Reviews of Lebala Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Lebala Camp; all singing and dancing
On our way from light aircraft to camp, our guide (Tabo) asked us what hadn't we seen yet. We said wildebeest; he said give me 5 seconds and we turned a corner to see a herd by a waterhole. Warm greeting by manager. Beautiful arrangement of towels on our bed. All staff seem keen to have the opportunity to interact with guests here, culminating in a wonderful half-hour impromptu performance of Setswana singing and dancing before our evening meal. A truly uplifting experience.
This was our second camp and gave us the opportunity to see larger herds of animals. The highlight was seeing a group of wild dogs, near to their den. They had just eaten and the blood on their coats was very evident. Tabo and his tracker (Bomen) gave us ample time to observe and take photos from within 3 to 10 metres. Our first observation of lilac breasted roller, in my view the most beautiful bird in Botswana. When close to a large group of elephants, Tabo explained that what might seem threatening to us, was just posturing (eg mock charges).
On the evening drive, we had close viewing of two male lions (brothers). The setting sun coloured their manes as they relaxed, seemingly unperturbed in front of us. We finished the day being joined by a group of elephants around a water hole for sundowners. Early on the second morning, we were just about to board our vehicle, when the camp manager, spotted a lion moving through the grass, away from the camp. (Later there was amusing banter between her and the guides.) We quickly went in pursuit and caught up with the same pair of lions. This time we were able to observe them moving through long grass and between stubby trees, again from a short distance away.
Saw our first herd of buffalo, for me the most challenging group to get a well composed photo of. A group of 5 Marabou stork around a small water hole. These birds have real character. Each in turn glided from one side to the other which enabled the chance for photos in flight. Great "photo shoot" with a pair of wildebeest. Like two fashion models, striking poses, giving artistic shots. Small group of impala attached to a female kudu, using her as a lookout for danger. Later, same morning a group of 5 lions. Two adult females and 3 six month old youngsters. They were hunting. We waited with them, in case a potential meal came by. After a while a small group of warthog did come close, but the lions did not pursue. Our guide said the warthogs had seen them. The lions then relaxed and we got great close-up images of group resting on a termite mound. Hippo in water hole and giraffe and wildebeest close by while we had morning coffee. Back to camp then off to plane to transfer to next camp.
great safari at lebala camp
spacious and well planned room here with more natural light, great views
food here was the best of everywhere, thanks to the ever smiling Mr Gee who clearly loves his work
game drives with BallyRaja and Mr Mo were fun filled exciting and varied, night drives in particular. it was obvious they care and love their work...the concern for the damage done to the few remaining ancient baobob trees and possible solutions out of their remit, the welfare of the wild dog packs, the sightings themselves. felt safe and confident with them both, from the hippo next to the tent to the puncture in the dark when following a jackal
Amazing sightings of predators
It was our last camp and given we had seen and done so many amazing things before, we thought we could not be more "wahoued"... And we were wrong.
We had an incredible experience following a pack of wild dogs in their hunt. Chasing hyenas and hunting down/eating warthogs.
We departed Kesane airport on a 13 passenger Cessna Grand Caravan for the 45 minute flight to Lebela. Lebala and its sister camp, Lagoon, are very well run by Kwando Safaris. Lebala looks over a grass field with a small creek running in front of the camp. Our Guide Paul and tracker Oti were incredibly good - we asked that we keep Paul and Oti for Lagoon and our wish was granted. Without a doubt the days at Lebala and Lagoon were the best of our 4 camp trip (the other two being Wilderness Safari's Kwetsani and Chitabe Lediba camps).
At the Lebala camp we had a hippo close by our "tent" that snorted periodically during the night. On the first outing in the arrival afternoon Paul and Oti spotted leopard tracks and shortly thereafter we spotted a female attempting to get the interest of a male. We spent the next hour observing the two of them including a fling on a large tree. Oti then spotted another leopard on a tree munching away at an impala that had been hoisted up the tree to keep it away from hyenas - there was a hyena at the bottom of the tree anxiously awaiting a morsel. The sundowners were perfect with our preferred drinks and great nibbles.
