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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mr & Mrs G from Hants

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

6

Countries visited

4

Lodges stayed in

20

Excursions taken

0

Another great trip with Expert Africa!

Zambia between 30 Jun 2015 and 13 Jul 2015

Trip rating: Excellent
"Wonderful trip again. Thanks to Chris was suggesting Zambia and to Megan for all her hard work planning the trip. The combination of camps was ideal for us plus the locations and we really felt that you understood exactly what we were looking for.

It was interesting hearing so many glowing comments about Expert Africa from camp staff and another travel agent we met in Zambia. This was all unprompted and really telling of what a great job you do.

Time to start saving for the next one.....

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

None"

Arranged By Megan Green


Radisson Blu Hotel

Radisson Blu Hotel

"Easy overnight stay"

1 night Arrived 1 Jul 2015
"We were staying overnight in Lusaka before heading out on safari. The hotel was very convenient, clean and comfortable.

We had dinner in the bar and the food was tasty and service were prompt and friendly. We had an early check out, before the hotel serves breakfast, but they had a "grab and go" table which meant we could have hot drinks, fruit and pastries before we left which was welcome."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Mwamba Bushcamp

Mwamba Bushcamp

"Wonderful bush camp"

3 nights Arrived 2 Jul 2015
"We loved Mwamba. It was the most rustic of the camps we stayed at on this trip but that did not mean basic. The bucket shower was the only element that you could really call basic and that only meant waiting 5 minutes for a huge bucket of piping hot water to be rigged up!

Mwamba is tiny and very remote and is an authentic bush camp. Simple, not flashy, fitting perfectly with the surroundings - just lovely.

The camp is rebuilt every season and so looked really fresh. Our room was clean and welcoming. The bed was so comfortable and lying in bed looking at the stars was very relaxing.

Matt and Charlie were great hosts - warm, attentive and they clearly take a lot of pride in the camp. We really enjoyed our time with them as they both make excellent company. All staff were helpful and friendly and could not have looked after us better.

Our guide was Sly (Sylvester) and we had a great few days with him. He was knowledgeable and easy company. We did both drives and walking and enjoyed both. The game viewing was really good - lot of leopard sightings, lion, hyena, elephant and the endemic sub-species of giraffe, zebra and wildebeest which we had never seen before. Birdlife was plentiful and interesting."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Tafika

Tafika

"Lovely Tafika"

3 nights Arrived 5 Jul 2015
"Tafika is a lovely camp on a beautiful stretch of the Luangwa River. The view from our chalet was beautiful.

The camp was larger than Mwamba in terms of size and number of people but we quickly got used to that. The staff were great and the food was really excellent.

The standard of guiding was high and we saw plenty. The guides are on rotation so it meant that we had different guides every day for different activities. For us this was a slight disadvantage because your "new" guide did not know where you had been or what you had seen previously, particularly when it came to smaller animals and bird life. On occasions it did feel as though you were starting from scratch as a result. This is a very minor point though. The guides were all personable and knowledgeable.

We had some excellent drives and some very quiet ones. On the whole, game was not as plentiful as at Mwamba. We did a great walk and could see how seriously Tafika take walking. We walked for about 3 hours, stopped to make a bush fire and have tea and cake and then walked back. The highlight was having a leopard growl at us from a bush before he disappeared.

Thanks to everyone at Tafika!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Chiawa Camp

Chiawa Camp

"Beautiful Chiawa"

3 nights Arrived 8 Jul 2015
"The camp has a lovely spot right on the Zambezi within the national park. We loved the camp, the staff were great and we really enjoyed the variety of activities - we drove, walked, went on a canoeing trip which was wonderful and went out on the boat.

Game viewing, particularly on drives, was fairly quiet. To be fair, there was an abundance of certain animals, in particular elephants, it was just that we didn't see the variety of game we have seen in other places. This may have been bad luck or possibly the time of year?

Very good guiding yet again and guides were on rotation as at Tafika so you had a different guide for each activity.

