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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mr & Mrs D from Sussex

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

7

Excursions taken

0

Our September 2019 trip to Namibia

Namibia between 21 Sep 2019 and 5 Oct 2019

Trip rating: Excellent
"We had a wonderful trip. We loved Namibia, the diversity of its landscapes, animals, birds and flora, and in particular the friendly welcome and fantastic level of service almost everywhere.

We only saw snakes in display tanks, and a single dead spider in a bin (so happy, happy days for two members of the family) but we were thrilled with the rest of our wildlife experiences and will never forget our sadly-too-short visit to Namibia.

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

Can't fault Expert Africa.

Tracy was knowledgeable, patient, had lots of common sense, honest advice and inspiring ideas. Thanks Tracy!"

Arranged By Tracy Lederer


Cornerstone Guesthouse

Cornerstone Guesthouse

"Charming welcome at the Cornerstone"

3 nights Arrived 22 Sep 2019
"We stayed our first three nights in Namibia at the fully equipped 3-bed Moringa Gardens apartment in Swakopmund which was perfect for us and our adult son and daughter. Check-in at the Cornerstone Guesthouse was super-friendly and professional - even though we turned up at the same time as other guests - with offers to make restaurant reservations and book our kayaking trip, and personal escort to the apartment five minutes away. So nice to be looked after when you've had a long, long trip.

The wonderful breakfast was well worth the short walk from the apartment and we looked forward to it every day, so thank you Peter and staff. Peter is the perfect host. When I mentioned we'd not been able to watch Wales play its first Rugby World Cup match because the apartment TV didn't have a great picture, he had it fixed the same day in time to see the highlights!

The only thing that might bother some people (perhaps with larger cars than us) was a couple of tight squeezes to park in the secure garage at the apartment block."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Doro Nawas

Doro Nawas

"Loved Doro! Nawas"

1 night Arrived 25 Sep 2019
"This was our first experience of a Namibian lodge and what a fabulous introduction.

The staff were just lovely and very talented singers and dancers too. Arriving at the same time as an American bus tour, we had to manoeuvre for lounger space at the narrow pool, however the chance to cool off was blissful. We stayed only one night but the evening meal in this very special desert environment was a highlight of our trip and never-to-be-forgotten.

In the morning we were up at 6am to pack the car and have breakfast, since we were checking out before going on the Desert Elephant safari with our friendly guide Geraldo. We saw plenty of close-up elephants, ostrich, chacma baboons, giraffes and some distant zebra. A fun first jeep adventure. I also loved seeing a glimpse of the village where Geraldo's little son went to school."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Mowani Mountain Camp

Mowani Mountain Camp

"Beautifully situated Lodge"

1 night Arrived 26 Sep 2019
"Mowani Mountain Camp didn't quite have the cultural vibes of Doro! Nawas but it had great views. It also had a very pretty small swimming pool built into the cliffs: the perfect place to be after our interesting but very hot walk around the rock engravings at Twyfelfontein. (Which we did independently.)

We didn't do any of the Mowani trips, so saw no big game animals, but there were lots of sweet little rock dassies (furry mammals) perched around the big rocks surrounding the lodge.

A real treat here was the fire pit dinner table arranged by staff member Kevin, who spotted that we were on a celebration retirement trip and made a real fuss of us. It was a delight to sit out under the stars to dine and Kevin provided lovely service and a lot of fun, even teaching us the five clicks of the local language - K'a'os Kevin!

The rooms were lovely with fab deck areas (handy because bathroom facilities weren't well screened for our son and daughter who were sharing). However we did have to Deet the room to remove some flies and what felt like a gale force wind through the tented/netted sides gave us a somewhat disturbed night's sleep."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Mountain Lodge

Mountain Lodge

"Lion adventures at Mountain Lodge"

2 nights Arrived 27 Sep 2019
"Mountain Lodge at Etosha Heights was in a stunning situation with an off-the-beaten track kind of feel, even though the local roads were actually a lot easier to traverse than the corrugated cattle-grid bumping of the desert D-roads around Swakopmund and Damaraland.

After a lengthy drive (Top Tip: watch out for knee-high elephant dung when you get out to open gates) we'd planned a lazy evening, but lovely Maggie the manager came to let us know that lions had been sighted by the waterhole, and would we like a special evening half-safari to look for them? Well, yes we would!

Guide Ali was brilliant. As we arrived at the site, a single vehicle from sister lodge Safarihoek was leaving, so we had the unbelievable privilege of sitting quietly in our open-sided jeep just metres from a fully-grown male lion guarding his zebra kill from the jackals and crows. As the sun went down another male and three females arrived - so there were five lions with us five humans and acres of bush around us. Amazing.