The next morning Oti spotted wild dog tracks and we were off to find them. After about 1/2 hour we came upon the 8 dog pack having laid down for the day. We observed for some time and Paul called in the other jeeps. In the afternoon Oti spotted lioness tracks and shortly thereafter we found two lionesses lounging after a full meal. Paul then proceeded to discuss their habits and how they were part of a pride that roamed the area. Paul then took us to see elephants, zebras, and scores of other animals. The meals at Lebala were good homemade fares with plenty of South African wines.
The next morning we loaded up our bags and proceeded for the transfer to Lagoon by safari jeep. A few minutes into the ride there was a lot of exited talk on the radio and Paul let us know they spotted two lionesses and three cubs chasing warthogs. We went where they were and saw the two cubs attempting to catch a couple of warthogs and missing them. One of the lionesses did catch one warthog and all four proceeded to much on the morning catch. We then proceeded to Lagoon camp.
Lebala Camp review
Lebala was the perfect marriage of delightful accommodations, a stunning setting, experienced staff, and a real emphasis on spotting game. While the atmosphere was very laid back and relaxed on the one hand, there was an underlying current that we were all there with a real purpose... to experience wildlife... and they were going to make it happen. Our guide, Partner, and tracker, Mr. More, were professional, incredibly persistent, extraordinarily talented, and extremely personable.
We especially enjoyed the schedule at Lebala which had some flexibility if you were "on the trail" and also included some time every evening spotlighting where we saw our only cerval and African wild cat of the trip.
We had so many highlights-great animal siteings including 2 prides of 2 female lions and 3 cubs, a beautiful mother leopard, 2 male cheetah, a herd of 30 elephants grazing/swimming off our front porch, sundowners watching the whole sky turn sherbet colors with a hippo to entertain us, painted wild dogs, driving through the bush with the smell of wild sage and excitement in the air, wonderful food (loved the folded animals napkins), and good company and conversation with the staff and fellow guests. There is nothing, honestly, I would have changed.
It was, in my wildest imagination, just what I thought a safari camp in Botswana might offer- an extraordinary, exhilarating experience staring mother nature!
Lebala Camp review
Lebala Camp was our favorite. Our tent was large and well designed. It was the only place where I would like to spend time in the tent and on the deck relaxing. The staff and common areas were excellent and we liked everything about it EXCEPT there were almost no animals after three game drives.
On our evening game drive we found a leopard and our guide kept contact with him for over an hour and a half. It was the animal highlight for the whole trip. That morning however after four hours we saw a handful of impala, some warthogs and elephants and little else--literally nothing. We would love to bring out group here but the game is so sparse which is contrary to how you describe Lebala on the website and how others describe Lebala.
We would like to hear from you about the game viewing. Would it be different a month later such as late May or early June?
Also although the guide, Tsabo, was very good he did not connect with us with the intimate information about the animals as did the guides at Kwara and Baines. He was still very good.
Lebala Camp review
Once again my modest requests for a particular tent and guide were not met, but Charles did come up with an explanation regarding the tent mix up which was acceptable. Moeti was present and available, but apparently my request for his services did not reach the camp.If we revisit Botswana it will probably not be with Kwando as I have found W/S to be much more responsive to the requests of return guests
Some excellent lion and wild dog sightings
Lebala Camp is a wonderful escape!
The camp is wonderful - each tent has plenty of privacy along with a fantastic view. The afternoon parade of elephants heading to the river/stream just north of the camp is spectacular to watch from your porch.
One of the nicest features for the afternoon is that your tent has a ceiling fan - a definite plus in the heat!
Amazing rooms, great guides.
A must in the Okavango area. The rooms are superb, in a wonderful location.
The guides are excellent.
Lebala Camp review
Staff are wonderful. Charles and Maepelo in particular. Game was disappointing. Food was excellent.
It is probably still our favourite camp.