tracker’s passion for the bush and exemplary knowledge of wildlife was evident on every game drive, providing us with unforgettable, thrilling and immersive experiences.

The understated luxury of the Africa-inspired main lodge blends seamlessly into the natural environment. Our suite, decorated with contemporary and stylish furnishings, boasted floor-to-ceiling glass doors extending out onto a private deck, offered uninterrupted views of the water hole - perfect for relaxing!
We have been lucky enough to have visited many luxury lodges in South Africa but, for us, Monwana is the epitome of a bush-lovers paradise - a truly restorative, special place. We cannot wait to return!

Date of stay: May 2024
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank OandJ2017
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.
MORE Family Collection Lodges and Hotels, Marketing at Monwana Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 6 June 2024

Thank you for your wonderful review! We're thrilled you felt part of our Monwana family and enjoyed our team's passion for the bush and wildlife. We're glad you loved the beauty of our lodge and the stunning views from your suite. We can't wait to welcome you back soon for another unforgettable experience!
All the best,
Your Monwana Family

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 June 2024 via mobile

I wish I could give more than 5 stars because this place is outstanding and exceeds every expectation! It was my second time here, and I hope there are many more times to come.
If you have to describe what it means to go above and beyond, Monwana Lodge is exactly that. I had been away from home for 1,5 weeks already but arriving at Monwana Lodge made me really feel like #cominghome again, making it especially hard to leave.
A warm welcome was given by the lovely Nicole, Phidolia, Dan and Fanoti, and was quickly settled in my beautiful, spacious and very luxurious lodge.
Everything is extremely clean and well maintained, and even though the new lodges have opened two years ago, it still looks and feels brand new. The private pool, luxurious bathroom and bed you sleep in like an empress, I could’ve stayed forever.
A big shout out also goes to Natalie, her team in the kitchen, Robbie and Hudson, for all the very delicious meals and drinks, served with a smile. Together with the rest of the Monwana team, we were also treated to a surprise riverbed dinner with fires and beautifully laid tables, an unforgettable experience!
A thank you also to Phidolia for the relaxing spa treatment, and to Dan and Fanoti for exceeding every expectation on the game drives. Waking up early has never been so rewarding! Fanoti’s eagle eye and ears, Dan’s endless knowledge of the bush and animals, they are with right a dream team. The sightings even surpassed last year’s experience and that one had already been priceless. I have found the dynamics in the bush one of the most interesting things, so I enjoyed hearing about it a lot (while also bombarding the team with lots of questions 🙂)
To the whole team at Monwana lodge, front of house and behind the scenes, THANK YOU for making this such an unforgettable experience, it has such a special place in my heart and I’ll miss you all!

Date of stay: May 2024
Trip type: Travelled solo
Thank tanjag0891
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.
MORE Family Collection Lodges and Hotels, Marketing at Monwana Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 6 June 2024

Thank you so much for your heartwarming review! We're thrilled that your second stay was as memorable as the first. It’s wonderful to hear you felt at home with our team and enjoyed the detail we put into each guests stay.
We’re glad you enjoyed the spa treatment and the exceptional game drives. We can't wait to welcome you back for more amazing experiences!

All the best,
Your Monwana Family

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 May 2024

I loved my stay at Monwana last week! The lodge is beautiful, the food was fresh and healthy and the staff was amazing. I hadn't been to the southern part of Thorneybush Reserve before and the game was terrific. Even saw two honey badgers! I highly recommend this lodge!

Date of stay: May 2024
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Stay64219146564
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.
MORE Family Collection Lodges and Hotels, Marketing at Monwana Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 20 May 2024

Thank you so much for your kind words! We're delighted to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us. It's fantastic that you appreciated the beauty of the lodge, the fresh and healthy food, and our amazing staff. Seeing honey badgers must have been a real treat! We appreciate your recommendation and hope to welcome you back soon for another wonderful experience.
All the best,
Your Monwana Family

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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