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Join us at Amani and Experience true Africalm

Amani

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OVERVIEW

Charming & Intimate

Simbavati Amani is a charming, intimate safari lodge in the peaceful heart of the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve, perfect for couples or exclusive use.

Though there are only four luxury suites within the homestead, a magnificent double volume sitting room, mezzanine library area, interactive kitchen and bar mean there is generous space to relax.

Warm evenings are spent socializing around the fire-pit, marvelling at the star-studded sky whilst animal calls echo through the darkness. Daytime means morning and evening guided game drives in the unfenced reserve, a part of the Greater Kruger and home to all the Big Five.

The gardens offer a tranquil oasis, shaded by mature trees. They flow down to a secluded entertaining area with infinity pool, terrace, alfresco bar and campfire. All overlooking a rewarding and flood-lit waterhole. Simbavati Amani can be taken on an exclusive use basis to create your own private bush retreat.

Why we love it

Intimate Safari Villa

Charming & Intimate safari retreat in the bush

Four Luxury Suites

 Ideal for exclusive use
(4 suites)

Active Waterhole

On the bank of a dry river with a floodlit waterhole

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Couples & Friends

The ideal getaway
for couples and
friends

ROOMS

Select Room

Luxury Suites within the Lodge

Simbavati Amani accommodates eight guests, in four luxury suites with king or twin beds. Each bedroom has its own private entrance onto the garden. All four suites have an en-suite bathroom, and offer a double basin, bath or shower.

 

Simbavati Amani - bedroom detail
Simbavati Amani - bathroom

Top Reasons to Visit

LODGE

Intimate & Relaxing

You arrive back from your game drive to cross a bridge over the dry river bed and into the cocooning ambience of the lodge. You feel like you are in your own island retreat, surrounded by the sounds of the bush.

At Amani, unwinding is the order of the day – whether under the trees on the deck, around the pool or savouring the bushveld views. The wildlife-rich watering hole will entice and ease the busiest of minds.

Families

Private villa

Simbavati Amani also operates well as a private villa for a family party.

Two bedrooms are on each side of the double volume sitting room. So parents and children can be close to each other, with two suites adjacent to each other.

There is also an upstairs Mezzanine area which makes for a perfect kids hang-out space. There’s space for an extra bed here for an older child or teenager (with a toilet & basin). Plus the fenced garden offers a safe environment for kids to run around.

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Through supporting and uplifting local children we, and our guests, can make a difference in the future.

Imagine living on the borders of one of Africa’s greatest National Parks, but having never seen a zebra or elephant in reality. The Klaserie Private Nature Reserve recognised that the communities surrounding the Greater Kruger area are a key part of its future conservation. However, these same communities are completely disconnected from their natural heritage. Thus, Eco Children was created as an initiative by the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve (KPNR) to educate and enrich the lives of its employees' children through holiday ‘bush’ workshops. These nature-based camps aimed to foster an understanding and passion for wildlife, creating a future generation of nature guardians.

In the Beginning

Deon Huysamer is an owner of Simbavati Camp George and recalls how the concept of the Eco Children charity took form.

“In 2007, our farm manager, at the time, and I had a lively debate about the separation of reserve/camp staff from their children whilst they were working in the reserve. We agreed about the unhealthy social consequences this had and discussed what we could do to improve the situation. We decided to bring the children to their parents over school holidays and to teach them about eco-related subjects.

Our immediate solution was to conduct the first classes in Camp George’s gardens. We then started to train selected reserve/camp staff in eco-subjects and soon the children were being taught about conservation and wildlife in their own language.”

In the lush gardens of Camp George, under the beautiful trees, the seeds were sown for what we know as Eco Children today.

From its humble beginnings, Eco Children has since extended its reach to over 5,000 children in some of the poorest communities in South Africa. Following a whole-school development approach, they have adopted nine local primary schools, where the focus is not just on conservation education but also improving school infrastructure, installing a new kitchen and fully-stocked library as well as a vegetable eco-garden capable of supplementing school meals.

Nutrition First

Ensuring that each child receives a filling, nutritious meal and has a safe, hygienic place to study is the foundation of Eco Children’s work. Once a child’s daily needs are being met, the programme’s other initiatives can be implemented. Their Eco-Villages combine  colourful eco-gardens with a dedicated classroom for lessons in conservation and natural science taught by local Environmental Educators. 

A Love for Reading

The new libraries help develop a culture of reading that has been shown to have a huge impact on literacy skills and attainment in education. An incentives programme motivates children to engage in their learning by rewarding achievement with books, new uniforms, overnight winner’s excursions and day trips into the Kruger National Park. 

