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“Comfortable Camp in Serengeti”

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Olakira Camp, Asilia Africa
Certificate of Excellence
California
Level 6 Contributor
165 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“Comfortable Camp in Serengeti”
Reviewed March 28, 2012

The camp moves twice a year to follow the Migration. It consist of 9 comfortable tented room with en suite bathrooms. My wife and I spent 3 days there in February 2012. It is very comfortable and well located. We had lions in the area overnight. Safe, but a real thrill. Food, staff and the facilities are first rate.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank mittyc2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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323 reviews from our community

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English first
Jackson, Wyoming
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 25, 2012

I am not a camper and generally avoid "adventure" travel without flush toilets. Olakira is an oasis of remarkable amenities and superb service . We visited their Serengetti camp in mid-March and enjoyed glorius sunrise coffee in the tent with the sounds of wildebeest nearby and gazelle poking around silently just outside. The food is wonderful and the wines are excellent! The camp is beautifully appointed down to the last detail. You feel like you are on the set of "Out of Africa" and almost expect Merly Streep to look up from the writing desk in the tent.The animals? lots of them! We saw lions, cheetas, leopards, elephants, hippos, all the antelope family, flamingoes, wart hogs, hyenas...everything except rhino. And everything was relatively close to the camp. We even enjoyed coffee on the roof of the vehicle one morning amid the sea of migrating zebra and wildebeest that stretched to the horizon in every direction.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank tutuwalsh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
87 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
Reviewed March 12, 2012

We spent 3 nights at the beautiful Olakira Camp while it was based in the Northern Serengeti in October and had the most wonderful stay.
The location just by the river provided all the classic Serengeti views and the camp had the perfect level of understated luxury - complete with hot showers (by means of a bucket rigged up outside the tent), very comfortable mosquito-netted bed, excellent and inventive food (even for vegetarians like myself), and friendly and attentive service. We could hear hippos, elephants and, one night, even lions from our tent. Our driver-guide, Jeremy, was wonderful, patient and professional and we were lucky enough to see a river crossing by the migrating wildebeest, as well as other memorable sites like a family of cheetahs.
Little things like the fact that Jeremy collected us on arrival from the airstrip (despite a redirection that we didn't know about) with a picnic in tow and a plan to make the most out of the longer drive as a result of our plane’s detour, the fact that all the camp staff were so helpful and friendly (without being obsequious) and the truly fantastic food and good wine, set this place apart from anywhere else we stayed. The camp was remote and beautiful and everything we could have asked for. If I had to find one thing to complain about, it was that some of the management (but not staff) were a little hard to take with levels of over-'attentiveness' bordering on the annoying and a bit of a hierarchical attitude. While there were some more difficult guests on one of the nights, most of our fellow guests were interesting and friendly and we genuinely enjoyed chatting around the campfire.
This was our favourite place we stayed during our trip to East Africa and we would highly recommend it. Although it is very expensive, we thought it was worth it. Also, since it included everything there were no surprises and it ended up being comparable to other places which weren't nearly as lovely.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank Loui-fly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
los gatos
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed March 8, 2012

My husband and I spent 3 nights at Olakira in their southern camp location in February. It is situated on the Serengeti plains outside the national park gates. We were there towards the end of the month and the wildebeest/zebra migration was in full swing. As we were driving along the plains, we saw a black line along the horizon, and our driver said, "there... see that black line, that's the migration". In the plains, you do not have to stay on the roads, as you do when inside the national park, so we were able cut across acres and acres of wild open plain to catch up to the migration. What a spectacular site! Words cannot describe the incredible natural beauty and energy seeing these two very different types of animal herds traveling north with their young in tow. Of course, the predators were in hot pursuit, lions and hyenas mostly. The gazelles and impalas, elephant, giraffe, baboons, cheetah, leopard and the most colorful host of bird life I could ever imagine were also plentiful. So, yes, it's a great location WITHOUT even stepping inside the Serengeti National Park. If you do make the drive to the center of the park to see the hippo pool and a few other sites you might not see on the plain, it's a long bumpy drive after the rains start. Horrible road, but at least the rain keeps the dust to a minimum. It's really not necessary, though, to have an incredible full safari experience without driving into the Serengeti Park.... just be sure to stop at the Ngorogoro Crater to see the hippos and the black rhino, which we didn't see anywhere else. As far as the Olakira Camp itself goes, Pascal and his team is the best! Very professional to the tee in the middle of the jungle! Silver tea/coffee service arrived at our tent each morning as our requested time, hot water arrives at the in-tent shower at whatever time you request, flushing toilets and all the amenities of a top tier hotel room are there for you in the bush. It's really amazing how homey the mobile camp is created to be... complete with a lovely community sitting room and library. The dining is family style, which is a great way to get to know other folks who are staying at Olakira with you. Fantastic experience!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank 2LGtravelbugs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 3, 2012

