AmaKhosi Safari Lodge

Location: South Africa » Kwazulu Natal » Zululand » Pongola

AmaKhosi Safari Lodge - Luxury accommodation on Big 5 Game Reserve, Zululand

5 Star
Name of hostsWanita Smith
Tel:+27 (0)34 414 1157
Cell+27 (0)73 375 9743

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A special place where royal treatment is a part of each day and no two days are the same, making every visit more special than the last! Guests can expect luxurious accommodation, outstanding cuisine, and magnificent game viewing.

From the moment you arrive, feel the caring touch of Amakhosi splendor. Herewith some practical information for you when visiting the Lodge.

A special hideaway where high levels of service and luxury live amidst striking surroundings; where time belongs to the rhythm and beat of ancient Africa; and where an extraordinary lodge offers guests their own private kingdom.

 The sight of a racing cheetah, smell of wild jasmine, and the cry of a Whalberg's eagle, together compliment this in the natural environment of river wetlands, valley bushland, umbrella thorn trees and thick bush grassland blanketing the mountains. From the moment you arrive at Amakhosi, you are scooped up in arms of royalty and sophistication with warm smiles and hot hand towels. The spirit of your journey lives here. Come and share it with us.

AmaKhosi Lodge … Where mystery becomes reality

AmaKhosi translated from Zulu means “The Place of the Kings” and is situated on the banks of Zululand's Mkuze River in the 10 000 hectare AmaZulu private game reserve. A 5 ½ hour drive from Johannesburg and 4 hours from Durban, it is ideally located in a blend of savannah, wetlands and mountains. AmaKhosi is home to quality Big Five game viewing, 15 species of antelope and over 400 bird species.


At the Heart of AmaKhosi Lodge is the most luxurious blend of river frontage. Riverbanks are home to the main lodge and six magnificent regal River Suites offering special views of the flowing Mkuze River. Each boasts separate air-conditioned bedroom and lounge with fully stocked mini bar and tea/coffee facilities as well as en-suite bathroom with a unique bath made for two. This, dressed with an array of candles and bath salts allows decadence to take on a whole new meaning bringing tranquility and serenity to the lodge, fit for a king.

The Lodge

An extraordinary destination where royal treatment is normal to each day, and no two days are the same, making this concealed, unscathed paradise worthwhile exploring.

Amakhosi Lodge

Amakhosi is located in a blend of savannah, wetlands and mountains. The Safari Lodge is situated on the banks of Zululand's Mkuze River in the 12000 hectare Amazulu Private Game Reserve. Artistic décor, African fusion cuisine and prompt attentive service, makes AmaKhosi a bush lodge difficult to match elsewhere in Southern Africa. St. Lucia Wetlands and Sodwana Bay are a mere 2.5 hours away from the lodge and are well worth incorporating into your itinerary. Mozambique and Swaziland is also in close proximity.

River Suites

Six luxurious river suites capture nature through ceiling-high windows and private viewing decks across the river. Each suite accommodates two adults with an air conditioned lounge, bedroom, bathroom with a bath for two, separate shower and toilet, safe, bath robes, fully stocked mini-bar and a tea and coffee tray.

Built in a shape of a Zulu shield and decorated in a typical Zulu style with a colourful modern touch, all suites are easily accessible from the main lodge.

Umntwana Honeymoon Suites

Umntwana, means "a child of Royalty" in Zulu. Slip into a nirvana in this ‘private kingdom’ with high thatched ceilings and glass walls. An open-plan design with spacious deck, a private bubble pool and hammock overlooking the river, truly spell ‘royal dwellings’, whilst an air-conditioned bedroom and lounge, fully stocked mini-bar, tea/coffee making facilities and en-suite bathroom made for two, transports lovers into a fantasy world of their own where nothing else matters.

Ibandla Camp

This bush camp, which is sold as a separate entity to that of the lodge, is situated in a remote area of the reserve with dramatic cliff faces and running water over rapids in the river below.

