South Africa Tourism Awards Logo

South Africa Tourism Awards

Type: Destination
Category: Unique Experience

Motivation for award: Hosting a diversity of habitats, Royal Thonga Safari Lodge is home to a spectacular variety of animals and birds. Birdlife around the lodge is particularly splendid, with numerous specials such as Neergaard’s Sunbird, African Broadbill, Rudd’s Apalis, Woodward’s Batis, Plain-backed Sunbird and Pink throated Twin spot being regularly sighted within the lodge’s property. With an array of local activities available, the lodge serves as a perfect base to explore the area from beach to bush. For those who prefer to relax, there is a large lap pool, day spa and comfortable lounge to unwind in. – Learn about the Sangoma or Traditional Healers practice – Experience the amazing tradition of the 700-year-old Thonga fish kraals. You will also discover how the Thonga’s make their palm wine and have a taste – Harvesting of the Marula fruit to make Marula Wine, commonly known as “ubuganu” – Learning the language isiThonga from the elders in and around our community Additonal Activities include but not limited to the following: Game Drives in the Tembe Elephant Park – Big 5 Game Reserve Kayaking Hiking Birding Raffia Forest Walks Tiger Fishing Traditional Fishing and Picnics Boat Trips including Lunch Snorkeling at Kosi Bay Community Visits Educational Visits Community Gardening Arts and Craft Shisanyama and Traditional Food Experience Turtle Touring at Kosi Bay

Region: Kwazulu Natal / Umhlabauyalingana Municipality

Royal Thonga Safari Lodge


This 4 star lodge is architecturally designed to emulate the local Thonga building style, and each of the fourteen villas are uniquely positioned to offer guests total privacy and luxurious comfort within a sand forest in Tembe Elephant Park.

Culmination of a dream of the local community, private investors and Tembe Royal family to create a natural paradise (in the bush) for visitors to experience this unique reserve
Natural materials and timber give a warm organic ambience and invite the outdoors in. All rooms are appointed with quality furnishings and bathrooms come complete with an indoor and private outdoor shower.

A comfortable 4 hour’s drive from King Shaka International Airport, Tembe Elephant Park is a Big 5 reserve, renowned as A UNIQUE EXPERIENCE and AN UNFORGETTABLE LOCATION – One of the few remaining wilderness areas in Southern Africa.

Vote and request your R1000 travel voucher

* The system only allows you to vote once for an entry. You may however comment multiple times per entry. We thank your playing your part and contributing to the South Africa Tourism Awards though voting and submitting comments.

* As a thank you we will send you a R1000 travel voucher to enjoy. We  ask you to share these awards with your friends and request them to vote too. By voting they too will receive a R1000 travel voucher. 



Thandekile Dumisa – 30.05.2022
Awesome team.

Elyse Rosenberg – 23.05.2022
Amazing destination!

Thelma Bathobile Tembe – 22.05.2022
Royal Thonga Safari Lodge offers unique experience, & proper destination for me. I like spending my time there.

Claire Love – 20.05.2022
An incredible destination on our doorstep … With the friendliest most helpful staff and incredible guides l … can’t wait to go back ❤️❤️

Naledi – 20.05.2022
My favourite local Safari lodge. Great for the whole family

Kerstin Plesser – 20.05.2022
I love this lodge

Prince – 20.05.2022
The best bush paradise in KZN PROVINCE

Driena Bantom – 20.05.2022
Amazing and beautiful place

Debbie Williams – 29.04.2022
Always nice to getaway in our own beautiful country – locals support SA tourism !

Asanda Tembe – 26.04.2022
Beautiful property and friendly staff

Tsepisho Makua – 06.04.2022
The pictures don’t lie. Beautiful lodge, excellent service. It’s purely blissful

Bonga – 04.04.2022

Sindisiwe Tembe – 03.04.2022
It has a wooow effect. Splendid.

Sicelo Mathenjwa – 03.04.2022
Beautifully place to visit

Goodman Ncobeni – 03.04.2022
Great property with loads of activities

Mandisa – 01.04.2022
Beautiful place

Nkanyiso Mncwabe – 01.04.2022
Excellent everything

Nosipho – 01.04.2022
This is a great place to pay a visit with your friends and family.they staff members are friendly and helpful

Asanda Tembe – 01.04.2022

Tswakai – 30.03.2022
The place is stunning. Excellent Service! Rooms are very clean and neat. #Home Away from Home.

Njabulo Ngcobo – 30.03.2022
Brilliant accommodation and perfect hosts.

Shah Dumisa – 29.03.2022
Absolutely amazing

Nobuhle Qwabe Gumede – 29.03.2022
The amazing place and affordable

Sicelo Mathenjwa – 29.03.2022
Beautifully place to visit

Thelma Bathobile Tembe – 28.03.2022
I like the place it is private, peaceful unique, lots of activities and elderly friendly.

Mlungisi Sibiya – 28.03.2022
Very unique, peaceful and energising

Nkos’nathi Khowa – 28.03.2022
A very welcoming place, peaceful atmosphere and love of nature.

Khwezi – 28.03.2022
I voted for Royal Thonga Safari Lodge because it has beautiful artistry, culture and amazing service. The pictures on their site don’t lie, everything you see is what you get and for such an affordable price.

Mbalenhle Kweyama – 28.03.2022
Amazing destination… great service.

Asanda Tembe – 28.03.2022
The best place to be

Tiishang Ngoasheng – 28.03.2022
An amazing lodge for that perfect bush getaway!

Mfundo Fezekile Dumisa – 28.03.2022
I vote Royal Thonga for Althea unique experience category.

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