The food was excellent and the lunch and dinner we had on the water were particular highlights. The bush barbeque was fantastic - the blackened beef is something we will long remember!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

October 2013 trip

Botswana between 12 Oct 2013 and 25 Oct 2013

Trip rating: Excellent
"We had a wonderful trip and loved being back in the bush. We had some great sightings, some new animals and birds and really enjoyed being back in the middle of nowhere. No phone, no TV, no email, great wildlife, masses of fresh air, good food - bliss!

October is known to be hot but we were told they were having a particularly hot few weeks and temperatures were into the early 40s by midday. That was the only negative for us as it made siesta time a challenge and guests and staff alike found it very sapping.

In terms of planning, Megan came up with a lot of really good suggestions and did a great job of helping us narrow down what we wanted to do. Her thoughts on particular camps were welcome and insightful. Thanks (again!) Megan

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

None"

Arranged By Megan Green


Selinda Camp

Selinda Camp

"Beautiful Selinda"

3 nights Arrived 13 Oct 2013
"This was our second stay at Selinda and we were not disappointed.

The camp itself is lovely and the staff are fantastic. They seemed the most genuine and friendly staff of all the camps we stayed at on our trip . Easy to talk to (and that wasn't just the managers), attentive but in a very unobtrusive way. Plus the food was excellent as on our previous trip.

We liked the fact that our activities were varied. Our guide was Joseph and he was knowledgeable and keen to answer questions. He wanted us to have a varied time in camp so as well as our game drives, we went out on a boat trip and did a walking safari. Both different but very interesting.

It was a very hot time of year to visit (which we were prepared for) which meant very early starts but a longer break in camp during the heat of the day. Getting up that early was a great time to see the game and we had some fantastic sightings. Masses of elephants, leopard, lions, hippos, lechwe, buffalo, kudu, giraffe, water hogs, impala of course. We also saw 2 new animals for us one evening - a serval and an aardwolf. Plus wild dog with 6 tiny pups who were a lot of fun to observe.

I think our favourite sighting was out on the boat very early one morning. We came across 4 lionesses who wanted to swim across the channel. A hippo came charging out of the water to scare them off but they were very determined. They moved further down the bank and then started swimming. It was a deep channel and a long swim - they were amazing swimmers and it was something our guide had only seen once himself before. It was a wonderful few minutes and we took a lot of photos."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Little Vumbura

Little Vumbura

"Little Vumbura - a good few days"

4 nights Arrived 16 Oct 2013
"We liked Little Vumbura but I think our expectations were too high because we knew that it's a very popular camp. Don't get me wrong. It's a lovely camp and I think it is just that we wanted to like it more than we did.

Camp was nice, rooms were clean and well cared for, food was pretty good (although not as good as at Selinda) and staff were friendly.

Going to and from drives by boat was lovely and very picturesque. We did a mokoro trip which is always relaxing and interesting and we really enjoyed that. Game drives were hit and miss in terms of what we saw. We saw sable for the first time and they were beautiful. We also saw a herd of 3,000 buffalo and followed them for a long time.

Because the camp was full, over a 4 days we shared a vehicle with a number of different people. The only disadvantage was that every time we had someone new in the car, it was like we were starting from scratch and we would go back to finding the buffalo to see if the lions were around. This wasn't our guide's fault but more a case of what other guests wanted to do. That said, we had some lovely sightings of a young leopard which were really memorable."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Facilities
Good
Mombo Camp

Mombo Camp

"Just great"

4 nights Arrived 20 Oct 2013
"We were a little concerned about whether Mombo was right for us which I'd discussed with Megan before we booked. We were worried that we wouldn't meet like-minded people who are keen to be out in the bush rather than in camp and that our very casual safari gear and battered bags might be out of place. We needn't have worried - we met some lovely people and only saw one set of Louis Vuitton suitcases in 4 days.

The camp is picturesque, tents beautiful but in keeping with the bush (no glass, no air con, no private plunge pool - a big tick from us), service and food were fantastic. The food was just as good as at a top London restaurant - top marks to all the catering staff - and we enjoyed having a table for 2 for most meals after being used to communal dining.

