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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Alice from Los Angeles

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

4

Excursions taken

1

Amazing trip to Southern Tanzania!

Tanzania between 27 Jul 2019 and 4 Aug 2019

Trip rating: Excellent
"We loved our first safari! We had no complaints throughout our trip.

Jessica did a fantastic job planning our itinerary perfectly. She was very responsive to my questions and emails and was so organized.

The Tanzania travel book and leather travel binder were very nice touches. The Nomad camps were first rate, the flights between camps were convenient, and best of all, the people were warm and friendly.

We didn't want our trip to end and definitely want to go back again soon!

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

Service was impeccable! I'm glad we decided on Expert Africa as you are so organized.

Payment was also very easy on the website."

Arranged By Jessica Plumb


Southern Sun Dar

Southern Sun Dar

"Comfortable room before our safari"

1 night Arrived 27 Jul 2019
"The Southern Sun Dar was in a great location and provided a nice room before our safari.

The beds were comfortable and the rooms well-air conditioned. The food at the restaurant was very good."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Kigelia Camp

Kigelia Camp

"Wonderul experience at Kigelia!"

4 nights Arrived 28 Jul 2019
"I am so happy that Kigelia was the camp we chose for our first safari experience, with Sand Rivers in Selous as our second stop. We went to Africa with our family of 4 including our son and daughter (15 and 12). The camp itself was so well-thought out. The tents were luxurious, much more so than glamping, and the outdoor bucket shower added to the experience. Eating an amazing dinner under the stars each night was fabulous. The food was always fresh and delicious with a gorgeous dessert.

I had selected this camp because of the slightly more rugged feel to it and the closeness of the animals to camp given the camp's placement next to a dry river bed. I was not disappointed. We had elephants roaming through camp a couple nights and vervet monkeys playing around our tent during the afternoon. There were also many species of birds enjoying the bird baths outside the tents and communal areas. There is wifi in the communal area so an occasional check-in with the outside world is possible.

Ruaha is vast and beautiful. We had so many sightings of elephants, giraffes, zebras, lions, buffalo, and even a honey badger, which we were very excited about. The night game drive was an interesting experience. Our game drives overall were very enjoyable. I was concerned that my hard to please kids (teenagers are a challenge) would get bored with constant game drives, but they loved the experiences. We are also avid birders and saw more than 100 species during our trip.

Lastly, the best part of this camp was its people. We were very fortunate to have Ken, the camp manager, as our guide. We learned so much about the animals including birds, their behaviors and habitat, Tanzania, and his view of the world. Ken is amazingly in tune with current events although he lives in such a remote area. He runs his camp so efficiently (e.g., we always received cold towels upon returning from our game drives and hot towels on the night drive and our bucket showers were always ready upon returning from a game drive). But best of all, there is a very warm atmosphere created by the people working there. We enjoyed talking to Steven, Pinny, Nicholas, Oscar, and especially Joseph, who announced the menu around the campfire each night.

After we left, the kids still talked about missing Ken and Joseph, which is unusual for them. If you wonder whether teenagers would like going on safari, don't hesitate. My husband, who wasn't keen on going on safari because it was so far from Los Angeles where we live, has talked about going back to do another. This was such a bonding experience for our family. We enjoyed our dinner conversations each night (without electronics) and even heard our son and daughter talking and laughing together each night after we were escorted back to our tents, so it was a good sibling bonding experience as well. It felt like a once in a lifetime experience, but we hope to experience it again soon. Thank you, Ken and your staff, for making our first visit to Africa so special."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
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Tungamalenga Village visit

"Visit to Tungamalenga Village"

30 Jul 2019 • Morning excursion

It was important to me to arrange a cultural visit of some sort to broaden our, especially our kids (15 and 12), perspective so Nomad [Ed: the team at Kigelia Camp] organized a visit to Tungamalenga Village outside of Ruaha National Park. The visit included a tour of the school and clinic. The drive to Tungamalenga took almost 2 hours each way, but we were able to see wildlife along the way and had a great view of the river for breakfast.

