Reviews of Zarafa Camp
Wildlife sightings and reviews
17 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Zarafa Camp and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Zarafa Camp review"
The wildlife was more sparse here than at the other camps but this was offset by the presence of a large pride of lions with 4 month old cubs which was spectacular to watch and video. The birding was also excellent.
Our guide Donald was extremely knowledgeable and seemed to enjoy sharing his knowledge with us." See all these reviews: 11n in Botswana
"Zarafa Camp review"
With our own chef, we were presented nearly anything we wanted. He would make suggestions and make it happen. The food was delicious and plentiful. He made a hot breakfast for us in the bush one morning. How fun to sit at a table with white linens in the bush....truly pampered. We never ate dinner in our room at the same place. One evening, dinner was on the lower deck, another by the fire pit where my wife and I shared wine each evening, another was next to the pool, and the last on the top deck just outside our living room. Even our 15 and 16 year old girls loved the food.
Being in Botswana in June/July is cold and often into low to mid 40's every night. It was nice to have a gas fire place in our room to turn on in the middle of the night when the temps started to really drop. The room was very nice. It's hard to believe you're in a tent with the lovely wood planked floors, recessed lighting along the walls, lovely furniture fitting of the locale. In between the rooms was our living room that overlooked a sunset flood plain with hippo, elephant, warthogs, baboons and red lechwe right outside our room nearly every day.
Game drives were outstanding. Our guide, Name (short for his Botswana name), was amazing. He found so many things that we didn't see at our other camps. Having already seen all the other main predators at the other camps, we really wanted to see leopards. Another Zarafa guide found an impala hanging in a tree and we sub sequentially arrived to find the leopard that put it there. She was beautiful to watch. We saw her even climb back up the tree to eat and rest. On our last day, we spotted a male leopard and Name tracked him through the thick mopane trees and watched him steal his warthog kill from a very large hyena that had stolen it from him earlier and climb into a mopane tree to secure his food (very exciting).
We were having a great time and didn't want to leave. We splurged and Frank (Zafara's manager) helped us cancel two flights, arrange a private transfer from Selinda to Gaborone the following day , and were able to spend an additional day at Zarafa. This was truly an extraordinary experience and feel privileged and grateful to have met the team at Zarafa allowing them to take such good care of us. Would strongly recommend this camp to anyone." See all these reviews: 9n in Botswana
"Zarafa Camp review"
Zarafa has a real homey feel to it, small scale, ultra comfortable, excellent service. Camp managers Alexandra and Ron made us feel like staying at their private residence, more like B&B owners than managers. Always in for a chat, always there to see us off and welcome us back. The strong point of Zarafa is the ability to totally personalize your stay, hang out with fellow guests or do everything in your own space. We could pick our favorite wines from the extensive cellar and Ron even organized a winetasting for us.
Their commitment to guests was truly above and beyond. We were very sad to leave Zarafa and found it the perfect end to a remarkable journey through Botswana." See all these reviews: 13n in Botswana
"Zarafa Camp review"
Apotheosis was our last evening after the drive, somewhere in the midle of nowhere, to see lights hanging in the trees around a big campfire and the barbeque already lit with the Chef busy with the preparations for our diner, and accompanied by dancing and singing from the staff. a truly fairy-like scene. (With a real toilet hidden in the bush)" See all these reviews: 13n in Botswana
"Our favorite stay"
This was our favorite lodge of the trip. The breakfast out in the wild was incredible. The bubble bath and private dinner for our anniversary was so special, a memory of a lifetime. We saw giraffes mating, we saw an enormously wide variety of antelope and birds, we saw prides of lions. There could not be a better guide nor tracker than Coupe.
Our only suggested improvements for this camp have to do with food. The dinner under the stars had us sitting in a row, instead of facing each other. It was strange. And we would have wished for some light snacks in our room. Otherwise, everything was incredible.
We would definitely return to this luxurious and small camp." See all these reviews: 8n in Botswana; 4n in South Africa
"Luxury Glamping in the Bush"
Game drives with our expert safari guide, Pete, were fantastic! He went out of his way to ensure we were able to complete another spotting of the big 5 and obtain incredible photographs. During the duration of our stay, we had sightings of several different animals--too many to mention them all--but we did have an incredible encounter with a leopard and no fewer than 40 elephants around a water hole!
On our last full day, Pete took us on a full day game drive, starting well before the crack of dawn and ending well after sunset (talk about stamina, patience, and a passion for game!), and, along with other members of the fantastic staff, surprised us with a several course lunch in the bush. What a day! But it did not end there, for when we returned, our lovely hosts and their incredible staff had drawn a hot bath for us that was followed by private dinner served to us in our tent--a brilliant and romantic end to the day!
Every meal at Zarafa is out-of-this-world delicious and high-end restaurant worthy. You can tell that an incredible amount of time and thought is given to the menu, which is extremely varied and flavorful!
Our "tent" was extremely luxurious and spacious, with a comfortable seating area that was perfect for relaxing mid-day when not on a drive, a delightful bed, and a bathroom featuring a stunning copper soaking tub. We shouldn't neglect to mention the copper gas heaters, which were extremely useful when warming up the tent in the evenings and mornings!
It is not a question of if we will be back to Zarafa, but merely when!" See all these reviews: 5n in Botswana; 2n in Zambia
"Outstanding experience, up close and personal"
A very intimate experience - like a very special house party. Fabulous food - passionate young chef.
We visited a lioness with several young cubs - watched her play with them - so self satisfied - a very proud lioness.
On the last night we were taken into the bush for a BBQ. Such attention to detail.
A wonderful place." See all these reviews: 9n in Botswana; 2n in Zambia
"Wow! Didn't want to leave even after 5 days!"
Motts, our guide, was outstanding. He was an amazing tracker, host, and guide and he shared experiences with us we have never had before, and probably never will again. We will always remember the double buffalo kill, mother and a calf by the two male brother lions on our last night. The adrenalin flowed while we witnessed the chase, the kill and the sadness under a full moon. We stayed for several hours in very low light watching the brothers at work. The story continued the next morning when the whole pride, including young cubs came to feed. We even saw several lions cross the water to get to the kill.
Motts showed us so much, leopards, cheetah, roan, which we'd never seen before, lions, ........... And the list went on.
Life at the camp was fabulous. The setting is stunning and there was always a large variety of animals a birds visiting outside the main viewing deck. Lots of action in the camp as well with elephants walking through, destroying the odd tree and a Marshall eagle sitting with it's prey, a slender mongoose, in one of the camp trees.
The food was out of this world. Hermann, the chef, created healthy, colourful, varied meals which were always outstanding, and food you'd expect to experience in a top city restaurant!
Our host Willem, apologies if I've spelt it incorrectly, was charming, enthusiastic and great to talk and spend time with. He has a great outlook and life and runs a very happy camp. Nothing was ever too much trouble.
This camp, although expensive, was well worth the money. It exceeded our expectations in every way. The Great Plains Consevation company that hold this concession are doing a phenomable job!" See all these reviews: 11n in Botswana
"Zarafa Camp review"
We had a wonderful stay." See all these reviews: 6n in Botswana
Just stunning in every aspect, location, design,wildlife viewing and staff. Exceptional knowledge and great company from our guide Lets. You could just stay in camp all day and watch the scenery and elephants passing by but there are boat trips at sunset to be taken and wild dogs to follow. The rooms may be very impressive but they still manage to keep a bush feel. Hippos and hyena calls surround you at night.
A great variety of delicious food and the choice of joining in for laughs at the dinner table or having a romantic private meal for two." See all these reviews: 11n in Botswana
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