Reviews of Chitabe Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Chitabe Camp review
Much more varied game here than at the other camps we stayed at. Gordon, our guide was excellent - knowledgeable and with a warm personality.
Comfortable room and enjoyed the outdoor shower and abundant hot water (didn't like minimal privacy for toilet in room). Also appreciated the hot water delivered to the room in the morning.
Very accommodating staff - including camp manager Connie who made us feel very welcome and met all of our special needs requests (like separate dining for our group, special food for sundowners, etc.) Nice pool area. Game drives were wonderful and we saw all imaginable game - appreciated the hot water bottles and warm lined ponchos.
Excellent in every respect. Fantastic range of game including leopard with very small kittens, lions with a giraffe kill and several sets of lions mating.
The guide was outstanding in finding game and also his knowledge and explainations. We appreciated the hotwater bottles and warm ponchos on early morning drives.
We thoroughly enjoyed our three-night stay at Chitabe Camp. The staff were exceptionally friendly and helpful. The accommodations were excellent.
I like to tell my friends that we went on safari and stayed in tents - with king-size beds, ensuite bath, double sinks, etc. It was cush! The food was plentiful and tasty - an early continental breakfast, mid-morning tea, mid-day brunch, afternoon high tea, sundowner cocktails and snacks, and dinner! It's remarkable that we didn't gain more weight than we did.
Most of all I want to call attention to our guide, Doctor. He was exceptional! I think he knew what the animals were going to do before the animals themselves knew. We pulled up to a pond with a hippo, and Doctor predicted that the hippo would make a mock charge, rising up out of the water and opening his gaping mouth in a huge splash, which the hippo did (before I could turn on my camera). We came upon an elephant scooping up acacia seeds from the ground. When they were all gone, Doctor encouraged us to wait and watch as the elephant began to shake the tree with his head to knock more seeds down.
There was the time, too, when we stopped to watch a herd of grazing zebras. Doctor maneuvered the jeep to a spot where he told us we could get a great camera shot when the zebras crossed the river. The zebras weren't moving - but then in a couple minutes, they crossed the river just as Doctor had said. I could say more, but I think you get the idea.
One highlight was getting to see the mother leopard and her two cubs nursing at dusk. Each day was filled with opportunities for great game viewing.
it was a well managed camp and very happy staff. we had some great sightings e.g. 9 wild dogs with a kill. B.B. was a great guide.
somewhat overwhelmed by the concentration of American guests. In fact we were the only non Americans!
The camp was 45 minutes from the air strip which made it tiring after a 24 hour trip.
Hot water bottles in bed and on early morning safaris were very welcome. Glad that we included fleece jackets, woolly hats and gloves in our luggage!
Chitabe Camp review
We had a fantastic guide and saw lots of really good game (some amazing leopard and lion sightings). Nothing was too much trouble for him and he had a great sense of humour. All the staff at the camp were incredibly friendly and helpful.
I was disappointed that the camp did not know I was vegetarian even though I had specified that on the booking form. The food was ok, but there was certainly plenty of it. I did not feel that they made a particularly special effort on the vegetarian front compared to what was being offered to the meat eaters.
Chitabe Camp review
Much the same comment as Kwara.
Food a little better but not much.
Staff exceptional, friendly, helpful and efficient.
Saw full range of game .
Best Game Drives
Lack of proper management. Great guide OTZ (he gave us very insightful lectures about environment and ecosystems; wild life, etc...).
The food was horrible; too spicy and always far from European or American taste. And the coffee was not filtered but just the soluble stuff; terrible as well.
It was extremely cold at night and in the morning drives; I still do not understand why we could not leave a little later after the sun had come out; it is not that the schedules were that strictly kept. We were on vacation and the time schedule was insane. You cannot finish serving me dinner until past 10pm and expect me to be up at 5:30 next morning. Meal times were not kept. These opinions were shared by most of the people we met with there.
As it happened when we arrived in Little Vumbura, we skipped lunch that day and got to the camp at 1:30 (breakfast had been at 7:00 and usually consisted of just toasted bread) and although we were asked and told them we had not had any lunch, they said that tea would be at 3:30 and so we were given no other option but to wait. I found that quite unwelcoming. The tent was considerably smaller that little Vumbura and the amenities were not as good (bath robe, slippers...).
The laundry service was unacceptable: clothes came back stained and unpressed. And one of my blouses got misplaced and had to ask for it many times before it came back completely wrinkled. The two other camps laundry service was first class compared to this one.
Wildlife variety and abundance
Probably the best overall Camp, yet again the Manager was not forthcoming, or warm. You must remember from whence we have just come. Our guide, Anthony was most enjoyable, able and attentive.
We were made aware of a Lion Pride of seven, who had a successful Buffalo meal on Wednesday. On our first drive we came upon them enjoying the afternoon and experienced forty minutes of magnificently executed strategy to have another kill, a Giraffe. Many may not wish to witness such, however it is natural and the strategy execution and dance and admiring of success by the pride is most interesting. I named them the Magnificent Seven, after the famous movie.
Facilities are excellent and the hot water, tea in room at wake up a must. The availability of Mammal and Bird guides in the room is a plus for those afternoon note taking and relaxing.
The night drives are good, however difficult to post process red lights out of photo's. The animals safety, without doubt, is more important than the photos.
Again, wildlife around the walk ways makes it a never ending opportunity to enjoy. A Wildcat on tour deck at 2400, scouting the area near the Lagoon was a nice surprise.
Disappointed that the expectations of our metal water bottles was not deliverable. Ran Out. A quality Wilderness Safari Group Camp?
Going to forward to us, I will not hold my breath.
There is no doubt from our second visit and from what other visitors were saying at other camps that Chitabe is right at the top of the game viewing stakes. In our first 24 hours we saw lions, Leopards, wild dogs, cheetah and a herd of buffalo about a thousand strong. It doesn't get much better than that.
The camp in terms of service is well managed (but see my overall trip comments for a major concern) - it is owned by a separate company and has a few touches beyond the normal Wilderness feel. Our dietary requirements had not reached them but once told they were fantastic.
Amazing Game Viewing and Guiding at Chitabe
3 days at Chitabe provided our quintessential game viewing experience -- in 21 days enjoying African game parks.
The game was present and the guiding was committed, determined and successful -- we even experienced a 10 hour all-day drive [we were met with a bush lunch served with tables and chairs -- amazing]. On this particular drive we witnessed a cheetah spot, chase and kill an impala, saw leopard brothers guarding their kill tied in a tree, followed a pack of wild dogs through the bush on their hunt, observed a pride of lions from 2 meters, resting after their kill ... and more. We really appreciated our guide's high motivation and ability to deliver -- the guiding here is serious, and each group of guests felt they had the "best" guide -- quite a testament.
Accommodations were luxurious beyond expectations, food was delicious and almost too generous, staff and guides were very sociable and sophisticated, and our cultural evening, which included dances, was really appreciated. Exceeded all expectations.