You will be warmly welcomed by a friendly member of staff who will assist with the check in process and orientation of the lodge. You will then be shown to your room, after which a light late lunch will be served, followed by your first afternoon safari which lasts approximately 3 hours, during which time you will stop at a selected venue to watch the sun set and enjoy a beverage. You will return to the lodge early evening for dinner. The following morning at day-break you will meet in the main area of the lodge, where refreshments and snacks will be on offer before departing on your morning drive which lasts approximately 3 hours. You will be given the opportunity to stretch your legs during this time whilst enjoying a coffee break. On return to the lodge, you will enjoy a full breakfast after which you will have some down-time to make use of the spa or lounge by the pool before lunch is served, followed by your late afternoon safari.
Bushveld casual, neutral colours are recommended. Most guests wear long trousers for dinner and always ensure you have a light sweater or windbreaker handy. During summer a bathing costume is recommended to enjoy down time around the swimming pool.
The rates at our lodges are all -inclusive which means accommodation, meals, snacks, early morning and evening game drives and optional guided bushwalks. For a full list of lodge inclusions, refer to the relevant lodge rates page.
Daytime summer temperatures (September – April) are high and may soar above 36°C/97°F. Evenings and early mornings are warm. Winters (May – August) have chilly nights and crisp early mornings (minimum 3°C/38°F), but the days are fine and warm. Rainfall occurs predominantly in the summer months from October to April in the form of magnificent late afternoon/evening thundershowers.
In order to have the most fulfilling safari experience, we would recommend a minimum of 3 nights stay, enabling you to enjoy your safari in a leisurely manner.
SA Airlink offers 2 scheduled flights daily between Johannesburg OR Tambo International Airport (ORTIA) and Hoedspruit Airport (HDS) which takes approximately 55 minutes, and 1 daily flight between Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) and Hoedspruit Airport (HDS), which takes approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes. Transfers can be arranged on your behalf from Hoedspruit Airport to the Reserve, at an additional cost. This transfer takes approximately 30 minutes by road.
Scheduled charter flights taking you directly into one of the Thornybush Nature Reserve Airstrips can be booked through our reservations department.
Private charters are available through several reputable private charter companies. Enquiries / quotes can be obtained through our reservations department.
Directions are available for guests opting to self-drive. Driving time from Johannesburg is approximately 6 hours.
On game drives you do get quite close to the animals but if you are an avid bird watcher we recommend a small lightweight pair of binoculars to enjoy your bird viewing. Most rangers have a pair on the vehicle but it is recommended that you travel with your personal pair which suits your eyesight.
Thornybush subscribes to a medical team and evacuation service. However, it is recommended that you include this on your travel insurance policy whilst travelling.
Thornybush and the Sabi Sand are big 5 reserves, so yes, the chances of seeing them are very high. We can however not guarantee what will be seen on safari as wildlife roam freely. However, we will do our utmost to ensure you get to see everything you have come to see.
Thornybush Private Nature reserve forms part of the Greater Kruger National Park. This is an area which covers a massive expanse of unfenced wilderness, allowing wildlife to roam freely between the Kruger National Park and a vast number of private concessions. Thornybush has 11 lodges withing the Thornybush Private Nature Reserve and 1 property situated in the Sabi Sand Nature Reserve.
The dress code is informal and neutral colours are recommended. A warm jacket for winter and evening safaris. Comfortable walking shoes, a bathing costume, binoculars, camera and video camera. Sunhats, sunscreen and sunglasses. A select range of safari clothing and amenities are available for purchase in our Curio Shops.
Yes, game drives are in 4-wheel drive game viewing vehicles, so if the opportunity arises, your guide will go off-road. None of the roads in Thornybush are tarred, they are all maintained dirt roads.
This is a modified four-wheel-drive vehicle, designed to carry between 6 and 8 guests and is used to bring you to within close proximity of the animals. The vehicle does not have a roof or sides and allows for maximum all-round visibility. Our ranger and tracker teams are well qualified and take your safety very seriously. They will communicate the rules of driving on this type of vehicle in the open bushveld before departing on your first game drive.
Please consult your general practitioner or medical travel clinic for detailed information regarding possible vaccines requir
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