Reviews of Camp Kipwe
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Kipwe, an amazing Lodge amongst the boulders
An amazing lodge built amongst rock boulders. It must have taken some imagination to create this!
Rooms were spacious, with loo and shower open to the stars, but our loo was only separated from the adjoining room's loo by a low wall! Fortunately we didn't use it at the same time as our neighbours! Their rock pool was really cold, though I did have a quick splash!
A very good sundowner just above the lodge with drinks brought to us by the staff. Our highlight here was an early morning tour (4 hours!) to find a herd of 10 desert elephants, including young. Very rewarding.
Mowani's laid back sister camp
Whilst not quite as jaw-dropping as Mowani, this is still a very nice camp and the whole bathroom being outside was incredible - although I must admit that I didn't really want to be visiting it during the night. Somebody probably should have given a bit more thought to the design of the rooms though because it was like sleeping in an oven - even though both air conditioning and an electric fan were provided, our room never dropped below 28C.
The camp has a more relaxed ambience than Mowani too, which we did prefer, and we rather liked the fact that some of the staff were clearly still learning as they were more prepared to chat - mainly about football with my equally enthusiastic husband. The sundowner spot was also a very nice place to enjoy a drink although quite a climb - I wouldn't like to be stuck up there in the dark as there is no lighting provided on the way down.
We didn't do any activities from this camp as we chose to visit the rock drawings at Twyfelfontein on our own.
Attractive lodge in Damaraland
Attractive and imaginative lodge in the fascinating Damaraland. Nice and comfortable rooms, with lovely outside bathrooms. The boulders provide all the privacy you want. Childeren stayed in a comfortable tent nearby the room.
Superb sundowner high up the rocks! Food was very good, we also had an excellent lunch before we left (chicken and game wraps).
We took the desert elephant safari, with Taffy, an excellent and entertaining guide. It can take a while before you see the elephants but then it is an overwhelming experience to come so close to these beautiful animals. A highlight of our trip to Namibia!
Camp Kipwe review
We stayed in room 2 for two nights. It was a beautiful domed/circular room which was an excellent size and had stunning views. The whole place was incredibly peaceful, private, laid-back and a wonderful place to relax.
There was a nice outdoor bathroom, a large outside terrace with chairs and a good size safe but no fridge.
The food was excellent - some of the best we had.
The staff were incredibly helpful and genuine (not over-officious).
We walked up to a lovely sundowner spot on the second evening.
We went on the nature drive - our guide was outstanding (one of the best ever guided trips either of us has experienced in Africa). We saw lots of desert-adapted elephants, including a three-day old calf. It was definitely a worthwhile experience even with the cold/foggy early morning start!
We would love to stay there again.
Fantastic Camp Kipwe !
Camp Kipwe was indeed superb! A beautifully constructed hotel in and around the boulders of this geologically fascinating area. The entire place has been designed with great imagination & is very atmospheric. One gets the experience of living 'close to the desert' / 'under the stars' but without losing any comforts. I cannot praise Camp Kipwe enough.,
It was wonderful experience to watch the sun go down over the desert standing on the highest rocks accompanied by an iced alcoholic drink!!!
The only comment I would like to make is that maybe, in time, the owners should perhaps consider is hiding a petrol pump behind a rock.!. Presumably they must keep a stock of petrol out there for their own use. Because of our fuel gauge problem we were acutely aware that although we had filled our tanks at the last possible location we had driven a very long way to get to the camp & would need to drive some considerable distance before we could purchase more. The worry of this was the only thing which marred our stay there because we didn't dare explore the area as we would have liked.
Camp Kipwe review
So disappointed in Kipwe.
Rooms fine but staff terrible and food the first night was poor. Poor vegetable soup, tough lamb shank (I think meat should fall off the bone) and the Malva pudding was just a square of mediocre sponge with a dollop of cold custard. The second night dinner was a bit better but generally below standard.
Service was disorganised and off-hand.
