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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mrs S from Surrey

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

13

Excursions taken

0

Fabulous trip

Namibia between 1 Apr 2017 and 24 Apr 2017

Trip rating: Excellent
"Most of the accommodation that Expert had booked was very good although we didn't find the staff, on the whole, as welcoming as we would have expected.

Once at the accommodation, in general, we found assistance with activities poor & some activities were just provision of a driver. We would have been happy to pay for such activities if they took us to places we couldnt get to on our own and offered more educational/informative elements.

However, we loved the country - the scenery was absolutely amazing - so varied and so devoid of people & we saw loads of birds and animals - BRILLIANT !!"

Feedback response

These travellers spent the majority of their trip staying in accommodations best suited to self drivers. For the most part properties are convenient locations for those wishing to explore Namibia on their own terms - usually in relatively close proximity to one of the countries main highlights. As a result although most do offer activities, this isn't always their prime focus and hence perhaps some standards were not as high as this traveller expected.

Arranged By Tom Morris


Haus Sonneneck

Haus Sonneneck

"OK start to our trip"

2 nights Arrived 1 Apr 2017
"We arrived around 9pm after long day of 2 flights from Livingstone via Jo'burg - the welcome from the owner was not very warm as we were late which was disconcerting as it was our first night's stay on our Expert holiday - Expert should have informed him of our expected arrival time.

Perfectly adequate room although not ultra-comfortable !

Stayed 2 nights - unfortunately 2nd day was Sunday so centre of Windhoek was very quiet. Joe's beerhouse was open & was a fun place for a meal (good food too).

Shame the pool was not in use due to water restrictions, however pleasant gardens to relax in (though the easy chairs around the pool were in need of a good clean)"
Average
Location
Good
Service
Average
Facilities
Average
Rooms
Average
Food
Average
Okonjima Bush Camp

Okonjima Bush Camp

"Fabulous !"

2 nights Arrived 3 Apr 2017
"We had been booked into Plains Camp & got upgraded , which was just great. Great rooms & loads of birds & 2 warthogs in our very own waterhole !

Two minor points -
1) why is there no water available in the lounge chalet where the coffee station is ?
and
2) for such a quality place it seemed odd that there was no choice on the menu (the portions were also a bit on the small side)

As we had been upgraded we had to pay extra for activities which I think are normally included (only fair).

We went on the leopard tracking which was great as we saw Electra. We also wished we had gone on the cheetah tracking - as we didn't see a cheetah in our trip.
The night hide visit was not so great - we saw 3 porcupines, who get fed kitchen scraps - they were already waiting when we arrived ; once they had eaten all the food they left & we were told that it was time to go. Very disappointing - no chance to see honey badgers or any of the other animals that it had been suggested we could see. I found the guide quite rude & did make a complaint.

I was surprised that the visit to the Africat centre was charged at $640, this seemed far too expensive so we declined .

It was nice to get out & go on one of the walks - great views of the reserve - but sadly very few birds (& no animals) seen."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Halali Camp

Halali Camp

"Good location in middle of park"

2 nights Arrived 5 Apr 2017
"We had a 2 bedroom chalet. The bedrooms were good. The lounge area was a bit shabby.

It would have been nice to have self-catered - but 3 drawbacks to this :
1) the shop did not sell sufficient food to make even a rudimentary meal ,
2) no utensils, crockery etc (apart from mugs & glasses) were provided ,
3) nowhere to cook apart from a braii which looked dirty & no fuel provided.

This may work for South Africans or Namibians who can come prepared, but not good for overseas tourists.

The restaurant food was OK - but overpriced (low quality , all you can eat buffet)

Sadly not many animals around the camp - we were told they had all gone east to Namutoni where there was more water- so we had to drive further than expected."
Average
Location
Good
Service
Average
Rooms
Average
Food
Average
Okaukuejo Camp

Okaukuejo Camp

"Great waterhole chalet"

2 nights Arrived 7 Apr 2017
"We had a great waterhole chalet which was very comfortable.

The first night the waterhole was visited by a large herd of zebra & then , after dark, a large herd of springbok. Sadly overnight it rained - the second night no animals came !

