Guests per Safari Vehicle
Located on the banks of the Olifants River, Ezulwini River Lodge boasts Luxury Chalets and Superior Suites which can accommodate up to 16 guests. Perfectly situated within a riverine forest of fig and mahogany trees which extends its branches draping over the viewing deck and outdoor lounge, you need not go far for spectacular game and bush views.
The main lodge offers an outside bar, providing guests with a space to enjoy the plethora of birds and grunting hippos in the river below between game drives. Guests wanting to take a break from game drives or just relax can do so in the swimming pool which overlooks the riverine. Enjoy homemade meals under the stars on the main deck whilst indulging in the beautiful sounds of nature.
River Lodge is centred around a superb outdoor guest area complete with a pool, shaded bar, outdoor lounge, and an indoor dining area.
A wooden walkway leads down to a viewing deck built around a tree and draped in leafy tree branches, all overlooking the riverbed and the Olifants River. A viewing tower at River Lodge offers a superb view over the reserve and a waterhole.
There is Wi-Fi available at the lodge, while an array of photographic and nature books keep you inspired while you take in the birdsong and various other sounds of the Balule bushveld.
Accommodation at River Lodge is stylish and inspired by the natural elements of the Balule bushveld, while air conditioning or fans are a staple. All rooms have tea and coffee facilities, while luxury suites also have minibars.
River Lodge has 4 luxury chalets, which are traditional, thatched rondavels equipped with twin or double beds plus mosquito nets, bedside tables, and en-suite bathrooms, which have both a bath and shower. The newly revamped chalets have wooden decking and balconies with views of the wilderness beyond.
There are 4 superior suites, which have large wooden decks, plunge pools, and views of the river. One of these superior suites is a honeymoon suite, and the other a family room. Interiors are chic and spacious with lounge, coffee table, and en-suite with bath, and indoor and outdoor shower.
The safari experience at Ezulwini is centred on twice-daily game drives in the lush Balule Nature Reserve. Boasting the ‘Big 7’, which is the Big 5 plus hippo and crocodile, and an abundance of birdlife and general game.
The reserve is part of the Greater Kruger and falls within its boundaries, so the flow of wildlife is unhindered. The vegetation is highly wooded, attracting all sorts of browsing animals, while the presence of the Olifants River attracts those water-loving birds and bees to its banks offering something to look at from River Lodge.
Photography on game drives is encouraged, as is bird watching. The experience of a morning safari sees the bush coming to life with all the diurnal animals, while evening drives bear witness to the activity of hyenas, jackals, lions, and owls.
Balule Nature Reserve was established by a group of like-minded, private landowners in the early 1990s. From the start, their objective was to create a larger, open system with no fences to hinder animal movement thus creating a much healthier habitat for fauna and flora.
The Reserve has since grown from the initial 11,000 ha to 55,000 ha, approximately 150 km of fences have been removed and it consists of both private and commercial properties. In 2004, the Eastern boundary fence was removed and Balule was officially incorporated into the Kruger National Park (established in 1898).
Thus, Balule is now part of an open system that covers over 2 million hectares in South Africa and is widely regarded as one of the most successful conservation areas in the world.
Balule is mostly made up of mixed Acacia and Combretum woodlands, which sustain 94 mammals, 280 birds, 72 reptiles, and 128 tree species, not to mention the insect, fish, amphibian, and other plant species.
Hoedspruit – Eastgate Airport
1 hour from Hoedspruit – Eastgate Airport
3.5 hours from Nelspruit
6.5 hours from Johannesburg
Ezulwini River Lodge, Hoedspruit, South Africa