Our guide was Moss who was very articulate, amusing and knowledgeable. He was so keen to show us all that the concession has to offer. General game was in much higher numbers than at our other camps, we had some good leopard sightings but it was lion that we saw more of. Lions sleeping, mating, prowling, calling and hunting. We were following 5 male lions when they chased and took down a buffalo just outside camp. A bit gruesome but amazing nevertheless. Our other highlight was seeing a rhino. We'd been following tracks and looking for signs when another guide came on the radio very excited to say they had found a rhino. We had a thrilling rollercoaster ride to get there with some awesome driving from Moss and then saw our first rhino. What a sight!

Overall, a wonderful stay and we were sad to leave. There were a lot of repeat guests and we could understand why!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

Another great trip to Botswana

Botswana between 26 Apr 2013 and 4 May 2013

Trip rating: Excellent
"A wonderful holiday for me and my Mum. It was my Mum's first time in Botswana and she loved it as much as I have.

Megan and Nick were really helpful throughout the booking process and were very good to alert us early when they heard about building works going on at one of the camps we were visiting. They were able to get the reassurance from Wilderness Safaris that the works would not disrupt guests and this really comforted us.

Overall, a great trip which Mum and I will remember forever (especially sitting in the dark in the landrover at Chitabe looking at the southern sky filled to the brim with stars and listening to the frogs singing all round us). Can't wait to go back."

Arranged By Megan Green


Tubu Tree Camp

Tubu Tree Camp

"The new Tubu Tree"

3 nights Arrived 27 Apr 2013
"We had a wonderful stay at Tubu Tree.

The camp has been undergoing an expansion and refurbishment and we had been forewarned of this before we travelled. We had been assured that the works were both quiet and unobtrusive and this proved to be the case which was great. This was my second stay at Tubu and the new tents are even nicer than the old ones. They have opted for a very light colour canvas for the tents and light coloured wooden floors which we really liked because it makes the tents feel more spacious and airy.

Staff were professional but friendly and nothing was too much trouble. The two managers (Rauve and Neuman) had been at the camp for 1 month and a few days respectively and hadn't worked together in the past but you would never have been able to tell had we not asked. They were charming, knowledgeable and a good team. Food was excellent and a lot of thought was put into settings for lunches and dinners. (Our first lunch with table set up in the shallow water just outside camp was amazing and so beautiful. It sure beat a Monday at work!)

Guiding was very good. Our guide was Seretse who was a very engaging chap and found us some great sightings. His love for his work was clear, he was knowledgeable and a lot of fun.

The water levels around camp were higher than on my previous visit which we knew would be the case. The guides did warn us that the water levels meant that some routes were too deep underwater to drive which meant that the area for driving was fairly limited. This did not spoil our enjoyment as there was plenty to see (still a great place to see leopard for example) and it meant that we could do a mokoro trip much closer to camp which was both interesting and relaxing.

It will be interesting to see what Tubu is like when it's 3 new tents plus adjoining Little Tubu have opened. It certainly seems to be a popular camp. Oh well, we'll just have to go back and check it out!!"
Excellent
Chitabe Camp

Chitabe Camp

"Another great trip to Chitabe"

4 nights Arrived 30 Apr 2013
"I love Chitabe for its wildlife. This was my 3rd trip to the concession and I met so many people on our trip who seemed surprised that I was visiting places I'd been before. I had no problem at all with going back to Chitabe and taking Mum for her first visit as we have enjoyed it so much in the past. We were not disappointed. 4 nights meant that we could relax and enjoy quieter drives as well as the excitement of times when we saw predators. We had amazing lion sightings including juvenile males who were play fighting so much that they disturbed their mothers on a hunt and a more successful hunt that ended with some very hungry lions getting a good meal. We also loved seeing and being with the wild dogs on several occasions, seeing leopard and also a cheetah (with cubs who I'm keeping my fingers crossed for).

