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This was a wonderful tour with a chance to see all the key wild animals in a natural setting. The fact that the park is dedicated to healing and caring for animals illegally trapped is an added plus.
The tour guide was very good and we saw many interesting animals ,She worked with us on what we wanted to see and she was very knowledgeable. The long trip was worth it and she gave a good account of the history of the area.
We stayed at the Green Fire Game Lodge, and the stay was super amazing. The guide 'Mr. Given', was extremely knowledgeable, polite, articulate and helpful. We felt safe and explored the wild to our fullest satisfaction. Excellent food was served by the in-house chef. The resort itself is super amazing and well equipped. Great place, amazing people, awesome food.
Most importantly, we were satisfied with our sightings.
Although I loved seeing the animals, there were a few things about this tour that frustrated me. First of all, it is advertised that the safari is a BIG FIVE game drive. This was not true our safari guide at Botlierskop told us that they do NOT have the big five no leopards at their reserve. I didn't really care about the leopard, so I wasn't disappointed, but they advertised the big five and our safari was not that. The other thing I didn't like was that they took us to Buffelsdrift for the elephant experience which is not included in the fee mind you, the elephant encounter was my favorite part of our vacation getting hugs from the elephants was memorable, but the fact that you had to pay separately or sit there for over an hour and do nothing seemed ridiculous. I don't know why it's not just included in the price. I liked the experience, but it did not meet my expectations.
A truly awesome experience. Wonderful memories. xx
Jean Graham of Discover Kruger Safaris is the best person to share this incredible experience with on so many levels. Jean was on time, friendly and extremely knowledge. We got to see all of the Big Five and then some. She drove from one spot to another in order to observe upfront and personal all species of animals and birds. I even got to see large white snails. a snake, and a turtle just hanging on the side of the road. The meals and rest spots were perfect. I couldn't think of having anyone else take us out. You have to plan on going out more than once. It is so worth it.
My family and I had the most special day , our guide,Prince ,was especially good . We saw Rhino Elephant ZEbra Giraffee wildebeest Buffalo baboon warthogs and lots of Buck . I definitely want to return and maybe be lucky enough to see some cats next time .
Recommend this tour as it was just the 3 of us.
Doing what: Hluhluwe Game Reserve Safari
Not a safari, more like a zoo. The best part of this tour is walking with the elephants, which is an extra cost.
Great way to get out of Cape Town for the weekend. Not impressed with the night at the Turnberry Hotel which is apperantly a 4 star hotel more leaning towards 2 stars.
The itinerary is efficient. Love the accommodation. Helpful tour guide.
My husband and I very much enjoyed the safari experience itself. The travel to and from the venue was, however very disappointing given how much the overall experience cost.
Although we were picked up shortly after 6 and others were earlier than us we then spent more than 40 minutes travelling across the city and waiting for one couple who were not ready waiting, and for a more extended period for a couple who did not turn up.
The minibus for journey alternated between having either poor ventilation Windows obscured with condensation or icy cold air conditioning. This was certainly not the comfortable journey I was expecting.
I am disappointed about the lengthy delay between finishing lunch and the return journey of over 1.5 hours - I suspect this was for the convenience of the driver's work at the centre there appears no other rationale for it. There was no activity to fill this gap - we were not advised that there was a pool for swimming so could not avail ourselves of this.
The factors outlined above detracted from our satisfaction of the day, especially given the cost of the experience.
The number of animals on the reserve was pathetic in the truest sense of the word. A minimalist zoo and not worth the investment in time to go see. I would avoid this tour and spend the time in wine country or on the Cape Tour.
Terry United States of ...
Outstanding! This group is doing great work with the animals! We were So close up! We have Wonderful pictures! Kudos to the wonderful staff who prepared breakfast and our lunch. The best food in South Africa!
This safari is nice if you're doing safari for the first time
Stayed at the Green Fire Lodge is why this gets 5 stars.
Technically not Kruger, but Greater Kruger. No fences in between, so animals can wander in between, but just be advised. I would 100 still book this.
Green Fire is brand new, rebuilt in 2012, so the entire lodge is GREAT! Amazing staff, amazing food! Also, they don't take their safari vehicles off the roads/paths a big plus! as they are not damaging or killing trees or small wildlife or actively chasing animals through the bush. I loved seeing the animals more naturally and not being chased. Didn't miss anything from this.
Book this, especially if you can select Green Fire!
Amazing, although a game reserve with fencing, all of the animals had acres of space to wander around, for a day trip if you dont have to time to do a full on safari, this is it, be prepared to get up early though, 5.30am start from Cape Town City and camps bay area,
Excellent trip, wonderful food and drink, amazing guides and outstanding setting
This is a great safari taster. We were only in Cape Town briefly on a cruise ship and it was great to be able to have a safari experience so close to Cape Town, in only one day. We managed to see all of the Big Five, even though the leopard was in the rehab centre at the time. The tour was well organised and ran smoothly and the guides were very knowledgeable and friendly. Being greeted with a glass of champagne upon arrival was a pleasant surprise! Can definitely recommend this tour.
dabhursin United States of ...
