When looking for the best accommodation in Bela Bela, you want to enjoy the lodging as well as unique activities that this area has in store. Bela Bela is special because offers you a full safari experience in a Malaria free region.
It is only 2 hours drive from the capital city of Pretoria, and 2.5 hours from Johannesburg, which makes it a very popular destination for quick weekend getaways.
If you are traveler doing a stop-over through Johannesburg on the way to Cape Town and want to see the Big 5 before you head down, Bela Bela is perfect for that too.
List of Best Accommodation In Bela Bela
Luxury accommodation in Bela Bela is only half of the store when looking for a place. This list is drawn up to cover lodges and hotels that give you the best in both lodgings, along with giving access to activities that will help you make the best of your time in this area of South Africa.
Zebula is undisputedly the most popular accommodation in of Bela Bela. Zebula is a golf estate with several luxury accommodations on-site. Nestled inside a game reserve, it is a luxury bush getaway with all the amenities you need.
The reason Zebula is so popular is that it offers a full Safari experience. The nature reserves is home to over 20 species of mammals. You can expect so see giraffes, zebra impala, warthog and many more. This is just on the property of Zebula. If you want to have the full Big 5 experience, Zebula has a partnership with Mabalingwe Nature Reserve which is right “next-door” and has all of the Big 5 animals.
For fun things to do, there is a 5 star golf course and 10 dams on the property. Zebula country lodge is also a bird sanctuary with over 250 species of birds. Each lodge has a gas braai and fire pit if you want to barbecue. Otherwise, there are 2 restaurants on-site in Zebula where you can do your dining.
Syringa Restaurant has an a la cart menu, while Terrace Restaurant has a buffet. The lodgings accommodate large groups well, with the largest being an 8 bedroom house able to accommodate 16 people. The opportunity to see wildlife is literally in your backyard.
Mabula Game Lodge is the quintessential bushveld experience. You can sit on the deck and enjoy expansive views of the bushveld terrain. The lodges are well-appointed to have views. The nature reserve is expansive and lodgings are set up in such a way that you cannot see your neighboring chalets.
What you get is a feeling of total privacy, even though the chalets are within 50 meters of each other. You are really close to nature. Just make sure that you close all doors and windows when you are away from the chalet because mischievous monkeys might come inside and raid the fridge.
One thing that should not be missed when here is a game drive on the property. The rangers are highly knowledgeable about the animals and the environment, and you are guaranteed to learn a lot. Remember to ask questions to make it even more fun.
For the ultimate wild dining experience, Mabula lodge has the legendary bush dinners where you will dine under the stars. There are few things more magical than dining with flickers of light and the sound of the wilderness around you.
There is also the lodge’s main restaurant, called Ko Bojelong, which serves up a menu of inspired dishes, like the impala casserole along with traditional South African Desserts. While at the lodge, you can engage in fun activities like stargazing safari drive, horse trails, or just unwind at the Spa. The accommodation comes in the form of lodge rooms or villas that can accommodate up to 10 guests and are ideal for large groups.
The view of the gorge right outside of the lodge is majestic. The lodge is situated on a hill in the Waterberg Mountain Region. You are right in the middle of natures and have antelope grazing right outside of your lodge, as you look down upon them from your balcony or viewing deck. The lodge consists of one main villa and 3 smaller chalets lying adjacent.
Each of the units are luxuriously furnished with an African bush theme and air conditioning for the utmost comfort. All of the rooms have a private patio that overlooks the gorge with spectacular views. They also have comfy waterproof furniture outside for the ideal lazy basking in the sun.
The infinity pool is one of the best placed pools you will see. It flows out in the direction of the stream outside of the lodge, seeming as if it flows into the stream. It makes for the most relaxing swimming pool in Bela Bela. The restaurant is an open air one and later in the day there is an open fire lit in the court for a most spectacular starlit dinner. Go out on a game drive and you can see diverse wildlife from rhinos to elephants, buck and warthogs.
The lodge is inside the Mabalingwe Nature reserve an area that is home to the Big 5. But have no fear when going on the drive. The lions are kept in a separate high security enclosure. Instead, you can watch the elephants up close as they feed on the thickets, or the giraffes hovering over the trees in the bush.
Leopards Rock Bush Boutique
This one is a feast for the senses. Three spacious suites are set on a rocky cliff with views over the gorge that are to die for. Each suite has its own special view and the view of the gorge can be seen from inside your suite. Big folding doors mean that you can open up the whole suite to blur the boundary between inside and outside and open yourself up to nature.
The ambience is topped off with the sounds of chirping birds and natural environment that will make you forget all your problems and leave you feeling refreshed. This is just one of those places that pictures cannot do justice and you have to see for yourself. The area outside of the lodge is perfect for bush getaway activities like cycling, and several walking trails that are available for you to enjoy.
Wildlife roams freely in the nature reserve and you will see all the game that you expect to see on a safari. When not out in the bush, you can sit back and take a dip in the warm water pool in your suite. This lodge is owner-run and the owners are experts at hospitality. The service feels very personal and the hosts are most friendly and welcoming. One of the best things about Leopard’s Rock Bush Boutique is the availability of free WiFi in the suite. Internet connection is not always guaranteed in this type of setting and it’s great that if you want to, you can keep in touch with your online affairs while hidden away in this wonderful retreat.
Ditholo Game Lodge
Ditholo Lodge caps off our list of the best accommodation in Bela Bela in fine fashion. The lodge is a bird sanctuary and fully endorsed by BirdLife South Africa. The highlight of your stay here will be game drives and tree walks, with rangers to fill you in on every sound and sight that you encounter. You will get up close and personal with nature, binoculars in hand with refreshments to keep you right as rain.
Looking for something different in the bush environment? You can get out on the water in the dam in a 4 person foot paddle boat across the dam, and at no cost to boot.
When you get hungry, the Kudu Restaurant serves with a wholesome approach to the safari dining experience. After you have enjoyed your meal, you can take some time out and revitalize yourself at the Bakwena Express Spa which provides a traditional African spar experience. You can enjoy this therapeutic treatment against the backdrop of the Waterberg Mountains.
Rooms vary from standard rooms to Deluxe suites with a king-sized bed, and family suites that can accommodate 4 people. Each suite contains a flat screen TV and wireless internet is available at no extra cost.