We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Absolutely Fabulous Thula Thula - We Will Be Back”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 6 more sites!
Thula Thula Exclusive Private Game Reserve and Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 23 August 2017

Our family of 3 (myself, husband and 13yr old daughter) had an absolutely fabulous time at Thula Thula in July 2017.
We stayed in the Safari Tent Lodge for 6 nights and had the last night at the lodge. Both accommodation places had wonderful staff that were, friendly and very attentive. The Main lodge room was larger than the family tent (which was not exactly small). Our time at the Tented Camp was very special as we were there for 6 days and got to know the Rangers, staff and other guests well. We felt very at home and nothing was too much trouble.
We are bird watchers, love taking photos and being in the bush so the guided walks were thoroughly enjoyed by us all & not to be missed. The game drives were probably our favourite activity. Each time we went out we would see something different. We were lucky enough to see the elephants each game drive we went on (I am not sure if that’s usual). We never tired of watching them or the other animals as they were always doing something different. Stopping to enjoy the sunset, views and smell of the bush were a wonderful way to end the day.
We chose Thula Thula for a few different reasons. ①My daughter & I had read and loved ‘The Elephant Whisperer’ (about the Thula Thula elephants) and wanted to see the amazing herd, their home and the dedicated people who look after them. ②We loved the respect that Thula Thula owners had for the local people, animals and the environment. ③We only had 15 days in Africa & to experience different things we could easily do day trips arranged by Thula Thula (Wetland cruise, Indian Ocean beach, National Park, Zululand etc).
If you haven’t read the book before you visit you will still have an absolutely wonderful time. We had the most fabulous guides Musi, Shandu and Jenny. They made the drives, walks and chats so much fun. Four weeks later we still miss them. The food was lovely and day trips included a fabulous picnic lunch. All guests we met during our stay loved their time there and everyone was either a return visitor or planning a return trip. We definitely will be back!

  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Rhonda C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (282)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

19 - 23 of 282 reviews

Reviewed 19 August 2017

Thula Thula has been on our bucket list of places to visit ever since we read Elephant Whisperer. It was everything we expected and more. We stayed in our very comfortable chalet at the Lodge which was super clean and had everything we needed. We ate in the dining room and were blown away by the wonderful food - delicious and well presented. Compliments to the chef(s). The staff were friendly and went out of their way to make sure our stay was perfect. We met Francoise who is gorgeous and just as we had imagined her from the book. I cannot even describe how wonderful the game drives were. Our rangers - Damien (our driver) and Khaya were amazing - punctual, friendly, charming, unbelievably knowledgeable and we couldn't have asked for better rangers. Our biggest wish was to see Nana and Frankie. Well not only did we see the two majestic ladies, but also Nandi, Shaka, Ilanga, Mandla, Mabula, Suzanna, Victoria and all of their beautiful family walked right passed our open jeep a few times - in fact at arms length away sometimes. Thabo and Ntombi, the rhinos gave us such thrill by coming right up to our jeep to say hello and then both facing up to Shaka, the elephant - playfully trying to show their authority. They pushed Shaka back a few steps and then Shaka would push them back - this went on for about half an hour. It all ended amicably as the twins gave up and went their own way. Later on, our ranger noticed a hyena emerging from the long grass as we were driving slowly along the track. He stopped the jeep and the cute, young hyena couldn't contain his curiosity. He inched closer and closer and then lay down behind some long grass just metres away on the track, thinking we couldn't see him. We always thought hyenas tended to retreat hastily when seen. We enjoyed a gin and tonic while watching a beautiful sunset high up on a ridge, saw so many animals and loved every second of our visit. Thank you everyone at Thula Thula - we can't wait to come back on our next visit from Perth, Australia and would recommend a stay there to anyone. Paul and Linda

  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank LINDA AND PAUL C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2017

This has been my dream since I was a little girl. OMG it didn't disappoint. We stayed in the tented camp sleeping to the sound of the country. We met the elephants and rhino's up close. Saw lots of other amazing wildlife every day. Brilliant rangers and staff ensured we had the most back to africa experience. We will be going back!

  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank KerryMiller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2017

We spent 9 days at Thula Thula and have enjoyed every minute of it. The wildlife is amazing, the staff very friendly and helpful, and the food is great. We've particularly enjoyed the informal atmosphere at the tented camp and the family-like way the staff interacted among eachother.

  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank ineke459
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 July 2017

I had such high expectations as I had read so much about Thula Thula but I was some what disappointed. Certainly not 4*. Dinner in the Boma was cold and I had to ask for the plates to be heated, it is winter. Food was not restaurant quality, there is room for much improvement especially as Francoise is a chef. Bath hot water tap did not work, replaced it a day later with shower tap and then we could not shower. No plug for electric blanket on one side of bed or for hairdryer. Had to borrow one from my daughter. Guided walks were not very informative. Game drive, we didn't see Rhino even though they are guarded and whereabouts are known. There are better game lodges catering for South African tourists, Thula Thula is geared for Americans.

  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank noelenec577
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FrancoiseDurban, Owner at Thula Thula Exclusive Private Game Reserve and Safari Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 29 July 2017

Good day Noelene, sorry to hear that Thula Thula was not up to your expectations.
Yes indeed we have a lot of guests from overseas, happy guests, but we also have a lot of South African guests who enjoy their time at Thula Thula. They keep coming back which shows that we do things right sometimes ...
For the food, what dish exactly was cold and not to your taste ? As we propose an interesting selection on our menu, surely there must have been one or two who were of "restaurant" quality ?
as for our rhinos, sorry you did not see them. On a 4500 ha game reserve, it can happen. But I am sure you must have seen our very special herd of elephants .
Best regards
Francoise

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

Been to Thula Thula Exclusive Private Game Reserve and Safari Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Thula Thula Exclusive Private Game Reserve and Safari Lodge

Address: PO Box 87, Ntambana 3881, South Africa
Region: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Ntambana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Speciality Lodging in Ntambana
Price Range: R5 628 - R6 367 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Thula Thula Exclusive Private Game Reserve and Safari Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Thula Thula private game reserve is a unique safari destination and home to elephant, rhino, buffalo, leopard and superb bird life, in Kwazulu Natal, in a malaria free area. With its unique atmosphere, stylish decor and superb cuisine, Thula Thula offers you the choice of exclusive accommodation between the luxurious Safari lodge, renowned gourmet destination, and the 4 star Luxury tented camp, offering an authentic bush experience in great style. Special packages, spa massages, Zulu culture tours. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Booking.com and Agoda so you can book your Thula Thula Exclusive Private Game Reserve and Safari Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Thula Thula Exclusive Private Game Reserve And Safari Hotel Kwazulu-Natal

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing