Simbavati Hilltop Lodge
Bedroom Bathroom

Simbavati Hilltop Lodge

The Simbavati Hilltop Lodge – situated within the world renowned and breathtakingly beautiful Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, which forms part of the Greater Kruger Park – guarantees an exclusive, authentic and unforgettable African Safari experience. Home to the famous white lions, expect exceptional game viewing within Simbavati Hilltop Lodge’s extensive tract of over 12,000 hectares of unspoilt wilderness


South Africa

Need to Know

Getting to Simbavati The Timbavati Private Nature Reserve is a wildlife-rich concession of land adjoining the western border of the Kruger National Park. The amalgamation of public and private land in the area forms “The Greater Kruger Park” area. There are no fences between the Timbavati and the Kruger National Park, which allows for the free movement of the animals between the Reserves.  *It is important to note that guests wishing to visit Simbavati from the Kruger National Park are unable to enter the property via the bush/park, but will have to exit the park and approach via the tar road (see directions). 
Transfers We offer complimentary scheduled transfers at set times to coincide with the scheduled flights into and out from Hoedspruit Eastgate Airport. Please note that this is a scheduled transfer and you will be sharing with other guests coming to the lodge. If you are planning to drop a rental car at Hoedspruit Airport, please ensure that you arrive well before the flight arrival time as unfortunately we cannot wait for late arrivals.  The transfer time is approximately one hour in and one and a half hour out. Please note the complimentary transfers exclude the vehicle entry fee of R140 (subject to change) payable at the gate. For VAT purposes, the transfer is zero rated and valued for 2016 at R1310, R660 and R400 for single, sharing and 3rd/4th person respectively per room. For 2017 the zero VAT rated transfer is valued at R1440, R730 and R440 for single, sharing and 3rd/4th person respectively per room. No discount/refunds are applicable for transfers not used. 

Scheduled Collection Times from Hoedspruit – 11:20, 12:10 & 13:15  Scheduled Departure Times from Simbavati – 09:30, 10:45  & 11:00

 All complimentary transfers need to be pre-booked as we only meet flights if we have guests on that flight. We are able to arrange private transfers from Hoedspruit’s Eastgate Airport, Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport, Phalaborwa Airport or the Timbavati Gate. Please ask for our Transfers Rate Sheet. 
By Air SA Express operates daily flights from OR Tambo (Johannesburg) International airport to Hoedspruit/Eastgate airport. Transfer from Hoedspruit to Simbavati takes approximately 90 minutes. Other airports in the area are Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport, also known as KMIA/Nelspruit (approximately 3-3½ hours from Simbavati) or Phalaborwa airport (1½-2 hours from Simbavati).
Guests can fly into a neighbouring airstrip within the Timbavati Reserve by prior arrangement. Charter company details need to be given directly to the lodge, so that transfers can be arranged from the airstrip. There is a prepaid landing fee of R500 payable for the use of the private airstrip. 
Directions by Road from Johannesburg/Pretoria     Simbavati Hilltop Lodge is a six to seven hour drive from Johannesburg or Pretoria. From Johannesburg take the N12 to Witbank/Emalahleni, and continue on the N4. From Pretoria, take the N4 to Witbank. Follow the N4 and turn left to Belfast (off-ramp R33/R540). Once in Belfast, turn right into Voortrekker Street and continue straight with the R540 to Dullstroom. Drive straight through Dullstroom, and continue to Lydenburg/Mashishing on the R540. At the T-junction, turn left into Lydenburg/Mashishing into Viljoen Street (R36).  Turn left again into Voortrekker Street. Turn right into De Clercq Street and follow the R36 through Ohrigstad. After the Abel Erasmus pass, the R36 turns left to Tzaneen. Do not turn left here, but continue straight on the R527 to Hoedspruit.
In Hoedspruit, continue straight. After the bridge crossing the railway line, turn right at the four-way stop and continue on the R40 for another 6,4 km.  Turn left onto the Timbavati/Eastgate Airport road and go through the Control Gate after approximately 200m. Continue straight for about another 18km until you reach the control gate of the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve. Here you will be required to pay a vehicle entrance fee of R140 per vehicle (subject to change). There is also a Timbavati Conservation fee of R215 per person (subject to change), which is payable at the lodge or can be pre-paid. Keep your permit, as the Lodge will issue you with an exit permit when you leave the reserve.
Continue straight for approx 25 km (speed limit of 50km/hour) and pass the Ndlopfu sign on your left. Shortly after this, you will see a dam on the right hand side. After this, turn right onto a gravel road at the Simbavati sign. The GPS co-ordinates for the turn-off as follows: S 24°12, 20.2’ E 31°19,24.2.  Carefully follow the Simbavati Hilltop Lodge paw print signs on the trees for a further 6,4km to the lodge. 

(Please do not go to Leadwood Camp). On the way you will be crossing a low water bridge.

