Pondoro Game Lodge is a small, owner-managed, luxury game lodge situated on the banks of the Olifants River in the 40 000 ha exclusive Balule Game Reserve, a big 5 game reserve which forms part of the greater Kruger National Park. Pondoro offers luxury chalets and suites and is excellent value for money.

  • Affordable luxury safari lodge
  • Located within the private Balule Game Reserve
  • Part of the Greater Kruger National Park
  • Open vehicle game drives, able to go off road
  • Night drives with a spotlight
  • 3 Hides for game watching
  • 3 Luxury chalets and 5 luxury suites with private patios, lounge, outside showers, and rock pool style jacuzzi
  • Air conditioning and ceiling fans
  • Rockpool
  • Superb African/European cuisine
  • Extensive wine cellar
  • Spa and small gym

This award-winning game lodge offers a choice of three luxury chalets or five ultra-luxury suites, for a maximum of 16 people in total. The luxury suites are architecturally designed and overlook the Olifants River. Each chalet or suite has an en-suite bathroom with a shower overlooking the river, air-conditioning, mosquito nets and a viewing deck.

Ultimate luxury

You are invited to indulge in the ultimate luxury when selecting either the Tree, Earth, Rock, Water or Buffalo suite. Each of the themed luxury suites is provided with a private wooden deck, lounge area and an outside shower for the adventurous. A new addition to all the Luxury Suites is a rockpool-style Jacuzzi built into the wooden deck in front of the luxury suites facing the river. They are all completely private and complement the romantic setting at Pondoro.

Game viewing experience

The 45 000 ha Balule Game Reserve straddles both sides of the Olifants River and is situated within the Greater Kruger National Park. 'Balule' is the Shangaan word for 'buffalo'. You will find the Big 5 roaming freely between the Balule Game Reserve and Kruger National Park. A reintroduction of African wild dogs has also been done in the Pondoro traversing area. Pondoro has rights to traverse on more than 8 000 ha that includes a network of more than 350 km of bush roads. The game viewing here is excellent, in our experience. Morning and evening game drives are conducted in open game drive vehicles with experienced and knowledgeable guides, who are always attentive to the needs of guests.

Olifants River views

The meals at Pondoro offer an indulging culinary experience, with an effortless fusion between traditional African cuisine and modern European trends. Pondoro also boasts an impressive wine cellar with an extensive selection of fine wines. All meals are served on a wooden deck high up in the tree canopy overlooking the Olifants River. An unforgettable bush dinner will await those who stay for the third night.

Getting there

By road - Pondoro Game Lodge is approximately a 6-hour drive from Johannesburg. There are road transfers available.

By air - The closest airport is Eastgate Airport in Hoedspruit. Transfers to and from Pondoro can be arranged.

Our take on Pondoro Game Lodge

Pondoro is a friendly place with attentive staff who make you feel welcome from the beginning to the end. Families with children are welcome at Pondoro. If affordable luxury is what you are looking for, Pondoro Game Lodge will be the ideal setting for a dream safari. Pondoro is in our opinion an excellent value-for-money game lodge, which exceeded our expectations.

  • Luxury accommodation
  • 3 scrumptious meals per day
  • Coffee and tea, snacks
  • Soft drinks, house wines and a selection of spirits & beers
  • Morning and evening game drives
  • A guided bush walk
  • Complimentary internet access
  • All personal expenses
  • Transport to and from the lodge (we will arrange this for you)
  • Conservation/Entrance fee
  • Gratuities (optional)
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