Reviews of Lake Manze Adventure Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Lake Manze Adventure Camp review
Other than the sighting of the wild dogs, which is always a treat, the wildlife was a bit of a disappointment, but this is in no way a reflection on the efforts of our guide, Mr. H or our driver Cacumber who both tried everything possible to find the wildlife.
Everything else was great.
Another Great Safari at Lake Manze
I just love Lake Manze. The informality in the camp combined with the excellent food and dining under the stars make for a magical experience and everyone is so friendly and helpful.
It was a thoroughly enjoyable safari (as always). The boat trips provide an extra dimension and the birding was very good. Elephant and lion numbers in the area seem to be down but this may just be a seasonal variation.
It was great to see a healthy and active pack of wild dogs again.
I am happy to rate all aspects of my stay at Lake Manze as excellent - within the camp's stated aims (which I approve) to provide a more natural (and correspondingly less luxurious) experience. Rebecca and her team are doing a great job.
great camp and great wildlife
weather hot and humid, typically low 26 C high 35 C , with one or two brief storms but mostly sunny. Camp delightful but furthest tents might be a bit of a trek if one was a bit disabled? Loo gets a bit damp if there is a downpour and wildlife invaded -- a frog fell onto my shoulder, several geckos appeared and fireflies - all inside the tent ! Shower worked well and bed very comfortable. Food very good . Some areas of the bush very rough and you get thrown about quite a bit.
Widlife excellent --breakfast visit from Lagos the elephant, lions mating, clouds of carmine beeeaters, masses of other birds, pack of wild dogs, numerous giraffes and elephants.
Good walking safari and boat trip as well as all-day game drives.
Guiding and driving very good.
3 nights in safari
We had a very good guide and driver here, who worked very hard and tried very hard to help us see what they felt we should. WE were happy with what they showed us anyway. Very friendly and willing to discuss things. The camp centre was fine. No choice in food, but was perfectly acceptable and beautifully presented. A solar powered fan made the second 2 nights more bearable, heat on the first night was a bit difficult to relax in.
One amazing incident where the elephants walked directly past our tent in the moonlight-beautiful
Breathtaking adventure at Lake Manze
Lake Manze is perfect in so many ways. Rebecca, the manager, is cheerful and always helpful. The guide that I had, Bakari, was top notch. The tents are comfortable and you really are right in the thick of it... elephants walked through camp daily and every night was an adventure as the sounds of various animals lulled me asleep.. or kept me awake!
I definitely heard some people complaining at dinner about the lack of "density" of wildlife. However, if density of wildlife also means density of jeeps and people, I would much rather have to work a little harder on a game drive to have my moments with lions, giraffes, wild dogs, jackals, hyenas, warthogs, zebras etc. etc. to just the jeep I'm in. Honestly, on most drives we never saw another jeep or maybe one or two others.
The Selous is stunningly beautiful with amazing vistas and at Lake Manze you can enjoy them by foot, in a boat or by jeep. The food is simple but abundant and delicious. This was my first safari and I couldn't have asked for a better experience.
Simple and relaxing
Our family of four started our safari adventure at Lake Manze where we stayed for three nights. The staff were friendly and welcoming. Our tents were comfortable - the girls slept in a room attached to the main tent. The showers and toilets open to the stars and bats at night gave us a different experience from the UK.
Our guide Alfred and driver Daniel were great. Very friendly and full of information. Daniel was a careful, considerate driver. However, our daughter's highlight of the trip was when he "put his foot down" to race across the bush to find us a leopard! We had some wonderful game drives seeing exciting and interesting sites every day. The trip to the hot springs was fun and we bathed in the waters hotter than a bath.
Unfortunately Lake Manze itself had dried up so we probably had less experience of animals near the camp than usual. However, our boat trip on the adjacent Lake Nzerakere with Elton our guide, was one of our loveliest times especially seeing the storks flying back home in formation against the backdrop of a stunning sunset. Eating the evening meal at a communal table gave us a chance to chat with other guests. The lack of electricity in the tents meant that torches were essential.
Lake Manze Review
We are seasoned safari hands and deliberately chose Lake Manze Camp for two reasons.
Firstly because it offers a more authentic 'bush' experience than some of the more luxurious camps. This proved to be the case - we were able to watch elephants bathing and giraffes passing in front of our tent. The camp blends well with the surroundings giving a feel of fly camping but with added facilities! The tent has no electricity but is spacious and well appointed.
Secondly because we hoped it would provide good game viewing and guiding. The guiding was first class both on land and on the lake. We had stayed at other camps in Selous and had to travel longish distances to see much game. At Lake Manze the game was on the doorstep.
Nothing was too much trouble for the managers - who were under pressure due to lack of water (now resolved). Food was the only negative - not very high quality although vegetarians might be happy.
Lake Manze Adventure Camp review
Lively camp, good atmosphere, pleasant helpful staff. Game drives good; particularly liked exclusive use of 4WD and driver PLUS guide (same individuals throughout), which increases chance of sightings. Only adverse comment relates to food, which was pretty dire we thought.
I'm pretty tough on gradings and believe Excellent should be awarded only in really exceptional circumstances. So, for me, Good is a pretty high rating.
Expert Africa comments
The manager at Lake Manze was sad to here these guests were disappointed by the quality of the food. We understand that there was only one chef in camp at the time, which although should not have affected the standard, may have had an influence. Since then another chef from Zanzibar has arrived who is working closely with the staff to improve the menu.
Great safari at Lake Manzi
Adam and Mgoma were excellent guides/driver. In particular, we were very impressed by Mgoma's thoughtfulness in positioning the vehicle for the best light for photographs and shade when he was able to do so without disturbing the wildlife.
As our stay at Lake Manze was 6 nights it was good to have the same guide and driver for the duration of our stay as they knew where we had been and what we had seen.
Being at the end of the dry season we were unable to do any boat trips due to the lack of water in the lake, although this was adequately made up for by the game drives. It was also a great experience to have elephants and other wildlife wandering into the camp day and night.
Lake Manze Adventure Camp review
We stayed in Tent 1 as requested and glad we did. It is a long walk from the main part of camp but the privacy and view are worth it. Just sitting on the porch in front of the tent was at times as good as a game drive. We had a small problem with tiny ants one morning and the staff took care of it very quickly. The nights were a little warm, even with the one fan going but then we expected that and knew what we were getting in to.
Food was decent and the staff attentive. We enjoyed the boat trip and absolutely loved our guide and driver on the game drives. There is much to see in the Lake Manze area although elephants were a big scarce. We finally saw one big heard of about 40 on the second day but they were a little ways off. Our drivers went above and beyond to make sure we got the most out of each drive which was very much appreciated.
Expect to many bumpy drives and the camp is dusty given the floor of the main camp is dirt. A nice feature was the outlets in the main camp were universal so we didn't need an adapter for our US plugs. Not having electricity was not really a big deal. We had our own flashlights and headlamp which came in handy.