Letaba is one of the most beautiful and best sited camps in the Kruger Park, and thus deserves the kind of service that would allow it to have 5 stars from all visitors. But, our hut was very indifferently maintained. There was a printout unceremoniously taped to the wall with an inventory of everything in the hut, with hand scrawled notes indicating several items as "missing" (aside from the baracks-like ugliness of this notice, could the items not just be replaced?). The cleaner emptied her dirty mop bucket in the sink and over our toiletries, leaving residue on both. The beds had no undersheets, and the sheets were stained. One night some camp staff let themselves into the empty hut next to ours and stayed overnight, keeping us awake with loud conversation at midnight (the Kruger Park is an early-to-bed-early-to-rise place so that people can go out at dawn to see animals). The next morning these staff left and went on their separate ways to their jobs in their uniforms. Really very depressing. The KNP is THE jewel in South Africa's public crown, and Letaba is an important part of that. How terribly sad to see beautiful Letaba tarnished thus. Satara rest camp was much more well maintained and was incredibly pleasant. I can only conclude that the difference comes down to a culture at each rest camp in which camp management either tolerates low standards and bad behavior or does not. Final note: The restaurants in all rest camps are terrible, hideous abominations, completely unworthy of such a majestic reserve. Buy all groceries outside the park, and do not eat a single thing in the restaurants. It's fun to cook for oneself there anyway; part of the experience! And, once you leave behind the stained sheets, the dirty sink, and the indifferent or even surly staff, and you're driving down those roads looking at the trees, birds, and animals, well...the KNP is a Garden of Eden; one of the most beautiful places on earth, and all the other things melt away.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The idyllic Letaba Rest Camp is situated on a sweeping bend of the Letaba River, midway between the southern and northern boundaries of the Kruger National Park. The name means "river of sand", and the sandy riverbed is an excellent location for game viewing, particularly elephant, which thrive in the area. Letaba is a green oasis in the surrounding mopane veld, and remains a firm favourite with visitors. At night the stars overlook a symphony of sounds. Owls, nightjars, frogs, fruit bats, crickets and cicadas all vie to be heard, until the lion roars, then all are silent. ... more less
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