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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Dr H from Dublin

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

2

Lodges stayed in

5

Excursions taken

0

Holiday of a Lifetime

Zanzibar and 1 other country between 4 Aug 2007 and 21 Aug 2007

Trip rating: Excellent
"We thoroughly enjoyed our holiday, and it lived up to all our expectations. This was some feat considering that we were a family of four - with 2 mature daughter - each of whom had different interests and needs. All these were satisfied by the holidays, which included different types of accommodation and experiences.

Expert Africa's advice was terrific, always professional and always timely in their responses.

One negative - the recommendation of $10 per person per day as a tip is, we feel, over generous. We are always happy to voluntarily reward good service, but there seems to be an excessive tendency of expectation by most staff, in all accommodations and places, which is to-say-the-least off-putting. To facilitate this 'expectation culture' is counter-productive."

Feedback response

We're delighted that this trip went so well - but on the traveller's last point ... it’s perhaps best here for us to try and clarify our suggestions for tipping. It's a tricky topic, and advice that's right for one place, can easily be worng for the next.

However. we’re completely agreed that the 'expectation culture' for tipping is a bad thing – and hence Expert Africa always suggests that tips are given as a lump-sum, at the very end of your stay at a place – as a final parting gift to all the staff. We never advocate tipping as you go along, and couldn’t agree more about this causing problems and being counter-productive.

As a guide to levels, we suggest that our travellers budget on ‘about USD5-10 per guest per day’ at a safari lodge or camp’.

By this, we’re thinking of lodges or camps where you’re enjoying full safari activities every day – and then USD10 is split between all the guides at the camp, on safari, and their back-of-house camp teams also.

We believe that in most safari areas this is a good level of tip. It’s appropriate for travellers who have had a really great time with great service. We’d never suggest the giving of this if things aren’t up to standard, or service hasn’t been particularly good.


Gibb's Farm

Gibb's Farm

"In the coffee plantation"

3 nights Arrived 5 Aug 2007
"We arrived after a long trip from London to find ourselves in a fantastic lodge in the middle of the 'no where'. The terrace of our bungalow looked onto a 'botantical' garden - as did the restaurant - which we have only ever encountered in a Botantical Garden.

The food was excellent and flavoursome. The staff were friendly and helpful.

A great start to a great holiday."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Image alt

Suyan Camp, Tanzania (this camp has since closed)

"Great Time in Serengetti"

3 nights Arrived 8 Aug 2007
"This place lived up to all our expectations, except the food - which surpassed our wildest dreams. The food and service were just fantastic.

The tents, the location of the tents within the park, the ambiance, the chance to meet other people, the night fire and drinks - all this was great. And especially the surprise Sundowner Event with drink and ambiance with fresh wild flowers.

We also thoroughly enjoyed the visit to the Masai village - a real cultural experience. We deeply appreciated our guide's insistence that as visitors to this camp, we should not be pestered with the sale of beaded objects."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Unguja Lodge

Unguja Lodge

"Beach time in Zanzibar"

5 nights Arrived 11 Aug 2007
"A spectacularly well-laid out and maintained resort, in a non-touristy part of Zanzibar. The accommodation was great - we had a fabulous view of the sea.

The pool area was always well maintained and spotless.

Our hosts were friendly and helpful, and created a nice ambiance to the resort.

While the food was good, it was not as good as either Gibbs Farm or Suyan - but maybe we were already spoiled by the unexpectedly high quality food in Tanzania.

Its worth noting that Unguja is fairly isolated from other main centres, and the cost of taxi travel is high. Having said that we enjoyed it thoroughly."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Chumbe Island Lodge

Chumbe Island Lodge

"Eco-tourism"

3 nights Arrived 16 Aug 2007
"A experience with a difference. The accommodation was 'Robinson Crusoe' style - but perfectly suitable for the location.

Food was fabulous, and staff were extremely helpful, informative, and pleasant to deal with you. The views from the various vantage points, incl. the dining area, were fantastic.

The snorkling was great and the coral reef was spectacular in colour, vibrancy and fish life.

Three nights would be the maximum time to stay, because its a virgin forest island with very llimited walking access. In fact, the walking tours could be extended."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Serena Inn

Serena Inn

"Luxury in Stone Town"

2 nights Arrived 19 Aug 2007
"The Serena was a real haven of luxury after Chumbe Island.

The pool area, the restaurant, the evening musical entertainment and the views all created a wonderful conclusion to our holiday.

Two nights was adequate, because Stone Town is sadly not very interesting and lacks municipal services (street cleaning). The tours of the town and the spice garden are over-rated. The sale of the spices of the farm are vastly over-priced compared with shops in Stone Town."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent

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