Hluhluwe | Reviews | Safari.com

Guest Reviews for Hluhluwe


Come and experience the wildlife and wilderness that makes Africa such a special place - the memories made on safari will stay with you forever!

Very nice - Food was good and the animals plenty to see thanks.

Mark Persson

Brilliant stay at Hilltop, amazing scenery and animal sightings both on self guided safari and on evening safari with guide. Staff very welcoming and helpful.

ANNE

The accommodation and buffet was wonderful. Did not mind the potholes too much. Actually saw a fair amount of animals. You made a good first impression.

Dean Ashleigh Lund

A worth-while stay. Accommodation perfect and excellent sightings of wild life.

Mr J van Niekerk

Fantastic. Staff was polite. Food great. Drives was what we hoped for.

Danny Patchy

Hilltop camp was a pleasure with spacious rooms and fantastic views

Andy Watkins

Beautiful setting in the reserve and despite the venue being a little tired in terms of decor it was really great. Many foreign visitors there so it would be dirt cheap for them.

Raymond Welthagen

The accommodation was excellent. The night safari was a bit cold. We saw 4 of the big 5.

Samrathsen

Had a wonderful stay and saw lots of game roads in rough shape

Etienne

Excellent

Rory

Great arrangements. Thanks.

Charlotte

What a lovely place. We wished that we could have stayed longer! And our game drive was wonderful.

Marilynne

I took my granddaughters and a friend and we had a fantastic time. Didn't see much game on our game drive but the girls went on an early morning walk an evening game drive and then again on an early morning game drive. They saw everything except the cats. Biggest delight were the wild dogs and for their Australian friend the bush experience. She is going to come back to do the bush experience camping and walking trip as one of the guides told her about it. So as you can see we all had a fantastic time and are planning a return visit during the September school holidays if possible.

Thelma

Hilltop Lodge is Great, only one problem, the roads could be improved.

Colin

Our stay was absolutely lovely. Nothing to complain about. The room we had, had the most beautiful look out point with a great view. The only things that could be improved on would be the signage on the walks and drives, plus attending to those potholes on the roads. Some signage is fading and some are non existent. The other was the "slope" in the shower in the room, instead of the normal step down into the shower. This made a lot of water on the bathroom floor which I see, over time, has leaked into the main living room, which is affecting the carpets and leaving a really strong damp smell - otherwise all good!

Lauren Trump

Great staff, great management, great accommodations: us 2 Americans were duly impressed. Your animals were healthy, in control, and accessible. Proud to see the great work you've done with the Rhino population. We loved our stay!

William S. Billings

Accomodation, Game viewing, general camp facilities excellent. In particular public facilities at camps and picnic sites well maintained. Suggest that tarred roads either be totally redone or scrapped and reverted to sand surfaces. Perennial pot-hole repairs unpleasant. Hill Top meals tasty but inferior meat employed. At two of four meals items on offer ran out and were not or terdily replaced. All Friday night Braai dishes cold.

Desmond Levin

Accomodation excellent. Animals exquisite.

Lucille Joseph

Our stay was fantastic. What an improvement to Tree Tops since our last visit 10 years ago. The chalet was gorgeous and Number 49 will always be our chalet of choice. We had the drought break whilst we were there so there should be an increase in antelope. However we saw lots of game and our kids saw lion hunting on the early morning drive. There were no scouts available for walks as it was Christmas time, but that was the only disappointment. The breakfast was fantastic as well as the view from the restaurant. The staff were all friendly and lovely. The roads are suffering a bit. The loos at the central gate had no water entering and leaving and were in a terrible state, which is always embarrassing with overseas visitors.However we will be going back much sooner than the next ten years if we have the choice!Thank you for your follow-up.Sue

Susan

Loved it, friendly staff, chalet/rondawel clean as were the ablutions and kitchens.

LynettLye Lynette

Beautiful house and surroundings, a lot of space, cosy, very clean, kitchen well equipped. Everything as experienced before on other occasions at this place, nothing was missing to give the stay a very nice memory.

Monique Hagnauer

The house was great and we loved the atmosphere at dinner with a nice delicious buffet. The dance of the waiters and cooks was a very nice memory not to be missed. We very much enjoyed our stay and always would come back. Do something against Rhino poaching, that's the only hope we have.

