The first thing that strikes one on arriving at the Kudu Ridge Addo Game Lodge entrance is the raw beauty of the place. We were so captivated by the natural bush and beautiful aloes that we almost missed the zebra gazing peacefully near the gate.
The lodge entrance was easy to find and with clear signs. After a short drive up the hill we were warmly welcomed by owners Brian and Jenny Bowren, along with their extended family of dogs. Jenny and Brian don’t seem to tire of new faces and we immediately felt the warmth of a family-run lodge.
Family-Run Addo Game Lodge
After a quick orientation Brian showed us to our four-sleeper safari tent. Of course my two boys were delighted at the chance to sleep in the bush in a tent. My husband and I were even more delighted to find a perfectly set up tent! Four comfortable beds, lovely linen, tea and coffee facilities, soap and shampoo and a hairdryer too.
We made our way to the communal boma and were happy to step into the cool mists of water spray above the bar. It was a 35+ C hot day!
With a refreshing drink in hand from the well stocked bar, Brian took us onto the viewing deck. What a clever use of space! We had a bird’s-eye view to orientate ourselves with our surroundings. The Sundays River valley was ahead and to the left was the huge Addo Elephant National Park.
We then met Andrew Bowren, Jenny and Brian’s son, and his fiancé Alison who help to run the lodge. More welcoming smiles.
With not much encouragement needed we were led for a walk with dogs in tow. A fellow regular guest showed us incredible artefacts and fossils just lying in dry riverbeds. This land is rich in ancient history.
On our return we enjoyed the delicious meal that Jenny had prepared us on the barbeque. After the meal our boys were excited to play snooker next to the boma, entertained by another friendly pet, an African grey parrot called xxx. My husband and I sat at the bar enjoying Alison’s stories about her bush camp experiences as well as other tales from the Bowren family.
Easy Access to Addo Elephant Park from our Game Lodge
We excused ourselves early as we had a full day of exploring in the Addo Elephant Park planned the next day. We strolled down the well-lit path to our tent and quickly fell asleep with the gentle sounds of the Addo bush in the background. It was so peaceful.
After a great sleep and hot shower we made our way to breakfast. The Bowren’s were already up and taking care of the needs of their guests. Breakfast was made and served by two smiling ladies, Pauline and Wendy. The breakfast was hearty and delicious and a welcome start to the day. Brian then gave us a map of Addo Elephant National Park and helped us plan our self-drive trip for the day. He gave us lots of helpful information including suggested routes, costs and the best waterholes for viewing game.
We enjoyed a spectacular day in the Addo Elephant Park and returned to the comfort of welcoming faces of the Bowren crew at Kudu Ridge. I am sure they have heard from hundreds of guests about their experiences in Addo Elephant National Park but they listened to our stories as if it was the first they had every heard.
After another scrumptious meal, including a great dessert made by Andrew, we left the campfire burning, the sounds of fellow guests laughing and chatting and retired happily to our comfortable safari tent for another restful night.
The next day arrived and we sadly had to leave. After another delicious breakfast, more stories and a final walk around, we said our goodbyes.
What a memorable experience it was to visit Kudu Ridge Game Lodge! We only just touched on the things to see and do during our two-night stay and we, the Olive clan, hope return again soon.