Reviews of Kwara Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Kwara Camp review
Highly recommended, better location than Little Kwara, you only have to sit in the lodge to see the hippos etc outside. The place is looking a little tired. They have now however fitted sliding doors to the tents instead of having to undo 6 zips. There are many things which need renovating.
It has been under various temporary managers for a year. In March it was an excellent training manager. Whilst we were there a new management couple arrived. They are very experienced and had been given the job if they wanted it. They were absolutely over the moon about the place (especially their accommodation). They took over the day we left. We spent quite a lot of time with them and talked about various improvements. I never got to grasps with their names but the lady after day one had five pages of improvements they were going to make.
Everything we mentioned she had already noted. We can't give everything excellent but the staff, the food, the service and location can't be faulted. Our guides were very good but didn't seem to be doing very much tracking. All the other guests very very happy.
We had a very nice time at Kwara but a member of the camp's staff did tell us that there were problems with Kwando since the partnership break up and that there was cost cutting and they did not feel that guests who had been before and came now would be as pleased. We were sad to here this as we had asked Chris about our concerns before.
We had a perfectly nice time at both camps but felt Anita and Lloyd were just waiting to go in five days time as they were there on relief work.
The guides were very enthusiastic and we had wonderful game drives. Irritating that we had to ask them to change time of transfer flight as otherwise we woudl have missed our game drive that morning and not seen the cheater hunting and kill! This is something that the camp manager should sort out automatically
Kwara Camp review
First, I would like to start by saying Chris did a most excellent job in helping us plan our trip. We went from the "rustic" to "luxurious" which was the best way to go, I think. But! I want to make one thing absolutley clear-- although Kwara was our least luxurious camp, it by far possessed our most favorite guide, tracker and staff. Anita and her fiance (I am embarrassed to say I cannot remember his name-- Paul? I apologize; I am terrible with names) were incredibly warm and accomodating and Ezekiel and Sevara's enthusiasm and friendliness were greatly appreciated. I think they may have been the most "green" of all our guides, but they definitely made up with genuine enthusiasm and a great attitude; a very "I am so glad to be here and we are so glad you are here with us" attitude. As our trip progressed, I would later appreciate Ezekiel and Sevara's enthusiasm and general kindness even more.
We were at Kwara when Independence Day came about and we were touched by how the staff included us in their celebration of their holiday. It was quite festive.
To be honest, I think our stay would have been perfect if it were not for two things--
1) a fan in the sleeping area of the tent (all of the other camps we stayed had fans to circulate the air-- VERY helpful to endure the heat during siesta).
2) a leopard sighting! ;-)
Overall, a truly memorable experience!
Life changing entry to the safari world
Now I know why Kwando camps are special-trackers as well as locally based guides, I can see makes a huge difference. The places the driver got those vehicles wa startling.
Being able to go off the tracks meant we had one morning where we saw a lion, 4 cheetahs and two leopards in one morning. We couldn't believe our luck. Anita and Lloyd running the camp were doing a brilliant job of making us welcome. I was a bit nervous to begin with, as the nighttime noises sounded a bit threatening, and the care the guides take meant I remained aware of the dangers, but I grew more and more confident and enjoyed it so much.
We were treated to a dance and song at one point by a whole group of staff- that was an extra special treat we enjoyed.. The food was amazing, and Anita even managed to organise gluten free wraps for my brother in law.
Ezekiel (our guide) and Jamoo(the tracker) did a fantastic job. They are so amazingly knowledgeable, and very willing to tell us as much as we were interested in hearing. They didn't seem to mind being pelted with questions about animals, their lives and how Botswana works.
I can also understand why Kwando have the guides eating meals with the guests, as it gave us a chance to build up a relationship and time to ask even more questions. My only problem about that is that it seems the guides don't have much time "off".
Trip of a lifetime
Had the most wonderful time, everyone so helpful. Good accomodation and food.
Superb guides-Justice and Savarra- nothing was too much trouble, enormous effort went into ensuring we saw a large variety of wildlife, friendly and so proffesional.
Different to Sandibe but just as special
Arriving at Kwara Camp was a test for the staff there because we were arriving from Sandibi and now had a comparison. The camps are very different but in many ways quite similar.
Kwara camp was slightly more basic although offering the same sort of facilities The welcome was just as warming and nothing seemed too much trouble. Everything seems to run like clockwork from the getting up at the start of the day to the time out in the bush/delta to the meals. Although whatever you suggested to the staff/guides was carried out with the minimum of fuss. We found that the combination of bush and delta gave Kwara the edge over Sandibe.
Great safari on truck, boat, mekoro
The five days spent in Kwara and Lebala were the highlight of our trip. The abundance of the wildlife, the trips on truck, boat, mekoro and the walking safaris were excellent. Our guide and trackers, Donald and Name in Kwara, Hector and Muate in Lebala - deserve to be mentioned especially.
The food and all services were outstanding.
We saw many lions (3 lionesses and eight cubs in Lebala), plenty of buffalos, wildebeast, different antilopes, countless elephants, a leopard and our favorite - the warthog. The most spectacular event was also a little sad for us - the lionesses killing a warthog in Lebala.
Great camp great wildlife
The camps which you recommended at Kwara and Lebala were both fantastic. Exactly as you described as ''lacking the chic of CCAfrica'' but very comfortable with good food and very high standards of game viewing. We had a great time at both camps with great staff and great game viewing. Our guides (Steve at Kwara and Vundi at Lebala) were first class in all respects.
The 'tents' at Kwara are new and very smart, whilst at Lebala they are older and a bit tatty in comparison.
The only slight hesitation with Kwando is that all camps seem to serve the same meals on the same day each week. so anyone doing 3 or 4 Kwando camps would spot this. The food was always good and more than enough, so it is a very minor issue meant to be constructive.