Guiding was excellent. Our guide was Oats who was always keen to get out on drives and we were more than happy to be out in the landrover than spending too long in camp. Oats was a great guide who made sure we got an education as well as taking pictures. Tracks, droppings, termite mounds, trees.....you name it, Oats could explain it and would then quiz us on it! We loved it.

Camp was lovely as usual. Friendly staff (especially Kris and Masedi), great in a crisis (rescuing me from a very large spider) and made sure everything ran smoothly. Camp was busy in terms of number of guests but it still felt very relaxed. Food all very good, particularly carrot cake!"
Excellent

Another great trip

Botswana between 11 Nov 2010 and 24 Nov 2010

Trip rating: Excellent
"We loved our second trip to Botswana.

It is expensive compared to East Africa for example but really suits us - generally quiet without too many people, we enjoy the little planes to fly in and out of camps, the wildlife and birdlife is great. The camp suggestions were good and Lucy and Nick were patient in helping find out availability for various combinations of camp.

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

Have a better system for passing messages internally.

We called and left messages 3 times which were not returned before we were able to speak to someone about Botswana. We know the team is busy but, if we had been first time callers to Expert Africa, we might not have persevered. It was only the fact that we've had such good experiences in the past with Expert Africa that meant we continued to call!"

Arranged By Lucy Copson


Chitabe Lediba

Chitabe Lediba

"Chitabe Lediba review"

1 night Arrived 12 Nov 2010
"We were only at Chitabe Lediba for 1 night because Chitabe main camp could not take us for all 3 nights. We had been to Chitabe Lediba in 2009 and my comments remain the same - great concession for game, especially predators, guides knowledgeable and friendly, staff welcoming and good food.

My only negative comment is the camp itself. We were told that it is due to be refurbished in 2011 and it needs it. Compared to the rooms at Chitabe main camp, the rooms at Lediba look very tired and the bathrooms are not the cleanest. Given the choice, I would stay at main camp until Lediba has been refurbished."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Average
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Chitabe Camp

Chitabe Camp

"Wonderful stay"

2 nights Arrived 13 Nov 2010
"Chitabe is a great concession and the camp is lovely. The game viewing was very good - we saw lion, leopard, wild dogs and a cheetah in the space of 3 days plus a lot of bird life and other animals. Gordon was our guide and he was personable and knowledgeable.

We really liked the camp. It has been refurbished in the last couple of years and the rooms are spacious and very tasteful. One of the best things is that the rooms are quite a way apart from each other so you can't hear or see your neighbours which is nice. The bathroom area was light and clean and the outdoor shower overlooking the bush was nice and hot.

The managers were really friendly and chatty and you didn't get the feeling that making conversation with guests was a chore. Food was good and varied and it is nice to be able to help yourself to as much or as little as you want rather than having meals served already plated."
Excellent
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Lebala Camp

Lebala Camp

"Nice camp"

4 nights Arrived 15 Nov 2010
"We enjoyed our 4 nights at Lebala. Game wasn't always very plentiful - the guide (Hector) explained that movement of game has been different in the last couple of years since the Selinda Spillway has started flowing again. We had a similar experience in 2009 at Selinda. The good news at Lebala was that although the game was at times sparse, the individual sightings helped make up for that. We saw a coalition of 3 cheetah brothers who were wonderful, baby jackals, young lion cubs, hyena with a kill and a beautiful male leopard.

The rooms and public areas at the camp are nice but nowhere near as smart or polished as the WIlderness Camps that we stayed at. The tents are large but a little too close to each other for our liking. If your neighbours talked at even normal volume, you could hear them! We would have preferred a mosquito net around the bed as at other camps, especially as Lebala has a lot of mosquitos. The tents were not quite as clean and well maintained at other camps - small points but wobbly sinks, sticking sliding doors etc.

