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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Ms L from Heathfield

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

4

Lodges stayed in

16

Excursions taken

0

My Aug 2017 trip

Namibia and 3 other countries between 16 Aug 2017 and 13 Sep 2017

Trip rating: Excellent
"We had a wonderful holiday in Southern Africa. There are so many memories- we tried to name our 'top 10 best moments' but it was impossible as each day offered something new and exciting. We will definitely be back to this lovely part of the world before too long.

Thank you to Tracy Lederer for her advice and organisation - everything ran very smoothly and exceeded our expectations."

Arranged By Tracy Lederer


Ilala Lodge

Ilala Lodge

"Really good lodge"

2 nights Arrived 16 Aug 2017
"Although they are building nearby to extend the lodge and gave us a free river trip to make up for this, it was not a problem for us, as it was a national holiday so no work was going on. The building is quite close to some (but not all) of the rooms so could be intrusive for guests staying in those rooms as it develops, although a high screen has been erected.

We really liked Ilala Lodge - the staff were very pleasant and we had a lovely room overlooking the falls in the distance. Dinner was very good- we loved sitting outside under the stars!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Victoria Falls Hotel

Victoria Falls Hotel

"Lovely hotel, but disappointing room"

1 night Arrived 18 Aug 2017
"Victoria Falls Hotel is iconic and we wanted to stay there for that reason. It is certainly a fantastic location and has a feeling of timelessness and luxury. The breakfast was excellent- one of the best of our entire trip and the staff were very attentive.

The only disappointment was our room, which was very small (even by standards in the UK!) It was also on the ground floor and quite dark. It seemed a little 'tired' and needs an update. We had to wait a long time for our room to be ready, although this wasn't a problem as the rest of the hotel and grounds are so lovely."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Average
Food
Excellent
Garden Lodge

Garden Lodge

"Great boat trip on the Chobe River from here"

1 night Arrived 19 Aug 2017
"The rooms at Garden Lodge are very comfortable and ours had a great view down to the river, from which we could view the animals coming in at night. The staff gave us a warm welcome and we very attentive and friendly.

The boat trip from the lodge on the river during the late afternoon is a 'must do'. We saw so many animals coming down to the river to drink, an especially loved seeing the elephants swim across! It was unforgettable and a highlight of our trip.

Garden Lodge is a good place to stay in a convenient location."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Chobe Under Canvas

Chobe Under Canvas

"Wonderful safari and great camping"

2 nights Arrived 20 Aug 2017
"Chobe Under Canvas is absolutely wonderful. We had never stayed in a tented camp such a this before and it was one of the best experiences of our trip. Innocent, our guide, managed to find lots of 'big game' including 17 lions by the river and a single female who walked right past our vehicle.

The camp has a feeling of permanence, even though it is moved every 5 days. The tents are very comfortable and the meals, taken in the communal tent with some of the staff, were delicious despite being cooked in a camp kitchen. At night, the stars in the southern sky are amazing!

The staff are very attentive and do everything they can to make sure guests have a good time, including 'singing them in' on return from safari.

We would thoroughly recommend Chobe Under Canvas"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Little Kwara

Little Kwara

"Beautiful location at Little Kwara"

2 nights Arrived 22 Aug 2017
"Little Kwara is in a beautiful setting in the heart of the Okavango Delta. The rooms are lovely - very spacious with outdoor space for sitting to enjoy the view (although watch out for the baboons, who are very troublesome and can land next to you unexpectedly!)

Most of the staff are helpful but to be honest, we didn't feel they went 'the extra mile', as we had experienced at other places where we have stayed and a couple of them were a bit surly. We were disappointed that our trip in a canoe was shortened because the two other guests with us had to get back early for their flight. Our guide did take us on a river trip in the motor boat in the afternoon to make up for this, but the canoe trip was one thing we were really looking forward to and it was not possible to go out in the canoe again.

Nevertheless, we did enjoy our time in the Okavango Delta, which is a very special environment."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Average
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Royal Tree Lodge

Royal Tree Lodge

"Comfortable room at Royal Tree Lodge"

1 night Arrived 24 Aug 2017
"Royal Tree Lodge is some distance out of Maun on a very sandy road. This was disconcerting as we had only just picked up our car and needed to take great care as it was not 4x4. The lodge sent an employee to greet us at the airport and he was able to guide us through the less navigable parts of the road.

We only stayed for one night and the room was very comfortable with an especially nice bathroom. Dinner was taken communally round a large table with the other guests and the manager which was enjoyable. However they have a problem with flies buzzing around and was especially evident at breakfast, where the flies were stuck in the jam (yuk!). We suggested that they cover the food to avoid this!

The only thing we would say is that the extra charges were quite high- .e.g. for extra drinks and for the packed lunch for the next day."
Good
Location
Average
Service
Average
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
River Dance Lodge

River Dance Lodge

"A fantastic location next to the river"

2 nights Arrived 25 Aug 2017
"We loved River Dance Lodge. The buildings have a modern feel and are architecturally interesting - for example, the bathroom and bedroom are on a decked area, with the bathroom as a separate 'pod' Our room had a great view across the river to Angola, facing the sunset. Very romantic and beautiful!

