As guests of Tintswalo Safari Lodge we’d been invited to learn more about Trec1000 and join Fritz and co. on their walk. As if that wasn’t quite gift enough, we were also invited to spend a night at their Safari Lodge, enveloped in true African style and luxury.
In the native Shangaan language, Tintswalo means “the intangible feeling of love, gratitude and peace bestowed upon someone offering you a meaningful and worthy gift.”
The Lodge overlooks a seasonal river bed and is set amongst ancient sycamore trees with a deck that runs the full length of it. Here lunch and breakfast was enjoyed. We saw nyala, wildebeest, vervet monkey and an elephant – without moving.
There is a library, wine cellar, formal dining room and boma where we gathered after the game drive to share bush tales with the other guests. Blankets and red wine, as well as a delicious meal and good company for warmth under the winter sky. Not much beats that.
For accommodation, dispersed along the wooden walk way, there are seven Explorer suites, each decorated to reflect the pioneering days of the great nineteenth century African explorers. I was in Speke, and there was a book at hand to teach me more about this man that had dedicated his life to finding the source of the Nile.
I slept easy, tucked up in my mosquito net clad bed, hugging the hot water bottle that had been placed exactly where warmth goes, knowing that Speke had not enjoyed quite the same luxury as he explored Africa. I have no doubt that a taste of Tintswalo spoiling would have been welcomed by him.
The suites offer wonderful privacy, an indoor/outdoor shower and spacious bathroom which opens out onto the deck. There’s a private plunge pool, loungers and a perfect area from which to watch the game come to you.
There is attention to detail everywhere, like this welcome note left on my bed. Also, after dinner, a bubble bath had been drawn and a trail of rose petals – from where? – awaited me.
In addition to the Explorer Suites, there is also the very opulent two-bedroom Presidential Suite as well as the family friendly three suite Manor House with private pool. Both run independently allowing a personalised safari experience. In this setting, there’s not much more to wish for as far as a safari in the Manyaleti goes.
There is a Spa privately situated from the main area, for a complete escape into the capable care of trained therapists. We were most grateful to use these shower facilities a few days later after a night out in the bush. Best showers those. The ones that wash away dust and sand and a sense of wonder after a night’s rough camping.
Loved this sculpture at the main entrance, guarding the place.
NOTE – a couple of the above pics are taken off the Tintswalo website, the rest I took whilst there.