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Chameleon Hill Lodge Bwindi
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Reviews (167)
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All reviewslake mutandabeautiful lakegorilla trekkingmain buildingboat tourindividual cabinsoutstanding viewsnext morningtwo week triptwo nightsmuddy shoesincredible staffcome homedirt roaddelicious foodmagical experiencean excellent place to stay
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116 - 121 of 167 reviews
Reviewed February 20, 2014

Please do NOT choose this lodge!! This is and will be the WORST experience ever have in my whole life. I visited the hotel for a vacation trip in Feb 2014, something horrible happened during my stay in this lodge.

In the midnight, someone broke in our lodge and had stolen our precious goods, cash, camera, worse still, our passports! However, after the theft occurred, the owner had done nothing to help us out, she could not have been less helpful or friendly. Before check-out in the morning, we asked for turning on the power for packing luggage and taking a shower, for your information, they usually cut off the electricity supply in the daytime, the owner was being very impolite and shouted: "WHY!!". She was being cold to what we have confronted, and offered no useful assistance. And now, she refused to satisfy our normal demands. She acted just like we should not assume liability towards the lodge.

In fact, the owner did not give us any actual assistance, instead, she kept on asking about how was the gorilla trekking activity. You can see that at that particular time, we really need some support and real assistance, which the owner failed to do so.

Please take your own SAFETY into consideration, you cannot expect what will in face of in this lodge! If you choose this lodge, please note that you might even not be able to return! Even if in the future I may visit Uganda, I wouldn't choose the lodge again - EVER!

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Johnson L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doris M, Owner at Chameleon Hill Lodge Bwindi, responded to this reviewResponded March 5, 2014

Dear Johnson,

Firstly let me tell you that I fully understand that you need to channel your frustration. It was a shock for us just as much as it was for you to experience the situation with the break in and the theft of your things.

However, it is wrong if you state that I was not helpful or of any assistance. Remember, it was very very early in the morning when I was informed about the situation. You were about to leave for gorilla tracking. After all this is why you were in Uganda and we did not really have a lot of time to discuss the incident as you had to leave to get to the starting point in time.
Also I would like to refresh your memory, we have offered to get in touch with the Chinese Embassy to sort out an interim passport for you, but your driver guide told us he would have enough time while you were with the gorillas to take care of this himself.

Then I would like to inform you that we had 9 (!) police officers and a sniffer dog on site for the enitre mornig to do investigation etc. The findings showed, that it was most probably kids climbing through the bathroom window as the police found kids handprints all over the walls. Again, this does not make it easier for you, but at least we are certain that we are not dealing with dangerous criminals but with a once off situation instead.

I admit that I do not have any experience how to deal with a situation like that as it never happened before and we felt (and still feel) very safe on our hill. Due to the location with the steep slopes right and left of the property and the fencing around we found it sufficient to appoint two security guards on site. However I would like to inform you that we have appointed 2 more armed members of the tourism police to assure the saftey of our guests and our property.

The generator – yes, we, and all other lodges in rural Africa, operate with generators. We have set generator times that evolve around the needs of our guests. Reason being firstly we don’t want to cause unnecesary noise pollution for the community around us, and we also try to work economically with the Diesel usage to be able to offer attractive rates to our clients.
When you asked for the generator to be switched on outside the official generator times in the middle of the day, obviously I am interested what the reason for this wish would be. I am of the opinion that you do not need electricity to pack your luggage and more importantly our hot water works on hot water heaters, which are running completely independently with gas and have also nothing to do with the generator. So to be able to take a shower and pack your things in broad daylight you do not need electricity either.
However, please let me refresh your memory – not one second did we hesitate at all to fulfill your wish to switch on. Yes, I did ask why, but that is where the issue ended, we did not even discuss it further.

I would also like to point out, that all our Chalets have imported, high quality safes installed. At check in you were asked personally to please store your valuables inside the safe. All over the world it is advisable to put your tickets, passports, phones and other valuables in the safe provided in the rooms.

It is unfortunate that you had to experience the break in and all the staff and I feel for you.

However I find it out of place to go into such an attack mode. We have done whatever was in our power to deal with the situation in the best way we could. I also hope you have received the refund for the second night that you decided not to spend at the lodge anymore.

It might have been a good thing to stay for us to be able to work throught the situation together. We only really spend a very short time toghether, a couple of minutes in the morning and then after you returned you had your shower and left. You did not really give Chameleon Hill a fair chance to unfold its full potential, which is unfortunate. On the other hand we fully understand that you had to rush back to Kampala to sort out your travel documents.

For the sake of all of us I hope that this was a once-off situation and would like to point out, that Uganda still is one of the safest countries in Africa.

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Reviewed February 3, 2014

- Chameleon Hill sits right on the lake and has an absolutely amazing view.
- Staff was friendly/ helpful/ and knowledgeable. (for example: we left our DIRTY boots from Gorilla Trek and they cleaned them for us! ... Trust me you don't know how dirty the boots were!)
- Electricity only by generator in the evening (not a problem since we were only in the lodge in the evening).
- Dedicated running hot water for each room through Gas (except one of the rooms hot water didn't work - but they let us shower in another adjacent room)
- Great tasting food options
- The only negative is that the packed lunch for our actual gorilla trek was disappointing (half an apple?)

