Simbambili Game Lodge
Dizzyingly good game and superb hospitality in South Africa's Sabi Sand
Simbambili Game Lodge
Located in the fertile Sabi Sand Game Reserve, a collection of privately owned reserves that border Kruger National Park, Simbambili Lodge is tucked into the trees along the meandering Manyeleti River. This exclusive lodge has an elegant Moroccan feel with rounded archways and cushioned seating nooks, and some of the warmest hospitality. The real drawcard, however, is its phenomenal game viewing, boasting some of the highest densities of predators in Africa, and frequent sightings of the Big Five. Between the endless winding rivers and vast savannah landscapes, and the dense Knobthorn and Jackalberry woodlands, this is a safari of note.
At the lodge
The main area is rather traditional as far as safari lodges go, with a rough-hewn thatched roof and solid sand-coloured walls. It houses a large, open-sided lounge with two distinct seating areas, and a dining room next to a large wood-burning fireplace. With wooden floors and stylish furnishings in luxurious neutral tones, it's spacious yet cosy. The deck is furnished with couches, deck-chairs and large umbrellas, overlooking the river and an active water hole that is flood-lit by night.
The eight double rooms are airy and light with glass sliding doors and large private decks that overlook the trees towards the river. Double or twin beds are draped with mosquito nets, and built-in cushioned bench seats, in-laid shelves and inventive lighting continue the Moroccan theme. Rooms have large en-suite bathrooms with double basins, showers and lovely ovular deep baths. Outside on the deck are a couple of sun loungers and a small plunge pool, perfect for a midday dip.
Twice-daily game drives and walks are the name of the game here. Drives are especially productive, covering more ground in a variety of habitats. Guides and trackers are exceptionally trained, often with several years' experience, and will steer you toward the ideal activity. What you see is anyone's gamble but you're likely to encounter at least a predator or two! After a busy few days of safari, ease your mind and muscles with a full body massage with aromatic oils.