Whether you are fulfilling the dream of a lifetime or a regular visitor of the world's great natural reserves, Pestana Kruger Lodge is your starting point to discover the most extraordinary things South Africa has to offer. This safari and spa resort is just 500 meters away from Malelane Gate, one of the main entrances to the world famous Kruger Park, where giant herbivores and the most fearsome predators in the world live in their natural habitat.
Located on a bend of the famous Crocodile River, where it is definitely not a good idea to go for a swim, this Pestana lodge is entirely built into the natural landscape that surrounds it. The lush greenery of the palm trees and of the grass contrasts with the darker and deeper tones of the tropical trees that surround and protect this resort. Several families live here, but some are more visible than others: the most audacious monkeys like to go for a stroll in the pool in the afternoon, while hippos enjoy going up and down the river with the current, using the water rapids on the bend.
It's hard to leave the deck balconies and focus on the surroundings, but believe us: it is worth it. The rooms, representing the famous Big Five - Lion, Elephant, Rhino, Buffalo and Leopard - are spread over a wide and very quiet area, ensuring maximum privacy and a unique and pleasant stay. You can fall asleep - and wake up - lulled by the wildlife sounds that surround you, not to mention the ubiquitous sound of running water. The proximity to nature that one can feel here is eerie, in a good way.
Since you sleep among wood and thatch, surrounded by ocher tones, you wake up feeling part of the surrounding setting. First thing in the morning, you walk these green areas, cross the bridge over the river that hosts crocodiles in drier summers, and make the most of the best things that the natural world has to offer. The second thing you do is to have a magnificent breakfast in the cool and sophisticated Buhlebethu room, or in the extraordinary deck area, while ospreys do the exact same thing in the river. Start the day in the best possible way with our delicious pancakes, our excellent meats and cheeses, and our freshly prepared fresh fruit. After all, you will need energy for your safaris.
Whether you visit one of the private reserves during the shorter tours or enter the National Park for a all day long safari, it is crucial to bring your binoculars. Some species will approach you gently, no problems whatsoever, while others you can only have a glimpse at among the bushes. Elephant mothers with their offspring, giraffes, zebras, herds of buffaloes and wildebeests with their complex social structure, impalas, lions, hyenas... here you can find the Big Five - Buffalo, Lion, Elephant, Leopard and Rhino; and the Ugly Five - Vulture, Wildebeest, Hyena, Marabou and Boar, the least handsome animals in the jungle. Of course, some species are easier to spot than others - the leopard is particularly elusive; but the experience of going through the jungle and feeling like you're in a National Geographic TV show is unique.
But don't think that just because you are in deep contact with nature, you'll lose touch with civilization's most sophisticated invention: the spa. Whether you schedule a full day of treatments, a more energizing ritual in the morning, or a more relaxing massage for the end of the day, get ready for one of the best moments of your life. You'll never really know if this is due to the excellent products in our Africology line, which are entirely organic and natural, made with the most powerful and effective raw materials. Or if the fact that our female therapists are part of a training program for the local rural population, bringing with them some of that pure African essence, contributes to mystical power of the experience. Even the fact that the treatment rooms are located in a thatched hut, with open windows into the jungle, can influence that. For whatever reasons, your visit to Thulani Spa will make it very difficult to have a regular massage again.
After the massage, the best thing you can do is relax by the main pool. If you come with your family, your children and grandchildren will love the huge water slide on the pool, which promises endless, adrenaline-packed adventures. By the way, your kids can safely stay in the pool and play in the lawn areas while you enjoy the spa. Or maybe you are a golf enthusiast; here you'll find the most exclusive course in South Africa, the Leopard Creek, where it might be difficult to play unless you know a member. The more accessible Malelane Golf Club is also in the vicinity, and there you can practice your strokes with total peace of mind, even if you don't know anyone.
Later in the evening, drink a typical Castel while listening to the family of hippos communicating, and feel like you're one of the luckiest people in the world for witnessing the occasional visit of buffaloes, elephants and even leopards, in addition to cranes and several other bird species who also come to drink water and toast to another phenomenal day in the jungle. There won't be a single minute when you don't feel blessed for witnessing a fire-coloured sunset in the nearby mountains; and not even a second will go by without your eyes feasting on the blue horizon of the more distant mountains. At Pestana Kruger Lodge, every single moment is absolutely unforgettable.