Thornybush Private Game Reserve

Kruger and surrounds, South Africa

The hotel

Romantic riverside cabins; a tented camp in the African bush; family hideaways with child-friendly game-drives – each of the small and intimate lodges in the Thornybush Private Game Reserve collection brings you a unique and unforgettable safari experience. Set in 14,000 hectares of wilderness in the game-rich Timbavati region, which fringes Kruger National Park, the camp has recently dropped its fences to allow wildlife to roam freely and give you optimal game spotting opportunities. From the crest of a hill overlooking the Drakensburg mountains to the banks of a lake, this collection lets you pick your lodge location and safari style – but whichever setting you choose, you can relax with Thornybush’s service and enjoy incredible game-drives in search of some of the 48 mammal species that call the reserve home, including that photogenic 'Big Five'.

Amenities

  • Bar
  • Safari
  • Spa
  • Swimming Pool

Where is it

On 14,000-hectares of private land, bordering Kruger's Timbavati Game Reserve, home to the 'Big Five'. Transfer time from Hoedspruit Airport: 30 minutes.

Hotel information

The 4V Monwana Game Lodge - offers 4 elegant suites each with private deck or patio overlooking the bushveld or the Monwana watering hole, en-suite bathrooms with bath and shower facilities. Luxury King Suite has a lounge area with open fireplace, private deck and 1 king-size bed, sleeping maximum 2 adults. Family Suites can sleep 2 adults and 2 children.

Full Board includes: all meals (drinks are not included) and two activities.

The 5V Waterside Lodge - set on the banks of a tranquil lake, adjacent to the Greater Kruger National Park, offers 20 en-suite thatched suites. Each suite has an en-suite bathroom, indoor shower and private deck area, sleeping maximum 2 adults.

The 5V Thornybush Game Lodge - offers 20 stylish air-conditioned suites, including 2 family suites. Luxury Suites overlook the Monwana River, each with en-suite facilities, outdoor shower and private decks. Family Suites are larger with a lounge area and sleeper sofa, suitable for children, these suites also have a private plunge pool.

The 5V River Lodge offers only 4 luxurious and spacious suites that overlook the Monwana River, each African styled with a private pool on an elevated deck, floor-to-ceiling glass doors in the bathroom and an outdoor shower.

A choice of 4V and 5V lodges and camps of differing sizes, each offering a BOMA area, swimming pool, curio shop, bar and viewing deck. Spa* (Thornybush Game Lodge only). Game-drives and bush walks.

* Denotes local charge.

Rating summary

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

  • Excellent (485)
  • Very good (36)
  • Average (5)
  • Poor (0)
  • Terrible (0)
Image of the Tripadvisor rating A world apart awaits you

Feb 12, 2020 Ted R London, Canada

On our way to a medical mission for eye surgery we were able to squeeze a day at this superb lodge and get in two game drives. We were put in the Royal rooms with our son having his own cabin to himself, a full separate kitchen dining room and a huge separate bungalow for us with plunge pool overlooking the bushveldt. The food was superb, The… Read more
On our way to a medical mission for eye surgery we were able to squeeze a day at this superb lodge and get in two game drives. We were put in the Royal rooms with our son having his own cabin to himself, a full separate kitchen dining room and a huge separate bungalow for us with plunge pool overlooking the bushveldt. The food was superb, The individual treatment on the game drives was absolutely perfect. There were only two other guests but you never share a vehicle with more than 2-3 others I am told even when its busy. Our guide (I am so sorry I cannot remember his name) was trying so hard to find us a leopard.. but in doing so we dove into the bush over and over with his agile driving and through streams and dry river beds. I can go on an on but I just wanted to say thanks for hosting us on route to our medical mission in Acornhoek just a few km away where another world awaited us. This lodge was a dream. We wanted to return for another night but we were just too busy at the hospital. I would highly recommend staying here. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Life changing experience

Jan 14, 2020 TrianaTeresa Seattle, Washington

We couldn't have dreamed up a better place to have our first safari. My two teenagers, husband and I loved everything about Thornybush! The biggest shout out goes to Sarah, our Safari Guide, who made the experience so interesting. She taught us about behaviors and how every thing in the bush is valuable. My father died while on this trip and… Read more
We couldn't have dreamed up a better place to have our first safari. My two teenagers, husband and I loved everything about Thornybush! The biggest shout out goes to Sarah, our Safari Guide, who made the experience so interesting. She taught us about behaviors and how every thing in the bush is valuable. My father died while on this trip and the experience was truly the best grief counseling I could have ever gotten. You truly see the cycle of life and how we all have a role to play. At Thornybush, you will approach every animal sighting with respect. There will never be more than two land rovers at any sighting. You will go for long periods of time without seeing any other signs of human life. It's so beautiful, varied, and spectacular. Seven game drives and we saw different animals and behaviors each time. I thought a safari might be like a glorified zoo visit - but it's nothing like that. We truly are just guests in their home. In a three hour drive, you'll see virtually the entire cycle of life - mating, playing, eating, hunting. It's truly life changing. The luxury at Thornybush is also amazing - a beautiful, relaxing pool; an incredibly comfortable bed; a huge bathroom with indoor and outdoor showers; drinks and meals in the bush. It's a dream from start to finish. We all loved it! Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Best place eva

Jan 10, 2020 Jodian14

We stayed there with our you kids and loved the place. Great accommodation and food with being in the thick of it all. Knowledgable guides with great night trip and up close and personal with all the wild animals
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Truly heaven on Earth

Jan 7, 2020 felicia142 Boston, Massachusetts

Thornybush is an amazing escape from it all. From the moment we arrived we were welcomed by the staff who showed us to our lovely rooms. We thought since we arrived later in the day we would have to forgo a safari that day but they got us right out in the Bush and what a treat it was!! Ever day the food was superb. I can not say enough positive… Read more
Thornybush is an amazing escape from it all. From the moment we arrived we were welcomed by the staff who showed us to our lovely rooms. We thought since we arrived later in the day we would have to forgo a safari that day but they got us right out in the Bush and what a treat it was!! Ever day the food was superb. I can not say enough positive things about our tracker John and guide Rudy. The knowledge between the two of them was outstanding! Definitely consider Thornybush for your Safari Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating 5 Star Safari Experience

Dec 30, 2019 jeanettemM353KN

Luxury chalet accommodation, charming staff and great food. All this and you get to go on safari with the most professional trackers and guides. You are almost assured of ticking off the big 5 and if you don’t then it is not for the lack of trying, All this with the most amazing sunsets and sundowner drinks. An absolute highlight of the 6 game… Read more
Luxury chalet accommodation, charming staff and great food. All this and you get to go on safari with the most professional trackers and guides. You are almost assured of ticking off the big 5 and if you don’t then it is not for the lack of trying, All this with the most amazing sunsets and sundowner drinks. An absolute highlight of the 6 game parks visited in Africa. Read less