Reviews of Okaukuejo Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Our room was fantatic with a superb view of the waterhole from the balcony. Unfortunately while the decor and setting of the 'waterhole chalet' was excellent it was far from matched by the experience as a whole.
The service was unfriendly - we were told off for checking out ten minutes late even though we'd done so because there was no running water and had to wait for them to switch it on so we could have a shower! The communal dining area was pretty chaotic and the food wasn't great.
That said, the waterhole made up for it seeing several black rhinos but if we were to do it again we'd definitely opt for a basic room as the money spent on the 'waterhole chalet' wasn't worth it given the bad service.
Okaukuejo Restcamp review
Although it looks basic from the outside the rooms were refurbished and very clean. the guidebook prices though are very out of date compared to the actual prices. Also the local shop does not stock much food suitable for eating on the road!Read more about the whole safari
great animal viewing in well organised Camp
As with Halali Camp would recommend strongly staying in Park to take advantage of wonderful viewing at own waterhole. Night drive revealed very little, Night, as well as day, viewing at waterhole was spellbinding for hours on end. One theatrical act followed another with all the animals taking their turn to drink in a certain pecking order Elephants rhinos, lions, giraffes, warthogs, zebras, oryx, springboks, wildebeest, hyenas, jackals all in wonderful abundance!
The camp restaurant was well managed and the numbers dealt with efficiently. The pool had been recently refurbished but had been left in very scruffy state e.g smears of cement everywhere allowed to dry on the surrounds. Very few pool loungers (about 5/6) and for most part broken or with torn cushions. No laundry yet and towels rationed!
Okaukuejo Restcamp review
The new renovated waterhole chalets are excellent.
The waterhole was fascinating - the busiest of any we saw in Etosha.
The food was average, buffet food, better than the other 2 camps in Etosha. Would have liked to have been able to purchase small meals (sandwiches, soup etc) outside meal hours.
It would have been good to have had a Wildlife Guide/Resource Centre at each camp who could answer questions about the area, wildlife etc., even give short lectures on various wildlife topics in the evenings. This is done very successfully in the Canadian Rockies Parks in the main visitor months. A small increase in park fees could perhaps cover the cost as well as provide employment.
Wish we'd been able to spend more time here.
Not pleased to see you at Okaukujo
Amazing accommodation sadly not matched by the facilities or service. The best bedlinen and fluffiest towels of the holiday.
Made to leave $500 cash (or driving licence or passport) in case we stole anything or trashed the room - such a nice welcome particulary as we were paying for a premier waterhole chalet. Having travelled the world I have never been affronted like this.
They need to look at their customer profile and general attitude to their customers. They actually sent a housekeeper to check the room before we left and she radioed back to reception so our deposit could be released ! Neither of us have ever been asked anywhere in the world to do this before - what are their clients like if they have to count the spoons ?
No bottled water provided in room and I would have expected some form of mini bar or dial up bar service for the price I was paying. Wasted opportunites - no mini bar in the room as clearly they don't trust you, it would have been so nice to sit out on our balcony and have a drink whilst watching the waterhole.
I have never been to a bar that doesn't have tonic to go with a gin and the bar man is seriously not bothered. Poor service in the restaurant, turn up with your voucher and feel like a criminal then wait ages for your drinks to appear. Staff look completely disinterested.
Waterhole was in a good location and we did see a good selection of animals.
Lack of information in the rooms regarding the park. Poor service will now be labelled "an etosha" experience.
Good choice of food, buffet style. Restaurant can't cope with numbers and needs to buy more china - they were taking plates as you finished to get them through the wash up. Bit like a canteen at times, not a relaxing experience. They need to separate out their clients and the service they provide. A canteen might be fine for the campers but if we are paying for a premium lodge then I would like a more relaxed and civilised service at dinner. Also if you do go for one of the lodges you need to understand that the crowd watching the waterhole will be right under your bedroom window.
Expert Africa comments
Expert Africa discussed the recent addition of a refundable N$500 deposit that is now required when staying at any of the restcamps within Etosha National Park. Although the deposit is here to stay, Expert Africa will now be making all their travellers aware of this before they depart on their holiday so that visitors to the restcamps are prepared for the deposit before they arrive.
The Namibia Wildlife Resorts organisation (NWR) is aware that their service and food standards are in need of quite a serious overhaul. Their priority was to finish their scheduled refurbishments by November. This has been completed and now the staff training has begun.
Okaukuejo has benefited hugely from its refurbishment; accommodation is excellent and its position adjacent to a wonderful waterhole unique. This was a brilliant theatrical setting with exceptional viewing of elephant and rhinoceros, giraffe and uncountable numbers of antelope and much else - viewing in complete comfort and safety.
But this site can't rely on its setting alone; staffing and procedures are light years away from the splendid standard of accommodation provided and the convenience of staying inside the park will not guarantee a 'full house' unless the standard of service improves. Though cooking facilities are provided, a poorly furnished shop on site doesn't encourage their use; restaurant provision is adequate and meals similarly so but staffing is poor and, again, badly managed.
The notion of service in this nationally run organisation has some way to go. The local buzz is that the increased price, post-refurbishment, is unreasonably high; without considerable effort to improve service all round, this site, despite its unique setting in the park, will lose out to private competion outside the area. Consideration for the material welfare of visitors beyond rooms and showers has a long way to go.
better than expected - the villa was very good , and the waterhole such a big plus that this outweighs what the restcamp may lack in comparison with private lodges. food options and quality average at best , but staff friendly.
if travelling from lodge to lodge as we did, having one night in a much more touristy environment is quite a good contrast. would recommend this stop in any itinerary.
Okaukuejo Restcamp review
as per previous okaukuejo reviewRead more about the whole safari
Okaukuejo Restcamp review
The waterhole is always a delight! Our rooms were well placed near the waterhole which was great. The refurbishment was good on the whole but some of the air-conditioning was noisy. The restaurant is fairly basic which may concern some people and the pool tile surrounds were broken but perhaps they haven't updated that yet.Read more about the whole safari
Fine facilities, first clas waterhole
We've marked Okaukeujo "excellent" overall relative to what it is, ie a state camp, rather than because it compares with the privately run Ongava. Despite some reservations before we arrived (based on comments from some people we encountered who had stayed there) we were pleasantly surprised. We had originally intended to stay two nights here and would not have been unhappy to have been doing so.
The accommodation was very pleasant indeed and the dining facilities were good - we commended the chef for the quality of his roast game. We were fortunate enough to have a room just a few yards from the waterhole, which is a great facility. Again, we were spoiled for elephants and black rhinos.
We used Okaukeujo to explore the west of Etosha, going as far west as Ozonjuitji m'Bari, ie as far as we were permitted, which we thought was very impressive in terms of the sheer number of animals there (although we were less impressed with the Ghost Tree Forest). This was the (unintended in our original itinerary) last stop of our trip and allowed us to leave on a high note.