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Mdonya Old River Camp
Mdonya Old River Camp
Mdonya Old River Camp
Mdonya Old River Camp

Mdonya Old River Camp


7°41’7.0"S 34°39’3.2"E

Reviews of Mdonya Old River Camp

Wildlife sightings and reviews

124 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Mdonya Old River Camp and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa

Wildlife sightings by our travellers
Starting in Aug-2018, 13 of our travellers have recorded their wildlife sightings at Mdonya Old River Camp.
Lion

92% success

Leopard

75% success

Cheetah

17% success

Wild dog

27% success

Elephant

100% success

Giraffe

100% success

Zebra

100% success

Buffalo

83% success

Hippo

75% success

Eland

46% success

Spotted Hyena

27% success

Roan antelope

25% success

Striped Hyena

10% success

Sable antelope

9% success

Aardvark

0% success

Pangolin

0% success

Showing 51-60 of 124
Duration
Arrival date
The W family
Thatcham

"Great 'out in the wild' feeling!"

2 nights Arrived 16 Jul 2012
"Had great time here! Loved the tents, which were well spaced out and the fact that wildlife could just wander through! (the camp not the tents!!) Dinners taken communally outside, which was great to hear about who'd seen what that day and then continued round the camp fire... Still amazed that when someone shone a torch into the darkness there might be an elephant no distance away happily having a munch! Wonderful going to sleep to the sound of impalas and elephants feeding nearby and all sorts of cries coming through the air.

Ruaha is perfect for getting close up to the animals, giraffe and elephants in particular. We saw a cheetah with cubs and a leopard as well as lions and numerous deer! The animals do not seem too worried about the vehicles and we didn't experience any problem with having lots of other vehicles around either. The guiding is geared to what you want when so we didn't feel pushed into starting too early." See all these reviews: 9n in Tanzania
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location:
Excellent
Service:
Good
Activities:
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Food:
Good
Facilities:
Excellent
Mr I
Kent

"Good guides and good game viewing"

4 nights Arrived 27 Jun 2012
"The guides at Mdonya were amongst the best I have come across, very knowledgable and very good at spotting the wildlife. The number of lions was incredible (around 30 different lions in 4 days) and the highlight was seeing a female cheetah with cubs. It was possible to get close to a number of different species without disturbing them including bushbuck and dik-dik. The elephants and giraffes were particularly relaxed and I would highly recommend this National Park for both these species.

The only downside of the game drives were the occassions when cheetah and leopard (to some extent lions as well) were sighted. Some vehicles (most often from other camps) seemed to disturb the natural activity of the animals - for example, we watched the cheetah hunt some impala but the impala were disturbed by a racing vehicle despite our driver telling other vehicles to approach carefully to avoid disturbing the wildlife.

The camp's location was good although it felt a little away from the more habitat diverse part of the National Park. That said some interesting wildlife such as dik-dik and bushbuck as well as a number of raptors could be found near camps. I also heard lion and jackal on a number of nights.

" See all these reviews: 9n in Tanzania
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Good

Location:
Good
Service:
Good
Activities:
Good
Rooms:
Good
Food:
Average
Facilities:
Average
Mr G
Portslade

"Mdonya Old River Camp review"

3 nights Arrived 24 Jun 2012
"Generally we had a great time there.

The food was the best of all the camps we stayed at. The Guides were very good and we liked the location. The tsetse flies were a bit of a nuisance at times but not enough to spoil our enjoyment. The only negative was that the staff didn't appear to be allowed to interact with guests, even though they were more than happy to do so." See all these reviews: 10n in Tanzania
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Good

Location:
Good
Service:
Good
Activities:
Good
Rooms:
Good
Food:
Excellent
Facilities:
Good
Dr N
Virginia

"Secluded tented camp provides great experienc"

3 nights Arrived 6 Jun 2012
"A really lovely place.

The managers (Nicol and Fabia; regrettably now rotated to different assignments) did a great job of creating a welcoming and friendly, but also extremely professional, atmosphere. Guiding was also excellent. The location has lots of animals, thought thicker brush than some other locations in Ruaha.

My stay here was one of the highlights of the trip." See all these reviews: 14n in Tanzania
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location:
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Rooms:
Good
Food:
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Steve H
Leeds

"Green season at Mdonya"

4 nights Arrived 7 Feb 2012
"Like Manze, Mdonya is a very well run camp and we were really well looked after. There was a very real sense that all the staff were interesting and interested - nothing was too much trouble and they really wanted us tio have great stay.

Enoch and Chele were a great team in the jeep. Great breakfasts and lunches in the bush. The only niggle was that on day 2 we did 2 half day game drives and we were afflicted by the tsetse fllies which are far worse in the area surrounding the camp and were not a problem on full day game drives. In camp they weren't a problem and we appreciate that the park authorities are at fault for not keeping the tseste traps properly treated but they are a real nuisance - everyone was totally distracted by them. So we wouldn't recommend half day trips whem the tstetse flies are active.

That said everything else was wonderful and we had some amazing wildlife sightings" See all these reviews: 6n in Tanzania
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location:
Good
Service:
Excellent
Activities:
Good
Rooms:
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Mr & Mrs H
Canada

"Mdonya Old River Camp review"

4 nights Arrived 5 Feb 2012
"Wonderful! We were late arriving due to snow in London and still all arrangements were delt with as though we had arrived on time. Very nice.

The camp manager, Alex, met us upon arrival to explain how things worked, always met us (with a cool drink) upon return from our daily outings and was always available just to keep things running smoothly. Made us feel very welcome.