On departure from the lodge, please follow the tracks marked exit through Wosa Wosa cut line to the north past Karans Camp entrance, Ingwelala airstrip and Motswari Camp Entrance. This route will bring you out back to the tar road at the Motswari turnoff.
Note: From Hoedspruit, it takes another hour to the lodge because of the speed limits in the reserve and on departure, it will take an extra 45 minutes back to the Timbavati Entrance Gate. It is very important to note that this is a ONE-WAY circle route, and all not adhering to this route will have their vehicle confiscated by the Landowner. Direction by Road from KMIA Airport Driving from Nelspruit or Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (KMIA) to Simbavati will take approximately 3-3½ hours. 
From Nelspruit, take the R40 to White River. From KMIA turn right onto the R40 to White River. Drive through White River; follow the R40 signs carefully to Hazyview. Continue north on the R40 through Hazyview. Note that this is a busy stretch of road with vehicles, people and sometimes animals on the road. Please drive carefully and slowly, and keep to the speed limits. Follow the R40 towards Klaserie and Hoedspruit. Just before Klaserie, turn right onto the R40 toward Hoedspruit. Travel for approximately 18km and turn right at the Eastgate airport sign. Follow directions above from this point….
General Information: 

No pets allowed 
Groups are welcome with an exclusive use lodge rate on offer 
Laundry service available 
Bush walks by prior arrangement and subject to availability 
Very limited cell phone reception 
Smart-casual dress code for dinner


The lodge offers Big 5 game drives in the early morning and late afternoon/evening, taking advantage of the time of day that the animals are naturally most active. Nocturnal creatures - including the big cats - are regular sightings at night. Currently over 40 mammal species are listed as resident in the Timbavati, including the Big 5 - Lion, Leopard, Rhino, Buffalo and Elephant, as well as endangered species including Wild Dogs and Cheetah.  There is an abundance of birdlife, with a total of 360 species of bird listed. 

Wildlife HighlightsWildlife Highlights

The lodge offers Big 5 game drives in the early morning and late afternoon/evening, taking advantage of the time of day that the animals are naturally most active. Nocturnal creatures - including the big cats - are regular sightings at night. Currently over 40 mammal species are listed as resident in the Timbavati, including the Big 5 - Lion, Leopard, Rhino, Buffalo and Elephant, as well as endangered species including Wild Dogs and Cheetah.  There is an abundance of birdlife, with a total of 360 species of bird listed. 

Local ActivitiesLocal Activities

Your day includes:
Early morning tea/coffee, a selection of homemade biscuits and rusks on the deck overlooking the river

Game drive (approximately 3+ hours), including a coffee/tea stop in the bush

Mid-morning breakfast/brunch – Continental and full hot breakfast

Leisure time – enjoy the use of the infinity pool overlooking spectacular views of the distant Drankensberg Mountains. Alternatively, relax in the lounge/bar area, avail of the free Wi-Fi on offer, or simply allow your mind to wander while sipping a refreshing cocktail, and watching the wildlife at the Nhlaralumi River.

Lunch – a la carte or chef’s specials (combined with High Tea)

Afternoon/evening game drive (approximately 3+ hours), which includes a bushveld Sundowner break. Bush walks can be arranged subject to availability


Lodge facilities include: 

Game-viewing deck overlooking the river
Infinity pool, with panoramic views of the bushveld and Drakensberg Mountains
Covered pool lounge for shaded outdoor relaxation
Curio Shop
360° Bar
Lounge, that offers a selection of books and board games
Wi-Fi connectivity in the reception, lounge and deck area
Spa in-room treatments

Tent facilities include: 

A private game viewing deck
Ceiling fan
Mini bar with drinks and snacks
Coffee and tea-making facilities
Complimentary eco-friendly, biodegradable products
Eco-friendly insect spray
Electric blankets for the winter period
Laundry services. A laundry bag is supplied in the room
Safe for storing valuables


Enjoy magnificent views of the bush, the Nhlaralumi River and the distant foothills of the Drakensberg Mountain Range from the vantage point of the beautiful small koppie on which the lodge is situated. Accommodation is pure African safari, and comprises of individual pavilion-style luxury tents, arranged to create a unique village feel. Each suite comprises two individual tents – one for the main bedroom, and a separate bathroom, which is linked by a passage that can be opened up on one side – allowing for an indoor or private outdoor shower experience. Privacy is guaranteed thanks to the careful placement of the tented-suites, ensuring a tranquil and intimate stay. Some of the private suites are situated to avail of the breathtaking views, and are therefore accessible via steep stairs. For the mobility impaired, please ensure that you stipulate your needs when booking. 

Average PriceAverage Room Prices

(per person per night unless otherwise stated)

Luxury Safari Tent:
R 6750.00 pps
R 9000.00 single

Children PolicyChild Policy

Child Policy:

No children under 12 years of age 
Children under the age of 16 years have to share a room with an adult over the age of 18 years.

Contact and Social Media

To find out more call us on +44 (0)1865 982290 or email us at enquiries at

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