Ali also took us on a morning safari drive the following day and again the sightings were awe-inspiring, including a black rhino with its baby, elephants, zebra, antelope of all kinds, giraffe, wildebeest, ground squirrels and a vast array of birds.

In the afternoon we had our own watering hole - the swimming pool - to ourselves. Mountain Lodge was quieter than the others, with perhaps three other couples arriving and leaving during our 2-night stay. We loved the genuinely personal welcome from Maggie and the other staff, the outstanding food cooked by chef Lorenzo (who came out of the kitchen for a long chat with us) and the thoughtful guiding by Ali that made the game trips so memorable."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Andersson's at Ongava

Andersson's at Ongava

"Wonderful experience at Andersson's"

2 nights Arrived 29 Sep 2019
"Andersson's at Ongava was new and impressively hi-tech. The suites were really spacious with wifi everywhere, air conditioning, TV with web cam feed from the nearby waterhole, and an actual phone to ring between rooms and make emergency calls (although there was the usual fog horn too!)

The eight double rooms were fully booked out so the communal areas were busy-ish. We'd been allocated the 'Family Suite' but the two rooms weren't actually linked, fine for us but not really suitable for a family with young children. By contrast, at Mountain Lodge, there actually was an adjoining door between our two suites, which could have been unlocked for direct night-time access.

The facilities were excellent, with interesting displays at the research centre, an underground hide, and a swimming pool overlooking the waterhole. We only saw animals at the waterhole after dark (when floodlit) but sightings during dinner included a rhino chasing off two young male lions!

The wonderful Tuly was our guide during our 2-day stay and we can't say enough good things about him. He was so friendly, knowledgeable and enthusiastic, he really made our trip. Effectively we had private tours again, since it was just the four of us in the jeep with him. The afternoon drive around Ongava's private reserve began with finding a pair of lions under a tree and concluded with a Sundowner just yards away from a white rhino and baby munching on a pile of grass.

The following day we went into Etosha National Park, a quite different experience with proper roads (and toilets) and masses of other vehicles. So not quite 'Out of Africa' but the sightings were many and fabulous, particularly at the waterholes, one with masses of elephants and babies, the other with an array of animals worthy of Noah's Ark. Unmissable."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Cheetah View Lodge

Cheetah View Lodge

"Interesting and worthwhile visit"

1 night Arrived 1 Oct 2019
"We were very glad we went to Cheetah View. The 'Little Serengeti' game drive with Job was excellent and he was as excited as us to come across a pangolin - a very strange scaled animal he'd only spotted once before this season. The landscape is lovely and quite different in this area, with far views of the Waterberg plateau, and Job's stories about the development of the reserve from a failed farm were fascinating.

The Cheetah-related activities (feeding and exercising) were also very interesting and it was wonderful to see them at such close quarters. We were a fairly large group of visitors but the staff gave good clear presentations of the work they're doing and are clearly passionate about raising awareness of the threat to cheetahs.

The lodgings weren't as luxurious as the other lodges we experienced, but they were perfectly fine. The evening meal was really good but the breakfast was a bit haphazard - what, empty coffee pots?? There was a pleasant garden and cafe, a well-stocked souvenir shop and some interesting displays and posters that would engage children. We were happy that our visit made a contribution to this work.

One point to note is that Cheetah View isn't well signposted from Otjiwarongo. In fact, the road leads from the town to a municipal tip and a faded sign that warns unauthorised people not to go past it, plus a turning to a military base. Venture bravely on and you'll find a sign for the reserve further down the road and then a manned security gate."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Average
Avani Windhoek Hotel

Avani Windhoek Hotel

"Okay stay in a city hotel"

2 nights Arrived 2 Oct 2019
"The Avani was a high-rise conference hotel in the centre of Windhoek. For self-drivers, the multi-storey car park entrance was at the back of the hotel, not the front, and had reserved parking for Avani guests on an upper floor (was it the 4th?) with a bridge directly into the hotel. These points would have been useful to know beforehand!

The rooftop bar was pleasant but very busy (Wednesday evening) and they couldn't offer us a table for an evening meal so we ate in the ground floor cafe. Since I was ill the following day - perhaps a reaction to the malaria tablets I was taking - I didn't see anything of Windhoek, but the rest of our party did explore some of the sights, although the zoological gardens weren't well maintained (perhaps due to the current drought) and the Alte Feste - the old German fort - was closed until further notice.

Breakfast service wasn't particularly friendly or efficient, with an unsmiling greeter demanding room numbers and food spilled on the floor by the chefs, however the location of the hotel was convenient for sightseeing, and as a stepping off point for the airport it was a good choice."
Average
Location
Excellent
Service
Poor
Rooms
Good
Food
Poor

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