Getting the Best Start

Lastly, Eco Children established their coveted bursary programme. Identifying talented learners who would otherwise be held back by the burdens of poverty, these children are awarded a first-class education at Southern Cross Schools in Hoedspruit. To date, 34 students have benefitted from the scheme, with several having completed tertiary education and now leading successful careers, inspiring the next generation in their communities. 

How Can You Help?

Guests that are passionate about making sustainable difference during a stay at our Simbavati Lodges in the  Klaserie, can consider adding an enlightening school tour to their trip or donating to one of Eco Children’s programmes.

Simbavati proudly supports and endorses the work that Eco Children does and is passionate about uplifting the foundation’s work and the children benefiting from it. 

Discover our Simbavati lodges in the Klaserie region, for your perfect safari experience with a heart for sustainability.

For more information about Eco Children, visit their website at www.ecochildren.co.za 

This article was compiled by Simbavati Lodge Collection and Emily Whiting

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Amani

Camp George

Community

Conservation

Homestead

Kruger Klaserie

People

Uplifting our Communities with Eco Children

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Disconnect to Reconnect

Growing up in a family that loves nature and wildlife, I have a long history of travelling for leg-numbing hours in the back of the land-rover. We kids had special beds and an assortment of books and games to keep us entertained. And let’s admit, quiet too. All as we headed for some new and suitably adventurous destination to go camping.

Our arrival at the camp would be a mix of excitement and groans. No scampering to a pool. We had to get set up first before it got dark, or before we could go out for an activity. But there were evenings around the campfire with stories until late into the night. Then we would head to bed - only to lie awake listening. And sometimes being terrified of the noises around us. But that's invariably part of the excitement and good for new stories for the next day! These are still some of our fondest memories growing up.

These days, of course, there is the option of coming to a safari lodge, where everything is organised ready for you. Families on safari have much less to think about, let alone do. We take care of your welcoming tent, your meals and your game drives, giving you much more time to relax.

And that's what one should get out of family trips away - an opportunity to make memories, have fun. And, most importantly, reconnect as a family. All the while, having a safe environment for kids to relax and be kids. And for adults to have a little pampering.

Families on Safari - the crucial question of age

So what age should your kids be for a safari? The ideal age to safely appreciate game drives on safari is from around 8 years or older. That's why we chose to set the limit at Amani and Camp George to eight years old. However, we are a little more flexible at River Lodge and have happily hosted kids of all ages. The same goes for Homestead where there’s no minimum age either. One does need to consider exactly where you go, though. Many safari lodges have a minimum age limit, mainly for safety reasons. If you have young kids on a game vehicle, the guide will not go as close to some predator sightings for obvious reasons. Plus remember that in the Kruger, malaria is a consideration, especially in our summer months.

For game drives, children need to be over 6 to take part in shared game drives at River Lodge. Sometimes it is possible to pre-organise a private game drive vehicle (at an extra cost per day). This gives more more flexibility to a family safari as you can go for shorter drives, which really helps for little ones with a smaller attention span.

How do the kids stay amused at Simbavati?

Our family-friendly lodges try to be flexible and tailors activities according to the kids - their ages, interests and weather. The options are varied, both indoors and outdoors, ranging from crafts, nature hunts, track mouldings, elephant dung cricket, card and paper making. All the way to seasonal delights of frogging and mud wallowing - yes dirt equals fun!

For older kids, there are nature walks, baking with the chefs, macro photography, learning local languages to a junior tracker or ranger course. Which of course comes with a badge or certificate.

At River Lodge in the Timbavati, there's even a Cubs Club. This is equipped with TV, DVD’s, games, archery practice area, books, maps and a discovery nook with bugs, bones, dung & identification tools. So everyone gets something! But each lodge has a refreshing swimming pool and some can even do spa treatments. Camp George and Amani have fenced in gardens which means that kids have space to play, without anxious parents. 

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Simbavati River Lodge - family safaris

Amani

Camp George

Homestead

People

River Lodge

Tips on Families on Safari

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When the change in seasons comes, so does the change in weather. The climate plays a big part in the movement of wildlife. Below I describe the safari cycle of life so that you can immerse yourself in the story.

Dry Winter Months

June through to October are the driest months of the year, although you only truly start seeing the bush drying up from June or July. August, September and October are when the bush is at the driest. The temperatures you’ll experience through this part of the year are from 15 – 26 degrees celsius. Most of the trees lose their leaves, 95% of bush changes colours to browns & greys. Water sources start to dry up. In the driest months where you have only one water source, you’ll have a higher concertation of animals around it compared to the wet months. When there’s a lot of water around animals don’t have to travel far and can be more dispersed.

