Reviews of Nxabega Safari Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Nxabega Safari Camp review
In March we thought that this camp was absolutely fantastic. Laurens Kritzinger and Helga Otto had just taken over as the new managers. Their management style is superb. Everything runs extremely smoothly without any obvious day to day intervention. Many improvements have been made and are planned. I will not list them in any particular order.
We like the flexibility of sitting down to meals when you wish. Within certain time scales of course. They used to rotate the menus 3 times a week this has been increased to 7. Great food, service and staff. The only complaint in this area is the manager Eileen who fed me so much brandy one night I missed most of the following morning. Apart from that she was always on hand and a great manager.
Very well stocked bar. Available whenever a guest was around. I ran out of cigars and Laurens managed to restock my supply from Maun in two hours!
New sitting area furniture was delivered whilst we were there. It is fantastic. The cushions on the old furniture were getting a little tired not helped by the animals trying to eat it. The old swimming pool was just a hole lined in plastic sheeting. A brand new fiberglass one was installed just after we left in March. It is fantastic.
The logistics of getting it there makes interesting reading but is indicative of the standard of CC Africa. There are new loungers by the pool which are proving very popular. There are very nice new rugs in the tents. The old BBQ area was a little bit scruffy. There is now a new one set in a Koral. There are new high standard umbrellas in the sitting and dining areas.
The managers have set up a library next to the lounge. It has very comfortable seating. It is actually the best of the old lounge furniture. And, it has a computer with free Internet access. It was only installed the day before we left but many guests were asking for access in the office so it should prove very popular.
There are brilliant new showers in the tents. It is like standing under one of their tropical storms. Hot water is always available. The wiring in the tents has been improved for safety and improved reliability. The boardings outside the tents are been rubbed down and re-varnished. The tents and furniture are very high standard.
On environmental issues. They have new engines for their boats. These are quicker 4 stoke engines. These give out less emissions and do not pollute the water like the old ones. The managers are changing all the light bulbs to low wattage ones. This keeps costs down of course as the generator requires less fuel. The knock on effect to this is less fuel deliveries thus less damage to the commission with trucks driving across it.
In March we had brilliant guides, Solly and Ace. They have sadly left to pursue other aims. Our guide this time, Basha, was the best guide we have ever had on any safari. He is training up his tracker Jo to be a guide. Jo was absolutely great and could spot a tree frog at a 1,000 mtrs. I haven't commented on the game because we were there, as always, to enjoy the delta, its nature, the scenery and the people. We did however see a lot. And, it is of course seasonal.
So many superlatives but we can't fault Nxabega. Extremely highly recommended to your clients from very critical people in the travel business. We said it before and we say it again, we will be back.
Game scarce at Nxabega
The variety and quantity of game indicated in the literature was vastly overstated. This is very much a transitional camp. We were lucky enough to see lions but they hadnt been previously sighted for 7 months.
Our guide and tracker, Dux and KB, worked very hard to make our experience enjoyable but are clearly embarrassed by the claims made in the literature.
The manager was notable by his absense until we were leaving!
Expert Africa comments
We are glad that these travellers were impressed by the guides at Nxabega. As we noted in our first letter in response to this enquiry, ‘Nxabega is based in an area which is predominantly wetlands, on the western side of the Delta and so activities tend to be water-based, although you can still do game-drives here.’
We must agree with these travellers - Nxabega is in a very scenic part of the Okavango, and although there is a variety of game in the area, activities here tend to focus on the watery aspects of the Delta and birding. We do tend to recommend that this camp is combined with camps in areas of the Delta and further north which have greater concentrations of wildlife – and we’ve changed our latest brochure’s wording to make this even clearer.
We have asked Nxabeaga to comment on the manager's absence during these travellers' stay – and have not yet had a response.
Now the negative! Luckily it was the single element of the holiday that we insisted upon so you are totally in the clear.
We returned to Nexabega because we enjoyed it so much last time. The camp was largely unchanged from 5 years ago and the food and accommodation is superior to Kwando in small details such as style and the quality of the cuisine. However with water levels in the Delta very high this year the game viewing at Nexabega was very poor. The staff admitted that some 5 weeks back they considered closing the camp because of water levels and the lack of game. The range of area available for game viewing was limited due to the water depth. There were loads of Elephants, Giraffe and great bird sightings. No big cats at all (no Lion for the last 4 months), though there is a Leopard in the area which we did not see..
It is a bit like going skiing when the hotel has failed to mention there is virtually no snow! I would be very careful of sending other customers to this location. It is still pretty scenic with all the water