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Shumbalala Game Lodge

4.9 /5
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Based on over 1000 Verified Reviews.


Shumbalala Lodge is a small and intimate safari camp situated in the game-rich Thornybush Private Game Reserve adjacent to the Kruger National Park. Guests are guaranteed an exclusive game viewing experience at this African-themed lodge where personal service and an informal atmosphere are hallmarks.

In between exciting morning and afternoon game drives, spend your days relaxing at the lodge or exploring the area on foot with a guide. Shumbalala's decks offer comfortable perches from which to savour the views and spot animals at the seasonal river and permanent waterhole.

The lodge has been designed to accommodate guests in wheelchairs.


  • Located in the Thornybush Private Game Reserve, a fantastic game-rich reserve
  • Small and intimate lodge with access to the Thornybush Game Lodge spa
  • Personalised service and informal atmosphere
  • Perfect for families, stay in the Presidential 2-bedroom suite
  • Communal areas overlook a waterhole which is lit up at night.
  • Wine cellar available for private dinners with views overlooking the waterhole


  • Animal tracking experience
  • Bird watching
  • Bush dining
  • Day tours
  • Elephant interactive experience
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • High tea on offer
  • Hot air ballooning
  • River cruises
  • Specialist guides
A superior safari experience that ticks all the boxes, Shumbalala will exceed all of your expectations - the full 5 star bush experience.
Lorna Symons

Lorna Symons

Africa Safari Expert

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Presidential Suite

For families or those seeking a even more luxurious experience, the Presidential Suite is ideal as it offers a covered plunge pool, a large wooden deck and a private boma area.


At Shumbalala Lodge relaxation comes first whether it is on the game viewing decks, in the swimming pool or at one of the lodge's two lounges. Guests have access to the spa at nearby Thornybush Game Lodge.

You can also catch up on some shopping at the safari shop or browse for an interesting read at the library.


Shumbalala Lodge offers sumptuous cuisine prepared by an experienced and professional team and served either on the viewing decks overlooking the waterhole or by candlelight in more formal surroundings in the main dining room, accompanied by a crackling fire in winter. Be sure to choose a bottle from the wine cellar to complement your dinner.

Open-air fireside dinners are also available for you to enjoy Africa's night sounds while feasting on freshly prepared and cooked-on-the-spot meals.

General facilities

  • Spa
  • Swimming Pool
  • Computer facilities
  • Laundry service
  • Library
  • Wi-fi available
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Traveller Reviews

Shumbalala Game Lodge

Laura Dykins

"Our stay at Shambalala was absolutely AMAZING! The staff was fantastic and super attentive to our needs and having only 4 total couples on the resort made everything feel so intimate and personal. By far went above and beyond what we had hoped for."

Ken Oksson

This was an AMAZING vacation. You planned it perfectly. Every place we stayed was superb and all vendors involved did as you scheduled. Shumbalala Lodge was top of the list. With only a maximum of 10 guests, we were certainly well taken care of. The safari exceeded my expectations. I have photographs that blow my mind every time I look at them. Actually, I’m still going through all 2500 of them.
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Valerie McClintock

"Shumbalala lodge was perfect!"

Helen Brown

It was the trip of a lifetime and we hope to do it again. We loved both Shumbalala and Londolozi. We found Shumbalala was smaller in scale, cozier and more intimate. Chalet 5 provided a great view of their man-made watering hole. We loved especially the fireplace in our bedroom which, upon our request, they kept going 24/7. We loved the outdoor showers at both places. The food at Shumbalala, prepared by Lynn, was stupendous. She met with all of us every day to tailor the meals and snacks to our requests. The weather in general was much cooler at Shumbalala because it is further north. They made heavy jackets, blankets and hot water bottles available to us to keep us warm. The veld was still lush and quite green but allowed easy game viewing. The bush was more dense at Shumbalala with more watering holes whereas Londolozi had wide open spaces and a greater variety of vegetation that was beginning to turn brownish. Thus, at Londolozi game viewing was generally easier. The variety of game we saw was stupendous, not to mention the birdlife which surprised us and especially delighted Allen. We saw lions (males, females and cubs), elephants, giraffe, wilderbeast, warthogs, impala, rhinoceros (white and black), water buffalo, hippos, and African wild dogs in abundance. We saw animals we did not even know existed. We saw three leopards, two at close range (at Londolozi which we learned was the more likely place as they had more of them). We saw two cheetah kills, one at each lodge, the second from start to finish and with two cubs in tow. Our guides, Wiehan at Shumbalala and James at Londolozi, were incredibly knowledgeable, articulate and interesting. Our trackers, Palance at Shumbalala, and Mike at Londolozi, pointed the way to some incredible sightings. We felt we were not only tracking and seeing beautiful animals but also learning a lot about them, almost like hunting. Our guides' command of the vehicles and knowledge of the animals meant we always felt safe. All of our senses were in play and our minds were thoroughly engaged. We had many photo opportunities, often going off road to pursue lions, African wild dogs, a cheetah kill, or a leopard. We grew accustomed to the routine at the lodges, even getting up at 5:30 am, and miss it even now, especially the feeling of excitement when you mount the Land Rover in the morning at what you might see in the glorious sunrise. In short, we are quite hooked.
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Hans Helmreich

And Shumbalala is an extraordinary place for safari. We loved it. Also the flights were perfect. Always well-timed. No hurry and no waste of time. Excellent. Evelyn was also very excited and enjoyed her birthday in Shumbalala very much. So we will re turn again. That’s for sure!
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Tony Elvin

Just wanted to let you know our stay at Shumbalala was amazing. We lucked out and got to stay in the presidential suite as the room we were supposed to stay in needed maintenance. Saw all the big five and more. Ranger and all staff at the resort we re fantastic.
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Dennis Bays

Our time at Shumbalala was simply wonderful! I really had set the safari trip up for Jean, rather than for me - I wasn't expecting much personally. I was wrong. There's something about bumping over the sand roads in the Bush Veld early each morning that I really, really liked. The animals were spectacular as well. We loved the hospitality at Shumbalala, and our accommodation was fantastic. We sighted a giraffe off our back deck while we were still being shown our room! All meals there were excellent, and the fact that there are typically no more than 8 guests in residence really made it a very personal experience.
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Jennifer Miranne

"Loving it here - it's fantastic and we have seen so many amazing things!!!"

Jacques Doucet

"Our stay at Shumbalala Lodge was great! The staff took care of our every needs & that was the highlight of our trip. We didn't want to leave."

Ann Hirst-Smith

Shumbalala was wonderful - especially so since we were the ONLY guests at the lodge, and it was like being royalty! Our game drives were therefore just perfect, and my photographer husband could do just whatever he liked and take as long over it as he liked. The staff were exceptionally knowledgeable, friendly, nice, and at the same time really professional. And the food and the ambience were excellent. I could not recommend Shumbalala any more highly.
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Philippe Brechot

"We were thrilled with your selection of lodges!!!"

Jon Broughton

"Particularly loved!"

Diane W Fuller

Was incredible. It was just what we wanted, small and gracious. The people were warm and delightful. They weren't full, so since we were a family, they upgraded us to the Presidential Suite so we could be together. The guide we had was wonderful - re ally knowledgeable and so passionate about the animals that our drives always went long which we loved. The food was marvelous and the accomodations superior.
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