Travel reviews

Travel reviews by Ms R & Ms M from New York


Trip of a Lifetime!! Oct-Nov 2014

On this trip, I visited Namibia between 23-Oct-2014 and 7-Nov-2014 and I travelled with 1 other person.

Overall my trip experience was:

ExcellentExcellent

We had a magical time in Namibia! Our trip was so well-organized and perfectly suited to our needs, wishes and budget that we wouldn't have changed a thing about it. This was our first time in southern Africa, and Namibia has indeed spoiled us! The big empty dirt roads, stunning scenery, incredible wildlife, warm hospitality, and eco-conscious mindset all combined to make this an unforgettable vacation. We cannot wait to go back.

Expert Africa's website was perhaps the main reason we chose to work with them over other self-drive tour planners we considered. Working with Sabina - a native Namibian - was also important. She was able to answer all of our questions and address all of our concerns, particularly relating to driving. We are so glad we went with her advice to NOT get a 4WD. Being city people that went against our instincts somewhat, but the price difference was significant and we were 100% satisfied with our Nissan X-Trail.

We did not make our plans early enough to get exactly every lodge we wanted, but the alternatives that Sabina suggested were excellent - especially Onguma Bush Camp. She also did a great job at pointing out details regarding a couple of the lodges that had concerned clients of hers in the past and wanted to make sure we were still okay staying there. We didn't have any major surprises (of the bad kind!) on this trip, and we believe it's because we were well-prepped by Sabina, the very informative Bradt guide, and Expert Africa's website.

The only thing that was consistently different from what we had been told was the driving times. It always took us much longer to get from lodge to lodge than we expected. We definitely made many stops along the way which delayed us - especially during the first half of our trip - but even when we didn't stop much we were inevitably somewhere between an hour and a half to two hours behind the estimate. Thankfully we always left early enough that we were never in danger of driving at dusk or night.

Another issue worth pointing out is that while we essentially did the Caracal Self-Drive as described on Expert Africa's website, our final invoice was a lot higher than what was quoted on the site. We did make several upgrades, such as going with a K-class 2WD instead of a sedan, getting an extra spare tire, spending a night at a premiere waterhole chalet at Okaukuejo, and staying at Okonjima. In the end we paid quite a bit more than what we thought we were going to pay based on the website quotes. We have absolutely no regrets about this in the end, but it's important to know that what is on the website is really the bare bare minimum and that one should probably budget several hundred dollars more per person if more than one or two changes to the itinerary are going to be made.

We had the time of our lives on this trip and didn't want it to end! Namibia is a place unlike any other we've been to. Sabina did a great job at making it all go smoothly and we will definitely be giving her a call as soon as we can get back there!

I stayed at and have reviewed:

Place Overall rating
Elegant Guesthouse, Namibia
23-Oct-2014 review: Great option for Windhoek
GoodGood
BullsPort Lodge & Farm, Namibia
24-Oct-2014 review: Friendly & comfortable - a pleasant surprise!
ExcellentExcellent
Kulala Desert Lodge, Namibia
26-Oct-2014 review: Unforgettable place!
ExcellentExcellent
Cornerstone Guesthouse, Namibia
28-Oct-2014 review: Friendly service, great location
GoodGood
Doro Nawas, Namibia
30-Oct-2014 review: Spectacular setting - a great stay
ExcellentExcellent
Okaukuejo Camp, Namibia
1-Nov-2014 review: It's all about the waterhole
ExcellentExcellent
Onguma Bush Camp, Namibia
3-Nov-2014 review: A wonderful 2 nights
ExcellentExcellent
Okonjima Plains Camp, Namibia
5-Nov-2014 review: A very special place - add it to your list!
ExcellentExcellent
Galton House, Namibia
6-Nov-2014 review: A pleasant stop over
GoodGood