The staff were very good - friendly, helpful and willing to chat. They seem to be keen to keep vehicles as full as possible - we had 6 in our vehicle for much of our stay. This was a squeeze because the vehicles only have 2 rows of 3 spaces. Given that the camp was not full when we had a car of 6, we weren't sure why they didn't spread us out a bit as has happened at other camps.

Food was good, mostly quite simple but filling. Catering staff were lovely and always keen to chat which was nice.

Overall, we enjoyed Lebala - being outside in a lovely setting and seeing birds and animals was what we were there for and we weren't disappointed. Given the choice, we would probably choose to go to Selinda if we were in the area again because (though more expensive) it was a much nicer camp in our opinion. We've been a bit spoilt by our experiences at Wilderness Camps I think. Other guests who were only visiting Kwando Safari camps thought Lebala was fantastic and luxurious in comparison to what they'd experienced."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Average
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Tubu Tree Camp

Tubu Tree Camp

"Absolutely wonderful"

4 nights Arrived 19 Nov 2010
"We had a fantastic stay at Tubu. We loved being in a small camp and it never felt busy. The camp is lovely and we had some great game and bird sightings.

The main areas and rooms are beautiful. We stayed in room 1 and could not have asked for a more lovely room. The views are great, furnishings very comfortable and the room and bathroom areas were spotlessly clean. The staff clearly take a lot of pride in keeping things nice. Like Chitabe, tents are spread out so you don't see or hear your neighbours and do have privacy.

Our guide was Johnny and he was a lovely chap who always had something interesting to tell us. He was patient with all the animals which we particularly liked - at no point did we feel like we were chasing after anything. It was very much a case of us being in nature and respecting it. We saw a lot more herds of game than at other lodges, even from the deck of our room. Leopard sightings were fantastic. We were sorry to miss lion and cheetah but the leopards more than made up for it. Bird life was fantastic - 95 different birds in 4 days that we noted down and that was just the birds that we saw for long enough to identify them.

We did a mokoro trip which was very relaxing and gave us a feel for what it would be like during flood season. Otherwise all our activities were game drives. If I was being critical, I would say that the drives sometimes seemed a bit short. I am sure that some guests get bored if there isn't much to see on occasion but we are quite happy just being out. The concession is beautiful and very lush.

Food was fantastic - the best of our 3 camps - especially the cakes! All meals were excellent and the dining room area is very nice with good views as is the bar. Staff were lovely. Justin and Jacky are great managers and we could not have asked for better. Their background in hospitality certainly shows - they are excellent at making sure everyone has what they need but are still relaxed and easy to get along with. We never felt fussed over but never wanted for another drink, food etc.

We'd love to go back one day."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

Fantastic trip

Botswana and 1 other country between 14 Nov 2009 and 26 Nov 2009

Trip rating: Excellent
"We had an amazing trip to Zambia and Botswana, in no small part thanks to Anna and Expert Africa. I don't think that we made Anna's life easy because we did not know where exactly we wanted to go but she really listened to the things that we said we did/didn't want and came up with 3 suggestions for places to stay that were perfect for us. When we had questions about booking a particular camp, Anna answered our questions honestly and we really felt that we knew what we were getting.

This was our second trip with Expert Africa and the things that most impress us are the fact that the people you speak to at Expert Africa really know the reserves and camps and can tell you what they are like and the fact that all of the logistics (flights/transfers etc) work so smoothly. This is not the kind of trip that we would want to organise independently and it is so nice to just be able to turn up and have everything arranged for you.

Thanks Anna for a great holiday!

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

No!"

Islands of Siankaba

Islands of Siankaba

"Peace and relaxation at Siankaba"

3 nights Arrived 15 Nov 2009
"We loved Islands of Siankaba and were so pleased that we had started our trip with the more relaxing part of the holiday. Ok you are a fair way of out Livingstone but the setting is stunning and the lodge is so peaceful.

We were given the honeymoon "tent" which was lovely - the shower and WC could do with a spruce up (nothing significant) but the room and open areas were very comfortable and nicely designed. Housekeeping and laundry were excellent.