We were first-time visitors to Africa and to Tanzania, and we found the Tanzanian folks all to be kind, warm, and professional at what they do. Manager Pascal and the staff at Olakira Camp were no exception. We were impressed with their first-rate attentiveness, good humor, and grace, which all enhanced our enjoyment of the camp. I even learned a few words of the Maasai language from Future, a young man who works with the tent crew. Karim was an excellent maitre d' and the food was delicious. I am not one who eats much lamb or pork—I could easily be a vegetarian—but I enjoyed both of these as they were prepared at Olakira. Any negative experiences we encountered were due to some of the other guests, who turned us off with their sense of privilege and with their insensitivity. It is a tribute to Pascal and the Olakira staff that they handled even these difficult folks with that grace I mentioned earlier. We highly recommend this camp to travelers who appreciate what is being done for them.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Deirdre J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
650 reviews
173 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 510 helpful votes
Reviewed February 23, 2012

We spent 3 nights here as we thought the highlight of our trip would be the wildebeest birthing during February. Unfortunately the migration was further north in the central serengeti. However, as we also stayed at Dunia, we did get the chance to see that as well. Compared to Dunia, Olakira was lacking a few key things. We were in Tent #8 which was the furthest away from the main tent at the end.

The towels they provided were really dirty and we were turned off by this. Either do not provide white towels or change them regularly. No one wants to see brown or dried blood spots on a towel. For the price we paid, we would expect to see clean towels.

We had 3 dinners here. For 2 of the dinners, the food was cold and not very tasteful. Breakfast was better. There was an egg cooking station and that was good. They will even make you an omelette. The camp manager dines at the head of the table. We found this a bit odd and this was not the case in Dunia. The table is family style. The first night, the 4 of us could not sit together as we arrived too late and no one wanted to move. As camp manager, we felt Pascal should have arranged that properly. No one wants to be separated from their group. We came on vacation together, not with a bunch of strangers. Dinner is served with people putting as much food as you want on your plate. This is nice as it limits your portion to however much you could eat. As with Dunia, there are no options for dinner. There is only 1 type of entree.

Our drinks were included and the South African wines (both red and white) were excellent. The pre dinner snacks were average.

In the main tent, there is are not enough seats so half the time you have to sit on the cushions on the floor or stand. Why can't there be more chairs brought in? This issue did not exist at Dunia.

One morning we ordered a shower and upon entering the shower, discovered there was no water. Bucket showers - these are different than Dunia. There is 1 bucket for 2 people as their buckets are bigger. However, it was also hard for the first person showering to gauge how much water to use. The water was soft which meant it was hard to tell at what point the soap had washed off. If you adjust your water pressure, you can make your shower last longer.

The toilet flushes every 5-10 minutes. The basin water is also provided by bucket. Water for drinking and brushing your teeth is provided in a thermos.

Due to the lack of rain, the roads were very dusty. You will get dust everywhere, on your clothes, under your nails, everywhere. There is free laundry and clothes are sun dried.

Of all the camps we stayed at during our stay, this was our least favorite. Not sure if it has anything to do with the fact that it is a mobile camp.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
7 Thank PandaHouston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2012

We were lucky to get an upgrade to the camp for two night. It was absolutely amazing. There was so much wildlife everywhere. At night there were Zebra's and in the morning they were still hanging out near our camp! This is the real deal. We saw the only leopard of the trip...15 seconds from the camp!

The staff is one of the bests we ever encountered. They do everything to make you feel at home. We told the staff we were on our honeymoon the first day. The next day we got surprised with a bottle of champagne! They also made us a table for two next to the campfire.

The rooms are amazing. Very clean and considering you are in the middle of nowhere amazing bathroom facilities.

This was a time to never forget. What a stunning place.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank JasperOosterveld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Olakira Camp, Asilia Africa

Property: Olakira Camp, Asilia Africa
Address: Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Serengeti National Park
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 118 Specialty Lodging in Serengeti National Park
Hotel Class:4 star — Olakira Camp, Asilia Africa 4*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Immerse yourself in the Great Migration at Olakira Migration Camp. You will feel the earth vibrate during brave winter crossings of the mighty rivers in the north, or be moved beyond measure by the mass summer calving on the south's grassy plains. Olakira follows the massive herds of wildebeest to two spectacular locations in the north and south of the Serengeti National Park. Home from December to March is the southern Serengeti, where herds of wildebeest calve simultaneously and the plains throng with new life. As the dry days of winter arrive, Olakira relocates north to the confluence of the Mara and Bolongonja rivers for spectacular game viewing at the Mara River itself and around the Lamai Wedge. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Olakira Camp, Asilia Africa Hotel Serengeti National Park

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