Luxury surroundings meet sensational sustainability at this South African escape. Centered around providing comfort with the utmost respect for the surrounding nature, Karkloof Safari Villas is a luxury South African safari lodge that truly immerses its guests into an authentic safari experience.

Through their philosophy, ‘Development with a Gentle Hand’, guests are revitalised and pampered whilst being enveloped with the beauty on their doorstep that is left well cared for and undisturbed. Wild animals are treated kindly and considerately by their two-legged neighbours, with whom they have adopted a trusting and almost tame-like nature.

Ideally located a mere 30 minutes from Pietermaritzburg, you’ll find it nestled in a place of spectacular beauty on a 3000-hectare reserve, surrounded by picturesque waterfalls and rivers. Breathe in the aroma of naturally hydrated greenery, tune in to the sounds of wildlife and let your tastebuds savour the taste of true culinary excellence.

Unique History
Co-habitation is at the core of this Lodge. The wider residing area of Karkloof Safari Villas used to be known as Ihlanze Game Reserve, established in the 1850s when colonial settlement took place in the area. The region has always played host to an abundance of wildlife including buffalo, lion, hyena, African birds, hippo and even packs of wild dogs that used to roam the land.

Around this period, larger game animals and predators were hunted to extinction, as was the case in many parts of South Africa. It is only in the last 15 to 20 years that these magnificent creatures have been sighted again and they are now recognised as an asset, not a liability.

The most significant change occurred in 2002 with the establishment of the present Ihlanze Game Reserve, leading to the consolidation of the Karkloof Valley, the Umgeni Valley and Malden-Saxony properties. Ihlanze is now considered a viable area for the conservation of biodiversity and in it is set to be the core of a large UNESCO-approved biosphere reserve under the Biodiversity Stewardship Programme, the first of its kind in KwaZulu-Natal. The region still plays host to a range of diverse and rare plant and animal species which it is committed to sustaining.

Today, Karkloof Safari Villas still upholds this same ethos. With a very dedicated approach to eco-friendly co-habitation, it still maintains a high standard of luxury for guests.

Sustainable Surroundings
Nature and luxury merges into one at Karkloof Safari Villas, incorporating plant and tree life into its structures. Each spacious villa is individually decorated, and comes complete with a private viewing deck from which to appreciate the free-roaming wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled for an impressive array of species – including 93 butterfly, 283 bird, 67 amphibian and 43 mammal species. You might even spot a rhino with your morning cuppa.

Karkloof Safari Spa also follows the same Philosophy, offering a range of treatments crafted from a range of cultures with organic and natural ingredients. It was integral that the design of the spa reflected this focus on sustainability – it has been built with recycled clay bricks, matching the lodges which are crafted from locally quarried cladding stone and natural ingredients.

The lodge and spa also uses biodegradable soaps and cleaning materials, organic body lotions, non-toxic wall paint and vanities made of wood instead of melamine. Whilst still offering opulent surroundings, eco-friendly structures are at the core of this property.

Bring it to life
Rates start from R4,050/ £230 per night per person on a B&B basis and includes an optional game drive. To find out more and make a booking, please click here.