One of South Africa’s most romantic destinations, and winner of the Leading Safari in South Africa category in the 2006 World Travel Awards, Thanda Private Game Reserve is situated on a 6000 hectare Big Five private game reserve in northern KwaZulu-Natal, only an hour away from the Indian Ocean.

Thanda, meaning ‘love’ in Zulu, unites romantic decadence and exclusivity with Zulu culture and wildlife. The five-star facilities include a main lodge, tented camp and award-winning wellness centre.

Encounter the abundance of African game including lion, rhino, elephant, buffalo and leopard found at Thanda. Let your tension be smoothed away at one of South Africa's most exquisite African bush spas, or feel the rush of adrenaline diving with sharks at the nearby warm Indian Ocean waters. Be transfixed in awe as you witness a hundred-year-old ritual performed by Zulu warriors, offering you a glimpse of a powerful nation that still retains its deep traditions.

Born from a dream to create harmony between man and nature, an exclusive hideaway awaits those who dare to share the dream in Luxury bush villas or the colonial safari-style tented camp.

Luxury Bush Villas:
The nine luxury bush villas at the main lodge each have a private infinity pool, viewing deck, private sala (thatched outdoor day bed area), lounge, fireplace and full bathroom with both inside and outside showers. Five-star cuisine can be served at the private boma (open-air reed enclosure with a fireplace) at each villa for guests wanting total privacy.

Tented Camp:
The non-electrified tented camp is built in colonial safari style, offering an authentic yet luxurious bush experience. The four luxury tents have viewing decks and en-suite canvas bathrooms. Public facilities at the tented camp include a dining tent, a boma area, and a sala consisting of an open-air lounge and a splash pool.

Lodge Facilities:
Decorated in Zulu-chic style, the public facilities at the main lodge include a lounge, library, dining room, boma, dining deck, wine cellar, cigar bar, fully equipped business centre and viewing decks overlooking tranquil water features. Artefacts made by local artists subtly enhance the public areas in honour of the Zulu culture and craftsmanship.

A variety of exceptional dining experiences are available at Thanda. The public facilities of the main lodge include a dining room, outdoor dining decks and an outdoor boma.

Private dining is available at the bush villas, where meals can be served in the private bomas or the private decks of each villa.

A bush breakfast or dinner can be arranged for special occasions. Dining facilities at the safari-style tented camp include an intimate dining tent and a boma.

Wellness Centre:
Winner of the Safari Spa category in the Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Awards 2006, the wellness centre at Thanda Private Game Reserve offers exclusive treatments such as reflexology, aromatherapy, pressure point scalp massage and hot stone massage using African essential oils in a base of shea butter.

Unique features include hot & cold outdoor kniepp therapy pools, a reflexology pool, outdoor sala treatment area, and a steam room & hydrotherapy bath, all with a unique Zulu feel and designed exclusively for Thanda. The Thanda Signature Treatments draw inspiration from the Zulu culture and are designed to be indulgent to both the body and soul.

Safaris in open game viewing vehicles are conducted exclusively for Thanda guests on the virtually malaria-free 6000ha reserve. Thanda has recently introduced a breeding pack of wild dog onto the Big Five property - the first time this has happened on private land in KwaZulu-Natal.

Vula Zulu, a traditional homestead adjacent to Thanda is a showcase of traditional Zulu warriors performing age-old dancing rites, as was done prior to and after battle with King Shaka Zulu. Thanda is contributing to the preservation of the Zulu culture, through job creation as well as maintaining an ongoing interest in the Zulu heritage.

Thanda is a unique beach and bush destination, with Sodwana Bay located merely an hour away. A day at the beach can be arranged where guests have the possibility to dive with sharks, snorkel above coral reefs, ride horses on the beach or just enjoy the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.

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Thanda Private Game Reserve

Courses Nearby

  • There are no golf courses nearby

Sights and Activities

  • Game Viewing of South Africa's abundant and spectacular wildlife in South Africa's top rated reserve in Kwa Zulu Natal


  • Wildlife at its very best.