The meals at River Dance are delicious, and a lot of thought is put into the presentation. The service is good.

We also went on a sunset boat trip on the river which was lovely and enabled us to see local people going about their daily lives.

We would recommend River Dance Lodge as a relaxing and comfortable place to stay."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Mushara Bush Camp

Mushara Bush Camp

"Very comfortable camp"

2 nights Arrived 27 Aug 2017
"Mushara Bush Camp is conveniently located just 10km outside Etosha National Park. The partially tented cabins are quite small, but comfortable and private. There is also a swimming pool for refreshment after a long day driving around the Park.

We especially enjoyed the evenings at Mushara - sitting round the fire with a pre-dinner drink and then enjoying the delicious meals which were beautifully presented.

We would recommend staying at Mushara Bush Camp."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Okaukuejo Camp

Okaukuejo Camp

"Watching the waterhole at night is amazing"

2 nights Arrived 29 Aug 2017
"On the first evening after sunset, we loved watching lots of elephants come to the floodlit waterhole, as well as lion and rhino. However, Okaukuejo Camp itself was disappointing. We noticed the difference in service compared to other camps on checking in, when the receptionist was quite rude and abrupt.

The accommodation was very spacious and it was clean although not particularly comfortable. They no longer seem to need an inventory to be checked and signed - there is very little in the room that anyone could take anyway!.

The worst thing about Okaukuejo is the food. The takeaway restaurant closes early and then all that is available is the restaurant where a buffet is served which is really expensive. Apart from the meat, which was cooked on a braii and quite tasty, the rest of the food offered was truly awful. It was so bad that we did not want to eat there the following night and went to the shop (which is sparsely stocked) and just ate snacks for supper! We would recommend that anyone staying at this camp bring their own food supplies in for supper, or buy a takeaway from the snack bar early before it closes.

The other thing that should be mentioned is that the petrol station in the camp ran out of unleaded fuel. We left on a Tuesday and no fuel was expected until Friday! It didn't affect us as we were moving on and had plenty of fuel to get us to the next town.

However the advantage of staying at Okaukuejo is the opportunity to see wildlife interacting at the waterhole after dark, which is wonderful. I will never forget seeing the elephants chasing a lion away and protecting the babies!"
Average
Location
Good
Service
Poor
Rooms
Average
Food
Poor
Damaraland Camp

Damaraland Camp

"The best place we stayed on our holiday"

2 nights Arrived 31 Aug 2017
"We would give Damaraland Camp the accolade of 'best camp we stayed in on our holiday'! Everything was so well done, from the welcome, to the activities and the food. The staff couldn't have done more to make our stay enjoyable.

There was a large party of 14 staying at the camp at the same time as us, leaving us as the only couple. This could have been awkward but the staff went out of their way to talk with us and make sure that we had all we needed. They even gave us a hut on the edge of the camp so that we would have a quiet stay.

Situated in the true wilderness of Damaraland, our pick up from the village (where we left our car over our stay) to the camp half an hour away was prompt and efficient. We were given a very warm welcome (singing and drinks!) and then the manager spent some time chatting to us.

Our hut was beautiful, with a smart bathroom and lovely view over the mountains. Little lanterns guided us on the path to the main area after dark. The food was great and we enjoyed the singing and dancing entertainment provided by the staff after dinner!

We had one whole day at the camp and discussed with our guide that we would like to see the desert elephants and also the etchings at Twyfelfontein. He suggested that we leave before dawn and have breakfast on the road, returning for a late lunch in the afternoon and we agreed. Shortly after leaving, he turned off the road and climbed a steep hill. To our amazement the staff had set up breakfast on the hill top- including a stove! We saw the sunrise as we ate our freshly prepared scrambled eggs. They do this regularly but it was lovely that they kept it as a surprise for their guests.
We did see the desert elephants up close, watching them for some time. On returning after a full day they served us a lovely lunch, as promised.

In the evening, again kept as a surprise although a regular event, dinner was served at a Boma which is hidden from sight from the camp. We were guided to it by candles along the path and it was a lovely evening.

What makes Damaraland Camp stand out is that the staff really work as a well-managed, happy team. They chat to their guests in a non-intrusive way and go that 'extra mile' to ensure they are well cared for. We were quite emotional when they all sang a farewell song to us as we left. We cannot recommend the place highly enough."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Strand Hotel

Strand Hotel

"Good location, bad service"

2 nights Arrived 2 Sep 2017
"The Strand Hotel is in a great location on the sea front at Swakopmund. It is only two years old, so although the exterior design is not very inspiring, the inside is beautiful. The rooms are the typical L shaped bedroom and ensuite, with views over the sea. Our bathroom was spacious, but had a rather dank smell, suggesting drain problems.

