Simbavati Hilltop Lodge

At a glance
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Simbavati Hilltop Lodge

At a glance
Enquire Now

Simbavati Hilltop Lodge has one of the finest settings in the Timbavati Private Game Reserve, an unfenced but private part of the Kruger Park. It’s perched on the hillside with wide-angle views over the bush and views to the distant mountains of the Drakensberg escarpment. Simbavati Hilltop Lodge offers an exclusive, authentic, and unforgettable African safari experience.


  • Simbavati Hilltop Lodge has one of the finest settings in the Timbavati Private Game Reserve
  • Romantic ambience with luxurious, private suites overlooking the beautiful dam
  • Spacious private decks with a Sala pavilion with daybed for each suite

You should know

  • Children 12 years & older are welcome at Simbavati Hilltop Lodge.
  • Children under the age of 16 years have to share a room with an adult above 18 years of age.

The detail

Savor magnificent views of the bushveld, the Nhlaralumi River and the distant foothills of the Drakensberg Mountain Range from the comfort of the lodge.

Simbavati Hilltop Lodge boasts eight individual Luxury Tents that are positioned to offer guest privacy and comprise of two individual tents. One tent features the main bedroom and the other a separate bathroom, which is linked by a passage that can be opened up on one side – allowing for an indoor or private outdoor shower experience.    
The lodge facilities include a lounge that offers a selection of booked and board games, curio shop, dining area and bar, covered pool long, game viewing deck overlooking the river, Wi-Fi connectivity in the reception, lounge and deck area, and an infinity pool with views of the bushveld and Drakensberg Mountains.

Currently, over 40 mammal species reside in the Timbavati, including the Big 5 - Lion, Leopard, Rhino, Buffalo and Elephant, as well as endangered species including Wild Dogs and Cheetah. The Timbavati Private Nature Reserve is one of the few places in the world where you have the opportunity to see the unique white lion in their natural environment. There is also an abundance of birdlife with a total of 360 species of bird recorded in the reserve.

Enjoy early morning and late afternoon game drives conducted in open 4x4 safari vehicles and led by professional rangers.

For the more adventurous traveler, bush walks can be arranged prior to arrival and are is a great way to discover the smaller wondrous creatures of the bush and learn more about the fauna and flora.

Simbavati Hilltop Lodge is ideal for solo explorers, couples and families looking for an authentic tented safari experience.

Price includes

  • Accommodation, all meals, two game drives per day, selected local beverages, Emergency Medical Response and Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance.
  • Our rates are per person sharing unless we note differently.
  • Single supplements may apply.
  • Request a quote or speak to one of our Agents for the best, most current rates available.
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Rates & Pricing

$ 650 USD
$ 490 USD
$ 650 USD
SPECIAL - Great news, you appear to be from a SADC country and can enjoy the discounted rate shown!
Rates are starting prices per person, per night sharing.
With specials, we always use the best promotion available, please contact our experts for more guidance.
60+ days notice will be a full refund.
30-60 days notice will be a 50% refund.
< 30 days notice will be no refund.

Policy above does not apply to flights.
For additional protection, see below.

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Your personal travel planner

