Siwandu

Reviews of Siwandu

Excellent(97%) From 79 travellers
Excellent
69
Good
9
Average
1
Poor
0
Terrible
0
Below are independent comments from 79 of our travellers who have visited Siwandu, and have kindly agreed to share their thoughts.

They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
M & C from London
Arrived on: 24-Dec-2019 Stayed for: 3 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Siwandu review

Beautiful lakeside location, Great service.

The area was very green in December, and there had been much rain the previous week. This made hunting for wildlife more of a challenge - but we still saw plenty, including wild dogs. The water trip was excellent, and also lunch relaxing on the pontoon.

A new dam is being built in the Selous - far from the lodge, but the new access road has made the area more accessible. I am worried that the dam will also affect water levels and wildlife over the next few years.

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Mr & Mrs JP from London
Arrived on: 25-Oct-2019 Stayed for: 3 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Super Siwandu

Selous was a great contrast to our few days in Ruaha. The rains had come early and it was very green and lush. Siwandu is beautifully situated on a lake and offers evening boat safaris and pontoon lunches (lunch on a boat) which provide a different perspective from land safari drives. The tents are large, comfortable, and well equipped. Mau did an excellent job of caring for our room and clothes washing. Our lake view was slightly restricted (room name Moja), numbers 3 to 6 on the south side have a more open view. All the food was excellent and we were superbly looked after by Alphonse. Evening meals start with a communal drink around the camp fire followed by dining alone on tables dotted around the banda. It is an open camp and regularly visited by elephants, giraffes and hippo. Maasai warriors escort you around after dark in case of any close animal encounters - we felt safe at all times.Our guide Christopher was knowledgeable, attentive and patiently answered all our questions. We asked to see wild dogs and he had tracked them down within an hour. We also had an excellent lion sighting finding them camped for the day in a little thatched open hut. One downside is the lack of mobile coverage in the camp and wifi only available in the reception area. It was also quite humid whilst we were there and we incurred a number of mosi bites. But overall a great safari experience.

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Mr I from Abergavenny
Arrived on: 2-Oct-2019 Stayed for: 4 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Good
Good

Fab safari at Siwandu

It was lovely to return to Siwandu and it was made more special by our request for our previous guide being granted.

Some improvements had been made to the camp in the four years that have passed since our last visit.

We had heavy rains towards the end of our visit and they coped well maintaining our safari programme. Also despite the airstrip being closed due to flooding, suitable arrangements were made for our onward flight.

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Mr D. from Maldon
Arrived on: 25-Sep-2019 Stayed for: 4 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Good
Good
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Siwandu review

The location of Siwandu by the lakeside with views from the terrace was excellent. There was easy access to boats at the lakeside. The camp also provided lunchtime boat trips with lunch served on board whilst enjoying the wildlife.

Every member of staff contributed to the excellent service. It seems there was nothing that was too much trouble. The food was creative and good quality.
Our guide during the four days of our trip was Christopher. He was knowledgeable and took the time to give context and background information about habitat etc. We were fortunate to have Christopher as our guide throughout our stay.

A unique experience for us was discovering many species of birds at a feeding frenzy of catfish after rainfall.

Siwandu is a bird spotters paradise.

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Mrs S from france
Arrived on: 19-Sep-2019 Stayed for: 4 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Delightful Siwandu

An oasis of calm, Siwandu has impeccable standards, and our second visit lived up to all our expectations. The staff are friendly but discreet, and very efficient. The tents and facilities within are of a very high quality, spotless and comfortable with amazing views down to the lake. The food is fabulous, every meal a joy, portion sizes perfect. And lovely to have a lunch out on the lake again. It’s great that Siwandu is now all inclusive, but I was slightly disappointed that there was no longer a little shot of liqueur offered on return from the evening game drive!

Activities were excellent, with a combination of drives, boat on the lake and walks. Would like to see different levels of walking tour offered though, as we all found the walk too sedate, despite being incredibly interesting. But we had excellent sitings every day.

The only slight negative, which is totally beyond the reach of Siwandu to fix, is waking up to the sound of trucks rumbling down the newly widened road on their way to the dam construction site. We hope this doesn’t have a negative impact on Siwandu and the reserve as a whole in the coming years.

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Mr J from Basingstoke
Arrived on: 5-Sep-2019 Stayed for: 3 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Good
Good
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

A warm welcome

Accommodation: The best safari style accommodation I've seen in 4 trips. Very well designed and equipped "tents" and with that all important view to the middle distance down to the lake.

Food and drink: The food was less fancy than some places of this type, but was very suitable to the weather and the activity level of the trip. In some ways, actually, this type of food is ideal being relatively simple, but is less spectacular than elsewhere. Overall, we preferred the food here to Ikuka. The wine however was a weakness and not of a good standard. Just a question of getting better advice I think, because the wines at Ikuka were absolutely fine.

Staff generally: Very willing and helpful although less refined than some places. Emil, the camp manager, is highly attentive and the room butler was exceptional. The atmosphere here is more of a camp with connections to its local community rather than the "colonial outpost" vibe of some places.

Guiding: Our young guide Amos was extremely knowledgeable and competent (although not as experienced as Geofrey at Ikuka who was exceptional)

Vehicles and game drives: A weakness - the vehicle was older and the roads in the Selous were considerably worse than other areas I've been to.

Game viewing: Very good for giraffe as well as hippo and other water dependent wildlife because of the lake. We were fortunate to see buffalo and lion relatively near by as we understand this is not typically the case and the long drive to get a sighting could be quite bad (as we discovered with a drive out to see some Wild Dogs). Also only two sightings of a single elephant here. This is all relative of course, and I'm nitpicking as one of our game drives in particular was absolutely stunning. Also a very interesting and entertaining walking safari with Allen, the head guide.

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Family G from Newbury
Arrived on: 31-Aug-2019 Stayed for: 4 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Good
Good
Facilities:
Good
Good

Fantastic safari

Staff were fantastic. Lovely people, couldn’t do more for you. Everything went extremely smoothly.

Premises all clean, tents/ rooms had lovely decor. Safari also good, with fun guides. Walking safari a bit tame, and felt a little staged.

We all enjoyed the delicious food, and the stories around the bush tv, as they called the camp fire.

Highly recommended.

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Mrs L. from London
Arrived on: 5-Aug-2019 Stayed for: 3 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Excellent stay at Siwandu

Fantastic location, extremely comfortable tents, great food and outstanding service from the staff at the camp - management team, guides (thank you Allan!), all the other staff and the chefs.

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Mr & Mrs D from Worcs
Arrived on: 4-Aug-2019 Stayed for: 4 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Average
Average
Facilities:
Good
Good

Great hospitality

The hospitality and the set up at the camp was great. It was really good that we had separate tables at mealtimes because we do not like forced 'getting to know people'. However, the camp did try to force us to get to know other people which was a bit irritating.

The wildlife was not brilliant here. Everything else - the service, the camp, the food etc was great. However, I am not sure we would recommend it because there were long drives without seeing anything.

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Mr & Mrs M from Devon
Arrived on: 3-Jul-2019 Stayed for: 4 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Good
Good
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent

Wonderful lakeside camp

A lovely welcoming camp. Helen was so helpful and accommodated our wishes even when we changed our minds.
We loved the views at lunchtime, sitting around the fire before dinner, eating out under the stars and chatting with our fellow guests in the bar afterwards.

A lovely, cool, spacious tent but not overly keen on the arrangement whereby the flaps tied back afforded a view of the toilet but we did like the outside shower.

Heard interesting and sometimes scary animal noises in the night!
Great boat trips on the lake (including a surprise lunch on the boat)

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