The staff were friendly and accommodating. We did not see that much of the managers Sonja and Paul but Sarah, Nami and Steven were always around to talk and see that we had all that we wanted. We were particularly impressed with the waiting and bar staff as they were extremely efficient but charming with it. No wondering where your food/drinks had got to but not rushed either.

The food was consistently very good. A good choice for breakfast and lunch and, although the 4 course dinners had a set menu, all dinners were excellent. As with the safari lodges, the only difficult part is that you are served so much food and we always felt bad about what we could not manage (and we are big eaters!) With breakfast, a substantial lunch, afternoon tea, canapes on the river and then dinner, we had to ration ourselves.

We were really at Siankaba to relax so we may not have done as much as other guests but we did not feel pressured to do anything. We went out on a sunset cruise each evening. Victor, our guide and boatman, was very interesting to talk to and knew a lot about the bird and animal life in and along the river. We also did a nature walk around the islands with Victor and were amazed at the different trees and plants and what they can all be used for.

We had a half day trip to Victoria Falls and went to Livingstone Island and to swim in the Devil's Pool - quite an experience! Although the falls are low at this time of year on one side, there is a lot to see on the far side of Livingstone Island so we were pleased that we made the trip. It also meant that we saw some of the Livingstone hotels that we could have stayed in. For us, Siankaba was perfect as it felt outdoorsy and like part of our safari and the hotels that we saw would not have given us this. Anna was spot on in suggesting Siankaba for us."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Selinda Camp

Selinda Camp

"Beautiful camp and very good guiding"

4 nights Arrived 18 Nov 2009
"Selinda is a beautiful camp in a lovely setting. The reserve is beautiful and with the river and lots of waterholes, it was very green.

Rose, Ishmael and Kea are great hosts and everything at the camp runs extremely smoothly. The staff were not in any way over-attentive but there were always people on hand to greet you with a towel (cold or hot depdning on the weather), get you a drink and check whether there was anything that you needed.

The tents were very nicely furnished and extremely clean and we really liked the semi-outdoor bathroom with its open shower and huge bath. Of the 3 places that we stayed on our trip, the tents at Selinda were our favourite. Everything felt new and fresh thanks to the refurbishment not so long ago and we appreciated the quality of the little things (towels, bed linen, toiletries) that added to our stay.

The food was excellent - good selection of cereals, pastries, toast and fruit for early breakfast; for brunches we had all manner of amazing salads, meats, cheeses, eggs cooked to order, bread and fruit; for dinner, we had a choice of main courses with set starter and dessert; the homemade cakes for afternoon tea were a particular highlight. We could not fault the food and, on our last night, they set up dinner for just the 2 of us which was lovely.

On to the important bit - guiding and wildlife. Marks was our guide and he was a nice chap as well as being very knowledgeable. There had been a heavy storm the day before we arrived and we had rain on our first day which had dispersed the game so for our first few drives we did not see many animals. That said, the bird life was amazing and we spent some happy drives learning about the birds and Marks' enthusiasm was infectious. Watching 2 eagles of entirely different species sit next to each other rain drenched on a tiny branch was very memorable.

When the sun and animals returned, there was a lot more to see including some great sightings of lewchwe, kudu, zebra, babboon and giraffe plus separate pairs of female and male lion. We looked for leopard and wilde dogs without success and the cheetah had not been seen for nearly 2 months but there was a lot of variety of other animals and we really enjoyed our drives."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Chitabe Lediba

Chitabe Lediba

"Great guiding and wildlife"

4 nights Arrived 22 Nov 2009
"The guiding and wildlife at Chitabe Lediba more than made up for the fact that the camp itself, whilst nice, is not of the same standard as Selinda and is in need of some updating.

Josie and Kenny were very good hosts and we were sorry to hear that Josie was leaving the bush as she will be a loss to the team. Staff were not quite as friendly as at out other camps but many were quite young and may have been a little shy. There were no service problems at all, it was just that service as not always with a smile.

