This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more

Skip to main content

Talk to an expert 1-800-242-2434 Lines open now

User menu

Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by B & J from California

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

5

Excursions taken

0

A most enjoyable experience!

Botswana between 26 Sep 2007 and 15 Oct 2007

Trip rating: Excellent
"Thank you for a memorable experience.

Just a couple sidebar comments - Bill and I really took to heart your brochure/manual's instructions and brought/bought all neutral clothing and packed in soft-sided duffle bags. We were pretty shocked that a good percentage of visitors wore bright clothing and brought suitcases with wheels! I was a little embarrassed for them (especially the Americans). Does this happen often?

We cannot thank you enough for our best trip yet! :-)

Up until this trip, I would've said that my trips to China/Japan and New Zealand were my favorite, but since this trip, I have told anyone who asks, that this is by far my most favorite trip I have ever taken. It was amazing. I went into this trip thinking that this would be a "once in a lifetime" experience. But now, Bill and I think that if we can afford it, we will DEFINITELY go back and if we could, we would go back multiple times (and also explore other parts of Africa).

As I mentioned in my review of Kwara, Chris certainly showed Bill and I why he wrote the Bradt Guide on Botswana. Chris could not have been more on par with planning our trip considering we planned it so late and there was not a whole lot to work with in terms of availability.

In hindsight, there are a couple things I would have done differently--

1) I would not have stayed 4 nights at Chitabe. I would've stayed either one more night at Kwara or Vumbura.

2) Vumbura would be the last camp, rather than second to last.

3) If it were possible (although, I did not see this occur nor do I know if one could do this), I would have requested a different guide at Duma Tau.

Overall, an excellent experience! The best trip we've ever taken!!! :-)"

Kwara Camp

Kwara Camp

"Kwara Camp review"

3 nights Arrived 28 Sep 2007
"First, I would like to start by saying Chris did a most excellent job in helping us plan our trip. We went from the "rustic" to "luxurious" which was the best way to go, I think. But! I want to make one thing absolutley clear-- although Kwara was our least luxurious camp, it by far possessed our most favorite guide, tracker and staff. Anita and her fiance (I am embarrassed to say I cannot remember his name-- Paul? I apologize; I am terrible with names) were incredibly warm and accomodating and Ezekiel and Sevara's enthusiasm and friendliness were greatly appreciated. I think they may have been the most "green" of all our guides, but they definitely made up with genuine enthusiasm and a great attitude; a very "I am so glad to be here and we are so glad you are here with us" attitude. As our trip progressed, I would later appreciate Ezekiel and Sevara's enthusiasm and general kindness even more.

We were at Kwara when Independence Day came about and we were touched by how the staff included us in their celebration of their holiday. It was quite festive.

To be honest, I think our stay would have been perfect if it were not for two things--

1) a fan in the sleeping area of the tent (all of the other camps we stayed had fans to circulate the air-- VERY helpful to endure the heat during siesta).

2) a leopard sighting! ;-)

Overall, a truly memorable experience!"
Excellent
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Chitabe Camp

Chitabe Camp

"Chitabe Camp review"

4 nights Arrived 1 Oct 2007
"Chitabe stood out for me in one way-- our guide, Lazarus, was the BEST guide we had on our entire trip. He was incredibly knowledgable and his tracking ability was uncompared to our other guides. He was the guide that found all the highly sought after animals. We were always the first ones to find the animals and then would wait while he let everyone else know where the animal was located. Bill called Lazarus the "Jedi Master" of guides.

I also appreciated Lazarus taking the time to tell us everything he knew about what he was looking at and/or for in the bush. He would stop the vehicle and point out all the details of the sights and sounds we were experiencing. He was quite militant about being shushing us if we were talking too much or too loudly. I appeciated that.

One drawback to our being the first to find all the animals was our drives seemed to be siginificantly shorter than all the other groups. I often felt there was a quota being filled on each ride. Once a large discovery was made (maybe two), then we were whisked back to camp. There were several times that we were back an hour or more before all the other vehicles.

