Reviews of Damaraland Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Damaraland Camp review
A very beautiful camp in a stunning location.
We didn't have time to do any activities but the marked walks were great.
The 'family' meals are a great experience and the women staff were outstanding.
Welcome, welcome to DMC
We missed the 14:00 pickup deadline, but this was no problem and we were quickly collected by our guide, Teek. As we cooled off with refreshing towels and drinks, the staff choir assembled to greet us with their welcome song performed in multi part harmony.
Dinner was a delight with the menu announced by Patricia and translated into the Damaraland tongue by Korbiana. After dinner the choir assembled once again to joyfully perform tracks from their CD. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays dinner is served in the Boma on the hill. This is an enchanting spot with a candle lit path from the lodge.
An exciting morning trip took us searching for the desert adapted elephants. Teek clearly loves these animals and spoke with passion about how they have adapted to their environment. The scenery is stunning and we enjoyed exploring the local geology.
Probably our favourite camp of the whole trip.
We were very impressed with Damaraland Camp. In such a remote location to achieve this level of accommodation and service is really something.
The main area was a lovely place to relax. The afternoon tea on arrival a lovely bonus. The staff were really lovely. The food was excellent as was the wine with dinner. The communal dining table was a good feature.
We went on a Drive in the morning with Teek our guide to look for the desert-adapted elephants which was excellent. He proved a good guide - very knowledgeable about the area.
we loved this camp it was one of our absolute favourites during the trip. We were made to feel so welcome by all the staff. The food was great and we were luck to be able to participate in a traditional evening meal outdoors. This was a real treat.
We had a lovely evening walk with Richardt when we arrived which was ideal after our long drive- the views were breathtaking. The following morning we had a drive to find the desert elephants - Richardt is so knowledgeable and he made sure we got great photos without interfering in the elephants' routine we also had the added bonus of Richardt finding some giraffe.
our only minor comment was that everyone went to bed and the bar etc closed right after dinner. I know most people want to head off to bed early but we were on our holidays and would have liked to lounge around a bit over a drink. this is a minor point though and didn't take away from our stay at all.
This is a really special place.
Damaraland Camp review
Excellent rooms, friendly staff and a wonderful boma dinner. We were given no information about the activities on offer though which was very annoying - we found out was available from other guests by which time it was too late to do everything that we wanted. Having said that we did go on an excellent trip to find the elephants and see the rock paintings.
If you go walking on one of the trails then be aware that only the start is marked and the Shepherd's Trail at least just peters out and isn't a circular walk. We ended up walking along animal tracks before turning back as we were in danger of getting lost.
The drive to the camp from the road is not too difficult in a 4WD.
Damaraland Camp review
This was one of our favourites, partly because of the setting which is exceptional, partly because the room was lovely (though not the best we had), partly because the staff were so positive, friendly and enthusiastic about the camp and their work. We were greeted with singing and we departed to singing too! We loved the activities, from the nature walk, to the game drive to the dinner at the boma by firelight, they provided a vegetarian meal for Ruth each night.
Nothing was too much trouble and all the staff were completely on message. If they were my staff I would have been so proud of them! They rank at the top of our list of staff thoughout our holiday.
Just one point for Expert Africa to note, in the notes sent to us prior to departure, we were told we would need a transfer to the camp and that we would need to be at the transfer point by a particular time. However when we got there, having had to miss out some stops en route in order to make the time, we were told emphatically that with a 4 wheel drive, we did not need a transfer. And indeed we did not need one, it was a very straightforward and beautiful drive to the camp.
Doro Nawas review
We did not go to Dora Navas in the end.
We went to the Damaraland Camp which we loved as it was smaller and more personal.
The Damaraland Camp is really in the middle of nowhere which is just perfect! It's a little jewel in amongst the harsh ruggedness that is the Huab River Valley. Star gazing is phenomenal here given the clear night skies.
The staff were great - a fantastic team who had fun togethe and with their guests (especially Desert Rose and Ghandi). James the manager on duty is a lovely man who is passionate about his job and has a great rapport with his staff and his guests.
The food was good - communal dining for all meals (unless you'd prefer otherwise) is a fun way to meet and interact with other guests. The early morning surprise breakfast - fantastic, in a stunning location!
We were lucky enough to see the Desert Elephants which was the reason we chose to stay at this camp.
The rooms were lovely but would have been perfect had they have had double beds and not twin beds - I would assume that most guests are couples...
We stayed here as much for the ever-changing, starkly beautiful scenery as for the animal life. We were not disappointed. The harsh desert environment limits the number and variety of animals present for viewing, as they move around in search of food and water, but we saw a large family of desert adapted elephants, a solitary bull elephant, baboons, and assorted antelope.
The lodge went out of its way to offer interesting experiences. Dinner in the candle lit boma, a short walk from the camp, was one example, with African songs and dancing by the staff. A sunrise breakfast for everyone on a hilltop a short drive away was another moment to remember. We enjoyed the family style dinners, which offered a chance to relax and chat with other guests. Overall, we thought the ambiance of the camp and friendliness of the staff was perhaps the best we enjoyed in Botswana and Namibia.
We opted for the chance to visit a local village, with only seven families, but it was Saturday and most of the residents had gone to town for the day. The contrast between traditional and modern was remarkable, out in the distant boonies. People still lived by subsistence farming and grazing, in mud daubed reed houses, but they also enjoyed clean water from wells with solar powered pumps, and several clean toilet blocks were lined up in the center of the village. A brightly painted kindergarten prepared students for elementary school, in another village. Excess solar power from the pumps was used to charge cell phones. Some residents worked at the lodge, providing them with cash income from the lodge, jointly owned by Wilderness Safaris and the local people. We were disappointed that hardly anybody was at home in the village, but were still glad we visited it. A more expansive visit, with the chance to speak with local people and learn more about them and their culture, would have been appreciated.
In hindsight, we thought that a third night here could be worthwhile, with the chance to see prehistoric rock art and/or take a guided hike. However, it was unclear from Expert Africa’s review precisely what these options offered and how worthwhile they might be. The village visit wasn’t mentioned at all.
Wonderful location and experience
Fantastic location. Lovely Lodge. The drive was quite long but necessary in order to find elephant.
We loved the meal served outside in the evening and the breakfast on the drive overlooking the mointains. Loved the outside toilet!! The staff singing was a lovely touch that we enjoyed everywhere.
The staff were very good, but very disorganised when we came to pay our bill at the end.