Etosha - never again





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  1. #1
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    Default Etosha - never again

    I don't think I will ever persuade my husband to go near Etosha again. This was our 4th or 5th visit. We entered at the Namutoni gate on the 27th of December, and stayed at Okaukuejo for two nights. We left a day early. Okaukuejo is filthy - garbage everywhere, insufficient dustbins for the number of campers taken in - several overlander groups - garbage at the water hole, an overflowing sewage manhole at the water hole, weedy broken pathways, ablution blocks in dire need of basic maintenance and on and on. After a four-country trip, this was our most expensive camping. The staff we encountered were rude, unhelpful, and officious. I have no idea why these places continue to get our money when they obviously view us with nothing more than contempt.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    The exact reason you don't stay in the reserve. We stayed just outside the Namutoni gate at the Mokuti lodge and drove in daily. The price of a 3 star hotel in SA and far better than inside Etosha.

    https://www.mokutietoshalodge.com/

    They have a special on in the festive season too - N$ 735 per person per day.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Ja dis baie sleg. Ek was nou daar by Olifantsrus vir een nag. Kan nie kla nie. Dis net hartseer dat sulke staats beheerde instansies oral tot niet gaan.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by LynneDT View Post
    I don't think I will ever persuade my husband to go near Etosha again. This was our 4th or 5th visit. We entered at the Namutoni gate on the 27th of December, and stayed at Okaukuejo for two nights. We left a day early. Okaukuejo is filthy - garbage everywhere, insufficient dustbins for the number of campers taken in - several overlander groups - garbage at the water hole, an overflowing sewage manhole at the water hole, weedy broken pathways, ablution blocks in dire need of basic maintenance and on and on. After a four-country trip, this was our most expensive camping. The staff we encountered were rude, unhelpful, and officious. I have no idea why these places continue to get our money when they obviously view us with nothing more than contempt.
    Thanks for this, I was planning a trip in the new year. I'll pass.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    The African formula, just like the Serengeti. The tourists will always come no matter the price, so why make any extra effort? That's why we save a ton of money and stick to Sanparks, Ezemvelo parks and countless other gems along our mountain ranges and coastline. It's nice to see Etosha, Okavango, Vic Falls and the Serengeti once but for a more expensive holiday we'd rather go overseas.
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by Olyfboer View Post
    The exact reason you don't stay in the reserve. We stayed just outside the Namutoni gate at the Mokuti lodge and drove in daily. The price of a 3 star hotel in SA and far better than inside Etosha.

    https://www.mokutietoshalodge.com/

    They have a special on in the festive season too - N$ 735 per person per day.
    Way TOO EXPENSIVE

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Betts View Post
    Way TOO EXPENSIVE
    Thank you Peter - like you, this is out of our price range by VERY far.
    But just as well to get the update on the Etosha GR - Thank you OP for that.

    It is a long time since we ere there and already saw some deterioration at that time, but still within acceptable limits.
    [U]Even then we found it expensive (campsites) compared to other similar./U]

    We really do budget, basic, or bush camp as much as we can.
    If no choice (as in emergency), then we would camp in a more expensive place through necessity - in this age, I doubt if we are alone in this as retired folk.

    Usually our "extravagance" is camping in KNP or at Hlane in E-Swatini (Swaziland) and that is after age-related discounts and Wild Card taken into account.

    Thank you for the "heads up".
    Answering the call of the wild is just so much beter than answering the telephone.
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Betts View Post
    Way TOO EXPENSIVE
    N$ 735 is too expensive for a 5 star lodge with pool, air conditioned ensuite cabins, WiFi, lawned areas, a lapa, pub, meals, pool and much more?

    It may not be in everyone's budget but is cheap for what you get. I was thinking of people that would be able to benefit instead of staying in Etosha which is way too expensive for what you get.

    Just checked-- - less than a lodge type accommodation in Etosha will cost you over N$ 2000 Per Person Per Day. Almost 3 times the price of Mokuti.

    How much does camping in Etosha cost? -

    Pic from the open pub in Mokuti.

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    Last edited by Olyfboer; 2019/12/30 at 02:35 PM. Reason: Price check
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    This is so sad and NWR does not seem to care.
    BUT we have wonderfull camps just outside most National parks. Gondwana Collection and Taleni Africa are two such companies operating throughout Namibia and deliver outstanding service.Oh and we have a large selection of private cams ass well.
    Swakopmunder

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Lynne I agree. Found more or less the same 2 years ago at Okaukeujo. Halali had less overlanders but was filthy. I would love to experience the park more, but I draw the line at certain things.