Some of the best sightings I have heard of have been in September. Here’s an example: One of my guides was in a sighting of a male leopard in a tree with a fresh impala kill and two hyenas at the bottom of the tree waiting for the scraps of the impala to fall down for them to scavenge. A couple of minutes later three lioness approached this sighting. The guide’s jaw dropped to the ground because you don’t see three predators in a single sighting every day! The next moment the hyena and lion were in a standoff (It’s always amazing to see the interaction between species). All the while the leopard was unmoved by this commotion below and carried on feasting on his impala kill. Lucky guide and lucky guests!

The Wet Season

The other half of the safari cycle of life is the wet season (November through to March) which falls in Spring and Summer of the southern hemisphere. Once the first rains fall, within a week or two, the crunchy dry golden bush starts to transform. Little green shoots start to pop up everywhere and it’s always a happy sight to see this regeneration.

December through to the end of February is the hottest time of the year. We see temperatures of 40 degrees celsius + and ranges of 40 -60% humidity. Game drives leave earlier in the mornings and later in the afternoons to accommodate the high temperature. Mostly, when it’s so warm, you’ll find almost all animals have a siesta or hide away in shady areas in the middle part of the day. Most predators will only become active in the cooler hours, preserving their energy to hunt for prey from dusk to the morning.

Although the days are hot and humid, there’s always fun to be had. This weather is perfect for spending the days at the swimming pool, watching birds or enjoying a few cocktails and dining under the African sky, full of stars.

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Simbavati Trails camp - walking safari & guiding

Amani

Homestead

Trails Camp

Wildlife & Safari

The Safari Cycle of Life through the Seasons

REGIONS

Getting There

Simbavati Amani is approx 60 to 90 minutes from Hoedspruit Eastgate airport, depending on how comfortable you are driving on gravel roads. It can be accessed via a rental car.

Directions from Hoedspruit Airport

As you exit the Airport, turn left for Klaserie Game Reserve onto Argyle Road. Continue until you reach the Enkhulu control gate of the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve.  Please note that continuous cell phone reception ends here.

At this gate you will tell security you are going to Camp George/Amani/Homestead in the Klaserie. You DO NOT pay an entrance fee at this gate. Immediately after the gate, there’s a cattle grid in front you. Do not cross this grid. Instead you turn immediately left before the grid and follow the road as it doubles back on itself and then curves to the right to head to the Klaserie main gate (Incheni Gate). This takes about 10 to 15 mins drive.

At the gate, you will be required to pay an entrance fee in cash. (This changes on a yearly basis).  This gate is open from 6am to 6pm. The lodge would have at this stage sent a QR code to the gate for your entry (SA ID / Passport information is required for your QR code).

Go through the gate and continue straight on the main road for quite some distance (approx 20 minutes) until you reach a big cell/radio tower. At the cell tower you will find a sign on a stone plinth on your left saying Northumberland/Fife/Klaseriemond/Durham/Dundee East. Turn right.

Follow the powerline on your left for approx 3.2km. Where the powerline heads away from the road, you will find a sign on your rights saying Camp George/Amani Safari Camp. Turn left here.

Continue until the next sign (on a stone plinth) and turn right here. At the next stone plinth/sign, you turn right for Simbavati Homestead and Simbavati Amani and follow the signs to your lodge.

Aim to arrive by 2.30pm, if possible so that you have ample time to settle in before the game drive. If you are going to be late due to unforeseen circumstances, please let us know on (015) 004 1400 

Note: Please do NOT rely on your GPS after Hoedspruit. It will lead you onto the incorrect roads where you could get loss and stuck!

Timing 

From Johannesburg Airport – ± 6½ to 7 hours (490km)

From Kruger Airport – 3 + hours (190km)

From Hazyview – 2 to 2½ hours (140km via the R40)

From the Three Rondavels view point (last point on the Panorama route, 145km) – 2½ hours (so depart by 12 noon latest).

Directions from Johannesburg to Simbavati Amani (± 6½ – 7 hour drive)

The most direct route is via N4 then Dullstroom to Lydenburg and Ohrigstad and onto Hoedspruit. However some people prefer to take the northern route via Polokwane and Tzaneen as there are fewer potholes. See Downloadable Directions.

From Johannesburg take the N12 to Witbank (Emalahleni) and continue on the N4 towards Nelspruit.  (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 on the R540 to Dullstroom. 