This secluded spot offers two stone-structured houses merging perfectly with nature, accommodating four guests in two en-suite bedrooms. Ibandla camp is seasonal and can be utilized between May and September. It is a special place that brings one closer to nature than ever before with traditional South African cuisine prepared over an open fire.

What to bring

We suggest a warm jersey or windbreaker for early morning game drives, suntan lotion, a cap or hat, binoculars and camera. Amakhosi is situated in a low risk Malaria area; however, please consult your doctor for advice. Basic first aid can be administered by a staff member at the lodge.


A safari is a journey of discovery in which you are one with your surroundings. Being part of life in the bush is the essence of a safari and being able to do it is a privilege one should never take for granted. Whether it is "Big 5", birding or seasonal frogging, fishing and cultural safaris, our guides are able to tailor-make this experience to suit your personal needs.


Imagine close encounters with newborn cheetah cubs or being the prime witness to a daring lion fight.

At Amakhosi our guides are well qualified and extremely committed to the environment. The experiences and memories of a safari by Land Rover will be as diverse as they are many.


Nothing compares to the feeling of approaching giraffes on foot.

The guides at Amakhosi know exactly where to take their guests for exciting, yet safe encounters with the many animal species residing here.

Walking offers excellent opportunities to share our dedicated guides' intimate knowledge of this pristine bush fauna and flora.

Walking Safaris

A walking safari brings you closer to the heartbeat of the bush, submitting yourself to the mercy of nature.

Knowledgeable guides know exactly where to take their guests for exciting, yet safe encounters with pristine fauna and flora.

Game walks of a different kind.

At certain times of the year, Amakhosi invites its guests to discover the fascinating world of amphibians.

At night time, our qualified guides will take you deep into the bush and let you marvel at the spectrum of colours and the loud calling of mating frogs.

Fishing Safaris

Lake Jozini is home to ‘The Seal of AmaKhosi’ an open-air boat that offers fishing safaris at its best. This massive expanse of water (16000ha) is the third largest dam in South Africa stocked with fish that once inhabited the Pongola river and now thriving in the lake. Fish here are the endemic yellow fish, barbel, tilapia and tiger fish, with exotics such as black bass and carp, a must activity in your programme!


A very powerful eagle, the Stephanoaetus coronatus, hunts mainly monkeys and small forest antelope. It kills by severing the vertebrae of its prey or will drive its very long dewclaw through the back of the monkey's skull. This Crowned Eagle prefers forest areas, but in the Amazulu Private Game Reserve it is also found in riverine forest. The reserve has three breeding pairs.

Massage Treatments

Life in the bush is a unique experience where relaxation is the order of the day. A qualified masseuse offers Aromatherapy treatments, including full body Swedish and stress relief back massages.

Perfect to awaken all the senses in the privacy of your suite.

Zulu Heritage

Nights under the starlit skies of Zululand are utterly unforgettable, and our arranged trips to a nearby local village is an African experience that should not be missed. Experience first-hand the rich culture and unique crafts that makes this unique culture a tourist's delight.


Game activities at AmaKhosi are a must! Early morning and late afternoon safaris allow guests the opportunity to observe the ‘Big Five” as well as an abundance of nocturnal animals, not to mention the variety of flora and fauna on offer in the reserve. All game activities are under the strict supervision of qualified game rangers. For those who prefer to relax at the lodge under the cool thatched patios, a library, swimming pool, ladies bar and game viewing deck awaits, along with an outdoor lounge overlooking the Mkuze River.


From Johannesburg (5 hours): exit from Johannesburg on the Witbank N4 take the Middelburg exit to Hendrina continue towards Ermelo on the N11 continue towards Piet Retief on the N2 stay on the N2 North until you reach Pongola From Durban (4 1/2 hour) exit from Durban to Stanger on the N2 North staying on the N2 North, continue past Empangeni to Pongola From Pongola (1/2 hour) turn down the R66 to Nongoma continue for 22 km past Magudu sign on your left turn right at the R69 towards Vryheid continue for 2 km & turn left down gravel road follow the Amakhosi Lodge signs