Hwange over Chrismas and new year





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  1. #1
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    Default Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    I would like to know if anybody visited Hwange over Christmas and New Year. We are planning a trip in December 2018 and had a bad experience 2 years ago in Etosha when locals took over the camp drinking and playing loud music during the night. Can someone please advise what we can expect in hwange during this festive season?

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    I have been there for Christmas, new year 2014/2015 but we were nowhere near the edge of the park, so not sure what the festivities are like. But certainly at any of the picnic sites you should be fine. We stayed at Kapula. I would personally avoid main camp and sinamatela.
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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    There is a lot of water in the park that time of year. The birding was excellent, game viewing was good but we did have to work a bit harder for a spotting.
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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    I was in Sinematella in August and the STAFF had a doof doof party all night long. Based on that lack of respect I wouldn't chance Sinematella over any festive period. I think the exclusive campsites would be fine.

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Thanks a lot for the comments I really appreciate it. I would certainly go for the exclusive camp sites or other wise stay away over this time

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    I was at Main Camp between Christmas and New Year.

    The camp itself was busy with lots of visitors but no one got out of hand or was noisy. The lodge we stayed in was clean and functional, but I would recommend taking your own small portable braai as you have to share braais with other lodges which isnt ideal.

    They had a lot of rain prior to our arrival and I havent seen the bush that thick in a long time, but the game viewing was still decent. The area around Main Camp was busy with visitors but is you head down to Makwa, Kennedy 1, Kennedy 2 and Ngweshla you dont see a lot of vehicles and you will see decent game.

    If you are looking to camp, then look at booking either Kennedy 1 or Ngweshla, but be warned that during the day people have the right to come into the picnic sites and use them.

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Yes - a couple of years ago we arrived at Robbins on Xmas day and stayed at Sinamatella and Main Camp that week. The staff had a bit of a shindig xmas night at their housing village at Robbins but it was pretty far and didn't keep us up. Sinamatella was awful - we had to beg for someone to open the bar and the same guy was cooking and serving in the "restaurant" but did not have any noise problems there nor at Main camp - think they were either all hungover or wanting to leave to drink :-)

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by kimbaleee View Post
    Yes - a couple of years ago we arrived at Robbins on Xmas day and stayed at Sinamatella and Main Camp that week. The staff had a bit of a shindig xmas night at their housing village at Robbins but it was pretty far and didn't keep us up. Sinamatella was awful - we had to beg for someone to open the bar and the same guy was cooking and serving in the "restaurant" but did not have any noise problems there nor at Main camp - think they were either all hungover or wanting to leave to drink :-)
    Thank you for the comments, we are planning to go via Botswana and cross the Pandamatenga border, I see on the Zimparks website it explains the exclusive camping as follow: These are undeveloped sites found at Lukosi, Vhikani, Rhino Bar, Salt Springs and Tshakabika. Four wheel drive or high clearance vehicles are necessary for visitors to Tshakabika.

    Has anyone stayed at Salt Springs, Rhino Bar ans Tshakabika before?

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by Beukesies View Post
    Thank you for the comments, we are planning to go via Botswana and cross the Pandamatenga border, I see on the Zimparks website it explains the exclusive camping as follow: These are undeveloped sites found at Lukosi, Vhikani, Rhino Bar, Salt Springs and Tshakabika. Four wheel drive or high clearance vehicles are necessary for visitors to Tshakabika.

    Has anyone stayed at Salt Springs, Rhino Bar ans Tshakabika before?
    I speak under correction but I think I read somewhere on this forum that the undeveloped sites are no longer available to the public and only to tour operators.

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by Beukesies View Post
    Thank you for the comments, we are planning to go via Botswana and cross the Pandamatenga border, I see on the Zimparks website it explains the exclusive camping as follow: These are undeveloped sites found at Lukosi, Vhikani, Rhino Bar, Salt Springs and Tshakabika. Four wheel drive or high clearance vehicles are necessary for visitors to Tshakabika.

    Has anyone stayed at Salt Springs, Rhino Bar ans Tshakabika before?
    Stay at Robbins - we were the only ones there and it was awesome!

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    We were at Hwange at the end of Oct.
    You are correct the undeveloped sites are no longer available for the public and are only available for the tour tour operators.
    The hole Robins area had no game at the end of Oct.
    The hole area was burnt and they allready had some big rains.
    Allmost all the elephants left into the tick bush in the southern part of the Park.
    After a few days in the park at the eastern sidethe elephants came back out of the bush and came back heading for the waterholes.
    Game wise we saw lot s more on the eastern side then the western side.