Drive straight through Dullstroom and continue to Lydenburg (name change to 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. Instead 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 south on the R40 for another 6.4km.  Turn left onto the D1909 (Argyle Road). The sign says Timbavati/Eastgate Airport road.  Then follow the Hoedspruit directions to the Lodge.

From Hazyview or Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport

KMIA – 3+ hours (195km) * Hazyview – Allow 2 to 2½ hours (140km)

The most direct route from Kruger Intl Airport is via the R40 thorough White River and Hazyview. Similarly if you are staying in or near Hazyview, the R40 north is the direct route. Just 6.5km south of Hoedspruit. You turn right onto the Timbavati/Eastgate Airport road. Allow 1½ hours to get from Hazyview to the Timbavati turnoff. Then another hour to get to the Lodge. Once on the Timbavati Road, you immediately pass the Eastgate Airport. Then follow the Hoedspruit directions to the Lodge.

Alternative Panorama route if staying at a Hazyview Lodge:

The R40 is a difficult road given the number of slow trucks and cars as well as many pedestrians. It takes longer than you would expect.

So if you have time, we recommend enjoying a tour of the Panorama route via the Blyde River canyon. Note that this is a longer route (240km from Hazyview to your Lodge (or 3¾ hours driving). En route you can stop off at the Bournes Luck potholes, Gods Window and the Three Rondavels

TIP: It takes approx 2½ + hours to get to the camp from the Three Rondavels viewpoint. So don’t leave the Three Rondavels later than 12 noon. Assuming you spend 1½ hours at the various stopping off points, we recommend leaving your lodge by 8.30am.

Simbavati Amani accommodates eight guests, in four luxury suites. Beds can be made up as one king bed, or two twin beds. Each bedroom has its own private entrance and views onto the garden or a small courtyard. All four suites have an en-suite bathroom with double vanity. Two have a bath and shower and two have a spacious walk-in shower.

In- room Facilities

  • Air-conditioning – with heating/cooling
  • Ceiling fan
  • Mosquito nets
  • Minibar with drinks 
  • Coffee and tea-making facilities
  • Bathroom – with double vanity. two with bath and shower, two with shower only
  • Complimentary eco-friendly amenities
  • Hair-dryer
  • Mini-safe for your valuables
  • Laundry service – laundry bag in room
  • Room equipped with electronic eco-friendly insect spray (1 min intervals) 

Lodge Facilities & Good to Know

  • Double-volume sitting area with books and board games
  • Mezzanine level acts as a private area (for study, yoga or business if you must)
  • Garden with extensive deck under mature trees
  • Entertainment area with infinity pool, pool terrace, open air bar and campfire
  • Complimentary wifi 
  • Floodlit waterhole
  • Maximum 8 guests on game drives

Families at Amani

Amani is usually sold on a per person basis. But it is perfect as a private Safari Villa for a larger family party or for two families travelling together. 

Children are welcome from 8 years upwards and can join the adult game drive, if you are sharing with others. 

Younger children are welcome but ONLY if Amani is taken on an exclusive use basis. (In this case, your guide will discuss how sightings will be handled if you have young children. For example you may not go as close to big cat sightings if you have very small children. )

Two bedrooms are on each side of the double volume sitting room. So parents and children can be close to each other. There is also an upstairs Mezzanine area which can take an extra bed for a teenager (with a small bathroom up there as well). Or makes for a perfect kids space to hang out. 

There are board games and a fenced garden which offers a safe environment for kids to play. 

OUR DETAILED

2024-2026 Rates

Enquire about our SA Resident Offers.

08 Jan 2024 – 05 Jan 202506 Jan 2025 – 20 Dec 202521 Dec 2025 – 04 Jan 2026
LUXURY SUITE
Per person sharingR9,850R10,750R11,825
SingleR13,100R14,298R15,727
Child
All inclusive
R4,925R5,375R5,913
EXCLUSIVE USE
Max 8 adults & extra 2 children in Mezzanine loft area
R68,700R75,250R82,775

FINE PRINT

Inclusions

Booking Policy

General Information

Health/Travel

The Kruger is a malarial area so we recommend that you take anti-malaria prophylaxis. Mosquitos are less prevalent in the winter. 

We also recommend anti-mosquito repellent to stop you from getting bitten. 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is a typical pattern of safari activities?

What’s the ideal length of stay?

Is there Wi-Fi?

What should I wear for a game drive?

Do you offer spa treatments?

Get in touch

Lodge telephone number: There is no telephone at Amani to receive calls. But a message can be relayed via Camp George on 015 004 1400  

Reservations: +27 87 151 4520