Our first night was Friday - the restaurant was absolute chaos - absolutely packed - long queues & running out of stuff. To be fair, they are re-vamping the inside restaurant at the moment so it may be better when that is finished - but it may just be better not to arrive on a Friday (Saturday was fairly quiet by comparison).

We drove westwards from the lodge & saw a great many animals - I have never seen so many zebra - mile after mile of them - brilliant !"
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Average
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Average
Doro Nawas

Doro Nawas

"Welcoming"

2 nights Arrived 9 Apr 2017
"This was the most welcoming of all the places we stayed in, even though the restaurant area does look a bit forbidding from a distance. The views are fabulous. It was great having a pool as it was really hot.

Evening meals were made to be an occasion - the first was in the dining room - it was fun listening to the menu in 'click' language & the singing was fun ; on the second night we were led out into the bush where a long table had been set out under the stars - a lovely touch. It was good to have house wine included in the price.

As we only had 1 full day to explore the area we didnt go on the elephant safari (my guidebook said it was the wrong time of the year for them to be close), which we regretted as people who went had a great experience. We did enjoy our visit to see the rock paintings, organ pipes & fingerklip."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Facilities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Cornerstone Guesthouse

Cornerstone Guesthouse

"Am der Mole apartment actually"

2 nights Arrived 11 Apr 2017
"We couldn't stay at the guesthouse because it was full - instead opted for the 3 bedroom apartment (even tho there are only 2 of us !)

It was great - really nice to have all the facilities of home for a couple of nights : a supermarket just round the corner so we actually ate in both nights & relaxed in front of the TV ; a washing machine - to get some clean clothes etc etc. The only issue was that after nearly 40deg temps in Doro Nawas, it was only 16-18 here so we couldn't make full use of the huge terrace overlooking the sea-front.

We could have stayed here a lot longer. The town seems very clean, interesting German architecture & very tasteful shops.

I'm sure there were lots of good restaurants we could have tried too."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Lagoon Lodge

Lagoon Lodge

"Shame about the road"

1 night Arrived 13 Apr 2017
"We stayed here to see the birds as it was billed as being right on the edge of the lagoon - but we were very disappointed to find the main (VERY busy !) road was between the lodge & the lagoon. We saw more birds on the previous days trip from Swakop to Sandwich Harbour - so we wished we had not stayed here but had an extra day (or 2) in Swakop.

The rooms were perfectly nice & we sat in the garden (too cold to go in the pool) - after having asked if there were any beds to use they produced some old-fashioned canvas deck-chairs.
The lodge is run by a Frenchman, who is quite a character, and his wife.

We had a lunch-time drink at the Raft, just down the road - there were lots of sea-birds flying around - but we couldnt see them because the windows were too dirty. We also had dinner there - good fish."
Average
Location
Poor
Service
Good
Rooms
Average
Food
Good
Sossus Dune Lodge

Sossus Dune Lodge

"Good for short visit"

2 nights Arrived 14 Apr 2017
"We stayed here 2 nights - but one would have been enough as there is nothing to do except to visit the dunes which are 60k away (tarmac road) and further few kilometres which are only possible by 4WD. A shuttle is available for the last bit tho it doesnt start until the coaches arrive. The lodge runs a jeep trip to the dunes (start at 4:30) but this is basically just for the transport & at around $600 pp we thought it expensive & it gets back to the lodge for breakfast. We followed it down in our 2WD and were lucky to get a lift for the remaining bit as the shuttle was not yet operational. We saw Big Daddy & Dead Vlei - impressive - but then were best by a sandstorm so returned to the lodge earlier than expected as conditions were most unpleasant.

Lodge was comfortable tho it is quite a long walk to some of the chalets. Set menu, tho costed by the course so you dont have to have alll 3 courses (although we didnt find this out until the 2nd night as there were no prices on the 1st night's menu - odd !)"
Good
Location
Average
Service
Average
Rooms
Good
Food
Average
Namtib Desert Lodge

Namtib Desert Lodge

"A farm without animals !"

1 night Arrived 16 Apr 2017
"In the middle of nowhere ! The drive to & from is as scenic as the guide books say - well worth the effort of getting here !

