Reviews of Lagoon Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Great Safari at Lagoon Camp
We spent four nights in early June at Lagoon Camp. This was an excellent continuation after Kwara Camp, where we started our Botswana safari trips. There was plenty of game, and very good variety, plus colorful birds. Contrary to Expert Africa review, game drives were not overly focused on wild dogs or big predators. We saw them, with more than enough time for photos, but we also paused to photograph many sorts of animals and birds, which all the guests in our vehicles wanted to do.
Guide Josiah and tracker James were excellent. We never had to ask our guide to stop for photographs; he did it routinely as well as placed the vehicle for the best sun angle and the best lighting. We always paused for photos as long as people wanted, and we were never pressured to move along.
Camp managers and staff were very friendly, and we appreciated that the guides and managers joined the guests for sit-down meals. We liked the family style dining, which allowed plenty of time to chat with other guests. Flexible brunch and dinner times accommodated the game drives, since we didn’t have to quit a photo op just to rush back to camp for a meal.
We really enjoyed African singing and dancing shows by the staff, which showcased local music. The staff was extremely talented, and it seemed that everyone participated.
Lagoon was a small camp (8 tents) which fully met our wishes for an intimate African experience. Food and accommodations were excellent in all respects.
Highlights: the resident pack of 14 wild dogs finishing their kill, and then visiting a pond for water; a leopard chased up a tree by wild dogs which per the guide were harassing the leopard to chase it away from a nearby den; the sound of hippos munching grass outside our tent at 3am; African sunsets.
We also stayed at sister camps Kwara and Lebala, and the following comments apply equally to them.
The safari vehicles were well designed, with (relatively) easy access, canvas tops (removable), and very few support poles to interfere with photography. Only six passengers were allowed, giving everyone a "window seat", extremely important to us.
The same guides and trackers remained with us throughout our stay, from pickup at the air strip to delivery for the return flight. This added a great deal to the safari experience, as guides came to know what guests were interested in, and which areas were best to meet guest interests. It also allowed us to get to know our guide and tracker better.
Having both a guide and a tracker measurably improved the safari experience, as the guide could concentrate on driving, especially off-road, while the tracker spotted the wildlife. When trying to find an animal, it couldn't have been done effectively without the tracker to watch for paw prints in the sand.
Night drives took place after the sundowners, en route back to camp. Pickings were sparse, but we were pleased to see the occasional nocturnal predator.
We really appreciated "bush babies" (hot water bottles) on the early, cold morning drives. They were also provided in the evening for our beds, as the nights were quite chilly (maybe cold better describes the temps). We brought several layers of light jackets and sweaters, plus knit caps and gloves, taking them off as the morning wore on, and putting them back on after the sun set. We had back packs which worked well to carry all these items of clothing, plus camera gear and whatever.
Laundry service was efficient, which meant that we could have left some clothes at home, and not have stuffed our duffels quite so full.
Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed our time at Lagoon Camp and would readily return. In hindsight, three nights would have been better, both more relaxed and less rushed, plus additional game drives in this wildlife rich area.
Lagoon Camp review
Everything was great about the Lagoon Camp.
Our only complaint is that it was our last camp and meant the end of our safari.
Lagoon Camp review
Beautiful camp with amazing rooms and again superb staff, Our guide, Carlos, was a mine of information, not only about the wildlife but also about all aspects of Botswana and James was an excellent tracker. Food was, as in the previous one,w onderfully good!
I've put only 'good' for the facilities because there were several blips with the water - we had none when we arrived and when we did get some, it came up black as it has to be pumped from the river. We completely understood the problem, but it was slightly off putting to bathe or shower in black water - and you need to after the dusty safaris in the dry season!
Great camp Lagoon
Best camp for location , rooms and public areas.
Our driver and spotter were very good trackers.
Hundreds of Carmine Beeeters - fantastic to sight
Good start of our Safari holiday
Received a warm welcome after a very long journey by the management and staff of Lagoon. Setting of this camp is truly stunning. Beautiful tents, with very comfy beds! Food was varied, inventive and always plentiful.
