Jabulani South Africa
Greater Kruger Area,
Kapama Private Game Reserve,
Date of Creation
Hotel General Manager
Ruan Roos is Lodge Manager at Jabulani and has been in the Jabulani family for many years, having started as a ranger moons ago. Ruan went on to become Head Ranger and then Assistant Lodge Manager and as such, he has vast experience in and knowledge of our special Big 5 wilderness and the Jabulani soulful safar
5 Star Luxury Safari Lodge. Relais & Chateaux.
2010 Jabulani added Zindoga Villa.
History & Story
Our story started in 1997, with Jabulani, an elephant calf of just four months, was found injured, abandoned and stuck in the mud of a silt dam. He was successfully rehabilitated and once weaned, introduced to the wild elephants of the reserve, who repeatedly rejected him.
Yet fate had a different plan for Jabulani. In 2002, we were contacted to urgently step in and rescue a hand-reared herd of elephants Zimbabwe who were to be culled during the country’s land reformation process.
Within a few days, we had rescued the elephants and brought them to our reserve in South Africa, together with their carers. We were hopeful that they would accept Jabulani into their family, as every elephant needs a herd.
Fortunately, Tokwe, the matriarch of the herd, accepted Jabulani lovingly and gracefully. Jabulani had finally found a new family.
This was a significant moment in both our history and our future, as the original herd are all believed to have been orphans too. Their unique family structure would create a favourable environment for orphaned elephants in need of a herd. They have since warmly welcomed another three orphaned elephants that we have introduced to them.
With the substantial financial burden of having to care for the elephants and provide housing and income for their carers, it was decided to build a luxury lodge that would offer elephant back safaris and sustain the herd. So, in 2005, Camp Jabulani came to be.
In 2006, the herd started to reproduce, an affirmation of their happiness and low-stress levels, as an elephant will not easily fall pregnant when under duress. Five healthy elephant calves have since then been born to the Jabulani herd. Two additional elephant orphans that were rescued by conservation organisations were accepted by the Jabulani HERD.
In 2018, Camp Jabulani rebranded to JABULANI, revealing a unique and soulful safari experience. Complimented by our people, the wildlife and the Jabulani herd, the experience will be etched into your heart and soul for a lifetime.
In 2019, Adine Roode, the owner of Jabulani built South Africa’s first dedicated Elephant Orphanage, HERD (Hoedspruit Elephant Rehabilitation and Development), which was built alongside the Jabulani Herd Stables.
Main lounge refurb May 2018.
Date added extensions
The Owner of Jabulani built Hoedspruit Elephant Rehabilitation and Development (HERD), South Africa’s first dedicated elephant orphanage alongside the Jabulani elephant stables in 2019.
Zindoga Villa added in 2010 catering for family travellers/ 2014 added the gallery, wine cellar and curio shop Gallery/ Curio Shop and Wine Cellar added in 2014.
Main Strengths, Special Touch
Jabulani, a Soulful Safari Experience.
Jabulani is a place to indulge your every sense. A place to explore the amazing wildlife, to rest, to eat, and to reconnect with nature, and most importantly, yourself.
Learn about our inspiring journey that began with a herd of elephants that rescued nearly twenty years ago. Our devoted elephant carers will share insightful information, and stories of their life journeys with the Jabulani elephant herd, whilst you have opportunity to observe the herd during their daily routines, such as their midday swims, or as they are out, for aging in the wild.
You soon realise that you are part of something much greater here, than just another luxury safari lodge.
The Jabulani safari experience is soulful, insightful and truly unforgettable.
A Proud member of Relais and Châteaux.
Jabulani is based on the Kapama Private Game Reserve 30 mins drive outside the town of Hoedspruit. Kapama is very conveniently located right next to Hoedspruit Eastgate Airport which is well serviced with daily flights operated by SA Airlink from Johannesburg and Cape Town, as well as charter flight operators. Jabulani is a 20-minute private transfer in an open safari vehicle from the Hoedspruit airport. Private charters direct into the reserve are also available.
Key sites/activities in the area
Guests have the exclusive opportunity to observe the herd, learning more about their behaviour, their unique character traits, their incredible story and what it takes to take care of them.
Much of this takes place while the elephants are in their natural environment, foraging in the bush, walking through the reserve or swimming at the waterhole.