Manfred

We stayed at the Munywaneni Bush Lodge with the family on this latest visit to Hluhluwe Game Reserve, rather than Hilltop Camp, as we have done in the past. What a great experience. The lodge is situated on the banks of the river and is completely isolated and very private, well off the road. There are plenty of game all around the lodge and lots of activity down on the river. The lodge has 4 chalets (each with 2 single beds and an en-suite bathroom). The chalets are linked to a central boma (with a kitchen, dining room, sitting room and deck, over-looking the river). Sabelo (the Game Ranger) and Simon (who does the cooking) look after the lodge and they were absolutely brilliant. We went walking in the Game Park with Sabelo (who is very passionate and knowledgeable about all of the animals, birds and plants that are in the Game Park). He also accompanied us on our night Game Drives (using our own vehicle). The Lodge is comfortable, well equipped and very rustic. There is no electricity (lighting is provided via batteries, which are charged using solar power during the day). The fridges, stove and geysers in the rooms are heated using gas. This is the perfect spot for a family getaway. The lodge is self-catering, so you need to take all the food and drink in with you. Simon is an excellent cook, so all you have to do is tell him what you want (and when) and leave the rest to him. If you want to stay in contact with the outside world you will need to take vehicle chargers and don't forget to pack some torches ... it is a long eerie walk down the boardwalks to the rooms in the pitch black. Brilliant. We will definitely do this again.

Rick

Staff very friendly and helpful - certainly make you feel at home. Park beautiful as always but some of the tar roads need some serious TLC!

Brian

We had a wonderful time. What a beautiful place. We saw 4 of the big five, up close and personal. The accommodation was more than adequate and the staff very friendly and helpful. I went on a game drive at a reasonable price, could of been a bit cheaper for SA citizens but all said and done I had a great time. Stuart

Stuart Bowes

We stayed in the 2 bed rondavals in Hilltop. Beds were comfortable and rondaval was well kept. Staff were friendly and helpful.Most enjoyable stay.

Grant Verster

Hi, the chalet we stayed in (no 43) was excellent! We found however that the roads are not that well marked, and it would be great if the signs had distances included like in the KNP. The grass was very long so viewing was limited from an average sedan car. The animals we saw were all in superb condition. We did also notice very poor driving by park employees. They drive very fast and well over the speed limit (we saw this on numerous occasions), and were nearly hit by one towing a trailer very near Hilltop. We did a night drive which was excellent but overpriced at R300 per person.

John Hopkins

Overall I was impressed with the facilities, however there is work that needs to be done. We stayed in the bungalows, and whilst the one we stayed in was fine, I noticed leaking outlet pipes in many of the other bungalows. One thing that definitely needs urgent attention is the potholes in the roads. You have to concentrate so hard on where you are driving to miss ending up in one that you don't actually have time to look for game.I found the staff friendly and the service excellent.Overall I had a wonderful time and would recommend the Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Reserve to anyone.

Valerie Kemp

Very nice trip. We had no water in our chalet on the last day, so we were unable to use the toilet. Bring your own drinking water .

Josie

Chalet (44) not in good condition -broken balustrades, loose and broken kitchen cupboard doors and hinges, broken lamps, etc. Park very nice. General speeding in park from Park Vehicles, and staff a concern.

Derrick

Wonderful stay.

Bronwyn

From the comfortable, clean, self catering cabin to seeing the Big 5 and having a great evening of fellowship and Zulu dancing at the restaurant on our last night, I'd recommend this experience to all who want to relax in quiet comfort and get some adrenaline flowing on game viewing (elephants!! More than impala!). Julius, the manager at the restaurant was fun to talk to (he LOVES sport and so do we). Lots of game so get out and find them. Enjoy your time!

Andre Meintjes

Mtwazi lodge for 2 nights was just lovely and the history of the lodge was there to feel. Don't change it! Yathi was 1st class He was very attentive at all times. We felt the small cottage was too dark and needed more lighting and was not very clean.Reception and staff in the restaurant and shop lacked passing on full details or knew little of how to receive our payments to the computer. Our early morning 6am drive was a failure for us as we were not given any instructions other than a very small piece of roadmap which failed to follow the trail. We were prepaid and missed out on the drive and no refund offer. Better information please. Ephraim was the best guide very knowledgable and he spoke clearly to us all.

James Peel

Excellent accommodation and great food at the restaurant my only complaint is the poor condition of the tar roads although they are working on it.Great game drive with a very good guide.

Vince Wharren

Overall we enjoyed the visit. A bit disappointed due to the scarcity of animals in the routes we travelled. still enjoyed the scenery and the nature.

