Reviews of Stanley's Kopje
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Camp in Underrated Reserve
We visited Stanley's Kopje for two nights before travelling on to Selous. We found our accommodation very comfortable with good views over the park.
The dining room is a steep climb up from the tents and the climb is not something we'd want to do on a regular basis. The food was fine, main courses being provided on a buffet basis.
We do feel that some improvements could be made for visitors going into the reserve. Breakfast was not available until 7am and there was no facility for coffee and biscuits for those wishing to leave earlier. There would seem to be no reason why these could not be provided in the reception area from (say) 6am. On the plus side, we were provided with coffee in our tent at 6.30am on the day we were leaving.
The Mikumi reserve seems to us to be very underrated. We saw lots of mammals and birds, including the only leopard we saw on the entire trip.
Great guides, good food, beautiful settings.
First of all, many thanks to Kate, Humphrey and Edward for the very memorable stay. Kate is the camp manager, Humphrey is the head guide while Edward is a junior one still learning the ropes with great enthusiasm and very quickly!
I was very lucky that I was the only guest for most of my stay at Stanley's Kopje and as a result, I had both guides completely to myself. As all three of us love nature and have a lot of interest beyond the usual 'big 5', it was an excellent opportunity for me to dig into Humphrey's extensive knowledge of Mikumi and his patience for my many questions. Yes we saw lions and buffalo and all that but we also explored the park, discussed the various plants, birds, insects, all the 'small' things that so many safari goers usually neglect. Enjoyed the all-day drives, the picnic sites are good in the Park, there was plenty of time for everything and I just felt so lucky.
I loved the big tents. There is plenty of privacy and the coolness of the breeze at night blowing through the tent made sleep very easy. Whatever you do, don't zip down the door or window flaps, you will miss out!
I swam lots in the pool, loved the food, appreciated the ice in my gin and tonic. Kate was lovely company at dinner. Really couldn't wish for a better experience.
Just an overnight stay
Nice camp, tents elevated over the surrounding lowlands. Game scarce in the area of the camp, but plentiful in the nearby plains. Vehicle access limited to main roads through the park.
Did not do any game drives with camp staff.
Stanley's Kopje review
The camp and staff were very good - good service, good quality tent, good location. Our guide (Euston) was superb - very knowledgable with extremely sharp eyes. The only slight negative was the food. While it was good quality and very tasty, it was a simple buffet and wasn't as high quality or as well presented as other places.
We were made to feel very welcome and were the only people on most of the game drives.
Our trip to Udzungwe mountains was really interesting. A long bus journey, but interesting to see the scenery on the drive. Some staff came with us on the bus in order to stock up on lodge food and drinks, so we had a short stop in the local town to do this. This was fine for us, and all added to the nature of the trip, but I can imagine some people would be a bit put out.
A good start...
We were driven to Mikumi after our 9 hour long haul flight. Although tired and sometimes sleepy, one can enjoy the drive up to Mikumi. Foxes Safari Camp is a simple camp with great views over the Mikumi savannah. Shame the Mikumi NP was so dry and burnt. Surely after the rainy season will be different.
Activities were led by our Kerseley´s driver (Mr. Ezequiel), so we can not comment on activities led by the camp itself. The all-day drive, at this time of the year and with Mikumi so dry is a bit disappointing, as it started a little late (8AM), and from 10-11 am onwards, animals are just away and resting. By the time it finished (4PM) animals were starting to come up again. We do not know about the camp activities but we think they should start very early in the morning (6am?), specially with these field conditions.
Nevertheless these are just recommendations and we really have enjoyed the experience.
We are unable to comment on this camp as we did not actually stay there. Unfortunately the camp had been damaged by fire on August 15th - 7 weeks before we were due to arrive. The first we knew of this was when our driver took us to Vuma Hills camp rather than the Safari Camp. It was very disconcerting especially as we were looking forward to a bush camp (which Vuma Hills is not!).
We were totally confident that Expert Africa had not been informed of the situation because we knew that if they had, we would most certainly have been informed. We gathered on our arrival at Vuma Hills that we were not the only guests that had not been informed - and quite naturally Karen the camp manager was very frustrated.
Having said all this it did not really detract from our enjoyment as the main point of the exercise was to have a driver/guide for a few days so that we could experience some of the countryside and see how communities worked - and this was certainly achieved.
Expert Africa comments
We were horrified to hear that there had been such a major change to this itinerary, and very concerned that we had not been advised about this change. We are sorry that we were not in a position to advise these travellers of this before they left for their trip – and talk them through the alternative options
We have apologised to these travellers – and talked to the team on the ground in Tanzania to ensure that this never happens again. That said, we’re glad to hear that it didn’t impact too badly on this trip – which was clearly a great success.