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“electrocuted in the shower - rude management response!”
Review of Sitatunga Campsite

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Sitatunga Campsite
Ranked #18 of 45 Specialty Lodging in Maun
Reviewed August 21, 2013

We upgraded to a cabin and i went to have a shower (I was alone as my friend was in the pool). I turned the hot lever tap on and then went to turn the cold lever tap on and my hand clamped around the lever as electricity soared up my arm. After a few seconds and starting to panic i dropped to my knees and my body weight was enough to pull my hand off and i banged my head on the concrete floor. I was shaking like a leaf. There is a South African couple managing the place and the woman tried to pass it off as static electricity (which it definitely wasn't!). The man detected that an electrical current was running through the pipes.

We got moved to a different cabin and a couple hours later when paying for everything I asked about just getting that night's upgrade fee (we were on an overland trip with OnTheGo) waived and the manager refused saying i should be grateful that he even moved us to a different cabin, that the waiver form we signed that our tour leader insisted upon (which we thought was just for an excursion) meant that the campsite wasn't liable for any failures (so i can get killed because of their equipment/accomodation). Not even as a gesture of goodwill would he waive the upgrade fee. It was cheap but a matter of principal. The other members of my group who stood with me were appalled at my treatment. Then a very intimidating big man came up to us and ordered us out of the cabin (I won't repeat the exact words he used). So we had to move our stuff for a 2nd time and put up a tent in the dark. I was left shaken by their attitude.

It was frightening because the campsite is in the middle of nowhere. it wasn't like we had a choice to leave and go somewhere else. We were trapped there at their mercy. Our OnTheGo tour leader wasn't much help - I think because he was worried about rocking the boat and getting fired from his job.

Campsite itself was nice but if anything goes wrong they turn on you and become completely different people.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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5  Thank ruckd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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40 - 46 of 75 reviews

Reviewed July 25, 2013

My wife got ill on the way to the campsite and we knew that we needed to get her to a doctor as quick as possible. Our guide promised to help out by calling the available doctors to get an appointment, we wanted to follow our guide to get the information but was not allowed by the manager (Jacques).
He was more interested in selling optional activities, which it was obvious we wouldn't buy. He also completely disregarded me when I told him to take it easy with my wife and that I would make sure that both of us signed the waiver form. He just kept pushing my wife.

Later in the day i overheard the same manager talking to staff and question one guests mental sanity just because he had asked if the bar could turn down the music after 10 pm.

It's sad that one man can destroy the experience completely of what appeared to be a good and decent campsite.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank Per G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2013

Absolutely loved the campsite from an Overlander's point of view. Layout was perfect. Staff was extremely helpful and always such a welcoming feeling when there. Nice vibe and awesome tours can be arrived from there eg. Helicopter flights/ horse -riding etc. Mokoro day or overnight excursion highly recommendable.

Will definitely be back.... Good memories!

Room Tip: Cabins are nice:)
  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Bellyfuss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Deltarain, Owner at Sitatunga Campsite, responded to this reviewResponded July 10, 2013

hello, thank you for your kind review - it is most appreciated. All of us here at Sitatunga Camp are thrilled you enjoyed your stay. Happy trails!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2013

Africa is amazing and filled with many wonderful and helpful people. That was not the case at Sitatunga Campsite. The management and bar help were inconsiderate and rude. They had a terrible system of keeping track of expenses and the checkout process was long and tedious.

That was all before my husband came down with malaria in the Okvango Delta and they decided that they would not answer calls from the driver of their truck, the overland operator with our group -- that books many groups with them throughout the year, and one of the managers of the overland trek company. The truck driver was afraid to drive my husband to the hospital for fear that the managers at Sitatunga would fire him for any extra miles on the truck.

Fortunately, the helicopter service that was giving tours of the delta was much kinder and my husband was flown to the airport and their staff took us to the hospital. A shout out for their customer service.

When I returned to camp, I noticed that they had upgraded -- at no charge -- the manager from the overland trek company and wined and dined her in fine fashion. From visiting around, I found that many of the overland trek companies use Sitatunga because they are about the only place in Maun that can accommodate them at the price level they need for their trips.

Once I was back at the camp, Suzy -- the camp manager, in front of the trek manager, was overly friendly and promised to get us a good rate on flights to catch up with our group. "Anything she could do to make our stay better..." Despite that she was late getting us the price for the flight and she had conveniently marked it up by a very hefty commission, which we would not have known except we decided to book our tickets ourselves. (So a word to the wise - think about booking your own excursions in Maun without using Sitatunga camp. They are quite generous in what they think their "service" is worth.)

Its a sad note that the management of the camp can't step up their customer service and lower their need to gouge travelers because it could be a terrific experience. Their attitude at every turn was "What's in it for me?" You have to wonder why they chose to be in the service industry if they didn't really want to provide service.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank InglishOkie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Deltarain, Owner at Sitatunga Campsite, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2013

Hello, Thank you for taking the time to post your report on trip advisor.
We are very sorry that you were not satisfied with the service that you recieved from our camp and staff.
We have very comprehensive medical evacuation procedures in place to offer our clients the safest experience possible.
Unfortunately the communications between our driver and the office were very difficult on the day, ask any one who has lived in Maun about the reliability of cell phone coverage on a daily basis. just because the phone rings does not mean that the call will work. There is also the matter of the other clients in your group that were on the vehicle and waiting for their helicopter flights to consider.
Our office was in communication with the helicopter via their office and we were informed of and supported the decision to fly your husband to Maun.