Pazit

Great getaway, lovely game viewing

Andrew Lucas

Large variety of game seen within minutes of entry and for duration of stay. Staff well mannered and helpful. Hilltop accommodation excellent. Restaurant very good but food sometimes not hot enough. Exceptional guided drive by Sakhile. Visitors should have been made aware of fuel crisis before it was too late. E.g. At entrance Gates or Camp receptions. Some sort of prominent signage should have been employed.

Desmond Levin

Accommodation was great and the communal ablutions were spotless. Dinner in the restaurant was very good. Game viewing was poor.

Cheryl Jackson

Over the years we have visited Umfolozi/Hluhluwe many times. Sadly this visit we have found many things are looking run down and not cared for. The BIGGEST problem is the roads - TOO MANY potholes. Some of the favourite look out points are so overgrown you cannot even see the river or view you are suppose to be looking at. The outdoors restaurant area up at Hilltops needed a good sweep and all the weeds taken out between the bricks. This is we're your overseas visitors spend there time and surely it should be attractive for them.Our rooms at Hilltop were lovely. Very clean and we noticed the lovely new linen and fresh looking bathrooms. Wonderful.Our experience with the Admin staff was not good. Their accounting experience needs some training. They tried to be helpful but were not experienced enough.Come on KZN Wildlife, work on these problems and then we can continue to support you and recommend to our family and friends from overseas that it is a worthwhile visit. At this stage we are hesitant as just now we will only be able to visit in 4 x 4

Guy BowmanS

My wife and I were very impressed with the Hluhluwe Park. It is very pretty,well maintained, with very good facilities ie picnic spots. The game can be seen in abundance. One criticism is the state of the tar roads which are filled with potholes. Hilltop camp is beautiful with an efficient restaurant and helpful staff. We were very satisfied with the chalet that we had and the sunset/night drive.

Michael Stafford

All facilities adequate and well kept. Nothing more required for ordinary "campers" like us. We stayed at Hilltop. Friendly, helpful service from all personnel - Hilltop and Gates.Potholes on tarred roads is a bad one! One has to watch the road carefully for potholes while driving and cannot relax while enjoying the beautiful surroundings and wild life in the park. We only drove around in the northern Hluhluwe area.

Sakkie du Plooy

Clients were very pleased, very comfortable tented accommodation, very nice view from restaurant, good early morning walk, good sightings; can definitely be recommended. Gila

Ms A. Lagauche c/o Lakeside Travel

I am of the opinion that the restaurant could improve dramatically. With the service and food we got we only ate once in it. Next time round we will bring our own supper and not make use of the restaurant - it is a real pity.

Frans Wilbrink

It is a great park not too far from Durban with easy access.Roads need more maintenanceand a higher bridge between Hluhluwe and Umfolozi, we were stuck there and had to go all around.Hilltop a bit expensive but we had large chalet. TV was not working ( only one remote from Satelite dish image blocked and no sound.... anyway we were there for animals....but it is also good in evening to check news and weather forecast on TV.

wuilay herve

Enjoyed our one night stay immensely. Found all amenities excellent, well stocked (i.e. ample bedding, crockery, utensils etc.) and spotless. Camp well run, staff quiet, friendly & efficient. Exited at Nyali (sp?)gate - quite a few potholes along that road.

CAROLINE DIACK

Thank you very much for making our stay an enjoyable and memorable experience. The accomodations were very nice and the staff exceptional.

Eric Schroff

We enjoyed our two day trip through the Hluhlwe - Umfolozi Park. We we saw as many animals as could be expected in hot summer conditions. The sighting of tree lions halfway between the Nylazi Gate and Mpila Camp was exceptional. First tree lions sighting in South Africa for me in 40 years of game park visiting. It was great to see the face lift done at Mpila Camp.The facilities at Hilltop camp are somewhat tatty. Hilltop can do with some "make over" to justify the rates. Looking forward to our next visit soon.

Mathys Sabbagha

Our stay from 23 to 28 December 2012 was great. The food was yummy and the accommodation was clean and well equipped. The only problem we encountered, was the lack of good communication skills at reception and of the workers in the restaurant. English is an international language and if you deal with visitors at this level, surely you must be able to understand and speak English. Nature is lush and beautiful and we almost saw all the animals by driving in a small Ford KA.

Carina Bothma

We loved our stay at Hluhluwe! Our rondavel chalet was very spacious and nicely appointed, but the best thing about it was the privacy. Sitting on our balcony, with only the bird song and insect humming, looking out over the misty mountain tops, I felt I was in the Garden of Eden. It was very restful and peaceful. The atmosphere of the dining room was charming, and the food very good. Thanks for such a wonderful stay!