Pascal is our local expert in all aspects of this accommodation. Ready to help you plan your trip, and ensure your happiness from now until you get back from safari.
Pascal John
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We had and awesome experience at Simbavati. The service and food was excellent.
Belinda Minnaar
Exactly what we expected and more, what an experience. The local specials make it possible for us South Africans to also experience this type of quality experience as well. Keep it up!!
We had an amazing 3 night stay at Simbavati, staff was great. Rooms were amazing. I would definitely recommend this destination.
Fleetwood Grobler
All what we expected and more...
We had family from the UK and needless to say we wanted to show them as much of our beautiful SA as possible. Although hesitant at first, we drove from JHB to Kruger - it was a long drive but worth every minute of it. SA has the most amazing landscapes and backdrops.Simbavati Hilltop Lodge was amazing, we were treated like royalty from arrival to departure. The venue surpassed our expectations - it was everything and more.Beautiful beautiful beautiful, needless to say we did impress our guests.A quick shout out to Bjorn and his team, very professionally handled. Thank you.
As a South African, I am used to our wonderful natural beauty, but I have never experienced a better vacation in my life! Everything was of the highest quality, and the service was exceptional! Thank you to all the wonderful staff at Simbavati - we shall definitely visit again!
Krzysztof Duda
Top notch facilities,great food,wonderful atmosphere, excellent service...what else do we need to have a great holidays?! We only wish we could stay longer at this place, but now we've got another good reason to come back!!!
mike hancock
This is a relatively new camp (July 14) and everything within it remains pristine. The staff and management within the camp remain extremely enthusiastic and passionate to ensure that every guest enjoys full enjoyment of the Hilltop experience. My wife and I have been to many reserves in SA, Namibia and Botswana and this camp rates in our top two !! The road to the camp is a little "exciting" for normal cars, but well worth the effort. Suggest that intending visitors fast for several days before arrival as the quality and quantity of food and drink offered is superb. The main reason for our trip was to experience the wildlife, and in this we were not disappointed - seeing the Big Five and seeing Leopards on each of our first four outings, one with kill in a tree, one just failing to take down a Impala and two just strolling! The knowledge, driving skills and bravery of the guide and the spotter make this a truly unforgettable experience. Unfortunately time spent here will never be enough, however we cannot recommend it highly enough. Mike Hancock.
Our stay at the lodge was great. The lodge, it's facilities, game viewing, meals etc - all was great.
Francois Klomp
Lovely camp setting. Large and very private 5 star suite. All lodge staff very friendly and helpful and excellent lodge managers. Spa treatment in room very pleasant experience. Fantastic game drive experience, twice exceptional leopard sightings. Sensitive field guides and trackers who respect animals more than at other lodges in Kruger, even when off road. Food was good. Private surprise dinner for birthday was wonderful experience. All and all a great experience. We plan to definitely visit again.
The Simbavati lodge rests on a hilltop overlooking a bend in the river and under the warm December sun the river foliage is low enough for visitors to see animals at the nearby watering hole from the comfort of the open air lounge, bar, or infinity pool. It's a small, luxurious, and environmentally conscious lodge run by a well traveled couple who want to share the magic of the bushveld without ruining the natural habitat of its residents. Their effort and creativity has resulted in a string of private pavilion-styled luxury tents (almost like canvas-covered bungalows) nestled on the slope of a hill overlooking the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve.It's kind of like camping...but for adults who want to treat themselves a little.Our bungalow, #8, was the farthest from the open air communal lounge, pool, bar, and dining area. Like the other bungalows, it consists of two large canvas tents connected together with a outdoor deck. One tent contained the big bed, desk, chairs, wardrobe, air conditioner, mini-fridge, and large windows. The other tent housed the toilet, a double sink vanity set, and large tub cuddled next to a mesh screen looking over the river and the African bush. Yeah, you can bet it was romantic. In between the two tents is an dual-headed open air shower that conceals you from the wooden pathway to other bungalows should you decide to belt out Toto's "Africa" to the riverbed below and any animal willing to listen while you clean your favorite birthday suit. Each of the bungalows are far enough to allow for privacy and yet close enough to feel safe and secure.If you come here, you must not forget that you're in the middle of a nature reserve: there may be some insects that get into the tents, it may be quite dark on the path to the bungalow at night, and one doesn't have a host of nightlife options. However on the flipside, you could get the opportunity to spy giraffes at breakfast, watch an elephant forage from the comfort of your private porch, or look up at the star-filled sky at dinner.And that's not even including the exciting safaris we went on.Even though we stayed just a couple of nights, my girlfriend and I had a really memorable time and we hope that we will get a chance to come back and visit this beautiful place.
