4.9 /5
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Based on over 1000 Verified Reviews.


Set in the northern Timbavati Private Game Reserve, Simbavati River Lodge offers over 12 000ha of wildlife-rich wilderness to explore. The perfect destination for safari enthusiasts, it's prime Big 5 country - Timbavati adjoins the unfenced western border of the Kruger National Park, and animals can move freely between the two reserves. Relax in the spacious lounge or on the extensive decks which provide lovely views of the Nhlaralumi River, a place where regular wildlife sightings are recorded.

Early morning, afternoon and evening game drives at Simbavati River Lodge ensure excellent opportunities to spot the Big 5 and with 360 species on record, the bird watching is very rewarding too. Simbavati is a family-friendly camp and provides kids programmes and amenities.


  • Excellent river front location - one of the best in the Timbavati
  • Welcoming and relaxed atmosphere
  • Expansive deck and lounge to relax
  • Perfect for families, with 2-bedroom chalets
  • Fantastic value for money


  • Bird watching
  • Game drives
  • Night drives


Relax in the spacious lounge or on the lodge's large wooden decks as you read a book or watch animals at the nearby waterhole.

Simbavati offers its guests a swimming pool and bar as well as a curio shop, and children have access to a games room, books and special kids safari programmes.


Start the day at Simbavati River Lodge with tea, coffee and rusks before your morning drive, after which an extravagant breakfast/brunch is served buffet-style on the outside wooden deck.

High tea is served just before the afternoon game drive while festive dinners are enjoyed in the evening around the campfire in the open-air boma or in the thatched dining area.

Indulge in a menu of African and Western cuisine and choose your drinks from a fully licensed bar and the large selection of fine South African wines.

General facilities

  • Swimming Pool
  • Bar
  • Boma
  • Curio or Gift shop
  • Spa


Special Offer

Stay Longer For Less

Valid for Travel

  • 2023-01-09 - 2023-12-20


R27 375 Per Person Sharing
Save 25%

Stay 4 nights and only pay for 3

All inclusions

Accommodation in a Luxury Tented Suite

Fully Inclusive

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Traveller Reviews

Simbavati River Lodge

Michael Corcoran

Our flight to, and transfer from, Hoedspruit was quite easy. The Simbavati River Lodge was lovely with very nice facilities, plus truly personalized service in an exclusive, peaceful and uncrowded environment. The staff was especially attentive and o ur guides were exceptionally knowledgeable about the abundant wildlife all around us. The whole safari constituted an amazing few days that we won’t ever forget. It was truly special to experience as a family. The food at the lodge was fantastic!
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Christine Bolan

"Great rooms, great service, good food. Our game drive guide, was good (not the best we’ve had, but good)."

Friends of Regina Blackburn

Overall, it was a great trip. I think we both enjoyed the safari camp the most, but it was close. We did see the “Big 5,” including doing it in a single day. Simbavati was great. The tent accommodations worked fine. Although I do use a wheelchai r, I was able to manage the couple of steps down to the bathroom. If a person was confined to a wheelchair, it wouldn’t work. Our guide was very good & the food was very good as well.
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Larry Moffitt

"Simbavati River Lodge. Great. A nice way to start the trip. It felt like a luxury safari camp which was what we wanted. Clean, comfortable, great food and nice people. Would definitely recommend and return again."

Denise Finney

"Simbavati was magical and perfect for our initiation into the safari schedule. We did see the big 5 and met wonderful people and all the staff were quite friendly."

Julian Herbert

"Simbavati - We absolutely loved the safari and were very happy with the lodge."

Kamasen Nayager

We stayed at Simbavati Lodge when we visited Kruger National Park. Kam and I felt very welcomed by the staff there. Staff at Simbavati Lodge were polite, warm and very helpful at all times of the day. The tent/room we stayed at was fantastic, we were particularly excited about the shower outdoors overseeing the wilderness. There's no fencing around Simbavati Lodge so when the elephants came to graze near our tents, it gave us both a really "real" experience. We were able to see all the big-5 in just 3 game drives. The drivers and trackers at Simbavati Lodge were really accomodating, trying their best to let everyone see the big-5 at their stay. The game drives were in an open vehicle and they get really close to the animals, unbelievable. It is particularly fun and exhilarating when the driver tries to chase an animal and we go off the track into the bush and knock down small trees. The food was served in sessions, everyone ate at the same time. I thought the variety and taste of the food was ok, could be improved, but the portions were sufficient.
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Maxine Whittaker

We were met by Elmarie, who thought we were staying for 3 nights. Maxine showed her our itinerary of 4 nights and matters were resolved in seconds. All the staff were excellent, the game drives with Christof & Daniel were outside of our imagination! Food marvellous, Charlie's BBQ the highpoint. On Mothers Day, Charlie & Elmarie led some of the staff members in a singing greeting, after they had sung Happy Birthday to a guest; we could have cried. Inspired selection!
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Jennifer Foston

The Simbavati River Lodge was fantastic, two room accommodation with complimentary Rhino swimming in the river and baboons walking past was unbelievable. Food was terrific although almost too much. The expert knowledge of Christof our guide and Danie l our tracker was wonderful and we have many pictures and videos of our drives to remember our trip with. On my recommendations for the lodge I did suggest some form of additional activity in the middle of the day, the 3 or 4 hours between breakfast/lunch and the afternoon drive was a little hard for us although I am sure others would not have this trouble.
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Colin Cox-Steiner

"Just wanted to thank you for a terrific trip! Everything went smoothly and we had a great time. You were right, the Simbavati Lodge was truly something special. Thanks again!"

Boaz Tasa

"We had there a great time, great Safari and a great vacation."

Brian Mccann

Simbavati Lodge was the most amazing experience. The comfort levels of our "tent" were better than some of the 5 star hotels we have stayed in around the world. The staff were so friendly and helpful, the food sensational and the animals were the sta rs... all making for a lifetime memorable experience.
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Peter Webb

"Simbavati River Lodge was great, such a nice location on the river and the staff and guides looked after us extremely well. The Leopards were great."

John Wakeman

"All the transfers, trips, hotels and locations were excellent - We particularly loved Timabavati/Simbavati and seeing leopards at close quarters was my personal highlight."

Regina Blackburn

"The stay at Simbavati was everything we could have hoped for in our first safari. Again, the accommodations were wonderful, the people were very friendly, and the food was great. It really gets a top rating."

Helen Belcher

"Kruger was fantastic .We saw leopards, cheetahs, lions making a kill and lots more besides .One day we saw all the big 5 on one morning game drive and 4 out of 5 in the afternoon!"

Gabriella Trabucchi

"Simbavati River Lodge - brilliant choice! The people there and the place, just marvelous. I enjoyed every minute of it and am, truly amazed."

Edmund Cheesman

Simbavati: we all really loved it here. The staff were all very kind and helpful, and really tried their best to make sure we had a good time. The camp is lovely, and it really felt like we were out in the bush. Our tents were right in front of the r iver, and during the night hippos could be heard nearby. The food was excellent. The highlight of course was the game drives, and we had some excellent sightings, including a very close encounter with two female lions, one of which was suckling 3 or 4 cubs - terrifying but absolutely amazing. We managed to see 4 of the big 5, but just missed out on the rhino. We were very sad to leave Simbavati, but plan to return some time.
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Fabio Kahn

"The Simbavati River Lodge was excellent. In particular the team for the private game (driver + guide) was extremely professional with explanations, findings animal, efforts to show us as much as possible etc. It was very good."

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