Highlights of Thonga Beach Lodge
- Stunning secluded beach setting on Mabibi beach
- Newly refurbished so looking fantastic
- Range of activities on offer
- Soft contemporary styling in spacious lodges
- Chic beach luxury
Thonga Beach Lodge, in Kwazulu Natal, is a stylish and relaxed beach lodge on the shores of the secluded Mabibi bay in northern KwaZulu Natal. It lies within the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a World Heritage Site, with no other lodges within 50 km.
Mabibi Beach is a magical place with a long sandy beach, snorkelling reefs, coastal forest and shimmering lakes behind. Thonga Beach Lodge, nestling in the canopy of the dune forest, offers panoramic ocean views. It has a spacious, relaxed beach feel with a stylish outdoor eating area, a secluded upstairs seating area with a DVD player for children, a chic open air bar and wooden walkways leading to the rooms.
However, Thonga Beach Lodge is in no way a resort – it doesn’t have extensive watersports or a kid’s club for example. Rather the emphasis is on relaxed coastal living with a variety of activities which you can sign up for on the board, if you want to…
Accommodation at Thonga Beach Lodge
The thatched en-suite rooms have been carefully constructed in the coastal dune forest to ensure minimum impact on the environment. Five have sea views and seven have forest views and perhaps greater privacy. Built within an extremely sensitive milkwood forest, no trees were allowed to be cut down. This means that even the sea view rooms do not have completely un-obscured ocean views. Luxuriously decorated, the rooms exude a romantic ambiance. Bleached wood, glass and natural materials have been used to create an open, airy feel. Each has a double vanity unit, bath, indoor/outdoor shower, separate toilet, minibar, ceiling fan, air-conditioning, mosquito net and private balcony.
There are also two Ocean View Suites with a private plunge pool on the deck. These have the best views and are also ideal for families as they have a separate living room which can be used as a second bedroom. Other facilities at Thonga Beach Lodge include a new swimming pool, curio shop, spa & wellness centre with various spa treatments on offer and a dive centre for all water sports activities.
Activities at Thonga Beach Lodge
This part of South Africa, in Kwazulu Natal is one of my favourite areas with its lush vegetation, unspoilt setting and friendly people. Activities at Thonga Beach Lodge revolve around the ocean and nearby Lake Sibaya. Complimentary activities include snorkelling direct from the beach, bird-watching and sundowner cruises or guided canoe trips on Lake Sibaya and turtle tracking walks in season (November to mid February). The white sandy beach is about 25 metres away via a board walk with an extended deck with sun loungers overlooking the beach. You can also dine here overlooking the ocean.
Various additional activities are on offer such as scuba diving, dive courses, cultural village visits and boat-based turtle tracking as optional extras.
Scuba diving at Mabibi is phenomenal, with reefs located only a short distance from Thonga Beach Lodge. Shoals of game fish, sharks and schools of bottlenose dolphins are often seen. 1,250 fish species can be found on these reefs (Great Barrier Reef has 1500). The Ocean Experience is great for seeing whales and dolphins with an exciting boat launch in the surf. You can sometimes swim with dolphins or whale sharks or snorkel with manta rays and giant turtles if you are lucky.
Birding is excellent and the variety of habitats attracts a great diversity of species. Typical coastal species include Livingstone’s and purple-crested lourie, green twinspot, grey waxbill and green coucal. Waders are common along the shoreline, and pink throated longclaw and rufous-bellied heron frequent the marshy areas. Lake Sibaya has recorded 279 bird species including the palmnut vulture, the only fruit-eating vulture in the world, Pel’s fishing owl and the pygmy goose.
Children are very welcome at Thonga Beach Lodge. Two small children (or one teenager) can share with parents or you can take the Ocean View suite for more space.