Reviews of Lagoon Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
THE place to see African wild dogs
Kwando Lagoon is a great place for families because it's casual and offers a variety of activities. Meals are served buffet-style at a communal table. It was fun to catch up with the other guests and talk about our day's sightings.
We loved that our guide, Bali, and spotter, AT, took us to see the elusive wild dogs, but then they were able to bounce our 4x4 across the bush as the dogs were on a hunt. Thankfully we didn't witness a kill (in spite of our 13-year-old's insistence that this would be educational), but we saw the warthog prey, tail up in the air, run for its life and duck into a hole at the last minute.
We saw young hyenas emerging from their den, lots of ellies, a male ostrich, impala, hippos, giraffes, zebra, the lovely lilac-breasted roller (bird), kudu and more.
Bali and AT took us out on a walking safari (Bali carried a rifle, just in case) and we learned about termite mounds and other creatures' habits.
Late one afternoon, we took the boat down the Chobe River, and we got to fish and have sundowners. Coming back to camp, the sunset was glorious.
Excellent remodeled camp!
Very nice accommodations and staff. Lots of great game viewing. Wild dogs were kind of a specialty here during my stay. However, there were plenty of other viewings of elephants, hyenas (including lots of puppies), hippos, warthogs, impala, kudu, ostrich, giraffe and cheetah.
As you've probably already read, the camp was completely remodeled about a year and a half ago. The rooms are very nice. I actually had 2 showers (1 indoor and 1 outdoor) and a bathtub. It's a bit of a walk if you have one of the higher number rooms, but that was ok. If you want hot water, you need to plan ahead; it takes about a full 5 minutes for it to hit the faucet.
The food was pretty decent. However, I am still trying to figure out who came up with chocolate covered pineapple (must be a British thing). Meals were at a community table and most of the guides would join us. Meals were buffet style except for the appetizer and dessert.
Chasing the local wild dog pack was quite an experience. Tip: don't sit in the back of the vehicle if you're going to do that. I almost literally got thrown from the vehicle. I was hanging on for dear life. We got to see the dogs hunt. We saw a few feeding on an Impala (just missed the kill unfortunately). Probably the most fun was watching the pack just play for a good 10 minutes in a small pond. They had a blast just chasing each other around and through the water. They raced around full speed just chasing and playing with each other.
Overall, a very nice camp with very good game viewing. Pictures and videos of my trip, including video reviews of my rooms, are available if you click here. I hope this review is helpful for you.
Lagoon Camp review
It was a great complement to Little Kwara. Between the two camps, we lacked for nothing in terms of animal sightings. Leopard, wild dogs, hyena, buffalo, hippo, and more.
Great food by Chef Gee and staff.
Lagoon Camp review
Lagoon Camp is a fairly new camp so the rooms were very nice. It was downhill after that. Never knew who managed the camp. The guides were not very friendly, other than the one assigned to you and then it felt like this was his job.
Did not know of my diet limitations, but tried to hard to make it work, with no advance notice. Had "Corporate" people and was more concerned with their comfort than the guests. If it wasn't for the wonderful rooms the whole place would have been a dud.
Again, this was a Kando Camp and not very organized.
Disappointment at Lagoon camp
Guiding was of an extremely low level. Vehicles kept breaking down. Management was indifferent.
The camp was beautiful though and the tents where absolutely huge and very comfortable. The food was great as well. We expected the focus to be on the guiding and the wildlife, however, and it certainly was not.
Expert Africa comments
These travellers had problems at Lagoon Camp so we looked into these in detail.
Amongst the issues, they were guided by the relief camp manager, who didnt know the area well; their vehicle broke down more than once, and wasnt fixed swiftly; and when they complained, they felt that they were not heard.
This is far from what we expect of Lagoon Camp so we passed the full story to Kwando. The companys General manager, Nicola, replied swiftly with a profuse apology, a detailed explanation of the circumstances, and a kind gesture to try to make up for their disappointment on a future trip.
These travellers were very satisfied and commented: It's amazing to see that both Expert Africa and Kwando take our comments that seriously! We're very impressed with this response. They felt reassured that their experience was not something Kwando considers acceptable, and are looking forward to returning to these camps in the near future.
Another Wonderful Experience at Lagoon Camp
This second camp was equally as impressive as our first. We were particularly happy with our guide, Dux, who was very experienced in tracking as well as camp administration and training. He helped us understand the operational requirements of the camps which was very interesting. He also worked very closely with his tracker, A.T., and they made a good team. All of the staff were very friendly and helpful. Moses, the manager, was very nice and always available to help.Read more about the whole safari
Lagoon Camp review
The most important element to us was the staff, specifically our guides. It is they who make the stay enjoyable and exciting, in finding game, and in pointing out all the details of existence - insects, trees, grasses, animal details, water, food.
We saw all the animals indigenous to the area, except for a leopard, including wild dogs. Every trip was outstanding, lions with their kill, hyenas surrounding and attacking, herds of buffalo, an unending variety of birds, hippos grazing our tent at night, and stunning peaceful views of the river. We really enjoyed the guides company at meals where they shared a lot of detail of their lives and surroundings , and also found the camp staff very kind and thoughtful. Sitting around the fire in evening and at breakfast was special, with good company and stories of the day.
The rooms were huge and comfy, and I really enjoyed the bath tub (and separate shower)with view of the river.
Disappointed at Lagoon Camp
After an amazing time Little Kwara, we were left quite disappointed by Lagoon Camp. The camp itself is wonderful, and the rooms are beautiful and were the most luxurious we stayed in! Elephants wandering through the camp every day made for some exciting trips to breakfast/dinner!!
Unfortunately, our game drives were very disappointing. We pretty much saw more wildlife in camp than on the drives, and it didn't seem like the guide was interested. Every time we saw fresh tracks of something interesting they seemed to be heading the other way and never once did we turn and follow them! The vehicle also broke down twice. In addition, our schedule was adjusted owing to another member of our group wanting to do a different activity, without us being consulted, which meant that we missed out on game drive time.
On the plus side, the boat trip along the river was fantastic - we've never seen so many hippos and it was a very relaxing way to see things!
Lagoon Camp review
Beautiful setting and a very luxurious room. (Can understand this is a 'different' experience from life in Europe etc but I am not sure why, having a modern lavatory plus a door one does not after all make it opaque?) However every wish was attended to and the guide we had (Spencer) was a remarkable man. It was a privilege to spend time with him.
The other outstanding member of staff was Grace who lives up to her name. She was hospitable, helpful, flexible, kind, humorous and just a very good person to have around.
A full-on experience
Our first visit to the "new" Lagoon following its refurbishment. It has been extended and each new room is pretty vast with all the safari-chic features you expect at the top camps nowadays. The bar/dining area is still lovely underneath a huge canopy and overlooking a bend in the water way. We had an hankering though for the old tented format which added an sort of frontier-spirit to the place. The extended part (where we were) is also away from the natural shade of the trees so they can get pretty hot during the day - the overhead fans work well though.
One thing that hasn't changed though is the enthusiasm of the guides/trackers to find the big draw wildlife. It was our luck that the wild dog pack were in the concession during our stay so we were able to observe them on the hunt.