At the start of January 2018, I longed to get away to the bush to catch my breath, soak up the sun, splash in a picturesque pool and walk in the wild. The itch to travel got me and I spent days wishfully browsing an online booking travel website. Then just like that, the browsing stopped and I booked Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg.

I really liked that it was about an hour away from Pretoria. To be frank, what made me book the chalet was their bathroom. The free-standing bathtub and wooden logs sticking out of the basins in the thatched lodge won me over. The semi-outdoor shower was a plus that I was not aware off until I arrived. Then I knew that this place was an uncontested winner and I chose well.

First impressions…
It is a bit awkward when you arrive because there is no one at the gate. You have to call for them to open. I felt uneasy waiting at the gate along a somewhat isolated tarred road. Coming from Pretoria (with high hi-jacking statistics), the last thing you want to do is to get cornered or ambushed at a gate while you wait.

So apart from the disappointment of an unmanned electric gate; once we got inside, the wild animals and bucks made it all worthwhile. It was beautiful in every way. The gravel road, trees, animals and awesomeness reassured me that this was indeed also a wedding venue of choice as indicated on their website. I must admit that their camp area with fixed tents (available from Amazon) also looked very inviting.

It is a relatively small retreat from the ones that I've been to. It feels homely. We were initially taken to a chalet, but the key didn’t open. So we went back to ask the friendly staff member for assistance. He apologized and told us that it was because something in the bathroom needed to be repaired and quickly led us to another chalet. It was just as beautiful and we appreciated the fact that we were not taken to an apartment with the faulty bathroom.

Marvellous chalet with semi-outdoor shower
When I entered the chalet, I must say that it looked very similar in structure to the thatched chalet at Lesedi Cultural Village that we visited last month (December 2017). The main difference in this regard was that the chalet at Warthogs Bush Camp did not have spiders and a host of flying and crawling insects also living there.

Warthogs Bush Camp chalet also had an unforgettable partially outdoor shower and a stunning open plan kitchenette with a sink (we did not have to get water from the bathroom sink). There was also a little outdoor “stoep” (sitting area). Although there was no TV, it didn’t matter at all because everything else was on top.

Unmatched accommodation
The value for money is great. Even though the chalets are rather close and centred around the communal braai also known as a barbeque area and pool; you still have enough privacy to feel like you are somewhere far away.

There's also an alarm panic button (varying kinds are available from Amazon) in the chalet which is a fantastic feature that helps guests feel at ease. The chalet was spacious and equipped with a convenient sitting/working area. The decor was modern and pleasing.

Unfortunately one had to pre-book to eat meals at the “restaurant” and this option was not available from the booking website, so we could not just pop in to eat at the last minute, but had to get out of the premises and drive to the town to eat dinner and breakfast.

The reception area was unmanned for the duration of our short stay and so we gave the keys to the ladies who cleaned the rooms upon check-out, who then asked a gentleman on a tractor (available from Amazon) to go and open the gate (a few hundred metres away).

Pet-friendly accommodation taken to the extreme
As we slept, we could not help seeing the “pet bed” propped up on top of a cabinet. I had heard that it was a pet-friendly lodge, but had no idea that there were so many dogs! There were dogs everywhere. Even though I love animals, this was rather overwhelming as the dogs were not on any leashes and ran around freely, even without their owners nearby.

One could not help feeling a bit scared when you had to walk to the car or on the premises as out of nowhere dogs would pop out of the bushes. At some point, my travel companion and I had to stop to reassure the dogs that all was well and we meant no harm. The dogs were orderly and did not bark all night or fight each other. Just some had different temperaments and all guests had to "mingle" with the many dogs sharing the same communal spaces.

All in all, I would love to return to this accommodation place and do like the pet-friendly aspect and most importantly the semi-outdoor shower; however, having a mighty host of dogs that are not always accompanied by their owners makes it a little intimidating. I did however thoroughly enjoy it.

If you have been here or know of a similar place, please leave me a comment below. PS: If you own/work at an accommodation place and/or restaurant and would like to work with me, please visit our contact page to get in touch.

Phindiwe Nkosi at Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JSPhindiwe Nkosi at Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JS

Phindiwe Nkosi inside a chalet at Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JSPhindiwe Nkosi inside a chalet at Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JS

Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by Phindiwe NkosiWarthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by Phindiwe Nkosi

Phindiwe Nkosi outside the Reception area of Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JSPhindiwe Nkosi outside the Reception area of Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JS

Warthog artwork from Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JSWarthog artwork from Warthogs Bush Camp, Magaliesburg. Photo by JS



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