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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mrs & Mr P from Essex

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

3

Countries visited

3

Lodges stayed in

23

Excursions taken

0

Another wonderful trip

Namibia and 1 other country between 15 Jul 2017 and 3 Aug 2017

Trip rating: Excellent
"This was our 7th visit to Botswana and 4th to Namibia. As ever we had a wonderful time. Expert Africa was once again exceptionally helpful and friendly. Although Megan booked our trip initially and was our contact more recently, Tracy also looked after us very well while Megan was away.
As usual, we mainly used Wilderness Safaris camps and, as usual, were particularly impressed with the high quality of the guiding in all locations. Transfers between camps were organised seamlessly.We were also very impressed with their care and consideration with regard to Ken's problems with balance in the dark, and in all locations they went out of their way to ensure that he had good lighting to escort us back to our tent at night.
We were also impressed by the way information was passed from camp to camp, so that when we arrived in a new location they already knew, for example, what drinks we liked for sundowners and other details of things we liked, which made us feel at home.
The Wilderness lounge at Windhoek was a good addition as somewhere to escape while waiting for the next connection and to use a computer to check in for flights.
Our only regret is that some camps now have separate tables for meals, as one of the things we have always enjoyed about these holidays has been the opportunity to meet and talk to people from so many different countries."

Arranged By Megan Green


Olive Grove

Olive Grove

"excellent location for a stop over"

1 night Arrived 15 Jul 2017
"Very comfortable room. Nice little extra touches like the port and chocolate in room after dinner. Dinner was excellent and very good value."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Kulala Desert Lodge

Kulala Desert Lodge

"Stunning location"

2 nights Arrived 16 Jul 2017
"Lodge is in a stunning location, Very convenient for visiting the dunes. Don't be put off by the rather ugly appearance of the concrete block at the back of each room which houses the bathroom, the rooms are very attractive.
Nice to be able to just go off for a walk around the area/down to the waterhole on your own.
Staff/service were excellent with great attention to detail. We discovered that they had noticed that Ken limped as he got off the truck on arrival, so had moved us to a room near to the main area. I asked if there was any Stoney's ginger beer at the first sundowner (there wasn't) but I was amazed to find there was some waiting for me on the 'welcome back' tray on our return. Visit to Sesriem Canyon very worthwhile (we hadn't been there on our previous visit)."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Desert Rhino Camp

Desert Rhino Camp

"My favourite Namibia scenery"

2 nights Arrived 18 Jul 2017
"On our rhino tracking outing, we were lucky to find the most docile of the local rhino population and were therefore able to spend quite some time walking very close to him and watching him browse.
Our visit was much enhanced by our exceptional guide, Bons, who made us feel that we were friends rather than customers and was a great fount of information.
Future visitors will have the benefit of a new airstrip which has just been built very near to the camp - we were on the last flight out of the old one.
One of the prettiest 'boma' dinner settings we have ever had."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp

Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp

"A stunning new camp"

3 nights Arrived 20 Jul 2017
"This 'new' camp is in a stunning location and the rooms are superb, each has a fridge with cold drinks and a really nice shady sitting out area.
Dining room feels a bit like a restaurant rather than a 'camp' but small enough to encourage conversation. Food and service were excellent in the evening but breakfast service quite patchy.
It is worth staying here for three nights to ensure that you are able to do the trip to the coast with the scenic flight back.
The staff 'concert' was particularly good.
It was also good to have the opportunity to visit the research facility which is on site here, where we had a talk from the researcher who has been studying the brown hyaena in the area, and saw a film made by another of the researchers (who we had met down at the coast) about the desert lions."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Olive Grove

Olive Grove

"Good place for a stop over"

1 night Arrived 23 Jul 2017
"As before, very good evening meal. We had to leave very early in the morning (3.30a.m.) for a flight to Jo'burg, but they gave us an enormous 'packed breakfast' (far to much for that time of the morning!)
Quite a long drive to the airport if you do have an early flight."
Excellent
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Camp Kalahari

Camp Kalahari

"A fabulous experience"

