Our Rating
8.0
Overall

Ezulwini Billy's Lodge

South Africa, Greater Kruger, Balule

from R 5510 pp/night sharing

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5%
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Our Rating
8.0
Overall

Ezulwini Billy's Lodge

South Africa, Greater Kruger, Balule

from R 5510 pp/night sharing

Save
5%
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Our Verdict

Relax on the elevated viewing deck perched directly above an active waterhole – at Ezulwini Billy’s Lodge the game comes to you!

Our Ratings

8.0
Overall
8.0
Luxury & style
7.5
Setting
7.5
Game Viewing
7.5
Romance

Our Ratings

8.0
Overall
8.0
Luxury & style
7.5
Setting
7.5
Game Viewing
7.5
Romance

What's Hot

  • The standout feature at Billy’s Lodge has to be the gorgeous deck, reached by elevated wooden walkway, where you can relax in a comfortable chair whilst enjoy the steady procession of game coming to drink at the waterhole beneath!
  • The 3 Luxury Suites are our top choice accommodation-wise – they’re spacious and quite luxuriously appointed for the price.
  • We love the lodge’s atmospheric wine cellar, built into the natural rock – perfect for a wine tasting or romantic dinner!
  • During the heat of summer, the private plunge pools of the Luxury Suites are a real winner!

What's Not

  • The Standard Rooms are quite old fashioned and dark – make sure you know which room type you’re booking after looking at the images of the rooms.
  • Probably fair to say that game viewing in Balule doesn’t reach the consistent highs of the other private reserves bordering Kruger
Ezulwini Billy’s Lodge

Ezulwini Billy’s Lodgea real standout for us is the gorgeous wine cellar carved right into the stone of a natural rock cave – here you can enjoy tasting top South African wines or perhaps a romantic dinner!

Lodge Profile

Relax on the elevated viewing deck perched directly above an active waterhole – at Ezulwini Billy’s Lodge the game comes to you!

Quick Overview

Location
Balule
Drive Time
6 hours from Johannesburg
Malaria
Yes - low risk area
Setting
Overlooking a riverbed
Rooms
4 suites
Aircon
Yes
Pool
Yes - Private plunge pools
Spa
Camp Fenced
No
Tracker
Yes - Ranger and Tracker
Off Road
Yes
Child Policy
No children under the age of 6

ARRIVE IN STYLE

The arrival at Ezulwini Billy’s Lodge is different to the vast majority of lodges. Rather than schlepping from your vehicle down a pathway and eventually into the lodge reception, at Billy’s Lodge you’re literally deposited directly into the heart of the lodge’s main public area! It really is a nice way to arrive at the lodge in style, even if you’re just returning from a game drive.

STUNNING ELEVATED DECK

The other thing that really jumps out at you initially about the public areas at Billy’s Lodge has to be the wonderful viewing deck perched directly over an active waterhole. Reached via an elevated wooden walkway, this is the perfect spot to relax with an ice-cold drink whilst slouched in a comfortable chair and shaded from the heat of the mid-day sun as you watch the game come through to slake their thirst in the waterhole literally right next to you! Watching ellies cavorting in the mud or antelope delicately making their way to the water’s edge is an effortless affair!

TWO DIFFERENT ROOM TYPES

Ezulwini Billy’s Lodge boasts just 6 rooms and you need to make sure you know what you’re getting as they are divided into 2 different categories which are very different. The 3 cheaper Standard Rooms are traditional rondavel-style rooms under thatch and whilst modernised and renovated still have that old fashioned classic bush feel and are fairly small. The 3 Luxury Suites on the other hand are a completely different case entirely – much larger, more contemporary and luxurious, each boasting their own private plunge pools as well as indoor and outdoor showers. These Luxury Suites would certainly be our preferred choice of lodgings but, as always, it ultimately comes down to budget of course!

Stained-concrete floors, natural grass thatch roofing, rough stony walls and a darker palette of greys and subtle off-whites and browns evoke the bush outside but can make the rooms feel a little dark at times. All rooms come standard with tea and coffee stations and air-conditioning (let us tell you, those hot summer afternoons and nippy mornings make these a godsend) Deep chocolate leather sofas and dark, polished wooden furniture lend an air of cosy comfort.

BUSHVELD PARADISE

Whilst sister lodge Ezulwini River Lodge is located on the banks of the large Olifants River, Billy’s Lodge occupies a more open bushveld setting away from the main river and overlooking a sand river instead. The Balule Nature Reserve shares an unfenced border with the famous Kruger National Park. Animals roam freely between these two parks, giving guests at Billy’s Lodge access to one of the richest animal diversities in Southern Africa. Tracking down the members of the Big Five and the smaller critters of the bushveld is always a delight (leopards are, as always, the most difficult to spot), thanks in no small part to the brilliance of the rangers and guides at Billy’s Lodge. They’re polite, very friendly and armed with an encyclopaedic knowledge of the wild creatures and plants of the Balule reserve. The presence of more open grassy plains areas around Billy’s (much of Balule can be pretty mountainous) also seems to attract good numbers of plains game to the area around the lodge.

BACK AT THE LODGE

Once you’re back at the lodge after your morning game drive you’ll probably fancy lying by the poolside or sitting under the shade of the incredible viewing deck that stands watch above the nearby waterhole. At night there’s a small open-air traditional boma with fire-pit to enjoy your meals in. But a real standout for us is the gorgeous wine cellar carved right into the stone of a natural rock cave – here you can enjoy tasting top South African wines or perhaps a romantic dinner!

Pricing

pp/night sharing

More Information

Booking Notes

Child Policy

  • No children under the age of 6
  • Children 12 and over pay the full adult rate
  • Children under 12 pay 50% of the adult rate