Reviews of Onguma Tented Camp
Wildlife sightings and reviews
79 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Onguma Tented Camp and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Onguma Tented Camp - Wonderful"
The Camp is very well designed with great use of line, shape and colour all leading to a sense of well-being. The main areas are very open which leads you to feel you are at one with the surroundings. Plenty of comfortable seating, individual tables for dining, a fire pit area and a rather nice pool with loungers, all with views of the water hole, make for a very comfortable stay.
Our tent, number 5, had a particularly good view of the water hole. All tents are very private, it was lovely to sit on the veranda and watch the various animals come and go. The tent was faultless, tasteful in design and every amenity you could reasonably want. The outdoor shower was a winner.
Food was delicious both at dinner and breakfast and served with a smile.
All of the staff we encountered were friendly and helpful. We were also taken by surprise on our second night to be served diner on our veranda which was decked out with lights, all very romantic!
We drove ourselves into Etosha on the two days we were there which did take a good half hour to get to but we encountered various birds and animals on the way so this was not a problem. We especially enjoyed the road around Fischer's Pan. The only disappointment was that we left it rather late to ask for an early morning bush walk and it was already full so would recommend making any request in good time." See all these reviews: 10n in Namibia; 9n in Botswana
"Deluxe accommodations near Etosha at Onguma"
A guided walking safari along the edge of Fisher's Pan was extremely interesting, with a guide (David) who seemed especially engaged by his duties. Our drive into Etosha was less rewarding, partly due to windy conditions, partly to a paucity of game (other than a black rhino), and partly due to a guide who did not make much effort to do other than drive,
The Onguma complex is generally well-located near the East Gate of Etosha, but the access road from the Onguma entrance to the camps themselves is long and somewhat jarring." See all these reviews: 14n in Namibia
"Wonderful bush location"
The food and wine was also excellent. A really special little lodge." See all these reviews: 12n in Namibia
"Lovely stay and Onguma Tented Camp"
The rooms were really lovely with a view over an attractive water hole. We did an evening sundowner drive in the lodge's own reserve, which I can't recommend as we saw very little.
We drove ourselves in Etosha during the daytime and saw a lot of game at various water holes." See all these reviews: 15n in Namibia
"Beautiful camp but limited game"
The only problem was the lack of game in the reserve - to be fair it had been incredibly dry and the landscape was desperately parched, but we saw little or no game in the reserve itself on our afternoon and night drives. The morning drive into Etosha was better and we saw plenty of game there. Our guide was ok but wasn't very informative - he just pointed out the animals.
The waterhole in front of the camp is in a great setting and it is very relaxing to sit and watch animals drink, albeit we didn't see much during our stay." See all these reviews: 11n in Namibia
Good facilities but just failed to hit the right note on service. The guide asked the right questions but then completely ignored the answers. He appeared grumpy and disinterested and was unable to answer simple and sensible questions from others in the vehicle.
Service in the camp was curious in that it verged on obsequious so that we, for the only time in Namibia, felt uncomfortable from the first welcome onwards. No need for poems by the bed,"good nite" (!) wishes on the hot water bottles but a bar of soap for the waiters would have been appreciated!
With some small but critical attention to the right detail this could be a truly special stay but for us it was not... Great food though!" See all these reviews: 15n in Namibia
"Onguma Tented Camp review"
"Very comfortable stay at Onguma Tented Camp"
Very friendly helpful staff of whom David and a trainee stood out." See all these reviews: 28n in Namibia; 5n in South Africa
"Lots of superficial gloss but no substance"
Here we were down as Mr and Mrs McDowall-Wilson - it's not something that bothers me but I thought it indicative (interestingly enough, when we left, the bill was made out to Mr and Mr McDowall-Wilson, progress of some sort). We were asked if we had any dietary requirements and when I said I can't eat fish or seafood, she said, well, that won't be a problem as there is always a choice. Except that that evening one of the courses was seafood and there was no choice! People don't listen. It's not a problem for me when I travel, you have to be adaptable, and I can be quite happy with a cheese sandwich, but there was an attitude problem here. And anyway the helping was so small that I probably wouldn't have been sick if I'd eaten it.
The food was the best presented on our trip but not the best otherwise. And helpings of meals that were included (we were on half board) were meagre and in some instances minute. At every other lodge or camp they were generous to the point of being copious. The lunch that we had, and paid for, was a huge helping but it was not very appetising: it was a single course of pasta with a mushroom sauce that was just a glutinous mound on the plate. They made a big fuss of their wine cellar but in fact the wine selection was nothing special.
The staff in the dining room were sweet and one of them in particular made a real effort to be helpful but he was clearly out of his depth; he was trying so hard but he was a complete bundle of nerves. We felt that he hadn't had enough training, which of course isn't his fault, and we ended up feeling sorry for him. On top of this there was a language barrier. His name was Portuguese so maybe he was from Angola.
The staff were a complete contrast to all the other lodges we stayed in. Even the guide was not as informative or as knowledgeable. On the morning drive into the park we did see a lot of game but mainly because he was in radio contact with other guides, so he knew where to go.
As we were here on a half-board basis we had to pay extra for everything and none of it was good value. As we'd driven to Onguma from Ongava through the park, we know how much the entry fees are, and they are a tiny fraction of what we had to pay for that half-day drive in Etosha while we were at Onguma. You don't mind paying more than the average for something special but here the prices were very high for nothing that was any better than we'd had included in the price elsewhere, in fact everything was all inferior in quality (and quantity).
There are other minor negative points I could make but I don't want to accentuate the bad. Overall we weren't impressed by the place and wouldn't recommend it to anyone else. It's a shame because it looks so nice but it really is a case of a superficial gloss and nothing much behind it. At other lodges the staff were small in number but they made up for it by working as a team whereas here the tiny number of staff contributed to a strong feeling of niggardliness." See all these reviews: 9n in Namibia
"Great spot but not much to do!"
Food above average but limited choice. We had opted to go on rhino expedition in the afternoon at 4.00 but were kept waiting with little information why the driver had not arrived. Then informed he would be another 20 minutes. No show. Then informed another driver was on his way. No show. Then informed it was cancelled. Returned to our lodge. Some 15 minutes later (by now c5.15pm) a driver arrived and asked if we still wanted to go - we said no thanks. No apology offered by staff.
" See all these reviews: 16n in Namibia; 4n in Botswana
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