Food was good - plenty of it and it was nice to be able to help ourselves at all meals so that we did not waste food. Everything seemed freshly prepared and meal times were sociable. We particularly enjoyed the evening that we had dinner around the fire with more traditional local food.

Our tent was perfectly adequate - clean and tidy and nicely furnished. We were told that the camp is closing for maintenance after Christmas and we would hope that this extends to the tents. They are a little tired, particularly the bathrooms areas. The completely outdoor shower was great though and surprisingly private and it was nice to sit on the terrace with babboons bouncing on the roof of the tent.

The guiding and wildlife were the best parts of Chitabe. Newman was our guide and we felt privileged to learn so much from someone who clearly loves nature and seems to know about everything. Newman was retiring and we were just about his last guests but he was still keen to get out early to show us things and share his knowledge. We saw a lot at Chitabe and it was rare to be out for long without a new and exciting sighting of something - baby hyenas at their den, 40 vultures fighting over a dead giraffe, a python wrapped around a poor baby impala and a leopard with her cub. In fact, we saw a different leopard each of the 4 days we were at Chitabe and felt very fortunate indeed."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Average
Food
Good
Facilities
Good

A huge thank you!

Tanzania and 1 other country between 15 Nov 2008 and 28 Nov 2008

Trip rating: Excellent
"The Expert Africa website is a great starting point - it is rare to get so much information including honest assessments from EA about the lodges. The in depth practical information is very useful.

Ellie could not have been more helpful and friendly. The lodges that she suggested for us were perfect - she really listed to what we said about the type of holiday and accommodation we were after. We spent a lot of time talking through the pros and cons of different venues and it was refreshing to speak to a tour operator who would give you their own views.

We had a fantastic time and can't thank Expert Africa enough for all your help and careful planning!"

Mwagusi Safari Camp

Mwagusi Safari Camp

"A fantastic introduction to Africa"

4 nights Arrived 16 Nov 2008
"We had a wonderful time at Mwagusi and could not fault it. This was our first time on safari and in Africa. Charlotte and her team made us feel very welcome and immediately relaxed. It was such a peaceful camp in terms of human activity, with any noise coming only from the wildlife. We loved watching animals come and go from the dry river bed outside our banda. Although the days were quite structured (as seemingly with any safari), the emphasis was on what we wanted to do. I imagine that the fact that it was low season with very few guests may have helped. What really shone through was people's enthusiasm for Ruaha and the wildlife.

Guiding: The guiding was the best that we experienced. Our guide was Daniel and his spotting and knowledge was amazing. We will never forget the 2 separate leopard sightings and the sandgrouse that Daniel identified from their flight pattern when they were miles away before we saw them close up to know that he was spot on. We learnt so much and had some fantastic sightings. It was particularly good to have a separate guide and driver (thanks Moses).

People: All staff at the camp were friendly and polite. Nothing was too much trouble. Waiters in the UK could certainly learn a lot from the Mwagusi team who were efficient and helpful! The housekeeping staff kept our banda immaculate.

Accommodation: Our tent under the thatched banda was great. The verandah, tent and bathroom were kept spotlessly clean. In fact, the housekeeping was some of the best and most thorough we had experienced anywhere in the world. The bandas were much smarter and more polished than we had expected having seen the photos on the website. The laundry service worked really well and was very welcome as we had packed light. Despite all the interesting animal noises at night, I had some of the best sleep ever!

Food: The food was much better than we had expected, bearing in mind the remoteness of the camp. We enjoyed breakfasts in the bush on each drive with Daniel and Moses always taking us somewhere different. The cinnamon rolls were delicious and we thought the breakfast selection was good. As we were eating so much for other meals, we did not need a big breakfast. Lunch, afternoon tea/cakes and dinners were consistently good. There was a good selection and it always seemed very freshly prepared. The vegetable dishes were particularly tasty. Eating dinner under the stars in different locations around camp was a great experience."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Beho Beho

Beho Beho

"Complete luxury"

4 nights Arrived 20 Nov 2008
"Beho Beho was fantastic and a real treat. To have such luxury in the middle of the bush was amazing. We were made very welcome by Tamlyn and Sacha who were great hosts. Our introduction to life in camp was rudely interrupted by Joseph, the semi-resident elephant, who was most put out that he wasn't allowed to eat our cake! We were very impressed by Sacha and Sean's handling of an elephant's tantrum because they made sure that we were well out of the way and we felt safe.

