Travel reviews by Mr & Mrs W from Herts
Total number of trips
Lodges stayed in
Yet another wonderful trip to Tanzania
Tanzania between 5 Oct 2008 and 19 Oct 2008
We are often asked why we go to more than one camp in an area - but each camp offers a very different experience - but we could Safari for much longer than we did this time and enjoy every single day! We are looking forward to planning our next trip with you! Many thanks
Suggestions for improvement:
We have not come across an issue that would need improvement so nothing to add here - we are very satisfied with all that you offer."
These regular travellers are completely right! If we’d known about a camp change like this (even for a good reason like this: their original camp had burnt down!), we would certainly have advised them, and discussed the possible alternatives with them.
In this case we were not told, and have taken steps to make sure this doesn’t happen again.
We have apologised to these travellers – and talked to the team on the ground in Tanzania to ensure that this never happens again. That said, we’re glad to hear that it didn’t impact too badly on this trip – which was clearly a great success.
Lake Manze Adventure Camp
"Great start to Safari at Lake Manze"
Nothing was too much trouble for the staff - from lending a brand new pair of binoculars (whilst waiting for the ones carelessly left at the previous camp to arrive) to sorting out creams for various peculiar bites!!
Rafiki - the almost 'resident' elephant kept us v amused as he trotted round the camp peering into the bar to see what was going on! He was rather noisy at night though when accompanied by other elephants he tore down leaves from the palm trees just outside the tent!
We liked showering under the stars, eating at the long table exchanging the day's safari experiences, having the same guides for the whole of our stay (3 nights), sunsets over the lake and much more."
"Even better than last year at Selous Impala!"
We couldn't fault anything. Mara was acting Camp Manager whilst we were there and she was brilliant, nothing was too much trouble. Always smiling, she chatted with every guest at several points during each day checking that all was in order, attending to everything in great detail. She certainly gets things moving too - on our first day she located the missing binoculars (which had been promised for a few days by then) - and they arrived the next day!
I had a wonderful surprise birthday meal under the stars complete with a birthday cake (the first one I haven't had to make for myself for ** years!) accompanied by a procession of the staff and rendition of Happy Birthday and Jambo Bwana!
Our guide for the whole time, Ezra, was excellent. His happy smiling face greeted us unfailingly as we met for each new adventure! Ezra's excellent knowledge of birds, animals, insects and plants ensured that we had our best walking safari - and we saw Colobus monkeys too! All the game drives were wonderful (with Rajabu driving) and we enjoyed the huge amount of game viewing - and Ezra we never tired of our Leopard search!!
We had 3 boat safaris - all very different. The birds along the river are beautiful (Ezra's 'bling birds') - the malachite kingfishers patiently waited for us to take photos and we got some really great shots of them, the pied kingfishers and bee-eaters. Gerard got us very (but safely) close to groups of elephants crossing - a wonderful sight in the beautiful sunset.
We also enjoyed our Verandha Safaris, exchanging stories of the days events round the fire, excellent bush breakfasts, evening meals under the stars, the conversations with various staff and much more. This was certainly a very memorable stay. A big thank you to all at Impala!!"
"Good post-safari relaxation @ Ras Kutani!"
Waking up in the morning to tea/coffee on the verandha was a nice beginning to the day - and we felt that we were having great lie-ins by getting up at 7am after the safari early starts!
The lagoon walk is well worth doing - but early in the day as it is very hot and humid under the canopy. We saw many birds, butterflies and monkeys - including colobus monkeys. We were quite lazy - which is great after a busy safari - and spent much of the time either on the verandha of the bungalow, on the beach or playing scrabble in the very comfortable lounging area. We occasionally did stir ourselves to walk along the beach which you can easily do in both directions.
The staff were very friendly and ensured that there was nothing we could want for - everything was taken care of and the only decision to make was 'Shall I have tea or coffee, beer or wine?'!!!"
A great holiday to Tanzania
Tanzania and 1 other country between 1 Oct 2007 and 16 Oct 2007
We have used your expertise for 4 holidays on the trot - and expect to do so in the future. Clearly we are very happy with your service - you provide us with the expertise and very clear information we need. There have been no nasty surprises on any of the holidays because everything has been so thoroughly explained before we go.