2 nights Arrived 24 Jul 2017
"Standard 'classic camp' tent layout, but great attention to detail to give the feel of a Victorian explorer in terms of the furnishings and fittings.(even down to the morning tea tray complete with tea cosy and plate of biscuits).
The camp does have electricity now, with adequate lighting in the tents and charging facilities for batteries etc in the main area.
The highlight of this camp is, of course, the meerkat colonies. It was an unforgettable experience to spend time so close to these enchanting animals. We were also lucky enough to see two brown hyaena here.
In addition, good, late, rains in this area, meant that there was still water in some of the pans. As a result there were still large herds of wildebeest, zebra etc and a huge flock of flamingos. Normally these would all have migrated away from the pans by this time of the year.
We had a really excellent guide here, Bart, who was a highly knowledgeable about the history and geology of the area as well as the wildlife, and therefore added significantly to our enjoyment.
We had an amazing sundowner where we came across a bar, chairs and camp fire all laid out ready for us on a rocky outcrop."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
DumaTau Camp

DumaTau Camp

"still one of our favourite places"

3 nights Arrived 26 Jul 2017
"Once again, our visit to Duma Tau was excellent. The camp is in a lovely setting and the main area of the camp is quite magical at night. We had Mocks again as our guide and he did not disappoint, finding things we had never seen before , for example, lions mating.
Lunch on the river makes a really nice change"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Jacana Camp

Jacana Camp

"Always my favourite"

3 nights Arrived 29 Jul 2017
"Even after 4 visits, dawn from the deck in front of Jacana is still a breathtaking sight, as are the sunsets over the water.
A fabulous spot for bird watching and we added a couple of kingfishers we hadn't seen before (the striped and a really excellent sighting of the giant). Our guide found the Pels fishing owl for us, both good sightings of a juvenile, and a fleeting sighting of the adult.
This is such a peaceful place and floating around in a mokoro or a boat makes a pleasant respite from bouncing around the bush on a truck.
We had an excellent guide (Broken) who, as a keen photographer himself, was excellent at getting the right positions for photos and for getting up close without disturbing the birds.
Our poler Gee also proved to be very knowledgeable and helpful.
On a night when we were the only people in camp they laid a beautifully decorated table for us for dinner, right by the water's edge.
This camp had the best staff 'choir' that we have ever encountered. It was a pity that, in order not to spoil the surprise of the boma dinner, we hadn't been warned to bring cameras.(Lesson -never go anywhere without one!)"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Mombo Camp

Mombo Camp

"What a pity Mombo Trails is temporary"

2 nights Arrived 1 Aug 2017
"What a pity this Trails camp is only temporary. For us this was absolutely perfect. It had all the advantages of Mombo in terms of the location and the quality of the food and service, but still in the style of a 'bush camp, rather than the hotel that Mombo and Little Mombo have become over the years. It is so much nicer to be at ground level and close to the vast herds grazing in front of the camp and to really feel that you are in the bush. Sadly the rebuilt Mombo looks like being an even more extreme version of a luxury hotel. Having been visiting Mombo every 4 years since 1994, when we visited the very basic original Mombo, we are very sad to see this change.
As usual we saw things we hadn't seen elsewhere on this particular trip, including a leopard, spotted hyaena and a white rhino. Unfortunately we didn't manage to get to see the cheetahs, but this was not for want of trying by our guide. We had Sefo again and he was, as before, excellent."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

My 2013 trip- as wonderful as the previous 5

Botswana and 1 other country between 25 Jul 2013 and 10 Aug 2013

Trip rating: Excellent
"Where do I start? As usual Botswana was amazing. The scenery, the wildlife, the excellent Wilderness Safaris camps all as good as ever.


As usual Expert Africa ensured that everything ran like clockwork. All just as we have come to expect on our repeated visits to this area.

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

I cannot think of any way it could be improved.

Expert Africa staff could not be more responsive, helpful and generally good to deal with."

Kalahari Plains Camp

Kalahari Plains Camp

"Very interesting visit to Kalahari Plains"

3 nights Arrived 25 Jul 2013
"Not the best time of year for game viewing at KP as driest time.

Nevertheless, our excellent guide, Godfrey, still managed to track down a lion on its way to drink at the waterhole, a young leopard whose behaviour suggested she may never have seen a Land Rover before, giraffes drinking at the waterhole silhouetted against the sunset and many other birds and animals. He always had something interesting to say about the flora and fauna or about the country generally and even took us stargazing one evening

Don't miss the back of house tour at this camp which gives great insight into the huge effort that goes into running a camp in this remote location, and the bushman walk which provides an opportunity to see some of the insects and plants you would otherwise miss."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
DumaTau Camp

DumaTau Camp

"Duma Tau was wonderful"

3 nights Arrived 28 Jul 2013
"The new Duma Tau is a delight. The tents are lovely and the main building is magical at night.