The tour of the school was such a joyful experience for my family. I have never seen so many huge smiles of kids waving to us excitedly as we drove in. They all crowded around to shake my husband's hand. The 6-7 year old children were finishing up their morning sessions. We brought a soccer ball and pump to give to the school. I had my daughter kick the ball to 2 to 3 kids standing by us, and within seconds, over 40 kids came swarming around the ball and kicking it all over the field. They all had such a good time. We took photos with the schoolchildren so I showed them the photos on my mobile phone. They were giggling so hard and were so excited to see themselves or their friends on my phone. We also visited the clinic and spoke with the doctor that runs it. He works 7 days a week with several nurses to support the people in the village.

The Nomad Trust supports the school and clinic with supplies at Tungamalenga. Coincidentally, 2 volunteers were staying at Kigelia to visit local villages to inquire about children with conditions that may be treatable, such as cleft palates and rickets. Various charities, including the Nomad Trust, support these children and families by taking them for treatment in Arusha. These ladies are doing such good work and we're glad we were able to visit the village and support the Nomad Trust. Best of all, my kids really enjoyed the visit and got to see a little of Africa outside of our safari experience.
Excellent
Sand Rivers Camp

Sand Rivers Camp

"Sand Rivers - Beautiful Safari Camp!"

3 nights Arrived 1 Aug 2019
"After our wonderful experience at Kigelia, we headed to Sand Rivers for the remainder of our trip. Combining Kigelia and Sand Rivers was a perfect combination because Sand Rivers offers different types of activities such as boat safaris, fishing, along with game drives. We were fortunate to stay in 2 suites that had private plunge pools. The rooms were gorgeous with fabulous views. Our son and daughter (15 and 12) thought these accommodations were 5 stars and the fanciest place they've ever stayed! Sand Rivers overlooks the river with tons of hippos and crocodiles. The hippos were fascinating creatures that watched us as we fished on the banks of the river. There were other small animal sightings around camp, including monkeys, civets, and a bush baby.

We saw similar animals on game drives in Selous including elephants, giraffes, lions, and many birds. And a few hyenas that were taking naps on the road. The terrain in Selous is very different from Ruaha, so the two safari locations provided contrast. Dayo, our guide, was so knowledgeable about Selous (his father was a Selous ranger and now he is a guide) and had an eye, especially for birds. He brings a well-used Birds of East Africa book with him on game drives but didn't need it most of the time as he was like a walking bird encyclopedia. He was a fantastic fisherman (we went fishing twice) and helped each of us catch at least one fish, which the chefs cooked up as an appetizer for dinner.

The food at Sand Rivers was just as wonderful as Kigelia. The vibe is a little different as this is a larger camp with a more permanent structure. Eric, the camp manager while Michelle was on holiday, was gracious and so interesting to have dinner with. The staff were all very friendly and provided great service to guests. We also had a great fly-camping experience that I will review separately. We overall loved Sand Rivers and really enjoyed the combination of the 2 Nomad properties."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Sand Rivers fly-camping

Sand Rivers fly-camping

"Sand Rivers Fly-Camping - What an experience!"

1 night Arrived 2 Aug 2019
"We loved our fly camping experience!

We went on an afternoon game drive which ended at our fly camp location. Milton and the staff had set up a beautiful campfire and dinner table. The chef cooked us a fancy candlelit dinner, no different than at the lodge but we were in the middle of the bush! They had set up a toilet and even a bucket shower at the campsite if we wanted to take one! The accommodations were very comfortable with mattresses and tents made out of mosquito netting-like material. They even set up two regular tents next to our see-through tents since it rained earlier in the day as a precaution.

Sleeping under the stars with occasional sounds of wildlife and waking up to the sounds of thousands of birds was a unique experience. The next morning, we had a sit down breakfast at our campsite, and then Dayo, our guide, took us to the hot springs where we took a dip and then completed the rest of our morning game drive and headed back to camp. Dayo kept a rifle with him the whole time we were at the fly camp and monitored the perimeter. We felt very safe.

Our son and daughter (15 and 12) were questioning why we would forego sleeping in our suite to camp outdoors, but even they had a really good time. We also had a great discussion with Milton and Dayo and learned a lot about the history of Tanzania. If you like outdoor adventure, then try fly-camping!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

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