Our Members Say
- Reviews: 344
Sodwana Bay Campsite: Very comfy camping!
We stayed at the campsite for a week, luckily arriving in the middle of the week, which gave us a choice of sites. Naturally we chose the best! :-p The sites are pretty big: we put up 3 tents and parked 2 cars quite comfortably.
The facilities are more than adequate, with each site having a power point (in the upper class sites) and a fireplace. The washing facilities are very good, with showers, baths, basins, and dish washing facilities in each section of the campsite.
Well, location to the beach is fantastic, taking 5 minutes to get there. And as its set within the national park, wildlife is very common within the campsite. there is a small shop at the entrance, and the receptionists are full of useful information.
- Reviews: 29
Coral divers v other accommodation: Where to stay
I haven't stayed at Coral Divers camp, but a thought to bear in mind when looking at accommodation options in Sodwana that the Coral Divers camp is in the nature reserve and therefore you don't pay R20 per person per day to access the beach, which you do from the other accommodation outside the nature reserve.
- Reviews: 2923
Sodwana Bay Lodge: Sodwana's Best
Aside from the lodge's diving facilities, recreation at Sodwana Bay Lodge also includes deep-sea fishing, allowing you to test your wits and skills against the noble marlin and combative game fish in their watery world.
International and local eco-tourists are able to marvel at the distinct ecosystems and prolific animal, bird and plant life to say nothing of the sight of humpback whales as they spout and gambol close to the shoreline en-route to their Southern Ocean feeding grounds.
The Sodwana Bay Lodge offers 21 refurbished twin-bedded reed and thatch chalets, each with its own en-suite shower and toilet, ceiling fan, mosquito nets and tea and coffee making facilities. Self-catering accommodation is also available in 6 or 8 sleeper time-share cottages.
Other facilities include a bar and restaurant - as well as an outdoor pool. A dive shop and centre is on site - however check my recommendation under the sports travel tip.
- Reviews: 3
Mseni Lodge: Sodwana Bay lodging
We stayed in Mseni lodge. It costs about 400 rand per person per nite. Thats fairly expensive, but the place is excellent.
The lodge claims to be the only one in Sodwana with private beach access, and I believe that is correct. There is a short but steep pathway down to the huge sand dunes on the beach, and this particular stretch has very few people on it and is a miraculous site.
What they don't tell you is that in this particular beach, you can't really swim because there are huge rocks under the water, making it too dangerous bc the waves are powerful. However, I stress that it doesn't really matter bc its such a nice spot and great for beach walks and lounging.
Also, you can walk about 20 minutes down the beach (maybe 15 minutes) and you come to the main swimming beach in this part of Sodwana. You can drive here from the lodge as well, in a couple minutes. This beach is the scuba diving launch pad for probly every scuba operator in Sodwana, and it is busy with tons of people in 4x4 trucks and tractors pulling boats into the water ... which will make you appreciate the privateness of Mseni's beach.
The rooms are fine, tho nothing special. Simple, clean, nice showers, each in a small cabin with no TV.
The restaurant is nice, well designed, all wood, as is the excellent bar, wich has nice fews of some greenery with the ocean nearby.
Mseni also has a pool with some pleasant hammocks, but the pool is very small. Once a couple people are in there, it wil be crowded. If they refitted the place out with a real pool, this place would really be top notch.
FYI: I also checked out Sodwana Bay lodge to compare, which looked ok. It had a bigger pool, but the restaurant didnt look nearly as nice and being inland, you must drive to the beach and don't have the option of walking ... a huge plus that puts Mseni in a class of its own.
As for diving, I forget the exact price, but I believe it was about 150-180 for the gear for the day and perhaps 150 or so per dive. You should check exact prices but it was about what diving costs everywhere.
- Reviews: 483
Mseni Lodge: Mseni Lodge
Mseni Lodge isn't exactly a hotel, and isn't exactly a camp. There are cabins scattered through the grounds, each with private bath. By some miracle of science, they manage to keep the mosquitoes out of the cabins even with the windows open. But watch out for the monkeys! We found our cabin to be rather comfortable and extremely clean. We had a front room with bunk beads and a master bedroom with a queen bed and a small desk.
The staff at Mseni are very friendly and helpful. A newsletter is left in your room that has not only information about hotel services, but a 5 day weather forecast, tide tables and phases of the moon. If you want to book an activity anywhere nearby, the management will be happy to call ahead for you at no charge.
If you want to scuba dive, Amoray Divers will meet and greet you in the bar at 6:00 PM to make a plan for the next day's dives. The gentleman at Amoray (I can't recall his name) is one of the most enthusiastic and inspiring divers I've ever met.
Vidal Saloon is the hotel's bar-restaurant. With the restaurant downstairs and the bar upstairs. The upstairs deck has a view of the ocean. The food was not all that memorable, but was good for hungry divers.
What is great about Mseni Lodge is that it claims to be the only hotel in Sodwana with beach access. The hotel is at the top of what is really a huge sand dune covered with something between brush and forest. They have a long wooden stairway through the woods and down the dune. It's about a 10 minute walk, but it does plop you right onto the most wonderful beach! The dunes are gigantic as are the waves! It was completely deserted when we were there, except for the crabs that occasionally darted into holes as we walked by. I felt so small there compared to the hugeness of the place. Maybe a mile or so to the north was Jesser Point and unfortunately we never did find out what was to the south. Maybe one day we'll go back and find out.
- Reviews: 1
Coral Divers: Coral Divers
I wasa Coral Divers recently (June, 2004). I stayed in the tents for 4 days. The tents are cheap and have two comfortable mattresses each in them. The tents are spacious and have a light. It was winter so bugs werent a problem. We took the dinner, bed and breakfast option. The breakfast were all the same, standard english fare. The dinners were equally unchanging, which sucked. But since its fairly remote, theres not much other options. The pool area is very nice, as well as the beautiful rustic restaurant indoor/outdoor facilities.
The scuba diving services at Coral Divers are excellent. A dive + suit rentals comes to R300. Shuttles regualrly take divers to and from the beach. The staff are friendly and helpful. The coral reefs are spectacular, visibility was good when I was there in winter, but is best in the summer months. Besides the diving there are other things to do. The place is full of monkeys, and other animals and birds which give an added bonus to the place. The best way to go if your a diver is to take a course, which is about the same price and duration as just getting the accomodation only, except the accomodation and rentals are free. Look into that.
- Reviews: 310
Coral Divers: Coral Divers
Coral Divers is one of the places to stay at Sodwana Bay. There are a range of different accomodation types and I stayed in a hut with an en-suite bathroom. There were no power points these huts. If you want mobile phones, laptops etc charged, they can be left at reception.
The staff here were very friendly and helpful, food excellent and the atmosphere in general was very relaxed and friendly.
The en-suite bathrooms had no roof so in the early morning you could take a show and see the African skies above you.
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