The problem with the Strand Hotel is the service. Apparently we are not the only people to notice this - a local guide told us that residents of Swakop do not go to the Strand because the service is known to be so bad.

Some papers were left for us at reception the evening before our 'kayaking with seals' trip explaining the arrangements. Reception rang our room and said they would bring the papers up to us - but they never arrived and I had to go and get them later that evening. The papers were in the office waiting for someone to deliver them. The next morning our pre-packed breakfast was not ready and we had to wait some time for it to be prepared. We then went to the restaurant for lunch and our order did not arrive. When questioned, the rather surly waitress said it wasn't her fault but her colleague's - but she had actually placed our order at the bar instead of in the kitchen. The meal eventually arrived nearly an hour after we ordered it. The next morning at breakfast, no-one came to offer us tea or coffee and we had to go and ask. Communication seems to be lacking and the staff do not seem at all motivated to provide a good service.

On walking round Swakop we noticed lots of other hotels in the town and we would suggest travellers stay at one of these rather than the Strand, despite its scenic location."
Average
Location
Excellent
Service
Poor
Rooms
Average
Food
Average
BullsPort Lodge & Farm

BullsPort Lodge & Farm

"Homely farm for a short stay"

1 night Arrived 4 Sep 2017
"We loved the location of Bullsport Guest Farm and managed to do some walking in the beautiful surroundings during our short stay (they provide information about guided walks from the farm).

Our room was spacious, clean and quite basic, providing everything we needed for just one night. We enjoyed the communal meal in the evening, when the owners and their team joined us and were able to give us an insight into what it is like to live and work near the Naukluft Mountains.

We would certainly recommend Bullsport Guest Farm for a short stay, especially if you like walking or horse riding."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Desert Homestead

Desert Homestead

"Good location for exploring Sossusvlei"

2 nights Arrived 5 Sep 2017
"We enjoyed our two nights at Desert Homestead. It is about 25 km from Sossusvlei along a very rough gravel road.

Our hut was quite small, but well appointed with a lovely bathroom and great views of the mountains. The staff are maybe not as friendly as some we have encountered but they provided everything we needed. The food was very good and there were lots of options for tables outside or in.

We went horse-riding, which we wouldn't really recommend highly as the guide wasn't very talkative and the horses seemed rather tired. The walk up the mountain from the Homestead is worth doing, especially at sunset."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Activities
Average
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Canyon Roadhouse

Canyon Roadhouse

"Quirky place to stay- good fun!"

2 nights Arrived 9 Sep 2017
"Canyon Roadhouse is very unusual, with old cars dotted around both inside and out. I completely missed the reception desk because it is in an old lorry! Inside the place has been designed like a garage with signs, workbenches etc. It is quirky and fun.

Our room was comfortable and followed the 'roadhouse' theme, with a really lovely bathroom (best shower of any on our trip!)
It was situated around a communal courtyard, but we had no problems with noise from other guests. There is also a small swimming pool on site with loungers and tables around it which we enjoyed.

The food in the restaurant is very good value and the staff are attentive and helpful.

Canyon Roadhouse is only 15-20 minutes from Fish River Canyon along a good gravel road. We left before dawn (the staff offered us a packed breakfast, which was very good) and arrived at the canyon before sunrise. The sun actually rises behind you as you look at the canyon, so it takes a while for the canyon to light up, but it is worth seeing the soft orange glow spread over the rocks. This is supposed to be a good time for photos - we certainly got better pictures in the morning than in the afternoon. It is worth walking from the main viewing area along the rim of the canyon - also better done in the cool early morning."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Annie's Cottage

Annie's Cottage

"Convenient location in Springbok"

1 night Arrived 11 Sep 2017
"Annie's Cottage is a comfortable, convenient place to stay in Springbok. There is secure parking which is easy to operate with a key fob. The cottage is surrounded by a pleasant garden which guests can sit in for evening drinks.

We were offered a choice of two rooms and took the one in the main building which seemed more comfortable. The other one, which is round the side of the house seemed a little damp and less welcoming. Breakfast is served in the main house and there was a wide range of cooked dishes.

In the evening we ate at The Herb Garden, a new cafe that is a short drive away. It was recommended by the staff at Annie's Cottage and we had a very reasonable priced, tasty meal there.

Annie's Cottage is a good base for exploring Namaqualand. Unfortunately (Sept 2017) there were no spring flowers due to the very dry winter but the area is still beautiful."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Rooms
Average
Food
Good
Ndedema Lodge

Ndedema Lodge

"A good place to stay in Clanwilliam"

1 night Arrived 12 Sep 2017
"Ndedema Lodge is situated some distance from the centre of Clanwilliam on the edge of town. It is an old victorian house and the rooms are furnished in period style, which we really liked. Our room was clean and well furnished with a large bathroom.

We ate at Michael's restaurant which serves homely food and is a short walk from the lodge.

The owners of Ndedema Lodge are friendly and helpful and the breakfast was good."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good

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