Max Zaharenkov

Hotel Review: Kruger Shalati, The Train on the Bridge

Hotel Reviews

Perched high on the historical Selati Bridge above the shimmering waters of the Sabie River, Kruger Shalati is a lodge unlike any other in South Africa's iconic Kruger National Park. The Lodge, aptly named The Train on the Bridge, offers an unparalleled vantage point from which to appreciate the breathtaking landscape and wildlife of the park. Who wouldn't want to sleep in a luxurious train carriage suspended over a river teeming with hippos and crocodiles?


As you arrive at Skukuza Rest Camp, where the lodge is located, you're greeted with a warm African welcome. Your luggage whisked away, you're immediately enveloped by the unique blend of industrial and natural design that characterizes Kruger Shalati. The walls of glass and open spaces allow you to immerse yourself in the surrounding wilderness from the moment you step in. Doesn't that sound like a dream come true for every wildlife enthusiast?


Every room at Kruger Shalati is an ingeniously renovated train carriage, balancing the raw industrial elements with contemporary design. The 31 rooms, each with a deck, offer an unmatched view of the Sabie River and the wild beyond. I had the privilege of staying in both types of rooms, the Bridge House and the carriage rooms. If your heart beats for panoramic river views, the carriage rooms are your haven. And if you're more into the secluded and spacious kind, the Bridge House rooms will make your heart skip a beat. What could be more memorable than watching elephants bathe in the river as the African sun dips below the horizon right from your room's deck?


Kruger Shalati is not only about unique accommodations. It's an immersive experience into the heart of the wild. The activities on offer range from thrilling game drives where you can spot the Big Five, to relaxing in the pool, marveling at the stunning views around you. And as for the evenings, they are a spectacle in themselves. Can you imagine the allure of sipping a cocktail while listening to the symphony of African wildlife under a blanket of stars?


As an adventure lover, I was particularly impressed with the bespoke nature activities, guided by some of the best rangers in the business. However, the highlight of my stay was the remarkable dining experience. The food, a fusion of African flavors, was a culinary journey in itself. Pair that with the surreal setting - dining in a train carriage overlooking the river - and you've got a memory for life.

Now, isn’t this the kind of experience that makes you want to pack your bags and head off to the wilderness?


As a seasoned traveller, I cannot stress enough the importance of being prepared when visiting a place as unique as Kruger Shalati. Bring binoculars for those up-close views of wildlife from your deck, and don't forget a good camera – the photo opportunities are endless. Don't worry too much about packing fancy clothes; comfortable clothing is your best friend here.

Remember, it's essential to respect the environment and the wildlife, keeping a safe distance and not disturbing the animals in their natural habitat. And most importantly, always maintain a sense of adventure – you never know what unique spectacle might unfold before your eyes.

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