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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by The L family from London

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

6

Excursions taken

0

A great holiday

Tanzania between 6 Aug 2011 and 21 Aug 2011

Trip rating: Excellent
"We had looked forward to this holiday, and it exceeded all our expectations, with the possible exception of the diving at Mafia Island which is possibly not as good a site as advertised, during the SE Monsoon.

It was very well organised by Expert Africa, alongside their local agents, and we felt secure in the knowledge that we were visiting the right places and that our travel and accommodation arrangements were secure.

The wildlife was plentiful and the Serengeti vast and unforgettable.

These travellers commented about their guide: Ayoub, a memorable guide

Ayoub was our guide, provided from Arusha. He picked us up from the airport at Arusha, and stayed with us through our visits to Lake Manyara, Ngorngoro Crater and to Dunia Camp in the southern Serengeti.

The vehicle, although old, was very comfortable, reliable and extremely well stocked with drinks, biscuits, cushions, sandbags for resting cameras on and tissues. Ayoub was totally dedicated, and informative on all manner of subjects. He knew how to find the game, could see lions on rocks or in the distance minutes before we had spotted them, and was very experienced in the areas we visited. His timekeeping was excellent and he knew when we had to leave as early as 5.30 for instance to avoid the long queues to enter the Ngorngoro Crater and Manyara NPs. His knowledge of the wildlife and birds was also excellent.

He anticipated our needs, ordering the picnics we would need from the places we were staying, and always managing to find a washroom or suitable bush whenever we needed one. The vehicle was always clean and tidy in the morning when we set off.

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

We would be happy to use Expert Africa for future holidays."

Lake Manyara Serena Safari Lodge

Lake Manyara Serena Safari Lodge

"Hotel in a stunning location on edge of rift"

1 night Arrived 7 Aug 2011
"This was a welcome overnight stay after the flights from UK.

The hotel is in a stunning location overlooking the rift valley, with a wonderfully placed infinity pool and bar. The room was comfortable and the main hotel buildings impressive.

The African themed buffet dinner the night we were there was memorable."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Facilities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Plantation Lodge

Plantation Lodge

"An oasis of comfort"

2 nights Arrived 8 Aug 2011
"Having bumped along dusty roads and spent the day game viewing at Lake Manyara, we were delighted to arrive at Plantation Lodge and find the beautiful gardens and lovely buildings. The dining areas and bar were very smart with log fires for the cool evenings. The food and service were very good, and the hotel was happy to serve us a very late lunch after a morning spent in the Ngorongoro Crater (for which they provided a picnic breakfast).

The Lodge was also well positioned for the Ngorongoro Crater, notwithstanding the early start required to beat the queues at the Park entrance and in the Crater itself."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Dunia Camp

Dunia Camp

"Great comfort in the depths of the Serengeti"

2 nights Arrived 10 Aug 2011
"Dunia Camp is situated on a slope in an interesting area of the southern Serengeti. Sunrise views are stunning. We had excellent game drives all around the area of the camp, including amorous lions down by the river.

Our experience at the camp was made by the manager Peter and his smiling, helpful staff. The food was of a high quality, remarkable considering the distance it had travelled. The evening camp fire was welcome in the chilly evenings of August and the communal dining table was friendly. The tents are very spacious and comfortable and the delivery of hot water, morning and evening, very prompt.

The night before our arrival the staff and guests had had a disturbed night caused by a lion making a kill in the camp. All was quiet while we were there apart from the grazing animals snuffling outside the tents."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Olakira

Olakira

"Outback camping in comfort"

2 nights Arrived 12 Aug 2011
"We visited Olakira Camp at the time of the migration and the camp is wonderfully situated on a hill overlooking part of the Mara River, so we could see the wildebeest congregating at the river's edge trying to pluck up the courage to cross.

We flew from the Serenera airstrip to Kogatende and were met by our guide Chagamba, who served us coffee and tea before going to deal with the never ending National Park paperwork (new rules seem to have made this process even slower and more complicated for entry into the parks). We game watched on our way to the camp and were lucky enough on that first drive to see wildebeest crossing the river.

Future game drives with Chagamba (treated here as "Activities from this camp") were wonderful. He was a man of few words, but certainly knew where the game was to be found. We had very close sightings of lion, leopard and cheetah, but the rhino, though she had been seen several days previously, was elusive.

The camp was as comfortable as Dunia, with the added sophistication of washbasin water coming out of taps instead of a jug. The shower water arrived promptly as before at Dunia."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Pole Pole

Pole Pole

"Pole Pole review"

6 nights Arrived 14 Aug 2011
"Pole Pole is a wonderfully relaxing place to stay after the early mornings of safari drives. It is small and intimate, very quiet and the guests are very well looked after.

The rooms, reached by a lovely thatched-over sand path, are spacious with verandahs overlooking the palm trees and the sea beyond. The staff, including the manager, Robyn, are attentive and helpful and relaxed. The mealtimes are as flexible as the guests want them to be and the food plentiful.

We were lucky with the tide during our 6 nights, so that we had the beach uncovered during the majority of the day (the high tide comes right up to the sea wall). This will be less of a problem when the almost-complete swimming pool is finished. It is interesting to walk along the beach at low tide, as there is all manner of life in the pools (starfish, cowries etc).

The free excursions arranged for Pole Pole guests each day were much appreciated. It was unfortunately quite windy during our stay, which made the sea choppy for snorkelling and the underwater currents very strong for diving, with unclear visibility at a lower level. Nonetheless, we thoroughly enjoyed all these excursions, especially the snorkelling and barbeque-on-the-sandbar trip, with white snapper cooked over coconut husks on the sandbar."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Serena Hotel Dar

Serena Hotel Dar

"A large international-standard hotel."

1 night Arrived 20 Aug 2011
"The Movenpick Royal Palm Hotel is a 30 minute drive from the airport and has everything you would expect of an international hotel (comfortable bed, satellite tv, swimming pool, a choice of two restaurants). It is fine for an overnight stay but no more.

The food was disappointing and expensive and some of the lights in our room were not working. Early morning room service breakfast was prompt and good for an early morning departure."
Average
Location
Good
Service
Average
Facilities
Average
Rooms
Average
Food
Average

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