Our guide, Chumbo, and driver, Good Luck, were excellent and had a passionate understanding of the role of conservation and the wildlife we came to see. We had been informed when booking that, at this time of year, the wildlife may be harder to find as water was more plentiful, however we saw more than I could have imagined everyday!

Tsetse flies were a bit annoying but not a big problem and surprisingly mosquitos were minimal.

Meals were delicious and service excellent. We particularily liked meeting with other travellers at the end of the day. We formed a very cohesive group in just a few days as we all sat together to enjoy the evening meal. It was an unexpected pleasure.

The tents themselves were very clean, comfortable and private with a daily parade of widlife, particularly at night. I didn't want to sleep for fear of missing something. It was all just easy to enjoy." See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 1n in Zanzibar
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location:
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Mr P
Maidstone

"Mdonya Old River Camp review"

4 nights Arrived 30 Oct 2011
"Overall we enjoyed the camp - the staff were exceptionally helpful. the land rovers were excellent, the tents were very good and clean, and the food was excellent. Game viewing was also excellent. However, we became conscious that the camp was located in or close to a tetse infected area. We accept that this can be part of a safari but we had no warning of this and a number of our party were badly bitten. This did detract from our enjotment somewhat even though we saw plenty of game including lots of elephant, giraffe, and lion and also saw leopard and cheetah.

I had expected walking safaris to be available but on arrival was told that this wasn't an option at Mdonya because they didn't have a permit. This was a disappointment. I believe other camps in Ruaha do have walking safaris available.

A particularly good feature at the camp was the option of short, half day or full day game drives where breakfast and lunch was well served in the bush." See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 4n in Zanzibar
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Good

Location:
Average
Service:
Good
Activities:
Good
Rooms:
Good
Food:
Excellent
Facilities:
Good
Mr & Mrs M
Surrey

"Mdonya Old River Camp review"

3 nights Arrived 23 Oct 2011
"Fabulous 3 night trip to Ruaha. Mdonya Old River Camp was excellent.

Our guides were outstanding, with the highlight being a "cat-trick" (lions, leopards and a cheetah) all on the same game-drive. The camp itself whilst not luxurious was comfortable, sociable and Sara, the manager was friendly, and quite determined that we should enjoy our stay.

We would certainly return - Perhaps in a "wet" season to see the contrasts." See all these reviews: 7n in Tanzania
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location:
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Rooms:
Good
Food:
Good
Facilities:
Excellent
Mr L & Ms B
Suffolk

"Just wonderful!"

3 nights Arrived 19 Oct 2011
"Alex runs the camp so well that it is hard to fault any aspect. Her welcome is genuine and makes you feel very much at ease from the moment you arrive. Her surprise of cake and champagne for my birthday was much appreciated as was the opportunity for Richard and I go out for a bush breakfast and whole day safari on our own. Tents comfortable and well spread out.

Game viewing wonderful, guides and drivers knowledgeable and experienced. Saw a cheetah kill and two leopards along with lots of other game. Sitting round the camp fire for sundowners followed by dinner under the stars each evening was magical.

Food excellent - markedly better than Lake Manze. Overall, I cannot rate this place highly enough." See all these reviews: 7n in Tanzania
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location:
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Mrs B
Bridgewater

"Mdonya Old River Camp review"

4 nights Arrived 14 Oct 2011
"Great camp - very comfortable and welcoming. We felt totally safe and loved having the animals walking through, such an amazing experience. It's well run and Alex is a brilliant 'host' - she makes everything seem effortless but we're sure it can't be! The food is good although not as flavoursome as we expected. As there is no electricity at the camp we knew there'd be no fans or aircon of course - we found the tents to be quite hot and didn't really let the breeze blow through even with the window flaps pinned back. The mesh is good for stopping bugs but seemed to prevent airflow too.

Our guide and driver were good and really made an effort to find the big cats we were hoping to see. We saw leopards and cheetahs which was an absolute highlight. For the first two days we had the jeep to ourselves and noticed on the second day that the driver and guide were speaking to us less and less - they answered our questions but didn't volunteer much information. They would occasionally stop and talk in Swahili but not tell us what they had seen or were looking for, which was a bit alienating. We thought perhaps it was just how things were at this camp but when we were joined by another couple they said their other guide was much more informative and chatty. Whilst we realise that the individual workers have different approaches, we wondered if we had offended or upset our guides in some way.

On our last day, they drove us to the airstrip quite quickly - there wasn't much game about - we arrived an hour before the plane was due. We had expected to have a final 20 minute or so detour to a part of the park we'd not seen but the guide told us he'd heard our plane was due to land early. It actually came on time [or slightly late] so we sat in the heat for an hour. As soon as we arrived at the airstrip the guys jumped out and went to talk to the other drivers and guides who were there [for an earlier plane that was running late]. We were left to our own devices and weren't given any further information. They only reappeared when we were getting on our plane. Perhaps cynically, we felt this was just for them to receive their tip. It was a disappointing end to the trip.

In summary, we liked the camp very much and the staff were good but we did feel that our guide and driver were uncommunicative which was a bit of a let down. We would like to know if we did something to offend them." See all these reviews: 4n in Tanzania; 2n in Zanzibar
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Good

Location:
Excellent
Service:
Good
Activities:
Good
Rooms:
Good
Food:
Average
Facilities:
Good
Showing 51-60 of 124
92%
124 reviews of Mdonya Old River Camp by travellers since August 2007
Overall rating by our travellers
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