Wow! What a spectacular place! I was at the Simbavati Hilltop Lodge for 3 nights. The service and staff were amazing. I really enjoyed the experience they had to offer. Colbert and Derek were my guide and tracker. Great knowledge of all animals even the birds. So exciting everyday to get out and go for the game drives (one early morning and one early evening). Breakfast, lunch and dinners were included and the 3 chefs they had were serving gourmet food. I even booked a massage one afternoon. The tents were spacious and very clean and comfortable. Great views of the river valley where you could see animals in the morning. Felt like a 5 star hotel underneath the 5 billion stars we could see every night. Colbert really did his best for us to see the Big 5 (elephant, lion, rhino, buffalo and leopard). Very highly recommended.
Neil Gulden
My stay here was seriously perfect. The lodge is beyond relaxing/spa like and the staff caters to your every need. Eddie was my safari guide and he also happens to be one of the GMs. Not only did Eddie know everything there is to know about the animals, but he also shared the same excitement as the tourists when we got word of an animal sighting. Eddie's excitement and passion for what he does made you as the tourist have even more fun, you can tell he absolutely loves his job. This was my first safari experience and I honestly don't think it could have been any better. We saw the big five in my 3 days there and each safari ride was more exciting and fun than the last. Also, because this lodge is private, unlike Kruger, we were able to go off roading and into the bush. We had several situatons where the animals were far into the bush and had we been at Kruger, we would have had to stay on the main road and not been able to go into the bush to see the animals. For those of you doing research on where to stay, you're crazy to not put Simbavati Hilltop Lodge a the top of your list!
We were assessing safari venues for our 2015 season. The staff are exceptional and very good hosts.The safari excursions were very well planned and no pressure was put on the wildlife. The meals were good and the Chef responded positively to dietary requests.
Liz Morel
We just spent 2 nights at this splendid lodge and we cannot wait to let everyone know how fantastic our experience was ..the rooms/tents are very luxurious without being over the top (the way we like it) and the view from the deck (and the shower!) is absolutely amazing! Food is very good and plenty, staff is very helpful and friendly. The best things were indeed the game drives, with our ranger, Greg, and tracker, Shaddy, a winning combination! Greg really loves what he does and his passion for the wild animals is contagious! We spent an absolutely incredible morning following a leopard and the wonderful experience has indeed left us with the desire to visit Simbavati Hilltop Lodge again. We visited a lot of other private game reserves in South Africa but this was definitely one of the best stays we ever had.
We stayed at Simbavati Hilltop Lodge for 3 nights and thoroughly enjoyed it. The service is excellent, Lelanie is always present, making sure everything is working as it should and she spends a lot of time engaging with her guests. The tents are very comfortable, well spaced out and offer wonderful views. We had a large herd of elephants walking right under our terrace ! I particularly liked the fact that staff are local and interact a lot with the guests. On two of the three nights we were there we had a traditional african fire (boma) and our safari guides joined us at the dinner table. Our guide was Shaddy and he was excellent at finding the wildlife, getting us very close and providing the right level of information. We were lucky to see the Big 5, three leopard sightings, wild dogs, hyenas but also loads of birds.On our second day our camera decided to stop working and Lelanie arranged for us to hire a camera from the other lodge (Simbavati River Lodge). She made sure it was charged for us every time we went out and downloaded the photos onto a CD and sent it on for us to our Cape Town hotel. We had a wonderful time at Simbavati Hilltop Lodge and would highly recommend it.
Greg C
