Slide Show - Serengeti lodges/camps

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Jul 2nd, 2005, 10:43 AM
  #1
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Slide Show - Serengeti lodges/camps

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Here are some recent pictures of the Serengeti camps/lodges often talked about here!

Serena Mbuze Mawe, the renowated Elewana Migration Camp, the new Mbalageti Camp, Lobo Wildlife Lodge, Ronjo Special camp, Seronera Wildlife Lodge, Seronera Sopa Lodge and Ikoma.

Ikoma has changed ownership and the new owners (of Moivaro and Kia Lodge fame) did not have the time to renovated it before the season started. One can safely expect that over time it will be improved!

http://www.kodakgallery.com/Slidesho...Uy=rol6rn&Ux=1
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Jul 2nd, 2005, 12:48 PM
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Is that a TV at Mbalageti???

Again, thanks for the photos. One question. I have a rough itinerary for next June/July, and I think we'll probably keep most of it as is. The only area I think I may try to mess with is:

After 2 nights at Kirawira (flying to Grumeti airstrip), we will have 2 nights somewhere nearabouts Seronera. Since choices are limited there, what would you recommend? I've stayed at the Wildlife and we thought it was fine, nothing amazing in terms of the accommodations, but a fantastic location.

Would it be a good idea to trek up to Mbuzi Mawe or is the gameviewing not as good? What about Ronjo?

Ultimately, of course, budget will have some impact on where we stay. Sandi thought prices should be coming out in August, but I'd like to have an idea of my preferences (read: the Fodors experts' preferences) by then.
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Jul 2nd, 2005, 12:58 PM
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sandi
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Leely -

You saw that one right... wide screen TV and a DVD player in their "presidential" suite. I was about to toss my cookies. But if it makes any difference, they do have a great view from the pool.
 
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Jul 2nd, 2005, 01:03 PM
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The paradoxes slay me. My friend turned on the TV at the Impala once--"Days of Our Lives" was on. Too funny.
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Jul 2nd, 2005, 09:08 PM
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The view from Mbalageti's pool is awesome, not to mention the one from the outdoor bath tub!

Eben,
How did you ever manage to fit in any game viewing between visiting camps?
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 02:31 AM
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Hi Patty

To save money we camped at public camp sites - then we splurged inbetween to stay at some of these lodges!

We did our game drives very early in the morning - while mosts tourists were getting ready for breakfast - and late afternoon when the tourists were returning to the lodges!

From about 11am to 4pm we slowed down, instead of looking for lion sleeping under trees, we visited lodges and private camp sites.

Since we were camping, we did not have any bookings and literally pitched our tents as near to any interesting wildlife as possible (especially at Seronera where there are lots of camp sites (both private and public). This way we could easily track a pride of lions or herds of wildebeest every morning. Some nights we were surrounded by the migrating herds!

To get easier access to the rooms and staff of the lodges/camps, we bought lunch or paid for dayrooms! But we managed to overnight at quite a few actually - Kambi, Treetops, Ndarakwai, Seronera Sopa, etc!
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 04:05 AM
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CHSL
Thank you ever so much with taking the time to photograph and then set up the slide show. It's great to get pictures that sren't from the company brochures.
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Jul 5th, 2005, 11:53 AM
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bat
 
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Thanks for the photos. What was your opinion of Ronjo Special Camp (in addition to your comment re its location)?
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Jul 5th, 2005, 01:57 PM
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Bat

The Ronjo camp is a standard dark green canvas setup with long-drop toilets, bucket showers, wooden beds with mattress & linen, camp chairs, mess tent and so on.

By standard I mean it is typical of the setups used by many outfitters when they book the "special" camp sites. There are at least 7 other special camp site around the Seronera area, used by different outfitters at certain times during the year.

Ronjo Camp is located just north of Kubukubu Special camp site - about 25 minutes North from the Serengeti Visitors center.

Ronjo's biggest attraction is its proximity to the Seronera area where resident wildlife is plenty. It is secluded away from the busy Seronera game circuit. At night you will certainly hear all kinds of wildlife. A slight drawback is the lack of tree canopies to shelter the tents from the warm sun.

IMO service and food quality are what set this style of seasonal camps apart from the competition. We did not overnight at Ronjo so I cannot comment on this!

If you like your accommodation to be more basic than Mbuze Mawe Tented Camp and Migration Camp, Ronjo is certainly worth a look for a 2-night stay to get closer to nature.
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Jul 6th, 2005, 12:34 PM
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bat
 
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Thanks. Sounds good except that the shade issue concerns me a bit. We have 2 nights booked next Feb.--to see the seronera valley and so that some of us can take the balloon flight without staying in one of the lodges.

Did you notice whether the toilet/showers are per tent?
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Jul 6th, 2005, 12:44 PM
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Yes, private showers + toilets at the back of each tent.

If you plan to be out and about all day, the shade issue is really a minor one.

Since you wanted to avoid the lodges anyway, I think you will like this camp.
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Jul 6th, 2005, 01:12 PM
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bat
 
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Thanks for the reassurances. I'll give a report on food and service when we return next year.
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Jul 13th, 2005, 09:56 AM
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Climbhighsleeplow: After reading your description of Ikoma I e-mailed my safari operator and asked him to refer me to someone who had just returned from staying at Ikoma, and I spoke with her at length about her stay there. She had both some very positive things to say (liked the food and staff very much, said the tents were clean and spacious and the beds were comfortable) and some other things that were less so (bathrooms were cement floor with concrete block walls, dining area very dark, tents were old, there was no aesthetic appeal whatsoever), which confirmed some of what you had to say. In addition, her account of a game walk they took at Ikoma did not boost my confidence. Overall her impression of Ikoma was somewhat more favorable than yours, but ultimately, we have decided to change to Mbuzi Mawe for those two nights. Part of the reason I had originally wanted to stay at Ikoma was for the opportunity to do game walks and night drives, but this woman stayed at Ikoma for 2 nights and said it was the only place they stayed in Tanzania where they saw no large game at all in the two days they were there, even on a night drive and on a game walk. Obviously that could just be bad luck (she did say they saw lion tracks and elephant tracks). Fortunately they saw lots of everything at the other places they stayed so she was not disappointed overall. Mbuzi Mawe is going to cost us $70 more per person per night than Ikoma, but I feel more confident that we will enjoy our stay there. So thank you for taking the time to post your information and your photos. Because of your information I think we will have a better experience than we otherwise would have.
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Jul 16th, 2005, 02:28 PM
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Lisa-
We stayed at Mbuzi Maw one week after it opened. They had a few glitches to work out and it didn't have the decadence of a Kirawira or the CCAfrica properties. However, it was on the ride there where we happened upon the migration. Seven kilometers of wall-to-wall wildebeast!! I realize that I can't thank the lodge for us seeing the migration but I have a sweet spot for the place. When they get eveything together (and they are VERY interested in pleasing their clients), it will be a pleasant out-of-the-way accomodations.
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Jul 16th, 2005, 07:52 PM
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climbhighsleeplow,

Where would you recommend I stay to complement staying at Kusini and Mbuzi Mawe? I think I need someplace closer to the Gol Mountains for a couple nights. I am trying not to break up my trip between different operators and I am preferential to Kusini and Mbuzi Mawe.

For sure I would like 3 nights at Kusini, but I am thinking 2 nights at Mbuzi Mawe and then 2 nights at a camp around the Gol Kopjes.

Would Olduvai Camp be my best bet?

Do you know if Olduvai Camp is exclusive to one operator?

What would the other option(s) be in the area?

Thanks.
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