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Does anyone know which exclusive camp sites are available by or close by Masuma Dam, where you don't have to share your campsite/during the day?
    Masuma Dam picnic spot really seems nice, but I am a bit in the dark here, not sure if I might have the wrong impression, I don't mind other people/campers coming buy have lunch and use the ablutions during the day I am just not in the mood for a lot of noise from other people or large overland groups of tourist spoiling our peace during the day.

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Kapula private camp. Self catering tented camp 3km from masuma
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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Shumba is also an option.

    Masuma is busy during the day, but unless the rules have changed you have the place to yourself in the evenings and don't share with anyone.

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by RobH View Post
    Masuma is busy during the day, but unless the rules have changed you have the place to yourself in the evenings and don't share with anyone.
    Correct! Only one party is allowed to stay there overnight.

    I stay there often with my tourists, but it is expensive now! $170 to book it now if you have foreigners (non-SACD) in your party. If you are SADC citizens only, it is $120 per night.

    That is for up to six people, but if you are only 3 people, the price is insane
    Last edited by mvcoller; 2018/01/10 at 02:37 PM.
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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    For me the problem with Shumba is that you can't see the waterhole from the campsite.

    Deteema has far less day visitors than Masuma Dam. We have accepted the day visitor fact and are staying at Masuma again and Deteema for the first time in September.

    We had to pay $172/night at Masuma and Deteema; booking was made this year and no discount, we are SADC.
    Last edited by mcowell; 2018/01/10 at 02:41 PM.
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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by mcowell View Post
    For me the problem with Shumba is that you can't see the waterhole from the campsite.

    Deteema has far less day visitors than Masuma Dam. We have accepted the day visitor fact and are staying at Masuma again and Deteema for the first time in September.
    +1

    I also like Kennedy 1 but I find Ngweshla overrated..... so far and the roads are terribly neglected. Even the road from Main Camp to Kennedy can be very badly corrugated at times
    Malcolm van Coller - retired 2013 but remained in Johannesburg (maybe will look at moving south, Robertson or Wellington type of town, once the wife retires)
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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by iLandy View Post
    Kapula private camp. Self catering tented camp 3km from masuma
    Excellent Place to Stay, be aware of the Hyena's after dusk there are plenty roaming inside the Camp, besides there is no other place in Hwage with the true Wilderness.

    Enjoy..

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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by mcowell View Post
    For me the problem with Shumba is that you can't see the waterhole from the campsite.

    Deteema has far less day visitors than Masuma Dam. We have accepted the day visitor fact and are staying at Masuma again and Deteema for the first time in September.

    We had to pay $172/night at Masuma and Deteema; booking was made this year and no discount, we are SADC.
    WOW That has become even steeper since I was there last (January - Masuma and Ngweshla & February - Mandawu Dam last year). I won't be camping at Picnic Sites again. We normally make it two nights in Hwange on my Safaris. This will now change to only one night in future. They are killing the goose that lays the golden egg with their greed. You can't call it anything else but greed!!!!
    Last edited by mvcoller; 2018/01/10 at 03:18 PM.
    Malcolm van Coller - retired 2013 but remained in Johannesburg (maybe will look at moving south, Robertson or Wellington type of town, once the wife retires)
    2011 Nissan Pathfinder 2,5 CDi LE Manual (with front Lokka) - My Platkar...
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    Default Re: Hwange over Chrismas and new year

    Quote Originally Posted by mcowell View Post
    For me the problem with Shumba is that you can't see the waterhole from the campsite.

    Deteema has far less day visitors than Masuma Dam. We have accepted the day visitor fact and are staying at Masuma again and Deteema for the first time in September.

    We had to pay $172/night at Masuma and Deteema; booking was made this year and no discount, we are SADC.
    Yes, there are far less "day" visitors at Deteema, but as it has a small hide it can be more intrusive than Masuma dam. This is also dependant on your camp set-up and position. Fortunately, day visitors tend to leave earlier from there to get back to Robins, Sinamatella or Robins. Masuma is 10 minutes from Kapula and they (visitors) try to stay as late as possible. The OP specifically asked about private i.e. no day visitors. Sorry but you are out of luck unless you can try to score the undeveloped sites, which technically is now only for tour operators.

    As stated, day visitors have access (always nice meeting fellow travellers) during daylight hours and I have not to date had any major problems. The odd visitor/s have tried to wangle themselves into sharing the site (mainly at Masuma) which I have never agreed too. Ensure that the camp warden is aware of this.

    I am surprised about the "no discount" comment, I would double check with Christina Mhuriro.

    Its time to get a new plan to go back to Hwange (4 months since my last trip).

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