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Found 7 results

  1. 1) Name of property and country: Grootberg Lodge, Namibia 2) Website address if known: http://www2.grootberg.com 3) Date of stay, including whether Green Season, Shoulder season or High season pricing (if known). Green season, February, 2015 4) Length of stay: 2 nights 5) Why did you choose this camp or lodge to stay in? Based upon what? I read fantastic reports on TA about this property, their amazing view and their Himba tour. 6) How did you book the property, direct or agent? Were your enquiries dealt with quickly and efficiently? I did the initial research an then contacted Discover Namibia. 7) How many times have you been on Safari? 4 times 8) To which countries? South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and Namibia. 9) Which properties have you been to previously that you are comparing this one to? None 10) Was the camp/lodge fenced? No, we were warned to be careful 11) How many rooms/tents does it have? 16 cabins 12) What tent or room did you stay in? Did it have a good view? Was it overlooked or private? We had a triple room with a breathtaking view over the valley. 13) How comfortably furnished was the room/tent? The rooms were comfortable and simply furnished. We enjoyed our time mainly at the communal area enjoying the views, drinks and snacks. 14) Did you like the food? If yes, please state why. If no, please state why. The food was fantastic and we left we recipes. 15) Was there a varied menu offering multiple choice? If vegetarian was a suitable alternative offered? (Did you have to request this in advance?) Yes there were different things on offer. 16) What is the default dining arrangement? Single tables or communal dining? Do the guides/managers host at mealtimes? Single tables, no hosting. 17) How good were the packed breakfasts/lunches if staying out on game drives? Very good and sufficient. 18) What are the game drive vehicles? Please include photo if possible. Open 4WD. 19) How many guests per row? Up to 3 in each row. 20) How long were the game drives and were they varied in the routes taken? Game drives were varied and depended on where we wanted to visit. We only went on a Himba tour which was approximately 5/6 hours. 21) What are the standard game drive times? Are game drive times flexible: i.e., if agreed in advance, can you go out earlier than suggested and stay out later, i.e., not returning for lunch but taking supplies with you? Drives were concentrated mainly in the early mornings but they could be all day affairs if trekking rhino or elephants. 22) Is this a private conservancy/concession, and what is the vehicle/lodge density like? Very little activity in the area 23) If in a National Park, what is the vehicle density in the immediate vicinity? 24) Are you able to off-road? yes 25) Are there rotation policies for sightings i.e., You face the risk of queuing or being bumped from a sighting. N/A 26) What wildlife is this property known for? Did you get good sightings. Excellent desert adapted elephants and rhino. 27) How was the standard of guiding? Excellent 28) If you had a bad experience with a guide, why? Did you report the issue to management, and if so, how did they deal with the issue? N/A 29) If you had a very good experience with your guide, please give reasons why: Friendly, helpful, informative. 30) Were staff attentive to your requests/needs? The staff were extremely helpful and happy during our stay. They genuinely seemed happy to assist, were proactive in their duties and enjoyed the guests company. 31) Does the property support a local community conservation initiative. If so, please provide brief details and website address if known. Yes, it is run by the conservancy and all money raised goes back to the people. 32) Safaritalk trip report link: 33) Any other pertinent details you wish to add: Grootberg Lodge offers by far the best and most professional service of any of the lodges that I visited in Namibia (and I visited 15!). This is evident as soon as you enter the property. The view is to die for and makes you easily forget the "interesting" drive up to the camp. The food/service/staff/rooms are fantastic. We loved our tour to the Himba Village and would thoroughly recommend this, our guides were brilliant too! The views from the communal area were the highlight of our stay and just sitting down with a sundowner makes you question why Namibia is not busier with so many brilliant places/experiences/animals. Thank you to all the staff who assisted us during our stay. 34) Please add your photographs of the property below, with headings. https://vimeo.com/144664241
  2. Keep abreast of news from the greater Mara ecosystem here: https://www.flipsnack.com/flip-preview/ftji6phhw/
