Prepare yourself to live in the lap of luxury! Tanda Tula Safari Camp has an extremely devoted team so you feel like you are in a 10 star resort. From Owners Don and Nina Scott, to Executive Chef Ryan; Guide, Godfrey; and Tracker Glenn: everyone of the Tanda Tula family is passionate about this camp and their jobs. At Tanda Tula Safari Camp, on the banks of the Nhlarumi River and in the heart of the Big Five country you will be enchanted by the charm and what-can-I-do-for-you atmosphere. The added ambiance is the active waterhole located across the camp; a lively wildlife hotspot for thirst-quenching or taking a splash. The day we arrived there was a hippo lounging in the waterhole.
The impeccable twelve canvas and thatch tents are plush, with an emphasis on a relaxed, private atmosphere. Each tent features an en-suite bathroom with a traditional Victorian bathtub, a dreamy, romantic outdoor shower and a private deck with loungers. The main lodge is warmly decorated, with inviting couches and armchairs. It includes a spacious thatched lounge where you can sit near the crackling fire and catch up with friends or other guests. Or enjoy some of the finest African wines at the open sided bar which overlooks the garden (don’t forget to ask the bartender about his homemade alcohol-free drink). Nighttime meals are enjoyed either in the boma, the garden under the stars, or the riverbed, which runs alongside the camp. There is an infinity pool overlooking the waterhole and, dear honeymooners, a hideaway at Machaton Dam for private picnics.
To add to the experience of getting closer to nature, Tanda Tula recently launched their new star beds experience. On a platform high above the bush, overlooking the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, guests get to sleep out under the stars and wake to an African sunrise, completely alone. With direct radio communication to the camp and a ranger, guests are offered a unique opportunity to experience the Africa bush by sleeping under the stars in complete privacy, with a 360 degree view over the Timbavati and Greater Kruger National Park . There is nothing but the nocturnal sounds of Africa to keep you company and a feeling of being completely immersed in the bush, with no other lights or noises to distract you. We did not realize that this feature was available until we arrived and it was already booked. Future trips to Tanda Tula will definitely include this unique experience!
Two game drives a day, bush walks, romantic private dinners, river bed picnics: everything is possible at Tanda Tula Safari Camp. The Guides share all their knowledge, and combined they have years of safari experience. We were especially lucky to have Godfrey for our Guide. He was on loan from another Private Game Reserve in the area where he is Assistant General Manager. Godfrey was born on Java where his parents looked after the camp. As a young boy he did various odd jobs, absorbing his father’s knowledge of the land. Godfrey’s passion for the bush meant he burned the midnight oil after work to study field guiding. His nephew, Glenn, is now following in the family footsteps, working as Tracker for the Tanda Tula Camp.
After the morning drive, a breakfast in the bush is waiting. Chef Ryan and his team serve a continental buffet and a cooked English breakfast feast (with warm face towels waiting for you to clear the dust of the drive from your face!). And for those who feel like some physical activity: plan a bush walk with an experienced guide and you will be blown away by all the small discoveries hiding around every corner. A sundowner on location, of course, accompanies the afternoon game drive, followed by a dinner in the boma. Chef Ryan sources local produce whenever he can, and the dishes are not only super tasty, but healthy as well. The kitchen also supports the Hlokomela Herb Garden, which grows and sells fresh herbs to provide general income for the local community. Sustainable and going-local never tasted so yummy.