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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mr S & Ms K from Windsor

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

3

Excursions taken

0

Wonderful trip

Botswana between 8 Apr 2009 and 17 Apr 2009

Trip rating: Excellent
"We were delighted with our trip.

All went smoothly - Botswana exceeded our expectations and everywhere we felt looked after and taken care of.

Having spent a considerable sum of money, we hoped that we'd feel it was worth it, and it certainly was in terms of uniqueness of experience and sheer enjoyment.

We felt well prepared for our trip and all went to plan - I like the fact you send a complimentary copy of Chris's book and also the Notes to Travellers are really good.

Thank you for a great holiday."

Royal Tree Lodge

Royal Tree Lodge

"Motsentsela Tree Lodge review"

1 night Arrived 9 Apr 2009
"Lovely lodge and I'm really pleased we stopped off there for a night rather than pushing straight onto safari camp. It was such a relaxing place to be and nice easing into being in Africa and the bush.

Our luggage did not arrive with us in Maun. No-one's did. It alll arrived 2.5 hours later on another plane! Motsentsela were really helpful. It was apparent from the outset that they would take us back to the lodge for lunch and then escort us back to get the luggage.

My husband went back to the airport with one of staff called Joe. The luggage was later than we'd been told so John and Joe went to a cafe for a cola and chatted about life, nature and Botswana. John really enjoyed this and Joe was very kind about staying after he was off duty.

The short time we were at the lodge we enjoyed wandering on the trails and both Kathy and Dougie were very helpful. Dinner was great fun - lots of interesting folk to talk to.

We were allowed to sleep in next day and have our breakfast when we woke up which was much appreciated. We thought all the staff at the lodge were charming and liked the ambience. I'd really recommend this place as a restful break before going onto camp."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Tau Pan Camp

Tau Pan Camp

"Brand new camp with wonderful character"

3 nights Arrived 10 Apr 2009
"What a wonderful place. We were so fortunate - only one family of four and us in camp and we all got on so well.

We effectively had private guiding with Balipi and KG to ourselves. It took a little time to get to know them but we learned so much from them. The bush walk they took us on was fantastic because they have so much knowledge. We really enjoyed talking to them about their lives - still in touch with their San roots and also moving on in the modern world of guiding. They were lovely people to spend time with. KG is very quiet - he just needs to grow in confidence. His demonstration of bush craft was wonderfully done. Balipi's experience shines through.

I know the family with us also had a fantastic time with Hector and Timothy.

We had gone to the Kalahari for the sense of space, remoteness and wide ranging views. Someone who measures their exprience on how much large game they see might not have been quite as happy as us. On the whole day trip we covered 150km between 6.30am and 6pm and saw a cheetah towards the end of the day. Otherwise, mostly antelope, giraffe, birds and smaller animals like ground squirrels and a honey badger, all of which we really enjoyed seeing.

The other group saw more large game - lions and several cheetahs so it is very much down to chance who sees what. We were perfectly happy with this. The game is there - it's just harder to spot at this time of year with the high grass - we were fully aware of this so no problem. There is a small female leopard coming into camp regulary. A guide had seen her a couple of days before we arrived and her prints were there each morning but we didn't see her.

The camp location is exactly as depicted - on an elevated area with stunning views of the Pan below. The buildings are fabulous and we loved the ambience. The activities were half day game drives, a full day's drive around the Pans and a nature walk near the camp.

The food was outstanding. Geoffery the cook was a genius - each meal was beautiful and then there was all sorts of other little touches like home baked biscuits with coffee on the morning drive and delicious canapes with sundowners.

The staff were all wonderful - so open and friendly - Hilda, Obi and Kenny are great at front of house, but we must acknowledge the back stage folk who kept everything running smoothly.

Alvin was managing in the absence of the regular managers - really nice guy and very reassuring presence with his experience. He really cared that we had a nice time and seemed to have a good relationship with the staff. One evening when we declined sundowners out in the bush after the long day drive, Alvin placed our usual drinks, chilled in an ice bucket on our deck so we could relax there. Really nice.

The camp is trying to run entirely on solar power which is great to see. There are one or two teething issues but nothing major and we were not inconvenienced. The hot water was coming through a bit slowly on the inside shower the first day but was receiving attention.

We spent one afternoon just chilling out on the observation deck in the shade - it was lovely. There were great books to look at, the water hole to keep an eye on, the pool if you wanted to use it and the shop (which is really nicely stocked).

The stink bugs were there in great number in the evenings - you doid need to keep your drink covered. This just adds to the sense of being out in the bush unless you're really fussy. I gather their numbers are very high at present and this isn't usual. The children staying in camp were thrilled with them and all the other insects.

The transfer to the airstrip is just a few minutes so very convenient.

We had the best of times at this camp and I'll always remember the beauty of the land and wildlife, the wonderful remoteness, the colours at sundown and the wonderful people who looked after us there."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Xigera Safari Lodge

Xigera Safari Lodge

"Wild water at Xigera"

3 nights Arrived 13 Apr 2009
"Flying into Xigera was amazing - at first it was hard to spot where we'd land - it was so watery. It really was a stunning arrival - the delta viewed from a light aircraft is quite special.

We'd chosen Xigera for its emphasis on water activities and weren't disappointed.

The motor boat excursions were an absolute highlight. We loved skimming through the delta on these - we saw an impressive range of animals including hippo, crocs, elephant, giraffe, red lechwe, numerous birds and fantastic frogs. This was my first viewing of hippos and we were able to sit close to a large pod from some time which was really exciting.

Teko was our guide and we liked him hugely. He was full of knowledge and very professional with a good sense of humour and really nice manner. He grew up in the delta and paddled mokoros around camp location as a child. This depth of knowledge of the area made him a very authoratative and interesting guide and we felt in very safe hands as he negotiated his way round the maze of the delta.

The day trip out to Chief's Island was fantastic because we got to see such a large area of delta.

The Mokoro rides were lovely and relaxing and a wonderful way to view the lushness of the delta. The lilies and the jacana birds are so pretty and ideally viewed from a mokoro. I was slightly nervous about meeting large animals whilst in these boats, but reassuringly a guide went ahead in a lead mokoro and we were able to enjoy a peaceful couple of hours. Our paddler, William went out of his way to show us things of interest.

Despite the fact there were 16 visitors in camp when we arrived, we were still only with one other couple for guiding, which was great. We were able to do the activities of our choice each day.

There are games drives when water permits. We chose to stay on the water but the other couple who'd been in our boat went for a game drive with Teko. The waters were very high and they were treated to an exhibition of great off-roading skill as the vehicle negotiated deep water and varied terrain.

The accomodation in camp is great - the decks outside the rooms are very well located overlooking the water. Sitting out on your deck before sunset is very relaxing. The rooms are really well designed and presented. We liked having en suite facilities in the room removing the need to go outside at night, particularly as one night we had two hippos outside chewing their way through the vegetation. We also saw a bull elephant standing a few metres from our room in the moonlight - that was spectacular.

One evening we had dinner outside in the boma with drinks around the fire, which was very atmospheric. Other evenings we ate at a large dining table in the very pleasant dining area, close to the water.

There are a lot of staff at Xigera - more than you could get to know in a short stay. Anton, Terri and Tlamelo were the managers we came across and got to talk to quite a bit - all were absolutely committed to ensuring that we enjoyed our stay and we were very well looked after both by them and the camp staff.

Overall this was a fabulous camp which delivered all we'd hoped for and more."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent

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