    How was the roads?

    Yes, one can stay outside the park but those camps tend to be packed in holiday periods. Plus there is the hassle of meat should one have your fridge in the car.
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Fully agree Lynne.
    After an absence of many years, my wife I went to Etosha again in 2012 and had the same experience that you have just had.
    We will never go there again (and I know never is along time!).
    We have travelled all over Namibia on a regular basis during the past 30 years - and are going again next year. Namibia will always be our favourite destination, but not Etosha.
    Sam
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by lekhubu943 View Post
    Lynne I agree. Found more or less the same 2 years ago at Okaukeujo. Halali had less overlanders but was filthy. I would love to experience the park more, but I draw the line at certain things.

    How was the roads?

    Yes, one can stay outside the park but those camps tend to be packed in holiday periods. Plus there is the hassle of meat should one have your fridge in the car.
    On the contrary, Mokuti was not packed at all, the reason they lower their prices in the holiday season. You can always ask management to freeze your meat in their freezers or plug the fridge in inside the bungalow. They will even give you a porter to take it there on a golf cart. I saw them changing wheels on one of the guests cars and asked them why they were doing it. They said that anything the guest wants they get.
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  13. #13
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    For what it's worth, my wife and I camped at Olifantsrus in March and we found the facilities to be good. Ablutions were not amazing, but decent enough for sure, and we also really liked the smaller camp setting compared to the other sites in the park. We only interacted with two staff there, one was entirely ambivalent to us and the other very friendly.

    We took a look at Okaukuejo and decided to pass, moving on to Halali, where we found the staff to be very friendly. The ablutions were so-so, and since it was off season the camping area wasn't crowded.

    The way we think about it, some places you go to camp for the stunning setting and experience, and others are just a place to stay for access to something interesting (like good game viewing). In our minds the camps in Etosha are more about access to the park and less about the setting, though we have had wonderful sightings at the watering holes at each camp, which are a real treat. When we stayed at Oliftanstrus we had heard there wasn't much game in that part of the park, but on the first evening we had two rhinos, a male lion, elephants, black backed jackal and antelope, so it seemed pretty good to us!

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Other isolated areas in Namibia also have inflated pricing. Hobas and Quiver tree forest comes to mind.
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  15. #15
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    The management of NWR is useless. Maybe its time that such reports reach the local newspaper. They spend millions on upgrading the facilities and run it into the ground with in a few years.
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    We camp just outside at the luxury camps for just under R300 per person - far better than any Etosha camps. Daily entry into the park is easy.

    https://www.onguma.com/tamboti-luxury-campsite/
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  17. #17
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by Olyfboer View Post
    On the contrary, Mokuti was not packed at all, the reason they lower their prices in the holiday season. You can always ask management to freeze your meat in their freezers or plug the fridge in inside the bungalow......
    Sigh....

    I am talking about camping.

    We CAMPED at Etosha safari camp 2 Decembers ago and I did not imagine having to step over the neighbours tent ropes.

    But OT anyway, the discussion is about the sorry state of the facilities and management thereof inside Etosha.
    Last edited by lekhubu943; 2020/01/01 at 12:46 PM.
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by lekhubu943 View Post
    ................ the sorry state of the facilities and management thereof inside Etosha.
    It's not just Etosha. We were at the Deadvlei in April. Oh boy, those toilets at the start of the walk to Deadvlei, you will NOT catch me "dead" using them. It is beyond disgusting.

    If you look at the number of visitors that stop at the parking lot and then are carted by NWR to Deadvlei, one would think there should be some money for the upkeep of the toilets. I mean, at R180 per person return, jeezz

    They must make a fortune and just pocket without ploughing any money back into Deadvlei.

    Probably the same situation all over Namibia!
    Last edited by Spook; 2020/01/01 at 01:54 PM.
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by Spook View Post
    Probably the same situation all over Namibia!
    No, soon pretty much all over Africa unfortunately...
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  20. #20
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    Default Re: Etosha - never again

    Quote Originally Posted by Spook View Post
    Probably the same situation all over Namibia!
    Correct . As said the management of WNR is a hopeless case. Political appointments without the relevant know how. Recently they rebuilt Gross Barmen for quit a number of millions. I happen to know the Contractor that did it. He had to stay on for a month or so when WNR took over to assist in get the place operational. The Contractor sort of pull out at the end as it was hopeless case with the personnel they appointed.
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