  3. 1) Name of property and country: (Please also include name of property and country as topic title and include as tags as well) Encounter Mara (an Asilia camp), Naboisho Conservancy, Maasai Mara, Kenya 2) Website address if known: http://www.asiliaafrica.com/destinations/kenya/greater-maasai-mara/encounter-mara/ 3) Date of stay, including whether Green Season, Shoulder season or High season pricing (if known). February 2016 4) Length of stay: 5 nights 5) Why did you choose this camp or lodge to stay in? Based upon what? Having stayed in conservancies in Kenya in 2014, I wanted to stay in a different conservancy near the Mara when I returned. 6) How did you book the property, direct or agent? Were your enquiries dealt with quickly and efficiently? Safari planner handled the booking 7) How many times have you been on Safari? This was the third 8) To which countries? Tanzania, Kenya x2 9) Which properties have you been to previously that you are comparing this one to? Porini Lion Camp, Porini Mara Camp, Porini Rhino Camp, Serengeti Wilderness Camp, Ndutu Wilderness Camp – all tented camps 10) Was the camp/lodge fenced? Yes, a 50,0000 volt electric fence, but was told it "only keeps out the buffalo, rhino and hippo" LOL! 11) How many rooms/tents does it have? 10 12) What tent or room did you stay in? Did it have a good view? Was it overlooked or private? I was in tent 11, which is quite a distance from the pick-up location and the common areas, but that remoteness is rewarded with no noise from fellow guests. It was not overlooked and looked out over a field that yielded to a riverbed of some sort. I was told that Osirata, the conservancy's resident leopard, spent much of her time on the other side of that field. 13) How comfortably furnished was the room/tent? Very comfortable. Nice big bed, one chair, plenty of room to spread out. Bathroom had double sinks, which I don't think I've seen before in a tent! Standard bucket shower 14) Did you like the food? If yes, please state why. If no, please state why. The food was good; I certainly did not starve. Although I think I've had stronger meals at the other tented camps I've stayed at. They handled the vegetarian request fairly well. I suspect it might have been better had I eaten meat, as a lot of the variety and creativity seemed to go towards the meat products in themed meals like the Indian meal and the barbeque. The "Unbelievable Red" blend wine is not to be missed! Very good! 15) Was there a varied menu offering multiple choice? If vegetarian was a suitable alternative offered? (Did you have to request this in advance?) Vegetarian was available, requested in advance. But otherwise a set menu. 16) What is the default dining arrangement? Single tables or communal dining? Do the guides/managers host at mealtimes? A communal table, but there looked to be a couple stand-alone tables too. Whether that is for overflow from the large table or for eating alone on request, I’m unsure. At least one manager was at each meal, eating with us and helping to serve, as well as one of the guides, which is a very nice touch. I appreciated getting to know and talk to other guides over the pre-dinner firepit and during the meal. 17) How good were the packed breakfasts/lunches if staying out on game drives? The breakfasts on the gamed drives were wonderful. Very plentiful and hearty. 18) What are the game drive vehicles? Please include photo if possible. Land Rovers 19) How many guests per row? Three rows behind the driver, two passengers in each row except the last row, which held three. 20) How long were the game drives and were they varied in the routes taken? Routes varied based on what was seen the night before and what guests hadn't already seen. For example, we saw a leopard before sunset the night before, we'd head out in the morning to see if she was still in the same location. 21) What are the standard game drive times? Are game drive times flexible: i.e., if agreed in advance, can you go out earlier than suggested and stay out later, i.e., not returning for lunch but taking supplies with you? Mornings were 6:15 – 11 or 11:30. Afternoons 4:15 – 7:00 or so. There is the option for night drives, which is really just taking longer to get back for dinner. 22) Is this a private conservancy/concession, and what is the vehicle/lodge density like? We saw vehicles frequently from the other Asilia camps in the Naboisho conservancy as well as other camps. There were never more than 7-8 vehicles at any one sighting (four immediately on it, three waiting to get in per answer to #25) 23) If in a National Park, what is the vehicle density in the immediate vicinity? Didn't go into Mara Reserve with Encounter. 24) Are you able to off-road? Yes 25) Are there rotation policies for sightings i.e., You face the risk of queuing or being bumped from a sighting. Limit is four vehicles per sighting. It is enforced. I couldn't ascertain though who was meant to give up their spot on these sightings. A few times we were the fourth on the sighting, and the first to surrender the final spot, especially to other Asilia vehicles (and sometimes to the detriment of our enjoying the sighting). It did not seem to be a "first in, first out" situation, but that's purely anecdotal. 