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CRL Aug 19th, 2003 05:12 AM

Namibia/Botswana Suggestions
We are planning a trip to Namibia, Botswana and Cape Town in October 2004. I am looking at Okonjima Lodge and Ongava Lodge in Namibia. If anyone has stayed at either, I'd love your comments. Pro or Con!
We will also stay in Moremi in Botswana perhaps at Eagle's Island...what have been your experiences? We would appreciate you input!!

Kavey Aug 19th, 2003 10:01 AM

CRL I can't give you input on those lodges but would be happy to feedback on Little Mombo in Moremi and on a few places in Namibia.

To find postings from me and others on some alternative accommodations, if you're interested, please enter the following into the search box.

(I also found some feedback on Ongava that way)



I happened to choose mostly Wilderness Safaris properties and was very happy with them but others have also reported back positively on lodges run by other groups.

Best of luck

Surfrider Aug 19th, 2003 11:01 AM

Most definitely access Wilderness Safaris and look at their properties for the different countries.

What have you read so far - I'm interested in how you selected the areas and places.

In Capetown, what did you have in mind? Some specifics would help a lot.

sandi Aug 19th, 2003 11:34 AM

Okonjima is a place unto itself - specifically the Africat Fndtn. and is a nice stop on the way to Etosha (presume you are driving)? It's about 2 to 2-1/2 hrs. north of Windhoek.

Ongava Lodge is a Wilderness Safari property. A friend recently returned from Namibia and was very pleased with this property which is air conditioned (many places in Namibia are not, unless they're hi-end properties) and is a hi-end property.

I concur with the other posters - take a look at the Wilderness Safari site for their properties in Botswana, as well as others in Namibia, as it appears you're spending little time there! If you're visiting other than Etosha, they have property at Sosssusvlei also (Wilderness Camp).

DJE Aug 19th, 2003 12:09 PM

Can also recommend Wilderness Safaris and recently spent time in 3 of their properties: Sossusvlei Wilderness Camp in Namibia and Kings Pool & Mombo in Botswana. All were very good camps in picturesque locations and we were more than pleased with all areas of service provided.

thit_cho Aug 20th, 2003 09:56 AM

I spent time last August at Ongava, and while I really liked the lodge, the game in the surrounding area was not nearly as abundant or diverse as that in Etosha. Fortunately the morning drive from Ongava is into Etosha, but the evening drive wasn't that spectacular. After my stay in Ongava, I spent one night in each of the three restcamps in Etosha, and in my view, the stay at Okakuejo was the real highlight. Granted, the facilities are not nearly as nice as Ongava, but the game is more plentiful and I really enjoyed the self-drive safari. But if you want to be pampered and are less interested in wildlife viewing, stay at Ongava as its a great lodge.

sundowner Aug 20th, 2003 11:02 AM

I just returned from a trip to SA and Botswana and stayed at the Tent Camp at Mashatu in southern Botswana for a few days. I had an excellent adventure.

The food/lodging/camp staff were great and the game drives were even better. There was a large herd of elephants of all ages at the camp "hide" the afternoon I arrived. I sat there for an hour or two just watching all the activity. I had to drag myself away to go on the game drive that afternoon but was pleasantly surprised by several more large herds of elephants, giraffe, impala etc. I was lucky enough to see leopards on the first 3 game drives at this reserve. And also saw a lioness nursing 2 or 3 month old cubs and then watched them playing.

This was my first visit to Mashatu so I don't know what is normal but we were hours late for several meals because the game drives were so incredible.

There are so many other places I want to visit in southern and eastern Africa but I do hope to be able to return to Mashatu.

Have fun with your planning!

LizFrazier Aug 20th, 2003 12:10 PM

You are the first I've seen post about Mashatu. Please tell me more. Did you see the Lodge? We were going to visit that camp first on our Spring trip that we cancelled due to the war in Iraq.
It just strikes me as the most unique experience. Anything you can think of would be appreciated. I don't remember a trip report, surely I've just forgotten. Liz

sundowner Aug 20th, 2003 12:33 PM

Liz - no trip report. Just returned Sunday and haven't fully recovered yet. My two little ones started school Monday, I returned to work Monday, and my house had no food in it (my husband and the kids must have eaten out the whole time I was gone!). And I've been downloading the photos. Same story - too much to do with too little time.

Anyway - I was thoroughly impressed with Mashatu. I'll see about throwing a few thoughts together and post them if you're interested.


Kavey Aug 20th, 2003 12:42 PM

Looking fwd to more feedback - sounds like you had a greeaat trip!

Nicci Aug 23rd, 2003 03:43 PM

We stayed at Okonjima Lodge for one night while driving from Etosha to Windhoek last October. The accommodation and food was great- we stayed at the Bush Camp. The animal experience was okay, keeping in mind it's a conservation. The animals wore radio collars and were easily tracked on our drives. A cheetah was hand fed on the hood of our jeep. The night drive took us to a blind where we watched a porcupine, a couple honey badgers and a ganet fight over our left over dinner scraps.

It's expensive at $220pp, but worth doing for a one time experience. Plus some of the money goes to help fund the Africat Foundation.


Mary Aug 28th, 2003 12:11 PM

CRL - We stayed at Ongava Tented Camp in April which is on the same reserve as Ongava Lodge and is also run by Wilderness Safaris. While I concur with thit cho regarding his/her take on the wildlife (lots more in Etosha than on the reserve) the wildlife in Etosha seem tame and accustomed to people and they were very visible in the open plains. Our night drives in the reserve were fun because you never knew what you would see around the next bush and the animals were more skittish and "wild". At the tented camp we had a water hole that nearly always had an abundance of various antelope visiting. We had dinner one night at the Lodge and the main lounge/dining room was completely open to the outdoors. Perhaps the accomodations are air conditioned. We did not see those.
You are going at a different time of year and the wildlife scene may be totally different.

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