On previous trips we have had to contact you whilst on holiday - what a service you provide - everything sorted out efficiently and immediately leaving no hassle for us. We feel absolute confidence in Expert Africa - so we cannot think of anything to improve on what you already do so well!!"
Mdonya Old River Camp
"Great Safari at Mdonya Old River"
The game viewing was excellent we went on two full day safaris and it was fantastic - we asked ourselves if there was anywhere else we would have wanted to be and the answer was 'NO'!
The only problem - and it was quite a problem was the tsetse flies. They were vicious and no amount of insect repellent deterred them - they bit through several layers of clothing. We were covered in bites which although initially painful did not itch but left large patches of bruising.
There had been a bush fire around the camp which apparently made the tsetse problem worse that usual. It did mean that we could not view game or take walks near the camp without being absolutely inundated with the flies - and that is the main reason for taking full day safaris.
Much as we really enjoyed the camp the tsetse problem would make us think twice about returning!
Unlike other guests, we had warned by you of the increase in park fees. We were told at Mdonya that the camps would be bearing this cost themselves for guests who had booked before the increase was brought in."
"Excellent safari at Selous Impala Camp"
The environment is beautiful and varied - the lakes meant that we saw plenty of water birds. We also enjoyed the fact that we could have boat safaris as well as safari drives.
We saw a pack of 15 wild dogs which was fantastic - but all the game viewing was very good.
Some people we met on route commented on the separate tables for dining. Most people we met would rather have had one large table so that it would be easier to compare notes and talk about the experiences that day - and I think we would agree with that point of view.
With regard to the increase in park fees - we were told that there was an increase but we didn't have to pay unless we wanted to. Unsurprisingly no one paid."
"Matemwe Bungalows review"
The bungalows themselves are lovely, very well appointed and extremely spacious. The verandah overlooking the ocean is wonderful and you can spend hours swinging on the hammock or lazing on the sofa watching the fishing dhows go out and back and the women of the village pegging and gathering seaweed (for Estee Lauder we were told!!!). The early morning tea and coffee is a lovely touch - we enjoyed getting up early to drink tea/coffee watching the sunrise.
The restaurant is especially nice at lunchtime when the sides are rolled up and you can take a leisurely lunch overlooking the ocean.
One of us was very poorly whilst staying there and nothing was too much trouble. Nigel the manager was very attentive and caring as were all the staff. The 'well' half was fussed over as a lone diner!!
The only down side really was the wind! When the tide comes in it can be very windy and then quite uncomfortable on the verandah and also inside the bungalow as the wind whistled through the louvred doors - at times there was no escape from it. If you are a light sleeper then the noise of the waves crashing on the rocks below can be disturbing - we did not find that a soothing noise."
Beyt al Salaam
"Beyt al Chai review"
We only had breakfast on one day as the second day we had to leave for our return flight home at 5.45 am (but we did get some fruit to take with us) - so it is not relly possible to comment on the food. The restaurant looked nice but we did not eat there in the evening as we would have been lone diners!! (We went across the road to the Serena Inn roof top restaurant for dinner - and that was gorgeous).
We were concerned about the lax security regarding the room key. We were asked to leave our room key at the front desk if we were going out - which usually meant leaving it on the desk with nobody there and a possibility of anyone being able to pick it up (the name of the room was on the key!). When we came back to the hotel after sightseeing on the first day we could not get into our room as the key had been taken by a member of staff to turn the beds down - and he had disappeared. When we returned on the second night the room key had completely disappeared and we had to use the master key!! The waiting for a key was rather annoying."
We were totally confident that Expert Africa had not been informed of the situation because we knew that if they had, we would most certainly have been informed. We gathered on our arrival at Vuma Hills that we were not the only guests that had not been informed - and quite naturally Karen the camp manager was very frustrated.
Having said all this it did not really detract from our enjoyment as the main point of the exercise was to have a driver/guide for a few days so that we could experience some of the countryside and see how communities worked - and this was certainly achieved."