Mala Mala Game Reserve

Kruger and surrounds, South Africa

The hotel

The original safari destination, the iconic MalaMala Game Reserve has been the flagship wildlife retreat all others try to emulate since 1964 (although its dream location wedged between The Kruger and Sabi Sand Reserve makes it unbeatable). It isn’t just South Africa’s oldest private reserve, it was also the first to introduce photographic safaris – and you’ll wear your camera out with the lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, and cape buffalo roaming free here. To cap it off, MalaMala Camp and Sable Camp have undergone extensive and breath-taking renovations. The new interiors and guest areas beautifully blend old and new, classic and contemporary – whilst preserving their heritage and authentic African character. The stats keep coming, as it’s also South Africa’s biggest private 'Big Five' game reserve. Its ‘private’ status brings extra experiences like night safaris, but all its game-drives are special, with just 4-6 guests per vehicle and its unfenced border with Kruger National Park making this a wildlife haven. It’s a haven for you too, with its luxury lodges including secluded Rattray’s Camp and historic MalaMala Camp, with their infinity river-view pools, and more intimate Sable Camp.

Amenities

  • Bar
  • Safari
  • Swimming Pool
  • Safety Deposit Box
  • Internet Access

Where is it

The MalaMala Game Reserve is on the largest concession within the Sabi Sands Reserve, a 6-hour drive from Johannesburg. A 1-hour flight from Johannesburg to Skukuza Airport and then a 1-hour transfer through the game reserve. Private charters to their own airstrip available.

Hotel information

MalaMala Camp offers 14 luxury suites, 4 luxury rooms, and 1 single room. Rooms have undergone a stunning refurbishment including beautifully appointed bathrooms, tea/coffee-making facilities, mini-bar and safe, sleeping maximum 2 adults and 1 child.

All Inclusive includes: all meals, snacks and drinks (excluding premium brands). Game-drives, nature walks and laundry service.

Sable Camp is located at the southern end of the MalaMala Camp and comprises just 5 Luxury Suites plus Lion’s Den which is a double suite, ideal for families, with 2 ensuite bedrooms leading off a central lounge.

Rattray’s Camp offers 8 luxury suites accommodating 16 guests only. All luxury suites have river views from a private verandah, plunge pool, "his” and “hers” bathrooms, outdoor shower, tea/coffee-making facilities, mini-bar and safe.

Each camp features an air-conditioned dining room and boma area for dinner. Lounge and historic bar. Infinity swimming pool. Fitness facility. Massage service*. Wooden safari deck overlooking the Sand River for sightseeing. Library. Safari boutique. Complimentary WiFi.

2 nights.

* Denotes local charge.

Rating summary

  • Location Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Sleep Quality Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Rooms Image of the Tripadvisor rating
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Traveller rating

  • Excellent (370)
  • Very good (29)
  • Average (18)
  • Poor (3)
  • Terrible (0)
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May 14, 2020 kevingray69 Norwich, United Kingdom

First of all I would like too thank the management and staff for my wonderfull birthday song and cake on the 6th of March even though it wasn't till the 8th and the bottle of bubbly and 2 glasses in our room when we got back to the room.we had a waterhole suite which was fantastic anything you wanted or needed was in there.Our guide was Ben's,he… Read more
First of all I would like too thank the management and staff for my wonderfull birthday song and cake on the 6th of March even though it wasn't till the 8th and the bottle of bubbly and 2 glasses in our room when we got back to the room.we had a waterhole suite which was fantastic anything you wanted or needed was in there.Our guide was Ben's,he looked after us from start too finish,at breakfast, on the safari and at the evening meal,Ben's gave us a great drive every day we saw the big 5 he was knowledgeable everthing safari always asked us what we wanted too see so thanks Ben's for a fantastic time.The camp was fantastic,the staff always willing too help and if there is a better safari in Africa they will have to go some,so again thanks too the management,staff,and of course Ben's for a brilliant 4 days thankyou Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Amazing experience

Mar 18, 2020 philp645 Washington DC, District of Columbia

We absolutely loved our time at Mala Mala. They treated us like royalty our entire time there. The rooms were beautiful, great food, and every single staff member was so friendly and helpful. It really is a special place. We also want to give a special thank you to our wonderful safari guide Nick. He was so professional, patient, kind, and… Read more
We absolutely loved our time at Mala Mala. They treated us like royalty our entire time there. The rooms were beautiful, great food, and every single staff member was so friendly and helpful. It really is a special place. We also want to give a special thank you to our wonderful safari guide Nick. He was so professional, patient, kind, and knowledgeable, constantly trying to give us the best experience possible. He made sure we saw the “Big 5” and so much more. We hope to be able to come back some day. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Beyond Anything We Could Have Imagined!

Feb 4, 2020 wcdgtripp

Try to imagine the most amazing safari experience and Mala Mala will be even better than that. Nothing could be improved on ~ even the weather cooperated! The staff was friendly and efficient and really wanted everyone to have the best time. Daniel Bailey was an outstanding guide ~ terrific tracker, knowledgeable and well versed in the animals,… Read more
Try to imagine the most amazing safari experience and Mala Mala will be even better than that. Nothing could be improved on ~ even the weather cooperated! The staff was friendly and efficient and really wanted everyone to have the best time. Daniel Bailey was an outstanding guide ~ terrific tracker, knowledgeable and well versed in the animals, flora & constellations! Even excelling as a bartender on one of our safaris! The camp is gorgeous, very well kept and extremely comfortable. To say we were pampered is an understatement. Can't think of going anywhere else should we choose to go on safari again. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Just everything was amazing!

Dec 3, 2019 SanC65 Cape Town, South Africa

We have just completed a magical 4 nights at Mala Mala. What a treat in every way. We had Cameron Inggs as our ranger. He certainly made sure we saw as many animals as possible but it was much more about the experiences we had with the animals that we have never experienced before at other camps. He was able to understand and predict the movements… Read more
We have just completed a magical 4 nights at Mala Mala. What a treat in every way. We had Cameron Inggs as our ranger. He certainly made sure we saw as many animals as possible but it was much more about the experiences we had with the animals that we have never experienced before at other camps. He was able to understand and predict the movements of the animals and this made the photo opportunities perfect. I do not think we will ever be able to see some of the sightings we had again. The rooms are beautifully decorated and a pleasure to spend time in between drives. The food is really great, it is not over the top fancy food which is welcome but all perfectly cooked and always a great selection. Actually too much unless you are disciplined to say no thanks. We will definitely be back and rather forfeit an overseas holiday to spend another four days there. Thank you to the whole team that made our stay so memorable. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Beyond all expectations!

Nov 5, 2019 Dave C

Incredible experience. We spent 4 days at Mala Mala and couldn't have been happier with the accommodations, safaris, rangers or hotel staff. Our ranger/guide was extremely knowledgeable about both fauna and flora. All were very conservation conscious, respectful of the animals, and aware that we were in the animals' kingdom rather than them in… Read more
Incredible experience. We spent 4 days at Mala Mala and couldn't have been happier with the accommodations, safaris, rangers or hotel staff. Our ranger/guide was extremely knowledgeable about both fauna and flora. All were very conservation conscious, respectful of the animals, and aware that we were in the animals' kingdom rather than them in ours. Read less