Robert Hilscher

We loved our stay at Hluhluwe! Our rondavel chalet was very spacious and nicely appointed, but the best thing about it was the privacy. Sitting on our balcony, with only the bird song and insect humming, looking out over the misty mountain tops, I felt I was in the Garden of Eden. It was very restful and peaceful. The atmosphere of the dining room was charming, and the food very good. Thanks for such a wonderful stay!

Robert Hilscher

Wonderful park, saw many rhinos, elephants, buffalo, warthogs, zebra, giraffe and various bucks.Staff was very friendly and efficient.However, the chalets need to be upgraded and also the foods was average with very little choice.

Micheline Naude

We had a wonderful time and enjoyed the diversity of animals. We would like to offer the following comments to assist you to enhance the experience of your guests:1. The floors were sticky on our arrival; however, the cleaner was quite prepared to wash the floors at our request.2. The presence of ants in the kitchen area (even in the fridge) as well as in one of the bathrooms, was really inconvenient. We were pleasantly surprised that we were provided with a USA electrical connection converter at no cost. (We tried to purchase a converter from the curio shop, but they referred us to reception. This is certainly proudly South African service).

Dorothy Joubert

Excellent accommodation, good food in restaurant & the park was fantastic.

Ron Heaton

Our first time there. Lovely reserve, great accommodation! My wife is in a wheelchair and it was very comfortable for her.

John Odendaal

The stay was great, but we decided to go and do a breakfast at the one hide which they provide gas, on arriving at 10.00 we found no one there so enjoyed the bird watching, at about 12.00 a man appears and I ask him about the gas braai he told me he was on lunch, so please be warned that have plan B or you will go hungry.

Johnny Voges

My husband and I had the most wonderful 3 days and 3 nights in the Hluhluwe Game Reserve. Our chalet at Hilltop was fantastic and left nothing for wanting. The curio shop is lovely and so too the Restaurant and deck with the magnificent view. The staff are very friendly and helpful. We saw a lot of game during our game drives, just about everything except for Leopard. Unfortunately we just missed seeing Wild Dogs! We really enjoyed it so much, it was just far too short. We will definitely be back! We were very sad to hear about the Rhino poaching, which we didn't think would happen in the Reserve.

Marianne Leonard

We enjoyed our stay at the park and were very comfortable in the Rondavel. We found it clean and were surprised to learn there was a small fridge and dishes. We were located right next to the kitchen, bathrooms and outside sinks and clothesline. The toilets and showers were clean and we used the sinks to do some laundry. We enjoyed walking the forest trail and sat by the pool. Meals were rather expensive so we only had the breakfast buffets which were very good but a bit expensive.

Linda Evenson

The accommodation was spacious,clean and definitely better than what we experienced in some other similar reserves. The game viewing in the Hluhluwe part of the reserve was surprisingly good and during only one morning drive we saw Buffalo, Lion, Hyena, Wild dog, White Rhino(a lot) Black Rhino(one) Elephant and numerous other species. The best of all,however, was the beautiful scenery,it was absolutely wonderful especially after the good rains.

Hendrik Steyn

Security guys at the gate were friendly and welcoming. The 15km road from the gate to Hilltop is full of potholes. This really needs urgent attention. Staff at the reception (not all of them)were not friendly. Chalets were very clean and we really enjoyed staying in them. Waiters and waitresses need to be taught how to do their job properly. Most of them had long faces. On our last day, we decided to order light meals and drinks from their a la carte menu and guess what.... one of the glasses with our drinks was dirty. I made the waiter aware of this and when he went to report it, the lady at the bar had a very bad attitude, saying the glasses were clean even though we had proof. And she did not want to replace it. All in all, I was very disappointed with the way they treated us. One more thing, the game reserve management needs to make it clear on their website that children are not allowed in the game drives. I took my whole family there to have fun only to be told, while booking for the game drives, that they were not allowed. We had to book a car for our family only which was a bit expensive. Not that I am complaining but if I had known earlier about this, I would have done something like taking the nanny with us. I won't be going there for the next five years at least. Thanx

Zanele Gumede

The Hilltop Cabin was better than advertised. The photos on the Internet do not do it justice. It was very spacious, clean and comfortable. We had a wonderful time driving throughout the reserve and also taking the night drive conducted by the rangers. All of the staff were extremely polite and helpful. We definitely would recommend this place and hope to return someday.