Guiding: Sean and Salum were our guides on different days for drives. They showed us a great variety of wildlife and birds. We will never forget Sean almost running down the path to get us at 6:15am to tell us, very excitedly, that the wild dogs were near the airstrip. We spent the best part of 2 hours with the pack and felt very privileged. The guides' enthusiasm was infectious! We also went out walking which was great and allowed us to see a different side of the bush. Sean and Sacha were extremely knowledgeable and we learnt a lot.

People: The people in camp were great - you could not ask for a nicer and more friendly group of people. Everyone was really helpful and we were treated so well. The service was seemless and there was never a time when we waited for anything (there was always someone asking if we would like drinks/refreshments and generally making sure we were ok). The camp offered some of the best service we've experienced anywhere.

Accommodation: Our cottage was stunning and the views were wonderful. We loved having the "curtains" open so that the cottage was open to the views all the time. Housekeeping was of a very high standard and the laundry service was efficient.

Food: The food was amazing - sitting under the stars eating barbequed lobster on our first night whilst watching the wild dogs at the pool was such an experience. The quality and variety of food was fantastic, beautifully presented and freshly prepared. There is so much to eat that we would have been very fat had we stayed longer (cakes and desserts were my particular highlights!)"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Fumba Beach Lodge

Fumba Beach Lodge

"A good comfortable lodge"

3 nights Arrived 24 Nov 2008
"Fumba was a good place for us to relax after just over a week of early starts on safari. Unlike some other guests, we did not find the journey from the airport to Fumba too bad (if you've been clattering about in a land cruiser on safari, you can certainly put up with a slightly rough road). First impressions were very good; Natashja showed us round and made us welcome.

Room: We had a baobab suite (number 5). It was spacious and we liked the outdoor bathroom. Our main reservation was that the suite was so near to the main public areas including the bar. Fortunately, other guests were fairly quiet at night but, if we'd had a more lively group at the bar, it could have been noisy. It would have been nice to have been further away from the public areas. The fact that there was access directly from the beach to our bathroom was strange - anyone could have come up the stairs and used the facilities! We felt that the bathroom area could do with some updating and refurbishing. The gardens at the lodge were beautiful and so well maintained.

People: Everyone was friendly and the waiting staff were very efficient. On a couple of occasions, we found the peace of the pool area disturbed by restaurant staff having very loud "debates". Apart from those incidents, people seemed warm and happy.

Facilities: We mainly spent our time by the pool or on the beach which was lovely. We had hoped to dive but David who runs the dive centre was on holiday and Lauren was fully booked so sadly we missed out. We went on a guided snorkelling tour which was interesting but not a patch on diving. One word of warning it you dive or snorkel, at this time of year there are lots of tiny jelly fish which give annoying little stings. Had we known, we would have opted for full wetsuits!

Food: The food was a little mixed in terms of quality. The breakfasts were buffet-style and were ok but the dinners were good. We felt we had a good choice of meat and fish/seafood main courses and the set starters and soups were always tasty. We had lunch on one of the days and there was lots to choose from and we did not think it too expensive."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Serena Hotel Dar

Serena Hotel Dar

"City centre stop over"

1 night Arrived 27 Nov 2008
"We had not been looking forward to our night at Royal Palm purely because it felt like our holiday ended early. However, the hotel was far better than we had expected. We were only there for 12 hours and most of the time asleep but the room was very smart, the bed comfortable and the air conditioning a blessing after temperatures of up to 38 degrees in the Selous.

We only had room service as we couldn't be bothered to get dressed up to go down for dinner but the service was good and the food was fine and not too expensive."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good

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