Set in the famous Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Simbambili has world-class game viewing opportunities. The managers, Mike and Tania, have been at Simbambili for over 10 years and ensure the lodge has a comfortable, sophisticated feel. We recently renovated the suites, which have been elegantly designed to blend in with the dense stands of knobthorn and jackalberry trees along the meandering Manyeleti River.
Massive decks and the shaded sala beds are a guest favourite. We’re also extremely proud of our guides and trackers whose wealth of knowledge and passionate for what they do, continuously leave lasting impressions.
At the lodge, our guests are made to feel at home through the personal touches and calming nature of the setting, with many an hour spent on the main deck keeping an eye on the large waterhole and its ever-changing visitors just below.
Thornybush is a 14,000-hectare private nature reserve that shares a fenceless border with the famous Kruger National Park in South Africa. Big 5 encounters are the standout experiences for our guests, with visitors particularly impressed with the lion and leopard sightings. It’s the vast diversity of wildlife, however, that has seen Thornybush emerge as a leading safari destination. With our passionate and expert guide-and-tracker teams leading the way, our guests leave with a genuine understanding of our entire ecosystem and the enthralling cast of animals.
All of the nine spacious suites face the riverbed and woodlands, each with its own private plunge pool, sala bed on the deck and a free-standing bath, with the Waterhole Suite overlooking the waterhole.
The large thatched suites have been elegantly designed to blend in with the environment and carefully positioned to enhance privacy. While the shower, free-standing bath, his and her sinks and modern finishings are impressive, it’s the outside deck our guests love most. Each suite has its own spacious riverbed-facing deck with a plunge pool and sala bed under shade to laze away a perfect afternoon.
There’s one Honeymoon Suite and one Waterhole Suite at Simbambili, both perfect for honeymooners and lying on the far ends of the lodge to ensure even more privacy. These romantic suites are slightly larger and come with added amenities. They have a shower, free-standing bath, his and her sinks and modern finishings as the other suites, but come with an added lounge area for more space. The outside deck, however, is still what our honeymooners love most. The extensive bush-facing deck, with a plunge pool and shaded sala bed, is the perfect place to spend a hot afternoon in the sun.
Awaken to a pink dawn, the sounds of the morning chorus as the birds begin to stir and look forward to a new day and an exciting chance to see the african wildlife begin their day – this is the ultimate welcome to a morning drive at Thornybush. You’ll need to be up before the sun, starting with a morning coffee and a snack before you hop into our game vehicles and set off to see the best big 5 animal sightings. Morning game drives are a perfect opportunity to seek out wildlife as this is when the land is cool and the animals are most active. Anything is possible and sightings come quickly, so prepare those cameras and have your bush eyes peeled! After a couple hours of roaming the reserve you’ll stop at a special spot for our famous bush coffee break before heading back for a delicious late breakfast.
With two game drives a day, you’re bound to spot your bucket-list big 5 animal sightings. Following a lazy afternoon, most likely spent by the pool or on your deck, we’ll meet for a deliciously prepared afternoon tea with sweet treats before you climb into your game vehicle for a three-hour drive that leads into the evening. The sundowner stop at one of our favourite viewpoints will no doubt show off one of Africa’s iconic sights – a sunset casting golden light across an African savanna. As night sets in, you’ll start to see new animals stir on your safari at night experience, adding another level of excitement to the end of the drive.
A walking safari offers something quite different to a game drive: the thrill of being on foot in a Big 5 reserve and a chance to engage with the smaller things. You learn about tracking, insects, flowers and most of all the power of the african landscape. It’s a chance to have an immersive experience where you get down and touch and smell what’s out there while at the same time you never quite know what you’ll encounter around the next corner. There is little that compares to a walking safari or going on a safari hiking experience in a true big 5 safari reserve.
Following a morning game drive, our guests can be treated to breakfast in a beautiful bush setting. While the savannah stirs to life, we serve a wide variety of breakfast dishes that our guests enjoy surrounded by the untouched African wilderness. No matter what your dietary requirements may be, we’ve got a dish for you.