Run by Namibian couple - should be a farm - but they sold all their animals in 2014 because just not enough rain to sustain them. Now all they have is a few oryx. A very isolated existence. It was nice having the communal meal (just 5 other guests) - to chat to the other guests & learn about the life from our hosts - very good food too.

Rooms adequate - although lack of fans & A/C could be an issue when really hot. Lots of scope for hiking - tho we arrived late & had to leave fairly early for Luderitz as at this point we had no spare tyre - due to major blow-out - so had to take it really slowly (finally got new tyre in Keetmansloop - some 500 kilometres later - quite an anxious time!!)"
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Nest Hotel

Nest Hotel

"Generic hotel"

2 nights Arrived 17 Apr 2017
"Hotel has no character - you could be anywhere in the world - shame ! However the food was good, rooms fine & nice sea views.

We ate here one night & one night at Ritzi's - where we had huge seafood platter & plate of crayfish which were excellent (and a lot cheaper than elsewhere).

Lots to do in and around Luderitz - we could have stayed more than 2 nights. Interesting church , Goerke House to go round ; Kolmanskop is a MUST, don't bother with agate beach - but go onto the peninsula to Diaz point (and beyond if you have 4WD) - lots of birds to see & great sea views. We also did the boat trip to see the penguins plus dolphins & many sea-birds which was good."
Average
Location
Good
Service
Average
Activities
Good
Rooms
Average
Food
Good
Canyon Lodge

Canyon Lodge

"Reasonably close to the Canyon"

2 nights Arrived 19 Apr 2017
"The rooms are little chalets spread around the grounds - lots of large boulders make an impressive back-drop. The chalets are quite small - ours was made worse by having 3 beds in it so we couldn't really move (would have complained but we were only here for 2 nights). Being given a map would have been useful as the 'welcome' staff were not very helpful but we eventually found our way round. Quite walk to the pool - but worth it - is in a really nice setting.

We drove ourselves to the Canyon. The only 'trip' they offered was only to 2 viewpoints which we could get easily to on our own with 2WD. We wondered why 4WD trips to viewpoints we couldn't get to were not on offer.
The view of the canyon were sensational & seemed to be different at each viewpoint - we happily spent the whole day there !
However, that is all there is to do - 2 nights quite sufficient.

Gardens at the front of the main building were nice & yielded many birds."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Average
Rooms
Poor
Food
Good
Kalahari Anib Lodge

Kalahari Anib Lodge

"Large modern lodge"

2 nights Arrived 21 Apr 2017
"We had been warned that this was a large lodge which could be filled with groups but were pleasantly surprised. It was busy but seemed large enough to cope. Some rooms were around the main pool , others (where we were) were a little further away and overlooked a (now dry) waterhole. 2 pools - but slightly too cool for us to swim ! The room was spacious tho lacked tables to put stuff & easy chairs !

The food, tho the usual buffet, was good and nicely labelled so we knew what we were eating ! On the 2nd night we were slightly unwell so didn't want the full buffet - the staff were kind to serve us a large dish of piping hot soup instead.

Good activities on offer - we didn't do the sunrise or sunset safaris but chose the dune walk. Shimi our guide was full of information - really good. We did walk for about an hour in the desert & learnt a lot about the different plants.The rest of the 4 hours was spent driving around - we saw many animals (a HUGE herd of galloping oryx) & many birds - excellent !"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Galton House

Galton House

"Galton House"

1 night Arrived 23 Apr 2017
"Our last night in Namibia !

We found the rooms a bit bare , very modern. The outside seating overlooked the parking area which we also found a bit stark - no plants or flowers to make it more welcoming.

We were not shown the pool, probably because it was raining. We had to leave early the next morning. We assumed the pool would be closed due to the water issues but perhaps not as per Mr B's review from 1st April ?
As it was a Sunday night we did not want to have to go out for dinner so we ate in - perfectly nice food - just not much of it !

All in all - a slightly disappointing stay given that Galton house has a higher rating that Sonneneck (where we stayed on the first night)."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Average
Rooms
Good
Food
Average

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