Named after a nineteenth century chieftaness of the local Shangaan tribe, Shalati was one of the most anticipated lodges coming out of the Kruger Park region. Comprised of a series of train carriages permanently situated on an old railway bridge of the Selati railway line, the lodge’s concept is itself more than enough to pique the visitor’s interest. Combine this with some of the most spectacular opulence to be found in the Kruger National Park, a dining experience to compare to any of the country’s top restaurants, and a superb game viewing offering tailor-made by seasoned guides, and you have a recipe for enormous success.
Perched high above the Sabi River just downstream from Skukuza Restcamp, Shalati offers uninterrupted views over the splendour of the African bush. Leopards slink through the riparian vegetation and hippos snort from their pools in the river below, whilst you sip a cool gin and tonic from your vantage point amongst the swallows, fish eagles, and other avian species that flit or soar above the majesty of the river.
The site of the lodge marks the spot at which the first visitors to the Kruger Park would spend the night. Pulling the train onto the bridge, they would carouse around a fire on the riverbank before retreating to the safety of the train to sleep, and then continue with their journey the next day.
The bridge stood practically unused for many years after the railway line through the park was dismantled, and it wasn’t until 2016 that a tender process was announced for interested parties to bid their proposals for tourism use of the Selati Bridge and Station.
Finally in 2020 Kruger Shalati reignited the experiencing of sleeping in a train on this bridge filled with a wealth of history.
Each room is a refitted carriage which makes the most brilliant use of the space available to it. From the outside the carriages appear limited in size, but upon entering you will be greeted by the most surprisingly large panorama out over the African bush; swallows swoop out from under the bridge and the chances are high that an elephant herd will be slaking their thirst somewhere down below.
Shalati offers 31 rooms – 24 Train Carriage Suites and 7 Bridge House Suites – all of which are tailored for immersive comfort. The utterly unique positioning of the train places the visitor on a constant plane of awe.
Whether you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind adventure, an enthralling break or to simply unwind while surrounded by earth’s finest creations, Kruger Shalati looks forward to welcoming you on a journey of discovery with nature in the most extraordinary way imaginable.
Get in touch to find out about pricing and availability, and let us help you plan the safari of a lifetime…