Onguma Bush Camp: Our full report
The Onguma Game Reserve borders Fischer's Pan, on the eastern side of Etosha National Park. Here, Onguma Bush Camp makes a good base from which to explore Etosha National Park. It is one of the five lodges within the reserve, which also incorporates Onguma Tented Camp, Onguma Tree Tops, Onguma Etosha Aoba Camp and Onguma Plains .
Over the last year Onguma Bush Camp has been refurbished and not quite the rustic lodge it’s been referred to previously. Its smart looking and now offers 19 rooms in total and are more in line with the rest of the Onguma properties. There are eight twin bedded standard rooms which includes three family loft rooms and a further three family rooms all with similar facilities. One Settler’s Room (formerly the honeymoon suite) and newly added are the six Waterhole/Pool View rooms.
The family loft rooms have a children’s sleep area in the loft and shares a bathroom. The family room has two separate bedrooms with a shared bathroom and small lounge area. These are all terraced rooms with seating in front of each room on the shared verandah and have views over the lovely manicured garden. Two of the standard rooms are slightly larger than the others and are located in individual thatched rondavels – these are the same size as the waterhole/pool view rooms, which are spacious. The newly added Waterhole/Pool view rooms are built with views of the newly enlarged waterhole or views across the pool. Staying in one of the waterhole rooms you get the feeling of being in the bush as these are set in an unfenced section of the camp, and although the camp is fenced off, the internal fences between the lodges have been removed so some of the plains game such as the Black Faced Impala and Common Duiker roam freely on the reserve and are often seen at the waterhole wandering past these rooms. These of the nature of these rooms, they are not recommended for children.
All rooms are air-conditioned and have mosquito nets over the beds. Each is also equipped with a tea and coffee station, hairdryers and air conditioning/ceiling fans.
At the entrance to the main area of Onguma Bush Camp is the large reception area with a curio shop. Along shaded paved pathways, you will find the “lapa" (an open-sided thatched area) that contain a dining area and bar plus split level lounge areas. The lounge and dining areas overlooks the waterhole and is somewhere lovely to sit and relax. In addition to these areas, there is also a games room for children. Across a lawn is a sparkling swimming pool with shaded sunloungers and a platform overlooking the waterhole.
Activities from Onguma Bush Camp include morning drives in Etosha, plus sundowner drives and after-dinner night drives on the Onguma Reserve. The landscape here is like that of eastern Etosha, a mix of pans, woodland and open plains, grazed by impala, oryx, wildebeest and springbok. These in turn attract the predators such as lion and leopard, and rhino are present too but sightings are never guaranteed! Alternatively, you can easily drive yourself into Etosha National Park, as the entrance to the reserve is just metres from the park entrance.
Our viewOnguma is the only fenced camp on the Onguma reserve and because of this, it is an ideal base for families travelling with young children. Because of its convenient access to the Etosha National Park, it can be a great base from which to explore the Park.
Ideal length of stay: A two or three night stay is recommended here.
Directions: Onguma Bush Camp is located just outside Etosha National Park's western gate, on the Onguma Reserve.
Food & drink
Usual board basis: Half Board
Food quality: A tasty buffet breakfast is served. This includes the usual breads, muffins, cereal, cold meat and cheese, yogurt, fruit and juice. A hot breakfast cooked to order as well as tea and coffee is available too.
We did not have lunch on our recent visit but the camp offers a choice of light lunches such as salads or sandwiches.
We thought Dinner here was of a good standard. It is usually served as set menu of three courses; we had lentil soup followed by Eland steak served with sweet potatoes, carrot and cauliflower. To round it all off a delicious peppermint cheesecake was served.
Dining style: Individual Tables
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Cost of meal e.g. lunch: £5-10
Drinks included: No drinks are included.
Attitude towards children: Onguma Bush Camp welcomes children of all ages.
Property’s age restrictions: There are no age restrictions here.
Special activities & services: There is a special games room for children to enjoy and a children’s menu is available. A child-minding service is available on request at no additional cost, however please note the minder may not have professional child-minding qualifications.
Equipment: Baby cots and high chairs can be provided.
Generally recommended for children: Yes, Onguma Bush Camp is the only fenced camp on the Onguma reserve and is ideal for families travelling with children.
Notes: Although Onguma Bush Camp is fenced, children must be under parental supervision at all times.
Power supply: Mains Electricity
Communications: There are no communications facilities for guests in camp, but there is some cellphone reception.
TV & radio: None
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: Yes
Medical care: The nearest doctor is in Tsumeb, about 100km away.
Dangerous animals: Moderate Risk
Security measures: The main entrance gate is locked at night.
Fire safety: There are fire extinguishers in all of the rooms.
Disabled access: On Request
Laundry facilities: A laundry service is available for an extra charge.
Money: No currency exchange is offered.
Accepted payment on location: Payment may be made in cash in US dollars, GB pounds, Namibian dollars or South African rand. Visa and MasterCard payments are accepted, too, although the bank may charge a surcharge.