With 11 lodges strewn over its 7 500 hectares, it may be hard to decide where to stay at Amakhala Game Reserve, let alone how to spend your time there. Fortunately, each of these lodges is distinct from one another, in aesthetic, in location and in the type of guests who would be most comfortable within them. They also offer Big 5 game drives through the reserve’s beautiful landscapes. Whether you’re an outdoors enthusiast, a couple on honeymoon or a multi-generational family, Amakhala can easily appease.
The benchmark of 5-star luxury at Amakhala begins and ends at two of its lodges – Bukela Game Lodge and Bush Lodge. Situated atop a lush valley, Bush Lodge offers unparalleled views of the reserve. It also accepts guests as young as 6 years old. For guests who prefer a more secluded and intimate experience, Bukela Game Lodge can more than provide. With only 4 rooms, 2 tented suites and no children allowed, Bukela is the ideal safari destination for honeymooners or safari enthusiasts. The majority of Amakhala’s lodges are 4-star, but that doesn’t mean that their hospitality is anything less than stellar. Hlosi Game Lodge is the ideal choice for families with young children. It is the only lodge at Amakhala that offers the reserve’s ‘Kids on Safari’ programme. As such, parents can rest assured that their little one’s experience will be both educational, entertaining and fun. Both Woodbury Lodge and Hillsnek Safari Camp are set on the cliffs overlooking the Bushman’s River, with the former offering accommodation in tented chalets and the latter in stone and thatch lodges.
3-star lodges at Amakhala all come with a 5-star safari experience. For safari enthusiasts, the Woodbury Tented Camp breathes a traditional safari experience but the Quartermain’s 1920’s Safari Camp is the authentic bush experience. Set amidst the reserve itself, the camp promises an insight into the bygone era of safari. For those who prefer a roof over their heads rather than a tent, the Edwardian-style Leeuwenbosch Country House and Reed Valley Inn can more than provide.
For a holiday in Amakhala, be sure to bring appropriate clothing for the season. Summer begins in mid-October and lasts until mid-February. Light-weight clothing like shorts, shirts and t-shirts will work well. Swimsuits and board-shorts are required for Amakhala’s respective swimming pools. Bush colours like brown and tan work best as they blend in with the bush while on a game drive. A light-weight jacket will also come in handy. Beginning in May and ending in September, the South African winter requires warmer clothing. Rain jackets, fleeces and warm headwear will all come in handy. Whichever season you travel in, be sure to bring comfortable walking shoes. Additionally, game viewing is not affected by the seasons. Cameras, sunglasses, binoculars and sunscreen are all musts for obvious reasons. The South African Rand (ZAR) is the only currency accepted at Amakhala, along with Mastercard, Visa and American Express.
Besides the game drives and bush walks offered by Amakhala, there are also many other activities available in the area. Amakhala offers horse trails through its non-Big 5 territory. The game reserve is equidistant from both Port Elizabeth and Grahamstown and all the treasures they hold. A day trip to either of them is the perfect complement to any stay at Amakhala. Closer to the reserve is the Bushman Sands and its 18-hole golf course.
Kids are welcome at many of Amakhala’s lodges but a children’s programme is only offered at Hlosi Game Lodge. The programme will be explained to parents and children by the children’s programme coordinator upon arrival. There is also a children’s room full of books, games, DVDs, and toys.
Still not sure where to begin? No problem! Have a look through the various Amakhala lodges and camps to find the ideal one for you. You can choose form one of our itineraries or contact one of our travel experts to start crafting your own custom itinerary! Remember, a few nights spent at Amakhala is the perfect way to end off an adventure on the Garden Route. Your dream safari starts here!
Amakhala Game Reserve is a Big 5 private game reserve in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. It promises a large selection of accommodations and thrilling game drives across its territory. Children are welcome at many of the lodges and the cuisine is sumptuous. Check out our ‘Where to Begin’ page for all the information you may need in order to decide how to experience Amakhala. Contact us today!