Reviews of Okuti
Wildlife sightings and reviews
21 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Okuti and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Nice camp - average service"
Game viewing and location - very good. Organization, attention to detail, attitude of staff - average at best.
I had a feeling the management of this lodge is more preoccupied with the comfort of the staff then with the guests.
Wasted one day on a trip to a location high the guide did not know. Saw one dead giraffe and got one juvenile elephant pi....d off one the way back.
Next day's was very good - even excellent.
Guide then followed us evening/morning to ensure we tipped him( would have done so anyway)
Got half a breakfast on the second day- then staff took away the plates and disappeared" See all these reviews: 15n in Botswana; 3n in Zimbabwe
We had mentioned in advance that we were interested in birding as well as animals and Solly (a birding expert) was therefore our guide. This worked very well with over 100 different birds sighted as well as wide range of wildlife including leopards, lions, hyenas etc.
The highlight was spending 30 minutes adjacent to a leopard and it's kill." See all these reviews: 7n in Botswana; 3n in Zambia
"Number One in Our Safari Book - Moremi Camp"
We were greeted upon our arrival with Botswana's greatest chorus, the Okuti staff member singing! It may sound cheesy, but the staff were incredible, heartful host who treated us to their traditional culture singing and dancing two of three nights.
One of our most memorable experiences occurred after spotting two leopard cubs later on our morning game drive. Our guide, Chachos, casually told us it was time to head back to lunch, to our surprise. Lunch turned out to be a white linen table set up out in the bush! Absolutely awesome!
Our last night at camp the staff went above and beyond the call of duty to surprise us with yet another incredible dinner feast, Botswana songs and dances. The game viewing was a special experience.
We were fortunate to see and hear lions and leopards, elephants, etc. If we ever return to Botswana, we would go back to Okuti!" See all these reviews: 8n in Botswana; 2n in South Africa; 2n in Zimbabwe
They prepared a special private dinner for us one night and it was beautifully appointed, decorated and very good. It was such a surprise we were both touched very much by the dinner. It was very romantic and beautifully done." See all these reviews: 9n in Botswana; 2n in Zambia; 1n in South Africa
"Three wonderful nights on the Delta"
No complaints at all." See all these reviews: 6n in Botswana; 2n in Zambia; 2n in Namibia; 1n in South Africa
Another issue we had was with the condition of the vehicles. We had several different vehicles over the 4 days and there were numerous problems. One kept stalling continually and we had to push start it. Another had a top that was so low, the men in our group ( one at 6'5", two at 6'2") had to slouch in order not to hit their heads on the bars when we went over bumps. We finally told our driver we needed to have one of the vehicles with a higher top.
The highlights of Okuti were seeing a pack of wild painted dogs, several leopards, a monitor lizard and a pride of lions. Again though, the experience in the public preserve was just not the same. At one point we were even all uncomfortable as it felt as though we were all cornering and corralling a leopard instead of observing it. There were too many vehicles (6 at one point) all trying to get a look and jockeying around for position. Our guide, Nando, did a good job with the circumstances being what they were.
We really enjoyed our final evening which included an amazing singing and dancing performance by the choir and a very special celebratory dinner under the stars for just the 6 of us." See all these reviews: 9n in Botswana; 2n in Zimbabwe
Okuti Camp took on board the constructive feedback from these guests and have advised us of the following:
Ker & Downey Botswana would like to thank these guests for their feedback and are happy to see that on the whole they had a great time at Okuti Camp. Ker & Downey Botswana apologizes for the guests having to help start the safari vehicle, this is certainly not the norm. As soon as the radio fault occurred, a technician from Maun was deployed to fix the problem. Unfortunately with the one vehicle having its starting problem attended to, an alternative vehicle with a lower roof had to be used for these guests. Ker & Downey Botswana is in the process of re-fleeting their camps, with the majority of vehicles having already been replaced with a design that offers more height clearance. This will mean that a similar situation is avoided in the future.
Senior management has noted the other comments made by these guests, and these will be addressed as the final touches of Okutis refurbishment are put in place. This includes reviewing the seating areas and the lighting in each room. Steps have also been taken to try and decrease the heat in the rooms during Botswanas hot summer months. Original plastic top wall panels have been replaced with a new technology mesh that is much more breathable for example. Each room also has fans fitted.
"Our four days at Okuti"
The highlight of our stay here were the game drives and, in particular, our guide. Not only was he an expert tracker, but he knew all the animals and birds, even obscure ones, and was thoroughly knowledgeable about the ecology and environment. We had arranged in advance a dedicated guide for our last two days here but, in the event, we had him to ourselves for the full four days. This made an enormous difference to our game viewing experience. There were some mornings when, for health reasons, we were unable to start out first thing. But our guide could not have been more helpful or accommodating. He was there when we were ready to go, on one morning as late as 9 o'clock." See all these reviews: 8n in Botswana
Our only slight difficulty was that our guide was rather too earnest and lacked a sense of humour. We also found it hard at times to understand his english. The first evening we were "told" to sit with him and the family who were our companions on the drive. At other camps we simply sat down where we chose and the various members of staff slotted happily into the gaps which lent variety to the conversations.
By this stage of the trip we were desperate for some exercise - a walk, a treadmill, anything rather than sitting! This camp (unlike the others) is fenced which increased the feeling of being confined. One niggle/concern - on the last morning the staff oiled the wooden floors of the "mess" tent and turned the surface into an ice rink. I nearly fell and pointed this out. Nothing was done. Several others slid and slipped and at lunch we had to hold on to the back of the chairs to go to the buffet table. Still no action was taken. Luckily no one actually fell over or was hurt.
Overall we both enjoyed it immensely." See all these reviews: 10n in Botswana
"Beautiful camp on the Delta"
That said, the staff was outstanding--it's a small camp, and very friendly. The food was excellent, served family style at dinner, with the guides and management joining the guests at the dinner table. One of the days we had a day-long game drive in which we were gone for 9 hours and went way out in the park, where we felt much more like we were in a private reserve. That day we saw a huge pod of 45 hippos and had a picnic lunch just outside where they were swimming.
We had an excellent guide, Nando, and enjoyed water activities as well as the game drives. The rooms were beautifully decorated and felt very luxurious. Ker & Downey sees to your every need, including having drinks and snacks in the room." See all these reviews: 10n in Botswana; 1n in South Africa
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