Dulini Lodge is privately owned and run by Dulini. This company operates three properties within the Exeter Reserve, and it aims to provide deeply personal safari experiences for the sophisticated traveller. The lodge has been awarded a Certificate of Excellence by TripAdvisor! Accommodation is booked on a full-board basis, including three meals daily, a selection of alcoholic and soft drinks, refreshments on game drives, all safari activities, transfers between the lodge and Dulini airstrip, Wi-Fi, and a laundry service. Guests stay a minimum of three nights, and any returning travellers receive a 15 per cent discount. The lodge is open all year round.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
The lodge is accessed via road transfer from its own airstrip, with direct flights available from O. R. Tambo (Johannesburg) and KMIA (Nelspruit). It’s positioned at the heart of the Exeter Reserve, above a small sand river and surrounded by trees.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES:
There are six guest suites, each occupying a classic timber, stone, and thatch structure positioned along the riverbank. All buildings are raised above ground level, to maximise your views. In the bedroom, you’ll find a double bed or twin beds with mosquito nets, bedside tables and lighting, a storage chest cum bench at the end of the bed/s, and ample storage space. There’s also a lounge area, featuring a couple of well-cushioned armchairs, an occasional table, and two comfy pouffes. En-suite facilities comprise flush toilet, twin washbasins with mirrors over, shower, and freestanding bathtub with shower attachment. Every suite is very spacious, and with a charmingly romantic style. Sliding doors from the bedroom lead out onto a private veranda, where you can relax, dine, and enjoy a refreshing dip in your private plunge pool! During the evening, lanterns are set up around the deck, for a particularly intimate atmosphere.
Dulini’s communal lodge is another timber, stone, and thatch build, on a larger scale. Inside, there’s the luxurious lounge, with sumptuous sofas and armchairs, coffee tables, explorer’s chests, a cosy fireplace, and two bookcases full of various reading material. Colourful rugs adorn the floor, and elegant lighting twinkles overhead, illuminating a few intriguing artefacts and some sophisticated glassware. In the dining area, guests can opt to eat at individual or communal tables. There’s a fireplace in this space too, in addition to a few easy chairs close to the lodge’s viewing deck. Dining on the deck is very popular, as is tucking in to delicious meals entirely al fresco! Dulini also has a well-stocked bar, and a wine cellar that’s full of some of South Africa’s finest vintages. You can also eat in the traditional boma, complete with traditional fire-pit. The safari shop sells both curio items and essentials, while the gym offers weights, treadmills, and an amazing view! And for relaxation between activities, we thoroughly recommend the lodge’s shaded swimming pool.
Dulini offers classic safari activities – game drives and walking safaris. Both are enjoyed in the presence of knowledgeable and experienced guides, guaranteeing great sightings of the reserve’s wildlife. The lodge shares traversing rights with a number of neighbouring reserves, making for fairly high traffic but exceptionally good game viewing. Highlights include all Big Five – lion, rhino, leopard, elephant, and buffalo. The Sabi Sands as a whole is particularly renowned for its high concentrations of big cats. Other predators in residence include cheetah, hyenas, jackals, and occasional wild dog, while the herbivore count features giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, and an exciting variety of antelopes! The water sources are popular with hippo, especially during green season in the reserve. Keen birders can look out for hundreds of feathery friends, from raptors to songbirds to waterbirds. Walking safaris are ideal for anyone interested in observing bird species, in addition to plant types and insects. And due to the lodge’s location, you can simply relax in a comfy chair on the deck and watch wildlife in a practice known as ‘armchair safari’ – it isn’t unusual for guests to see leopard passing close by!