Port Lympne Safari Lodges and Cabins

South East England Kent Hythe

  • From £139 a night
  • Lodges & Pods
  • Safari Lodges

Get a true taste of safari by staying on site at an acclaimed wild animal park

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John Aspinall, a businessman, notorious gambler and wildlife enthusiast, once won a park in a card game. Realising a lifelong dream, he stocked the 600-acre site overlooking the Romney Marshes with his favourite Indian and African wildlife. His theory – give animals enough space and something akin to their natural patch and they will breed. His proof – restocking the Gobi Desert with the once-extinct wild horses from his very own park.

All these years later, the Aspinall Foundation is lauded for its exemplary conservation work, both here and overseas. Another result of all this is that you don't need to schlep to the African bush to gander at gibbons, leer at lemurs and make a contribution to the cause. Through years of hard work, this beautiful patch of the 'Garden of England', Port Lympne, has been cultivated into the Serengeti plains. You can not only visit it but have the run of the place after hours with a stay in the on-site accommodation which ranges from camping cabins to luxurious lodges with huge (super-strength) windows looking into the big cat enclosures. If that's not enough, they also have their own hotel, treehouses and romantic forest hideaways.

Wherever you stay, you’re sure of a good night’s sleep – even the most basic accommodation, the camping cabins of Pinewood, come with comfy made-up beds. These little pods in the pines sleep up to four and share facilities, unless you choose one of the handful of en-suite cabins which take the luxury up a level. It’s ramped up further at the other end of the park, where the 19 safari-tent style lodges of Bear Lodge each sleep up to eight people and come complete with open-air verandah, heating, carpets, beds, linen, duvets and fluffy dressing gowns. Private showers and toilets (including for disabled) come attached and cots are provided on request.

Finally, Lion and Tiger Lodges are the most luxurious (and expensive) option by far – the cream of the crop for animal lovers, offering unparalleled 24-7 views of lions and tigers. Inside, you'll be greeted by super-comfortable, stylishly-furnished and decadently decorated places to stay, including an outdoor wood-fired bath!

You can consider the morning grunts and snorts nature's own wake-up call, and the sunrises and views are well worth it too. Stay in the front row at Bear Lodge, in Lion or Tiger Lodge and you’ll wake up to a stunning backdrop of far-reaching views of the Kent coast and beyond the English Channel to France (on a clear day of course). With more wild animals than Noah's Ark, plus a range of restaurants, bars and clubhouses, you really won't want for much here. As the song goes, "it means no worries, for the rest of your days". Hakuna Matata indeed.

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The Port Lympne and Howletts Wild Animal Parks are among Europe's most well-respected wildlife reserves. The Aspinall Foundation's exemplary conservation programme has ensured the successful captive breeding and preservation of many endangered species including various species of primate, lions, tigers, rhinos, bison and the curious binturongs.

Guests at Bear Lodge (19 luxury safari tent lodges, each sleeping eight) have free entry to both parks (Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve and Howletts Wild Animal Park), meaning you can enjoy the monthly themed trails and safaris, guided walks and conservation talks. All have private shower and toilet facilities, wood-burning stove, bed linen, electric lighting & heating, storage. Campfires are not permitted.

Pinewood Pods and Lion and Tiger Lodges sleep up to four and include entrance to both parks, with Lion and Tiger Lodges offering the most deluxe experience.

Suitable For

Glampers – yes. Infants are welcome. Everyone else (including dogs) – no.


Well, if you really must... the iconic ancient city of Canterbury lies just 3 miles north of Howletts. Further north, you'll find the unspoilt shores of vibrant Whitstable – famous for its lively fish market and restaurants. Nearer to Lympne, pebble Hythe Beach offers a more peaceful option for seaside strolling. Kent isn't known as the Garden of England for nothing – the 500 sprawling acres of parkland and glorious gardens at Leeds Castle are well worth a visit.    

Food & Drink


Bear Lodge costs from £44 per person if 8 people share (£365 per tent), Pinewood is from £139 per night, and Lion/Tiger Lodges cost up to £2250 per night.

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Contact Website  01303 234 112  Port Lympne Safari Lodges and Cabins, Port Lympne Wild Animal Park, Lympne, Near Hythe, Kent CT21 4PD

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Getting There

From the M20, leave at Junction 11 signposted for Port Lympne Reserve. Follow the signposting for a couple of miles through two roundabouts until you reach traffic lights. Turn left here and continue to the end of the road, ignoring signs for the reserve parking as there is separate parking for overnight guests. At the end of the road turn left and Bear Lodge is on the right hand side soon after.


  • Open Fire
  • Private Bathroom
  • Wifi

Looking For...

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