I can't imagine a nicer place to stay. Beautiful and private bungalows with outside rain showers and nice bathrooms/big tubs. Comfortable beds with heating blankets. Air condition/heat in wall. Plenty of plugs for electrical. Only 8 units, so 16 people max! quiet and secluded. Animals right off the back decks for most rooms.Great pool/bar. Staff is very smart and helpful. Super nice and friendly. We will miss them all. Food was great and plentiful. Beautiful decks and sitting areas. Lots of animals to see. We saw all the big 5 when we were there. Just amazing. We would definitely go back (we were in a party of 12, my family was 4, an 11 and 14 year old girls).
Rob R
We spent 2 nights at the lodge. It was exactly what we had hoped for. Small , intimate , personalized and great game viewing. Greg our ranger and tracker shaddy were fantastic - respectful of the bush and knowledgable . Lelanie was superb as manageress and all round advise The lodge is fairly new and there were a few minor snags that we advised them on. Hope to return soon ! Rob and anthea
Oliver W
What a wonderful way to spend one's time in the Bush. The tents are brand new, and so spacious! Outside Shower and Bath with a view. The decks, bar and pool all have a view over the valley, and it was a really great time. Very much recommended.
Marilyn S
We spent 4 nights at Simbavati Hilltop Lodge and it was the highlight of our trip to South Africa. Spacious luxury tents...not really tents at all...all very private and well spaced apart from your neighbour. The viewing deck was huge , the bathroom spacious with a large soaker tub and double sinks. And the double outdoor showers was a great touch. The game drives were awesome, we saw the big five and then some! Our guide, Colbert and our tracker Derek were excellent and really knew where to find the animals and were very knowledgeable and entertaining. The food was very good,and we had two outdoor barbeques which were also very tasty.The dining staff are excellent, Aubrey and Bishop are very helpful as was Benedict, the night watchman who showed us to our room each night. We cannot say enough good things about this lodge, it is well managed, the staff are excellent and the accommodation is very nice. We loved it!
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out of 5 based on
180 reviews
Feb 1, 2023
The person helping me was great
The person who was helping me with the booking, Carien, was exceptionally helpful and she made it very easy to get information and to get my booking sorted. The website was very easy to navigate and receive good information about which spots offer which amenities
Wynand De Villiers
Jan 27, 2023
I cant say much but safari is the best…
I cant say much but safari is the best when it comes to book coz they know client are always right and they help me very quicky.God bless u
Phathu Matshintshisa
Jan 11, 2023
Unorgettable trip in South Africa
We have spent 12 days as a family in South Africa with my 3 children and my wife who is in a wheelchair. Thanks to Pascal, consultant, we were able to spend an unforgettable moment with a great program while being well accompanied despite our constraints. I recommand particularly the "Monwana game lodge" for a safari in Hoedspruit. It's an amazing place with very nice people and a real family atmosphere. Thank you to the entire team for this unforgettable trip.
fabrice dont
Nov 26, 2022
We had an amazing first safari…
We had an amazing first safari experience with! 💯Thanks to Dolan for the well planning and ensure our itinerary goes smoothly and safely!
Oct 21, 2022
Superior service, knowledgeable, transparent, amazing can-do attitude
These guys get 10/10. I have booked with them a few times. To Kruger National Park, including both public and private(concession) camps, flights and car hire. Their senior agent, Dolan is exceptional. Nothing is too much trouble. Attention to detail, transparency, and 'can-do' attitude are out of the ordinary. I recently came into contact with Tanya at as well. It looks like all their agents are similarly well trained. Thank you. I cannot recommend Dolan and his team highly enough.
Nov 18, 2022
Cape Town miracle
I was in Cape Town, South Africa recently for an athletic competition and had allowed myself a week of personal time to relax and properly conclude the trip, but had not bothered to plan a safari to occupy the time. I was skeptical of the cost and whether I would enjoy the experience, however a couple days into that final week it occurred to me, in a bit of a panic attack, what a waste it would be not to take advantage of this opportunity. I hopped online and started looking at flights to Johannesburg (almost all the safaris in SA start there with an early morning pick up), but it was basically impossible to get a flight early enough and/or to coordinate with the multiple safaris operating in or just outside of Kruger. With no apparent options available to turn my remaining 4 1/2 days into even a 3 day safari I stumbled on the most obvious website one could imagine, I'd completely given up negotiating all the variables on my own but here was a safari travel agent that might be able to help me .. and they were based right out of Cape Town, literally a stones throw from my lodgings. Serendipity, or so i hoped. I