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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mr & Mrs B from London

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

4

Excursions taken

2

Excellent trip all round

Zimbabwe between 24 Sep 2019 and 6 Oct 2019

Trip rating: Excellent
"The trip was very well organised. All the transfers worked seamlessly and there was plenty of time to do everything we wanted to. It was supposed to be a wild, adventurous, luxurious safari and trip to the falls and that is what we got."

Victoria Falls Safari Club

Victoria Falls Safari Club

"Luxury Hotel"

1 night Arrived 25 Sep 2019
"A really luxurious hotel to start and end the holiday at. The complimentary cocktails and canapes in the afternoon are a great touch and the breakfast is fantastic. Views from the lounge and room balcony are incredible. We also enjoyed attending the vulture feeding one afternoon. Only negative was our water and tea and coffee in the room wasn't restocked so we ran out before the end of our stay. Watching wildlife coming to the waterhole in the evenings is fun although going to the bar/restaurant at the sister hotel - Safari Lodge - gives better views. It was a great place to stay overnight when we first arrived before heading out the next day and then to catch up on sleep at the end of an intense safari."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Camp Hwange

Camp Hwange

"Incredible camp"

4 nights Arrived 26 Sep 2019
"This is the best safari lodge I have ever stayed at. The camp is run by Kim and Savannah who ensure everything runs smoothly. The food is always excellent and the vehicles are always stocked with coolboxes with snacks and drinks. You always had the feeling that behind the smiles and friendly chat behind the scenes a lot of hard work was going on to make sure everything was just right - they are very professional. The waterhole opposite the camp is very active and we spent a fantastic evening in the log hide there watching elephants at very close quarters, as we sipped a gin and tonic. The rooms are just right - quite simple but have everything you need. The wifi was down while we were there which didn't bother us at all. There is a plug in the room suitable for charging most devices. Meals in the camp were of a very high standard.

We were guided at both our camps by Alan, a ZimPro freelancer. It should be noted that the camp only has 2 resident guides, Adam and Moses, so when the camp is full as it was when we were there, freelance guides are brought in who are very good but you can't rely on being with a particular resident guide who you may have read about working there. The camp has a policy of keeping guests with the same guide throughout there stay and as we were travelling to the sister camp - Hwange Bush Camp - Alan was brought in to guide us for the full 8 days. They also have a policy that a guest must be guided by a ZimPro guide, even on vehicle activities although they have a group of learner guides working towards the highest qualification. This meant it was just the two of us with Alan and his tracker Ernest for 7 of our 8 days. On the day we were joined by other guests it was an elderly American couple who were quite frail. I was braced for a frustrating day at having to cater to their pace and style of safari which could not have been more different from our own but was impressed that the camp had immediately realised this and sent a learner guide with us, assuring us that we would drive for a short distance, then we would go for a walk with Alan while the learner guide continued in the vehicle with the American couple before meeting us later. When one of the Americans then suggested he would like to walk with us it was gently suggested to him that we would be covering several miles on difficult ground in the heat and perhaps he would find the vehicle more enjoyable. It was well handled by the camp staff as he was totally unsuited to the kind of walks offered by the camp!

I don't want to give the impression that the walks were very demanding - they weren't - but they were several hours long and after about 10am the temperature rockets upwards. When you pick up the tracks of something you want to follow it takes as long as it takes (we tracked Rhino for about 4 hours, after picking up the tracks 2 hours into our walk). This was fantastic for us and what we were there for but isn't for everybody. When you consider that tracking and approaching big 5 on foot is what the camp specialises in it was surprising that some guests arrived at the camp not knowing this and not being suited to or wanting that type of safari. We thought the balance between vehicle and walking activities was just right. We started the day in the vehicle, then got out to walk for a few hours, then returned to the vehicle to slowly drive back to camp. In the afternoon we did vehicle activities, apart from hopping out to quickly try and approach elephant and buffalo as we came across them on a couple of occasions.

With Alan we had excellent vehicle activities but also spent a lot of time walking. We walked up on several elephant and a buffalo, both intentionally and also when tracking something else and 'coming across' elephant as we walking. We tracked rhino, leopard and lion but unfortunately didn't catch up with them (we saw numerous lion from the vehicle). Just being out and trying to track the animal, and watching the guide and tracker as they interpret the tracks and sign, was a great experience although would of course have been better if it ended with a great sighting on foot. It gives us something to go back for.

At both camps I was very impressed by the 'learner' guides. They rotate between the camps. Despite the title of 'learner' I found them all to be very knowledgeable and experienced and had a lot to contribute. They are all qualified vehicle guides - they just can't lead walks by themselves. One of them joined our activities when they could to add another set of eyes. At the end of the day they were happy to sit around the camp fire and swap stories and were always leaping up to refill an empty glass.

There is a good sense of fun and adventure at the camp. One evening, less than five minutes before dinner as we sat around the camp fire with a glass of wine in hand, one of the guides came running over to say there were male lions just behind the camp. Everyone put there drinks down to pile into 2 of the vehicles and dash out to go and see them. After finding them and having a quick 10 minute sighting of males moving into a new territory we then returned to camp to pick up our drinks and have some late dinner. That kind of spontaneity was fun and contributed to the positive atmosphere at the camp.

If you want the pure safari and as much time out and about either in vehicle or on foot as possible with highly qualified guides then this is the place for you. We loved it."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Hwange Bush Camp

Hwange Bush Camp

"Very comfortable tented camp"

4 nights Arrived 30 Sep 2019
"The tents are very comfortable. The main area of the tent has enough space for a double bed and bed side tables but not much more. There is then a storage area and bathroom complete with bucket shower. The showers can be ordered at any time, including as you return from a game drive so it is ready for when you return. We found the showers lasted plenty long enough. One thing to be aware of is the camp site is in quite an exposed position and can be very windy. This makes for a billowing and rustling tent at night which takes some getting used to for a light sleeper. We were advised that the winds were even stronger in the days before our arrival! The food at the camp was very good, but understandably simpler than at Camp Hwange.

The resident guide is Spike who we chatted to around camp but were guided by Alan who had come with us from Camp Hwange.

We did a lot of walking and focussed mainly on tracking lion which was the last thing on my list that I really wanted to do - approaching lion on foot. We were unsuccessful in finding them but we enjoyed tracking them and walking. We heard lions from camp on a couple of occasions during the night. The concentration of wildlife is less in this area of the park and what we did see was more nervous of the vehicle.

The main area of the camp is similar to that at Camp Hwange and very nice. Sitting around the fire with a glass of wine in the evenings is a great way to end the day."
Excellent
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Victoria Falls Safari Club

Victoria Falls Safari Club

"Second stay"

2 nights Arrived 4 Oct 2019
"See the review of our first stay at the beginning of the holiday."
Excellent
Helicopter Flight - Zimbabwe

Helicopter Flight - Zimbabwe

"Helicopter Flight - Zimbabwe review"

5 Oct 2019 • Morning excursion

Excellent activity and offered great views of the falls. We also saw elephant and buffalo in the national park as we flew overhead. Everything is filmed and at the end the staff work hard to sell you the video which feels a bit of a tourist trap. The activity is very touristy but good fun.
Excellent
Ra-Ikane River Cruise

Ra-Ikane River Cruise

"Ra-Ikane River Cruise review"

5 Oct 2019 • All-day excursion

The cruise was excellent. We were served canapes and a very strong gin and tonic. On the cruise we saw elephant, crocodile and hippo and had lovely views of the river.
Excellent

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