We were able to see the big 5 animals. We were so close to all the animals. The elephant walk was incredible. Feeding the elephants and having an elephant give you a hug was incredible! This was worth the money.
Booking and receiving confirmation for this trip was the hardest travel arrangements I ever experienced. It took at least 10 calls, where each call resulted in at least ½ hour waiting to speak to a sales represented.
The booking confusion was frustrating at the least. Perhaps this was due to their coordination with the travel group in Africa. I never received a clear travel itinerary and luckily I decided to fly to Zimbabwe to see if the tour representatives would be on the ground to greet me.
Once on the ground in Zimbabwe and Botswana the tour itself was very rewarding as it is hard not to enjoy Victoria Falls as it is spectacular. Chobe National Park is full of animals and the guides professional so that part was amazing and well worth it. The accommodations were nice.
I am giving this a 4 star due to the frustration in the initial booking, otherwise it was well worth the price.
Our tour guide Johnny was the good, and accommodated our requests and made us feel at ease. We sat up the back of the minibus, but unfortunately could not hear Johnny's enthusiastic guide about Capetown or countryside highlights of the 2 hour drive above the engine noise and the rattles at the back. There was no microphone.
On arrival arrival at the Aquila Game Reserve we had to stand over 30 minutes in a queue which was outside the door in temperatures which were warming up for the day. We had booked about 10 weeks ago online, and had our booking reference etc, ready. I would have thought that Viator would have been able to expedite our reception process with a bit more professionalism. Our breakfast and lunches included in the cost of the ticket were great value and delicious.
Our safari wagon was a bus holding over 20 passengers. Understandably there was no microphone
so we could not hear the commentary by the driver or the guide.
Although it states that sightings are not guaranteed we did manage to spot the animals at distance.
People with binoculars saw the face of a lion high up in its cave.. The saving moment of this journey was a truly beautiful scene which happened because 3 bus loads arrived before the animals: Rhino mothers with their babies ambled down to a water hole, followed by several Zebras, ducks and a Springbok.
I was disappointed because seeing animals in their natural environment was my reason for coming to South Africa. I really felt as if we were attending a beautiful resort, with a few animals along the route thrown in for a talking point.
We had a great time, with nice up close views of the animals. Our driver, Maurtie was extraordinary, he made a long ride fun and enjoyable, can't say enough good about him. The extra elephant feeding is a must, nothing like it!
Richard S USA
I'm very conflicted about the rating I've given for this tour. While it is definitely worth doing as there are incredible highlights, there's just enough errant incidents during our tour that has left us with a sour note. First the good... we definitely loved the lion walk, which by the way wasn't even listed in the itinerary here. We also loved the elephant ride as well as the ostrich farm.
Now for the not so good. The game drive was just alright. It felt very artificial.... like a ginormous zoo. Yes, we've seen rhinos, elephants, giraffes. However, there were so limited number of them that we felt like they were placed there just for this reason. It didn't feel like they were really in the wild, very unlike the scenes you see on other safaris where there's a herd of elephants in all stages of life crossing the river, a herd of giraffes crossing the path of the vehicle, lions getting real close to the vehicle, etc. There was supposedly a lion that was pointed out to us that I never saw because we were so far away from it. The hippo was submerged in the water other than maybe a few indistinguishable inches of it's head poking out of the water. There were 2 lonely giraffes by the trees. The Cango wildlife ranch also felt just like any other zoo you'd see at home.
What really disappointed and more than a little peeved us was the whole vibe of the tour. There were 2 vans that went on this tour. One van had the tourists who chose to stay at the 3 or 4 star accommodations while the other van had the ones staying at the backpackers. We unfortunately were grouped with a gaggle of 23 year old German girls staying at the backpackers. We were the only ones on that van not staying at the backpackers. Worse, we were brought to the backpackers place for so called dinner. What's the sense in paying for a 3 star accommodation when you're eating at the backpackers? The experience would've been much better if the company grouped the tourists accordingly.
tr through the park was excellent and guide was terrific but too much time left hanging around at end of park tour before we could leave on the mini bus.
Our driver, Denver, was awesome and got us safely to and from Aquila Game Reserve. Once we arrived, the bubbly wine and breakfast started the safari on the right foot! We boarded the safari vehicles and started on our journey through the reserve. The animals are fantastic and it was just so neat to see them in action! Just realize that this is a reserve and not a national park- the animals are fenced in and it can feel like a wild zoo and not an actual safari. It doesn't limit the danger, though. We got pretty close to the lions, the rhinos were still treated as dangerous, and the guides still have to keep you safe. Half way through the tour, we were able to get out and walk around with another glass of bubbly near the zebras. The tour ended with a fabulous lunch! After lunch, we lounged in some chairs by the fire pit. There is also drink service at this time. It was an amazing day! Loved every bit of it!
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