Our guide and tracker were Carlos and Timo. We found Timo a very friendly guy, enthousiast and good at his job. Our views about Carlos are somewhat mixed: our game drives were, overall, interesting and varied. However, we would have appreciated Carlos to be more communicative during the drives and during dinner. At times, we honestly had the impression we were bothering him with our questions.
Personal highlight: the Sunset Boat trip on our last evening, which offered truly wonderful sightings of elephants and hippos bathing in one of the most amazing sunset we have ever seen...
Great Safari at Lagoon Camp.
Great Camp, saw leopard, wild dogs and lion, so very rewarding. Food was good, wonderful staff. The rooms are very spacious (maybe even a bit too spacious) and are very comfortable. As they are not in the shade, it gets pretty hot during the day time. Sitting on the verandah overlooking the river is hardly an option, as there is no shade here either.Read more about the whole safari
Watching lions bringing down a buffalo
Very spacious, comfortable accommodation with far more natural light than most we stayed in. The bath however is a bit of style over substance - it takes ages to fill, the water is gritty and being by the large open mesh window it is draughty. The shower on the other hand was wonderful with really good water pressure.
This was where we had the most impressive sighting of the holiday: a pride of 7 lions bringing down a buffalo from a herd that had gone to the water to drink. The flurries of action followed by standoffs where the protective tightly grouped buffalo stood motionless encircled by the equally still lions made more dramatic the sudden charge by the buffalo pursued by the lions, one of which managed to cling on to the hind quarters of one buffalo. That allowed the other lions to target that injured animal. It took some time for the buffalo to give up struggling and then the lions could enjoy their meal.
Our guide Hobbs seemed rather withdrawn at first but later at communal meal times he was good company.
authentic camp experience deep in the bush
an outstanding safari camp experience, which met or exceeded our high expectations. Located adjacent to a lagoon tributary with no "fences", wildlife, especially elephants, literally would pass thru the camp day or night -- during one evening we could hear an elephant munching/ consuming a small palm tree adjacent to our detached room.
Th Kwando Lagoon staff were very friendly and helpful and seemed genuinely interested in maximizing the guest experience. All of the meals were served a large table where all of the guests and guides ate together to share the day's experiences. This enabled the guests to interact with the other guides as well as the specific guide "assigned" to us for the drives.
On the drives, the various guides worked extremely well together (via radio contact) so that key wildlife sightings e.g. wild dogs with cubs, lion prides etc by one vehicle were quickly communicated to the other guides so that the other vehicles could participate in the viewings also. A tracker was utilized at this camp (the other camps we visited did not utilize a tracker) which appeared to increase the likelihood of a wildlife citing. My impression of this camp was that wildlife sightings were the number 1 priority of the camp as the guides seemed relentless (in a good way) in this pursuit.
Lagoon Camp with Family
We spent 3 nights at Lagoon with our 3 children. We had the family tent (master bedroom and 2nd bedroom) and a second tent which had twin beds. The accommodation is excellent, extremely spacious with a glorious position over the river.
Hippo and elephant are often to be seen from the camp. The staff were so kind and helpful and gave us a very warm welcome. We had Spencer as our guide - he was exceptional and we enjoyed our game drives so much and saw an enormous amount of game and wildlife. We had a good boat trip one evening too.
Would highly recommend staying at this camp.
Lagoon Camp Review
Lagoon's location is excellent and the rooms are spacious and comfortable. The laundry service is excellent. Visitors shouldn't be concerned about the baggage allowance on the flights to the camps and the storage and retrieval of my additional suitcase with Mack Air went without a hitch.
The quality and variety of the food was good. I particularly enjoyed the traditional Botswanan dinner. The staff were very pleasant and willing to help.
My only really adverse comments about Lagoon centre around Hobs, the guide I was assigned, Hobs is clearly knowledgeable but he would benefit from being more communicative. He readily answers questions but it would be better if he offered more information about the animals and birds, particularly when the vehicle stops and there is an opportunity to observe the animals and their behaviour. Its not enough to say for example,'Its a lioness'. He has the skill and the knowledge, he needs to exploit it. This was somewhat mitigated by Timmo, our tracker who was very knowledgeable and a much better communicator than Hobs.
Sadly for me there were no wild dogs but a lion kill on the first morning made a very good start!!