Situated on a Big five private game reserve in the Greater Kruger area, this is one of the finest places on earth for viewing and photographing wildlife. Experienced rangers host guests on game drives and bush walks for close sightings of predators and other iconic African species living wild.
Other optional activities include hot-air ballooning, canyon helicopter tours and golfing. No itinerary has set times, as Jabulani offers a tailor-made experience according to our guests’ specific interests.
Jabulani is named after our first rescued elephant Jabulani. Jabulani Means « rejoice /happiness. »
The Jabulani Soulful Safari experience touches the hearts of even the youngest of our guests. Our JabuJuniors programme promises that our young safari-goers experience the best of South African wildlife and allow them to dig deeper into the fun world of soulful conservation.
Your children have the opportunity to become JabuJuniors Conservationists in the making or be accredited in our JabuJuniors Ranger Academy; taking home personalised certificates to fondly remember their Jabulani and South African wildlife experience for many years to come.
• Aquaponics tour: Learn about the world of aquaculture and responsible tourism.
• World of Worms: Get wiggly with us!
• Visit Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre(HESC) and learn all about rhino conservation, cheetah conservation and other wildlife conservation projects.
• World of Elephants: Learn all about the remarkable Anatomy of Elephants with our elephant carers.
• Elephant Dung Research: Assist our elephant care team carry out vital research in monitoring the stress levels of the Jabulani herd compared to wild herds of Kapama.
• Elephant Dung Throwing Challenge
• Learn how we make Compost
• Make your own Elephant Dung Paper
JabuJuniors RANGER ACADEMY
• Orienteering (learn to find your way home in the wild) Survival Tips for the Bush l Animal Tracks Identification: Learn how to identify the trails of wild animals.
• LandRover Orientation
• Learn about the Big Five and Ugly Five on Safari.
• Seeds and Pods: Learn how even the tallest tree comes from a small beginning. l Discover our African Skies: Stargazing
• Bird Watching & Identification
• Flowerpower: Learn about different plants and their medicinal uses.
• Bug Search: For the adventurous JabuJuniors! l Learn basic Shangaan (local language)
• Mammal Behaviour Lessons
JabuJuniors CREATIVE KIDS
• Elephant biscuit decorating
• Design your elephant pizza l Make your African animal T-shirt l Spoor casting (painting etc.)
• Various arts and crafts activity
Nestled within a Big Five Private Game Reserve in the Greater Kruger Park, Jabulani’s six suites and exclusive Zindoga Villa, ensure a highly refined, personalised and intimate stay.
Each spacious suite is discrete, luxurious and complimented by both a private deck and plunge pool.
• Number of suites: 6 Suites overlooking a dry riverbed
• An Exclusive Private villa (Zindoga Villa) 2 master suites with plunge pools with an additional 3rd bedroom for children.
• Number of rooms, (keys) in all: 8 suites
Restaurants & Bars
Jabulani prides itself on exceptional cuisine, combined with fine wines and a variety of dining venues, both indoors and outdoors.
• All Inclusive (all meals and a selection of local beverages)
• Unlimited private dining
• Tailored menus according to requirements that can include kosher and halaal
• Internationally trained executive chef delivering 5* fine dining, with a South African twist
• Beautiful lakeside boma with the ambience of stars, lanterns and bonfires, with food cooked over open fires
• Surprise bush breakfasts and champagne sundowners can be set up for groups
• Dining Room and private deck for meals
• Cocktail lounge
• Therapy Lapa (outdoor spa)
• Outside gym
• Each suite has a private plunge pool
• There is an on-site gym and experienced therapists offer soothing massages in the outdoor sp (Therapy Lapa) or in the comfort of your Jabulani suite.
Corporate & Celebration Events
• We can cater for up to 18 guests
• Innovative and fun team-building activities available on request
Extra Notable Features
• Unique and Soulful Elephant Experience and Tracking
• Game Drives and bush walks on Kapama Big 5 Reserve. Private guide(s) allocated to groups
• Optional extras include helicopter tours of Blyde River Canyon, golf, hot air ballooning, relaxing spa treatments
Hotel and restaurant Awards
Relais & Châteaux Woman of the Year – Adine Roode (MD and owner of Jabulani)
Five Star PREMIUM Status awarded by TGCSA (Tourism Grading Council of South Africa)
Certificate of Excellence Trip Advisor
Conde Nast Saver’s / Sustainability Award
Number of employees
52 Lodge + 30 Elephant carers