immediately sent out an email and crossed my fingers .. for roughly an hour and a half, at which point Dolan from responded to me requesting I give him a call so that we could expedite potential arrangements. My in country phone plan wasn't able to make calls, but we arranged for him to call me and not 3 hours after being in the grip of despair Dolan got through to me and far from notifying me of how absurd it was to hold out hope for a literally, last minute safari adventure with barely 4 days available to me, he had already worked out all the details I'd sent and created a preliminary safari trip that would bypass Johannesburg airport for a flight the next morning to a closer, much, much smaller airport where I would be picked up taken, not to a 3 day safari, but a full 4 day safari, then back to the tiny, tiny airport for a return flight to Cape Town with 2 hours to spare for my return leg all the way home. It almost feels like an afterthought, after the minor miracle Dolan was able to conjure up, but the safari itself at Simbavati Lodge was just an absolutely stunning experience. The single "tent" he booked me was as luxurious as any 4 star hotel I've stayed in, the game drives, one every morning, one every evening were more amazing than I could have ever imagined, and the food, 3 meals a day with snacks and an open bar was sublime. I could go on about the wonderful staff, or the wonderful other safari goers you can meet and grab a drink with, or the different animals walking through the open lodge facilities daily .. but I've gone on long enough. I'll simply conclude by saying .. safari, absolutely, yes, do it, it is amazing. And when you do decide, will do you right and if you have the pleasure of working with Dolan, do give him my thanks .. the entire experience was the best part of my trip :)
Damian Glennon
Nov 12, 2022
A great company
What to say! We planned a South African Safari for 2020 with We researched companies and took a chance on one we had never heard of before. Henry Franklin was our agent, we gave him our budget and wish list. He came up with a wonderful looking trip and we made our choices! Then came Covid, preventing us from going. We couldn’t have been in better hands. Henry rebooked everything for the next year. He kept us updated on how things looked there. When in 2021, we decided it still looked iffy, he rebooked us a second time for 2022. We couldn’t have been happier with the service we had in a rough time for all. We had a wonderful experience on our trip when we finally got to go!! Henry had everything so well organized and gave us a detailed list of what transfer companies would be meeting us and when. When Airlink bumped us and put us on standby returning from Victoria Falls, we called the concierge number Henry had given us and Catherine worked hard on this and got us back on our flight. The team had our back and we have no regrets. Would definitely use them again. Our lodging was wonderful, saw the big 5 within first 2 drives. Henry definitely knew the territory and did a great job matching what we wanted with where he suggested we go and stay. Thanks, Henry and Catherine!
Heather Carlson
Sep 5, 2022
Trip of a life time
Well where to starter, África always been my number one dream vacation, I found didn’t know anything about, but pascal made me feel very confident.pascal put my whole trip together (everything I wanted) a trip of a life time. Had the best time in Africa, was everything that I except and a little more. Pascal is the best and I will go back to Africa and will go through that I recommend and is 💯 legit.thank you for everything pascal, you rock!!!
Tricia moyses
Sep 5, 2022
For a second time I booked a safari in…
For a second time I booked a safari in South Africa by and had the great pleasure to be assisted and followed by Dolan Sequera. I have to say I really appreciate his way to communicate with me by phone and/or WhatsApp/mail, I always got a very quick answer to my questions with solutions and or suggestions which solved the doubts/problems I had. A really very very knowledged and professional person I will surely suggest to friends of my or who ever is plannig to visit South Africa! Thank you very much Dolan
antonio caccia
Aug 31, 2022
I've recently interacted with Dolan and…
I've recently interacted with Dolan and hands down he's been the best travel agent that I've every worked with. He was a wealth of experience and knowledge which shows volumes. He took into consideration my budget and my individual needs to tailor make a package with recommendations for my preference,he knows Kruger and Greater Kruger like the back of his hands and I will wholeheartedly recommended his services. He is truly an asset to his institution.
Apr 21, 2022
The best company
I have booked several trips with and they are the best. They are personal and professional and always pay attention to the details to make your trip special. Casper is the best agent I have worked with. We are looking forward to booking another trip!!
Steven Hopson
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