Chitabe was very comfortable. I appreciated the celing fan very much. I also appreciated the raised walkways. The food was great. I think we could've done without the meals in the boma. Luckily, Bill and I had headlamps so we could see our food, but there were some envious comments that came our way because people could not see what they were eating. We were at Chitabe the longest of all our camps (4 nights). I think that may be too long. I think 2 or 3 nights would've sufficed-- only because there were no water activities to break up the driving."
Good
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Good

Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Vumbura Plains

Vumbura Plains

"Vumbura Plains review"

3 nights Arrived 5 Oct 2007
"Vumbura was our most expensive camp and thus, it was expected to be our best experience. It certainly lived up to our expectations. Our "tent" was bigger than our house (actually, I think the shower may have been bigger than our house!) and beautifully decorated.

The staff and guide were our second favorite (a VERY close second to Kwara). We really enjoyed the water excursions -- the mokoro and boat rides were really great-- a nice break from all the driving and bouncing around. Dux was a wonderful guide. We really enjoyed his company and his depth and breadth of knowledge. We could tell he was a seasoned and senior guide.

The surprise brunch out in the bush was incredible. We did not experience anything like that at any of the other camps. It was amazing. I was truly impressed by the set-up details -- from the "loo with the gauze cover" to the bar decorated with porcupine quills AND the best meal we had at Vumbura. I have to explain the "good" rating -- while all the brunches were quite delicious, the dinners (although, very beautifully presented) were often overcooked or little lacking in volume. Bill came away hungry a couple times (all our other camps served dinner buffet-style; I think we were accustomed to getting as much food as we liked).

All in all, Vumbura exceeded our expectations. The staff -- Gareth, Liz, Glorious (whom I had the pleasure of pruchasing a couple of her baskets) and James (our bartender) and all the others whose names I cannot remember were incredibly hospitable and friendly and courteous. I sensed a level of professionalism that I did not feel at the other camps. I really appreciated that."
Excellent
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
DumaTau Camp

DumaTau Camp

"DumaTau review"

3 nights Arrived 8 Oct 2007
"Duma Tau being our last camp is probably getting a tougher rating than it deserves, but there are a couple of concerns that I would rather not print.

Overall, our stay at DT was fine. Our last evening drive was very enjoyable. The manager in training (I cannot remember his name) and our pilot, Pedro, joined us. I believe their presence really helped make our last drive the best one we had during our stay at DT.

I had the pleasure of purchasing a couple of baskets from Judith. She was a stand-out staff member -- very sweet and a talented basket weaver. The managers were very professional and courteous.

I will admit, DT was the only place we were able to view a few rare animals-- wild dogs, monitor lizard, roan. It was very exciting to see the wild dogs. I feel like our trip was complete after getting to see them."
Good
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Good

Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Image alt

Own Arrangements - Cape Town

"review"

3 nights Arrived 11 Oct 2007
"Up until this trip, I would've said that my trips to China/Japan and New Zealand were my favorite, but since this trip, I have told anyone who asks, that this is by far my most favorite trip I have ever taken. It was amazing. I went into this trip thinking that this would be a "once in a lifetime" experience. But now, Bill and I think that if we can afford it, we will DEFINITELY go back and if we could, we would go back multiple times (and also explore other parts of Africa).

As I mentioned in my review of Kwara, Chris certainly showed Bill and I why he wrote the Bradt Guide on Botswana. Chris could not have been more on par with planning our trip considering we planned it so late and there was not a whole lot to work with in terms of availability.

In hindsight, there are a couple things I would have done differently--

1) I would not have stayed 4 nights at Chitabe. I would've stayed either one more night at Kwara or Vumbura.

2) Vumbura would be the last camp, rather than second to last.

3) If it were possible (although, I did not see this occur nor do I know if one could do this), I would have requested a different guide at Duma Tau.

Overall, an excellent experience! The best trip we've ever taken!!! :-)

Most sincerely,
Jennifer Ng and Bill Munday"
Excellent
Experience Report
Overall Rating:
Excellent

Login to Expert Africa

Sign in with password

Sign in with email link


New to Expert Africa? Create an account

Forgotten your details?

It's free & quick to set up

  • Save your wish-list
  • Send us an enquiry
  • Pay online for your trip
  • Subscribe to our newsletter
  • Give us feedback on your trip
  • Full site benefits of the site

Need some help? Talk to our team