We saw a huge range of animals and birds.

Excellent guide, Mocks, seemed to be able to find things to order. We even saw a cheetah, the only sighting in our last two visits to Botswana (they used to be a lot easier to find). Difficult to pick out highlights. We saw the wild dogs returning to their den and the puppies all coming out to suckle. Lunch on the boat while watching an enormous herd of elephants swimming across the Linyanti River was also something very special. We saw a leopard lounging in a tree then making a rapid descent to make an attempt at passing impala. Huge variety of birds and animals in the beautiful scenery along the Savute Channel.

'Roads' in this area are deep sand making for very bumpy drives, may not be an ideal area for anyone with back problems."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Jacana Camp

Jacana Camp

"Jacana, still one of my favourite locations"

3 nights Arrived 31 Jul 2013
"This is still one of my favourite places in Botswana. One of the most beautiful locations and wonderful for birdwatching.

Water based activities make a lovely change from game drives. Wonderful sunrises from the main area of camp.

The new bathrooms are lovely.

We were a little disappointed with the guiding there which was not up to Wilderness' usual high standards. Our guide was a really nice chap, but It seemed that we and our fellow guests, were more likely to spot things and we missed being able to watch several interesting events because we did not stop in time."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Little Mombo

Little Mombo

"Little Mombo review"

2 nights Arrived 3 Aug 2013
"It seemed that there was perhaps not quite as much game around as in previous visits to Mombo, but it still did not disappoint. Less for Mombo is still more than in many places. As usual Mombo delivered things we had not seen anywhere else. We saw 4 rhinos runing through the bush, a wild dog living with the jackals, hyenas suckling young and the icing on the cake was seeing Pels Fishing owls actually in camp. As usual there were a lot of lions in the area. Excellent guiding by Sefo.

It is disappointing that this camp now has separate tables for meals as one of the things we really enjoy about camp life is being able to sit with people from all over the world to share views and travellers' tales."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
The Constantia

The Constantia

"Excellent stay at the Constantia"

3 nights Arrived 5 Aug 2013
"It was good to see the Bishopscourt team again.

The Constantia was just as wonderful as Bishopscourt. Excellent service, comfort and attention to detail. Lovely room. Staff helpful and welcoming. Treat you as if you are a visiting friend."
Excellent
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Grootbos Garden Lodge

Grootbos Garden Lodge

"Good whale watching at Grootbos"

2 nights Arrived 8 Aug 2013
"We were disappointed on arrival to find we had been moved from our preferred Forest Lodge to the Garden Lodge, especially as our room was one at the lowest level of the garden and therefore did not have the same wide view of the bay.

However we had a really good 4x4 safari in the fynbos with an excellent guide whose enthusiasm for the plants and birds was infectious. We were also lucky to be there on a day when the weather conditions encouraged a large number of whales into the bay, a number of which were within metres of the rocks so we were able to end our wildlife spotting trip with some very good whale watching.

The food was excellent and the room comfortable."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

Another wonderful trip

Botswana and 2 other countries between 3 Aug 2009 and 23 Aug 2009

Trip rating: Excellent
"Another fabulous trip to Africa, we can't wait to go back

One thing we did notice however, was that, while the standard of guiding remains generally very good, there seem now to be some guides who are doing the job just to make enough money to be able to fund other business/life plans. As a result we encountered one or two without the old passion/feel for the job. While their knowledge was probably very good, it was in a bit of a textbook style and seemed to lack an empathy with the animals/environment.

Possibly because the good rains had meant animals were more dispersed and therefore a bit more difficult to find, there seemed to be a lot of racing around trying to find things without stopping to evaluate the surroundings and potential. I also felt that there was a bit more harrassing animals by changing position to let people get a different shot rather than just sitting quietly to observe, again perhaps because of the perceived need to move on to try to find something else. Also because there were possibly fewer 'opportunities to view' there tended to be several vehicles at each sighting.

Suggestions for improvements:

Difficult to think of anything Expert Africa could do better. We are always delighted with the service and have recommended you to lots of friends.

It would have been helpful to have seen the questionnaire before we went so that we could make notes on relevant points as we went along. After three weeks and lots of locations it is a bit difficult to remember precise details for"

Arranged By Maruska Adye-Rowe


Image alt

Bishops' Court, South Africa (this camp has since closed)

"Great fun at Bishops'Court"

2 nights Arrived 4 Aug 2009
"An amazing place. Beautifully appointed and fabulous views. Very warm friendly staff.