I did the Elephant trip early but was kept waiting until 7am to be picked up after a 5.30 alarm and as I was the only one I joined couple from Mowani. Good experience.
They tried to charge for both of us on the elephant trip when my husband wasn't feeling great so hadn't even arranged to go and they also tried to charge us 160N$ for two bowls of soup for lunch
We got the impression there were serious management issues here. Staff were surly and unsupervised .
Camp Kipwe review
A very imaginative lodge in a quirky location. Our guide, Taffy, was excellent. However, there was no apparent effective management and it showed. We arrive mid afternoon and were offered no lunch. We were then asked to pay for the lunch we had prior to departure. We declined. (This was tried first, on Mr Kelly and then on me!) Management improvement is definitely needed here.
Food was OK, save for our last evening meal, which was specially laid on in the boma and was delicious. The kudu steak was the best meat we had in the whole of our trip, including in Cape Town.
Great Location to Explore Damaraland
Very nice lodge conveniently located near the top destinations in Damaraland. We were welcome by Andrew and he made us feel right at home. The staff was very pleasant and accommodating. They even had some staff in training which were also top notch. The room was extremely comfortable. They have outdoor bathrooms which makes the whole experience even better. Taking a shower while watching the stars is an experience that everyone should have. The food was excellent!
We took a desert elephant safari and our guide was very knowledgeable and thorough. He knew where to go to find the desert elephants. We not only saw one herd of elephants but three. Altogether there must have been about 40 to 50 elephants. It was quite an experience. We also went to Twyfelfontein and enjoyed it a lot. On our way to Windhoek we stopped at the petrified forest; it is worth it.
My only criticism of the area surrounding Camp Kipwe was the amount of garbage on the trails. You see dozens of bottles of beer, cardboard boxes, tin cans and plastic bags all over. It would be great if Camp Kipwe would work with the community to clean up the surrounding area.
Elephant spotting at Camp Kipwe
The location and design of Camp Kipwe lives up to all the expectations from the brochure and website. The rooms built into the rocks blend in very well and the outdoor bathrooms are large, very private and a joy to use - ours (no. 7) had a huge boulder for a roof and was certainly a loo with a view. Rooms are quite dark as a result of the design and also tend to get rather warm, but all have a shady terrace with great views over the surrounding landscape.
Staff are friendly and welcoming, but service levels whilst still good, were slightly below that of other places we stayed. Although we were asked for dietary requirements on arrival these did not appear have been properly noted as they were overlooked on two occasions, but rectified immediately without any argument. Meals were 3 course with a choice of main courses. Food was good but was not quite up to the same standard as some other lodges. Sundowners on top of the Kopjie behind the lodge were superb - a great view with very little climbing effort with drinks and snacks brought up by the staff.
We took the trip to track the desert elephants and were fortunate enough to find them and get an excellent view. The guide was excellent, informative and entertaining and the trip also showcased the beautiful and diverse landscapes of this area. We believe this trip was also very good value for money as it is not something you would be able to do on your own.
The public areas of the camp are stylish and inviting and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay here.
Luxury at Camp Kipwe
Camp Kipwe was another stopover because the distance between places we wished to go to we're too far to be driven in a day. However It was worth the stop as Camp Kipwe was the nicest place we stayed at. Having experienced showering and toilet in the open air at Tok Tokkie we were not worried that the wash basin, shower and toilet were all outside covered by just a few sticks. How you went to the loo in a rain storm, should that event ever happen, is anyone's guess. No need to worry about privacy though as rock and vegetative screens block the view from outside your quarters.
The camp is set amongst boulders so blends into the environment as is the small plunge pool where I was able to cool off after another long drive. We watched the sun go down from a spot high above the camp with drinks and canapés brought to us by the attentive staff in the company of two honeymoon couples.
Dinner was on an open terrace where we both had delicious Oryx steak.
Again we were sorry we only spent one night here as we could have spent a whole day exploring the area instead of making do with a short visit to the Twyfelfontein rock engravings on he way to our next destination.