26) What wildlife is this property known for? Did you get good sightings? The Mara conservancies are known for their big cats. I thought the sightings were good, but not the quality or quantity I've had on a previous stay in the Mara. Talking sheer numbers: 85 individual cats in 2014, 41 on this safari. Not nearly the number of "enlarge this photo for the office" experiences. But this could be due to Mother Nature, tall grass due to El Nino and just the luck of the draw. 27) How was the standard of guiding? The guiding was good, but not as strong as I've had at other camps. Knowledge of resident animals was not as strong nor was the eye for setting me up for ideal photos. 28) If you had a bad experience with a guide, why? Did you report the issue to management, and if so, how did they deal with the issue? N/A 29) If you had a very good experience with your guide, please give reasons why: N/A 30) Were staff attentive to your requests/needs? Yes, the camp staff were excellent. Everyone who interacted with me was personable, friendly and cared about my experience. I suffered a logistical snafu with my booking and Andrew and Sammy handled it for me as if it was nothing at all, for which I’m deeply appreciative. 31) Does the property support a local community conservation initiative. If so, please provide brief details and website address if known. Unsure. 32) Safaritalk trip report link: http://safaritalk.net/topic/15901-my-safari-3-kenya-again-and-again/ 33) Any other pertinent details you wish to add: I cannot say enough about Andrew and Sammy. Both really lived and breathed the safari experience and did what they could to add to it. Sammy "heard" leopard sightings from the camp on a couple of occasions, went out to investigate the noise, then radioed to the guides where he'd found them. Unbelievable talent and willingness to go the extra step for guests. 34) Please add your photographs of the property below, with headings. Interior of tent #11
  4. Here is another of Mr Cheetah80's videos - summarising sightings from our 3 trip to Kenya. Makes me want to go back! PS - watch in HD
  5. Good Morning Safari-Talkers! We haven't been very good about posting news and updates on Mara Naboisho Conservancy here on SafarTalk. We did, however, want to give you a quick update about the Loita Migration. There are at least 70,000 Loita wildebeest Loitering (couldn't help that one) in Naboisho at the moment. About a 2 weeks ago, they were just entering the very Northern end of the conservancy from Ol Kinyei and Maji Moto areas. They are now slowly moving further South and West, filling the high plains in front of Encounter Mara. Yesterday evening we witnessed a double line of wildebeest on the move at least 2km long! We've just reopened the camp after having been closed throughout April. Most of the other camps in the conservancy are still closed, so we've got the wildlife to ourselves! We're already having great sightings, with plenty of elephants and lions around, the usual high numbers of giraffe, and Striped Hyena tracks right through the middle of camp!! May and June are FANTASTIC times to be in the Mara. Wildlife numbers are high, but tourist numbers and rates are low. Come pay us a visit before the end of June to catch some of our special offers. Email us on info@encountermara.com to find out more! Kind regards, The Encounter Mara Team PS: A parting shot from 2 evenings ago - A very playful cub from the Core Pride along the Enoolera stream. She settled down just long enough for us to snap the photo after her brother jumped off the tree stump.
  6. Encounter Mara Camp is looking for a camp manager (single or couple) to run our camp in Mara Naboisho Conservancy for this coming season (and hopefully many seasons to come!) We are looking for someone who is dynamic, respectful, hard-working, a team-player, and enjoys being in the bush. Camp Manager duties include (but are not limited to): - Some hosting of guests (although not as much as some similar camps) - Oversight of all departments and staff in camp - Monitoring consumptions and costs - Weekly supply orders - Monthly Reports - General quality control Food and accommodation are provided on site, and medical cover is included in the package. If you would like more details and are interested in the position, please email Zarek Cockar, our Operations Manager: zarek@encountermara.com
  7. The crowds have left Masai Mara, but the wildlife in Mara Naboisho Conservancy is still bursting at the seams. Many thousands of wildebeest from the Loita plains to the North-East are still "Loitaring" (sorry, couldn't help it) around and gnu-ing across the plains with lions in tow. Elephants are back in large numbers, and our clients are seeing more and more leopards every month! So you see, right now is a FANTASTIC time to visit Encounter Mara Camp, so you can experience all this wonderful wildlife without anyone else around to spoil it for you! Book to stay at Encounter Mara any time between now and the 14th of December 2012 and get 50% off from your second night onwards! *offer valid only for New Non Resident bookings, and cannot be combined with other specials.

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