Jackie Pfeiffer

Our stay at Hilltop was great and my family had an awesome time. However, we had dinner at the restaurant on Thursday the 19th and my 14 year old daughter got food poisoning a couple hours later. She was acutely sick with severe diarrhoea and vomiting.I could not leave her and had to nurse her the whole of Friday. This was very disappointing as we missed out on a whole day of game viewing.She ate venison from the buffet and my husband, myself and son did not and we were not affected.I am a registered nurse and could easily assess that it was food poisoning and not a gastroenteritis.I hope that this is reported to the manager of Hilltop and some investigation of the kitchen staff is addressed.I would appreciate some feedback from management of the resort.Thank youMrs.Mandy Ferguson & family

mandy ferguson

Our chalet at Hilltops was excellent and the service good. I thought the buffet meals at the restaurant good but rather expensive for South African families. For some technical reason there had been no petrol at Hillltops camp since 17 June and when we departed on 5 July there was still none. At Mpile we had to pay cash for the petrol as they did not take credit cards. Within the park no ATM to replenish our cash.The animal and bird viewing was superb, and we even saw the big 5 animals in one day (4 July).However, our biggest gripe is the state of the tarred roads - almost more potholes than road, and the verges are all seriously crumbling. If this deterioration continues, soon only those with 4X4 vehicles will be able to visit.

Lesbury van Zyl

An excellent few days in Mtwazi lodge (Hilltop). Love this place and will be back next year...

Brendon Fulton

The Hilltop accommodation and communal areas were clean and well maintained.Some of the tar roads were awful because of potholes.The night drive was overpriced and our guide / driver was below par.The staff, from management down, were pleasant and helpful.Our biggest problem was not being able to buy a Wildcard at the camp, in spite of having being told that they were available.I tried to buy one online using a smart phone, but was repeatedly presented the hopeless SANP mobi screen, in spite of "permanently disabling it"This needs to be rectified urgently.

John Eden

Hilltop Camp is well groomed. We stayed in the rondavels and shared ablutions. The rondavels are well appointed, the ablutions very clean and the grounds well manicured. Good value for money although not cheap. However, take all you will need for groceries, including charcoal and fire lighters into the park with you. The prices for goods in the camp shop are extortionate. You could find yourself paying nigh on R70.00 for charcoal and fire lighters and near R40.00 for a block of cheese.

Colleen Aldous

Weenjoyed the two days in the park and the overnight accommodation

Mathys Hendrik Sabbagha

It is still a great pleasure to be in Hluhluwe but comparing to few years ago, the prices increased badly (restaurant, game drive etc ...) and the service offered is not as good as before. It is a pity.

SCHWEYER (AFONSO) ISABELLE

Wonderful stay,the highlight being a night drive and the low point having monkeys raid our kitchen. Why are there only guards on some windows?

Bass, Margaret

First and foremost the road are terrible. You spend more time looking at the road that looking for game!Secondly, we did not have hot water for the two nights we were there, only on the morning that we left, did we have hot water! I do not know why you have installed DSTV. Nobody goes to a game reserve to watch TV! The money should have been spent on improvments to the chalets and the roads.We went on a sunset game drive, which would have been great had it not been for our guide/driver. (I think his name was Colin). He had no interest in game and in fact the only hyena that we saw, he went roaring up to it as such a speed that it obviously ran into the bush. He was just interested in getting the game drive over as soon as possible!We had a non catering chalet, so ate at the restuarant. Unfortunately, the evening meal is not great and it was only luke warm! Breakfast was fine.If we had not had such a great view from our chalet and the fact that the sun shone evryday and we saw a fair amount of game driving around by ourselves, we would have been very disappointed in Hluhluwe. This is my second visit and my husband's third visit and found that the standard of the park has sadly deteriorated.Avryl and David Pearson

Avryl Pearson

I visit Hluhluwe at least once a year and typically bring a group of people with me. I have always found the accommodation to be exceptional and the food at Hilltop is world class. Each year there have been improvements to the booking process. This year I found the booking process to be the best ever. Thanks for all the improvements and the ease for making bookings for your international guests.

Mike McDowell

Really enjoyed our first experience of a Game Park. Accommodation quite dated and found the bathroom quite dark. Be warned that there are no room keys. We read the information on the website as to what safaris were available and had decided on a bush-walk and visit to St Lucia. On arrival the receptionist did not know what we were talking about?? We were given two options a jeep trip am or pm. The trip at 5am was wonderful and saw all but the lions. Our guide was very informative and interesting. However, a coffee out of a flask and rusk after 2 1/2 hours was not inspiring.

Sandra Tough