Susie believes that she was quite clear and helpful to you regarding the best option for you to book your flight, we cannot book directly through Air Botswana for you, we must use an agent therefore there is an additional cost. Susie feels that she explained your best option would be to book directly and directed you to the Air Botswana ticketing office. In reference to the prior review posted by another member of your group, we also feel that we directed you to the closest Hotel to the medical centre. No commission was received by us for any of the assistance or advice we offered you, nor were we looking for any.

We did give attention to the operators representative that was traveling with your group, after all these are the people that bring us our business and we try to take every opportunity to get feed back from them to improve every clients experience.

In light of your dissatisfaction we have reviewed a number of our procedures in the hope of improving our service and client satisfaction. Once again i offer my appologies to yourself, your husband and the other members of your party.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 8, 2013

I stayed at Sitatunga Camp and had some of the best memories from my time in Africa. The staff and owners went out of their way to help with anything, they helped arrange an amazing trip into the Delta. The facilities were clean and there was a really great atmosphere throughout the camp.

Yes the campsite was busy with overland trucks but that is testament to how good this campsite is. The busy atmosphere only added to the experience.

Would definetly recommend to anyone travelling around Botswana to stay here. Some people need to remember it is a campsite and not a 5* hotel!!!
Thank you to everyone at Sitatunga Camp for making my time there so memorable.

Room Tip: Camp every time as it is all about the experience
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled solo
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Thank JoMartin13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 7, 2013

I have stayed in several places around Maun both as a guide with clients and as an independent traveller. I quite often do not have a choice where I stay due to differing contracts with overland companies but Sitatunga has always been my favourite. As an independent traveller it is my first and only choice. Great bar, excellent meals, comfortable chalets if you are willing to spend a little extra and loads of trees to keep the sun off in the hot months. Our clients always have hot showers when they come out of the Okavango Delta and the management organises several other activities from horse riding to getting over the Delta in a variety of 'flying machines'. The management has changed over time as people come and go, but they have always been very helpful and our bookings have always been honoured, which is not something I can say about a lot of places I have stayed at in Africa (or around the world for that matter). Like every place in Botswana, they have had security issues, but this is more a problem that the entire country needs to face up to rather than blaming a camp that has 24 hour security. I for one do not want to camp behind 15 foot concrete walls and razor wire so as I do in all places in Southern Africa, I leave my valuables locked up safely in my vehicle and I have never had a problem. Sitatunga is a great place and it is my favourite in Botswana by a long way.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank Emptysea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 3, 2013

2.5 really--I couldn't decide 2 or 3 stars. We camped here for one night on our overland tour before going on a mokoro trip into the delta with Delta Rain (who runs the camp). I really did not like this camp. I think my dislike was mostly due to this being the fullest overlanding camp we had encountered to date when we stayed.

They have some chalets that looked OK and they have a "chalet only" pool that just rubbed me the wrong way especially because we had to pitch our tents spitting distance from it. There was a camper pool too, but it was much farther away and adjacent to the bar that was ridiculously loud even when no one was drinking there. The bar kept going pretty late into the night and despite the distance, kept me up late when I was trying to get some sleep prior to the mokoro trip.

There were two bathrooms. One was a long dusty walk away and the other was always busy and very very dark. There were no hooks or dressing areas in the showers (my pet peeve), but there was plenty of fire-heated hot water (when I first saw the water heating equipment I thought they were distilling some moonshine!).

We didn't see any bush babies which was disappointing because we were looking for them after seeing the other reviews. I just keep thinking that the camp was nowhere near full when we were there and still it felt so crowded. Very confusing communication from the manager on our mokoro trip--not sure if that was my tour company's fault or theirs. The other thing I didn't like about this camp was that it was very close to a river and yet it was totally enclosed and fenced in (very common in Africa unfortunately) so it felt very claustrophobic.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank mullydad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sitatunga Campsite

Address: A3 Road to Ghanzi, Maun, Botswana
Location: Botswana > North-West District > Maun
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 45 Specialty Lodging in Maun
Price Range: $3 - $65 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sitatunga Campsite is located 12kms out side of Maun on the road towards Ghanzi. We have a large campsite with shared ablutions and 12 simple clean and affordable chalets with ensuite ablutions and airconditioning. Or try out our new Meru Tents located in a beautifully shaded area. Perfect for campers that are tired of setting up their tent and are looking for that extra bit of comfort and privacy. Sitatunga Camp has a great setting and you can relax in our bar and restaurant (free wifi)and make use of our swimming pool. The campsite offers large well shaded areas with powered (220v) sites and bbq / braai facilities.There are two shared ablution blocks. The campsite has security guards employed on a full time basis. Predominantly our business caters for the overlanders so come and enjoy some beers and tell some stories. We also offer Mokoro safaris and day trips in to the Okavango and Mobile Safaris and day trips to National Parks. Other activities include Scenic Flight, Helicopter or Fixed wing aircraft, Horse riding and sunset boat cruises(seasonal) ... more   less 

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