Advice on private game reserves

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Nov 9th, 2003, 12:46 PM
  #1
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Advice on private game reserves

My family and I are planning our first trip to South Africa in May 2004. We were interested in two game reserves in particular, Nottens Bush Camp and Ndumo Wilderness Camp. Has anyone had any experience with either of these? Should we be looking elsewhere? Can any of you please help me out? Thanks. Alison
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Nov 10th, 2003, 11:59 PM
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I've found this site a useful starting point:

http://www.game-reserve.com/
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Nov 11th, 2003, 11:04 AM
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Thanks very much, Kavey. I took a look and it is very informative. If you any other ideas for a newbie, I would really appreciate hearing them.
Alison
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Nov 11th, 2003, 11:22 AM
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Oh goodness.
Well I am also planning a trip to South Africa for May 2004 - we're landing in Cape Town for 6 nights on 6th May so if your dates coincide lets meet for a drink!
I basically read a lot of guidebooks and websites (I think uhoh topped a thread which I started for people to share useful ones on Africa travel) and decided what I thought I'd like to include. I also asked for input from a few agents - though I was upfront with them that I was dealing with 2 others and was in very early planning stages only.
After I had narrowed down my itinerary I asked for input on it here and on the Lonely Planet Thorntree site.
I fine tuned it.
Now I'm in process of booking car hire and accommodation (very slowly) at a price that won't bankrupt me.
That's not as easy as it sounds given that the 5 weeks we're spending in SA is succeeded by 3 weeks in Botswana and Namibia on a very luxurious trip that I booked several months ago.
Anyway, my rough itinerary is as follows:
Cape Town
Garden Route
Flight from Port Elizabeth to Durban
Durban to Umfolozi Hluhluwe park
Time in St Lucia wetlands area
Itala
Kruger
Jo'burg overnight for flight to Botswana
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Dec 15th, 2003, 07:15 PM
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Hello Kavey
It has been awhile since I was able to log in so my reply is a little late. We are arriving in Capetown on May 7 for 4 days. We would love to meet you for a drink. We are babes in the woods as far as Africa goes. So your advice is most welcome.
We are hiring a car through our agent. It is hellishly expensive. So good luck to you.
We are going from Capetown to the wine district (2 days).
- Then Hermanus (2 days)(shark diving)
- Then Knynsa (2 days)
- Addo Elephant park (3 days)
- Flight from Port Elizabeth to Joeburg (1 day tour of Pretoria and Soweto)
- Flight to Hoedspruitt and 2 nights Gomo Gomo
- Light plane to Nottens Bush Camp for 3 days
None of this written in stone yet but we will be booking shortly. Any comments?
I hope you get this message and we haven't missed you. Talk to you soon.
Alison
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Dec 16th, 2003, 12:53 AM
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Am working at client site but am home tomorrow so will reply properly then!

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Dec 17th, 2003, 01:15 AM
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Hi Alison
Well, getting together in Cape Town is going to be fun! Uhoh is going to be there at the same time too, she's another Fodorite who I correspond with offline and have met on her previous visit to London.
So it's looking like a real GTG!
I don't know anything about Nottens, but I am interested in Ndumo and still trying to work out whether we can splash out on that - SA is meant to be the budget segment of our 2 month trip!
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Dec 19th, 2003, 05:48 AM
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Hi Kavey
Meeting both you and Uhoh sounds great. We will be in Capetown till at least the 11th so we can discuss the where and how.
I don't think we are going to make Ndumo after all. Sigh.
We are trying to get into to Nottens as well as Gomo Gomo. Not fancy but there ARE 4 of us. Have you heard anything about Gomo Gomo?
Congratulations on the renewal of your wedding vows. We will have to toast you and Pete when we meet you.
I will send you my email address via your hotmail.
Thanks
Alison

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Dec 19th, 2003, 08:29 AM
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We're arriving on the 7th as Kavey may have noted - Sounds like we have a nice group shaping up here! We fly out on the 10th (reeeeeally early) for our safari segment in Botswana. We'll fly back to Cape Town to pick up a car night of the 16th and driving around the winelands before we head home on the 20th.
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Dec 19th, 2003, 11:19 AM
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I'm thinking that the 8th or 9th might work well as a get together date?
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Dec 19th, 2003, 04:54 PM
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The 8th or 9th sounds good to me.
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Dec 21st, 2003, 12:27 AM
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Hopefully Selwyn and his wife will be free to join us (I'll drop an email incase he misses this thread) and that will make a grand meeting of 8 people!

Sounds like a lot of fun!
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Dec 22nd, 2003, 09:29 AM
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Good idea Kavey! This is going to be fun!
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Dec 23rd, 2003, 07:16 AM
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I wrote to Selwyn, I'm sure he won't mind my quoting some of his response:

What a BRILLIANT BRILLAINT idea. I will DEFINITELY BE THERE. Let me know the numbers and I will suggest what we should do and try and make it into a very special night for all.

I know we're going to have a great evening.

Kavey
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Dec 30th, 2003, 07:53 PM
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Hello all
This sounds like it is shaping up to be fantastic.
There are 4 of us but I may be able to dump the "kids" for awhile.
Alison
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Dec 30th, 2003, 07:56 PM
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Spoke to the "kids" and they wouldn't mind joining us. Since they are 21 and 23, they will enjoy anything we get going.
Alison
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Dec 31st, 2003, 05:37 AM
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It would be great if they'd come along - Pete and I are 32 so we will have a range of ages present!
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Dec 31st, 2003, 07:48 AM
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They should enjoy it -- my "kids" are 22 and 25 and have enjoyed meeting our travel friends...We'll enjoy meeting them too! (My daughter joined us for a dinner in NYC with some Fodor folk and my son has also met a couple of DC area Fodorites.) I'll attest to Kavey and Pete being friendly and charming and interesting -- we've gotten together in London and in fact it was her tales of their trip to Namibia that first sparked our interest in traveling to Africa!
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Dec 31st, 2003, 10:13 PM
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Hi Uhoh
Sounds like we're on!!! I think we'll all have a terrific time. Kavey has my email address if you want to write to me directly. Drop me a line. We are in Montreal Canada.
Alison
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