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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mr & Mrs Coucal from Herts

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

2

Lodges stayed in

4

Excursions taken

0

My Feb 2008 trip

Tanzania and 1 other country between 7 Feb 2008 and 22 Feb 2008

Trip rating: Excellent
"One of our most memorable overall Africa experiences. Partly because of the variety of camps, scenery and activities, partly because of the fact we visited in the early part of the wet season, implying green landscapes with fat and happy animals. This can make for very photogenic stuff, with animals pictured amongst fields of flowers and greenery, rather than dust, and I took some of my best ever pictures on this trip. Bird variety and sightings are also fabulous at this time of year.

The downside of the wet season is that things can become a bit more chaotic, with roads becoming impassable and airstrips being temporarily unusable. As such, not quite as "stress-free" as safaris can be at other times of the year, but very much recommended as an experience if all you've done before is the dry season (which was the case for us). Oh, there's one other downside too - more insects!

The balance of the trip was excellent in terms of safari/beach/city, with the Zanzibar accommodation being perfectly chosen to suit our particular preferences - thank you Ellie. Logistics were flawless throughout. Overall, very pleased indeed, and starting to think about our next trip already."

Beho Beho

Beho Beho

"Beho Beho review"

5 nights Arrived 8 Feb 2008
"Probably our most memorable overall camp experience anywhere in Africa. The location and facilities are stunning, and the camp succeeds brilliantly in conveying the feeling of being a guest at a house party, rather than just a "customer". Guiding is excellent, with - to us - the ideal balance of professionalism and personal relationship. We were lucky enough to bump into our splendid guide Onno on the plane flying into the Selous, so we had a chance to get to know him early.

We visited at a time when the wet season was arriving a bit early, so the whole area was beautifully green and the animals were fat and happy - a highly recommended experience if you've only ever experienced the dry season before. Getting around does become more difficult though, so be prepared to get stuck in the mud a few times!

Game viewing was very good overall, with particularly good bird sightings. Above all else we visited Beho Beho (hopefully) to see wild dogs, and we were lucky enough to have two extended sightings of a large and relaxed pack - wonderful. Highly recommended.

One final comment - the food was utterly outstanding - when you sit down to lobster on your first night in camp you know you're in good hands! Oh, and one final final comment - my snooker record was played 2, won 2, so Augustine needs to keep practising!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Mwagusi Safari Camp

Mwagusi Safari Camp

"Mwagusi Safari Camp review"

4 nights Arrived 13 Feb 2008
"Mwagusi is a lovely camp with good facilities and a spectacular location - we visited early in the wet season when occcasional rain storms would see the river in front of camp rise and fall dramatically. With the river generally impassable by vehicle at this time of year we had to be "winched" across in a bosun's chair whenever we left or returned to camp - great fun but possibly not for everyone!

However, a new bridge was almost complete as we left, implying that this particular aspect of Mwagusi life will no longer be required.
The landscape around the camp is truly beautiful, with hills and plains covered with varied vegetation, including thousands of baobabs. Our animal viewing was also excellent, with cheetah, leopard and many lion, including a pack with 9 cubs.

Guiding was very good, with our man Zawadi having amongst the sharpest eyes of any guide we've ever had. This is a camp where the guides keep themselves to themselves away from the game drives, so you don't get to know them as well as at some other camps - this isn't a criticism, by the way, just an observation.

The camp itself was run wonderfully by the marvellously serene Libby (who also did sterling work as a medic treating an infected insect bite which I had picked up). Food was very good, with the vegetable dishes being particularly memorable for their variety. The closest I would come to a criticism of the camp would be to say that the lighting in the banda bathrooms could do with being beefed up a bit, but this is scarcely a big deal.

Owner Chris Fox is regularly around camp, and very interesting company, with very forthright views on the politics of Tanzania's safari industry - well worth hearing, if a little sobering."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Fumba Beach Lodge

Fumba Beach Lodge

"Fumba Beach Lodge review"

3 nights Arrived 17 Feb 2008
"We stayed at Fumba after 9 fairly full-on days on safari, and it was the perfect way to adjust back to "civilisation". The rooms are beautiful and very much in the style of a safari camp rather than a beach resort. We stayed in one of the baobab suites which we would highly recommend - swinging in a hammock suspended from your very own huge baobab is a memory we will treasure. The baobab extends right over the beach below the suite, providing welcome shade for your sunlounger, and also one of the favourite spots for "lodge dog" Simba to rest up, which was a nice bonus.

Fumba is in a relatively quiet part of Zanzibar, although there is very good snorkelling/diving right next door, so probably better suited to people looking for a restful and pampered few days rather than a "party" atmosphere. This is meant as a compliment, by the way! Food was good, and we were lucky enough to be treated to a lobster dinner cooked outside our room - we could only conclude that the charming owner Edwin thought we looked like newlyweds!

Because Fumba is so close to Stone Town it would be possible to use it as a base to visit Stone Town itself, but we would recommend you actually stay in town for a couple of days - it's the kind of place you want to immerse yourself into rather than just visit. Use Fumba to unwind in luxury. Highly recommended."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Zanzibar Palace Hotel

Zanzibar Palace Hotel

"Zanzibar Palace Hotel review"

2 nights Arrived 20 Feb 2008
"We stayed for two nights at the Zanzibar Palace and would utterly recommend it to anyone wishing to stay in Stone Town. However, we should stress that we stayed in the Dunia suite, which offers a lovely air-conditioned bedroom, plus stairs to an open-air bathroom and sun-deck right on the roof. This provides fabulous views over the city, with a view straight out to sea for the sunset, and mosques all around to hear the "call to prayer" each evening. Above all else, the sun-deck is cool and breeezy, and believe me, you will appreciate cool and breezy after a few hours on the streets of the city itself!

The hotel is beautifully decorated and run in a very friendly fashion. Breakfasts are lovely and there is a cosy (air-conditioned!) bar to have an evening drink, although again we were lucky enough to enjoy our sundowners on our roof terrace. The hotel is also well-located in terms of getting around the maze of streets in Stone Town, not least because it's quite close to the sea and therefore easy to find!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent

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