Every year, readers of the luxury travel bible, Conde Nast Traveler, vote for the best places to stay around the world. No fewer than fourteen stunning South African hotels were selected as winners of this year’s prestigious Conde Nast Gold List. Five of these spectacular sites are set adjacent the Kruger National Park and four of these were awarded additional “platinum circle” status for making the exclusive list every year for the last five years. Take a look at the five South African lodges safari dreams are made of…
Most guests would describe Mala Mala as “luxury without ostentation”. It’s all about service at this lodge, without sacrificing the down-to-earth connection with nature that brings visitors to the bushveld in the first place.
With its classic design and simple luxury, Singita is one of the hotels favoured by the rich and famous. And it’s hard not to be fabulous while watching a herd of elephants from the lap pool of the lodge’s wooden decks, or sleeping under the stars on your private terrace.
We could say many things about the amazing wilderness, people, service and experience at Londolozi, but the only thing we want to say is “leopards”. The abundance of this notoriously shy species is a huge draw-card for Londolozi. In fact, leopards were voted the Big 5 animal tourists would pay the most to see. And rightly so – being face to face with these elusive cats is one animal encounter worth every penny.
With the lingering presence of hippo and crocodile in the Sabie River, the excitement of a Sabi safari lives up to the Tsonga word tsave (meaning “danger”) from which the lodge gets its name. But the only thing dangerous about the luxurious accommodation, sumptuous food and world class service at Sabi Sabi is that it is extremely addictive.
Anyone fancy a night in the ultimate bush bedroom, high up in a lavish tree-house, under an African sky? We bet you do, and we have just the place to make it happen – the Lion Sands Chalkley Treehouse. Alright, so the lodge only made Conde Nast’s Gold List and not the “platinum circle”. But who needs platinum – when you’re sleeping this close to the stars and sweet dreams are pretty much guaranteed?