We were the first guests after a major refurbishment and arrived a bit earlier than expected. As a result we were the first to experience a number of snagging problems as the builders moved out ! This resulted in a very light hearted relationship which really made our visit to South Africa. Tessa , the manager, felt like an old friend by the end of our stay.

An in-house driver willing to take us to restaurants in the evening and pick us up later was very helpful.

We had an excellent meal in-house on our last evening."
Excellent
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Grootbos Garden Lodge

Grootbos Garden Lodge

"Stunning location"

2 nights Arrived 6 Aug 2009
"Fantastic views and amazing rooms.

The 4x4 drive into the fynbos was the highlight of our stay there. Brummer was an excellent guide.

We opted for a beach walk in the afternoon and were rather surprised that the guide didn't seem to have realised it would be high tide (and therefore no beach!)"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Serra Cafema

Serra Cafema

"Serra Cafema review"

3 nights Arrived 9 Aug 2009
"The location of the camp is amazing and the rooms were lovely.

The green ribbon of vegetation along the river in the middle of the desert is quite stunning
Francois was an excellent guide. We very much enjoyed our walks and drives with him.

Serra Cafema has separate tables for evening meals which we feel detracts from the camp experience. Also, as the dining room is indoors at this time of year, the parrafin smell from the hurricane lamps on each table can be a bit unpleasant when you are eating."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Facilities
Good
Desert Rhino Camp

Desert Rhino Camp

"Desert Rhino Camp review"

2 nights Arrived 12 Aug 2009
"The refurbishment has been done very well, adding to the comfort while still retaining much of the old camp feel.

It was a great bonus to find that there is a new airstrip only 45 minutes from camp.

As a result of the relocation of some of the rhinos, it is necessary to travel a bit further afield to find rhinos at the moment. It is perhaps worth being aware that this may mean 12-13 hours out on a 4/4 over the very rocky desert tracks."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Image alt

Terra Africa, Namibia (this camp has since closed)

"Ok for a one night stop over"

1 night Arrived 14 Aug 2009
"Very helpful staff. Interesting place. They have made the best possible use of a small space to create a very attractive garden. Good breakfast.

We were only here for one night but I don't think we would have wanted to stay longer. The hotel is on a corner on a very busy dual carriageway and currently overlooks building work on the adjacent government building (as a result the meerkats mentioned on their website have moved away).

It was a bit disconcerting when we went out to dinner to find the public areas were in darkness with no staff around at all."
Good
Location
Poor
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Jacana Camp

Jacana Camp

"our favourite wet camp"

2 nights Arrived 15 Aug 2009
"We loved Jacana as much this time as on our previous visit.

The staff were excellent, and the welcome very warm. Joseph was an excellent guide

The bird life was excellent and we seemed to get a lot closer to them than we have on previous trips."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Little Vumbura

Little Vumbura

"Lovely setting"

2 nights Arrived 17 Aug 2009
"The camp is in a lovely setting and the bird life around the camp was excellent but there seemed to be relatively little on the waterways. Although we saw some interesting lion behaviour on the 4x4 outing (tree climbing lions!), we really did not see much at all on the waterbased activites.

It is possible that this may have been due to the exceptionally high water levels this year. Quality of guiding a bit mixed (we had several different guides during our stay)"
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Savuti Camp

Savuti Camp

"An amazing transformation"

3 nights Arrived 19 Aug 2009
"It was wonderful to see Savuti transformed by the water in the channel. It is now such a pretty area and it was so interesting to see how quickly waterbased flora and fauna have moved into the area. It was so strange to sit on our deck watching hippos, herons and fish eagles instead of herds of plains animals.

There are still vast numbers of elephant in the area with lots of young. A new phenomenon is the large number of hippos now basking in the river. Some of the best hippo viewing we have ever had.

However, compared with our previous visit we felt that the game viewing was not as good. Whether this was just bad luck for the days we were there, a one-off result of the game being more dispersed as the result of the number of waterholes resulting from good, and late, rains or a longer term effect of the flowing channel. it is difficult to say. Also it is possible that herds of other types of animal will increase over time as a result of the flowing channel (e.g. lechwe, roan antelope, reed and water buck, buffalo etc.).

Dinner in the bush was quite a highlight, something we have never done before in 5 visits to Botswana."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

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