Overall - I highly recommend this Lodge and if I ever come back will stay there again!

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with friends
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Thank Ramzi K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doris M, Owner at Chameleon Hill Lodge Bwindi, responded to this reviewResponded March 5, 2014

Dear Ramzi,
thank you very very much for your nice review. I am glad that you appreciated your shoes to be cleaned, and believe me - there is no such thing like dirt that we can't get off :-) !
I am also happy that you liked the staff and food. Regarding half the apple I owe you a big apology - the reason for this was that we simply did not have enough apples left for everybody on that specific day. You can imagine that due to the location so far away from everything, every single can be a mountain to be organized. Most of our items are ordered in Kampala and we let them either fly in, transport them on the overnight bus in cooperation with the drivers or we organize our own transport. We also usually try to involve and support the community by purchasing as many fresh products as possible. Regarding fruits we have a lady that supplies us regularly with bananas but during your visit she simply did not show up at the lodge. So the only fresh fruit available was apples. And for the 4 of you we only had 2 so we decided to share them between you. I can fully understand that it looked funny for you to find half the apple in your lunch pack. Again, please accept my apologies for this. I will make sure that next time we will pack 2 apples for you!
Regarding the hot water that did not work in your Chalet, this was only the batteries that needed to be changed, everything is fine and working again.
Thanks again for taking the time to review Chameleon Hill, this is highly appreciated.
Kind regards,
Doris

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Reviewed January 27, 2014

Chameleon Hill is probably the best choice in Bwindi Impenetrable Nationalpark. I can just agree with all the other comments about the amazing view, the great and unique design and the friendly staff.

But more than that I highly recommend to spent at least 3 nights at Chameleon Hill, to get the chance to enjoy the view and do one or more of the activities offered around the lake. I personally did the boat cruise and the walk to Kisoro, which was great!! Furthermore I was so lucky that we had a very clear view and we could see the active volcanoe glewing at the horizon, a very spectacular backround at the evenings on the terrace enjoying a drink and reviewing a perfect day.

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Cathy_Bert
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doris M, Owner at Chameleon Hill Lodge Bwindi, responded to this reviewResponded March 5, 2014

Dear Cathy Bert,
many thanks for your review and recommending to fellow travelers to stay for 3 nights rather that the usual 2. We fully agree with you that there is so much to experience around the lake and the area that it is definitely worthwhile to stay for 3 nights. I remember that you did the boat excursion by canoe. We have built a brand new 10 seater boat powered by an engine imported from South Africa. That way you can now do the same excursion even on a tighter time schedule.
Thank you very much for appreciating our staff and the design of the lodge. Please come back sometime soon - Kampala is only around the corner :-).
Warm regards
Doris

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Reviewed January 21, 2014

one of the most original landscape I have ever seen, lake Mutanda is an unkown gem.
over the lake stands the lodge with its colors and view and emotions, test this is a place where I felt new emotions, where I saw the unseen, where I waited for my gorilla trek, we spent two nights but its' worth even more.
attentive staff, good cooking, beautiful room, compliments to the architect and the owner !

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank xconrad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doris M, Owner at Chameleon Hill Lodge Bwindi, responded to this reviewResponded March 5, 2014

Dear Xconrad,
please let me thank you for your review which means a lot to me, especially due to the fact that you are a top reviewer. Not that we don't value all our reviews, but you seem to be well travelled and surely you are very spoilt by having seen many places around the globe. Still you express your emotions during your stay at Chameleon Hill... Even for me, spending so much time at the lodge, it is just as emotional as it was for you to just watch this unbelievably beautiful view across Lake Mutanda with its islands and volcanoes in the background. To also "upgrade" the area around the lodge we have started to cut down the alien vegetation like Eucalyptus and replace it with indigenous trees. You must come back one day and see the development and and growth of new life.
Thanks again and regards to Italy
Doris

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Reviewed January 4, 2014

We stayed at this lodge for two nights (regretfully not longer), and it was really wonderful -- the best place we've stayed in in Uganda. The food was extremely good, and the rooms were amazing. The staff was very professional, welcoming and very accommodating. We also had the luck of meeting the very friendly owner, Doris, and her amazing children who happened to be visiting. Because of this we were able to hear many interesting stories about the creation of the lodge.
The view offered from every of the rooms and especially from the main terrace is probably one of the nicest in the world. it has to be seen to be believed. Pictures just don't do it justice.
overall one of the nicest places we have ever stayed at.

Room Tip: all rooms are the same with spectacular views throughout. Walking from one of the last rooms can be quite a hike, so if you do not enjoy the exercise, chose one of the earlier numbers (1,2...).
  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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Thank ph123452014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doris M, Owner at Chameleon Hill Lodge Bwindi, responded to this reviewResponded January 16, 2014

Dear Ph123452014,
Thank you for taking the time to write a Review about our property. Your comments are very much valued and appreciated. We are grateful that you enjoyed your stay so much and we look forward to another opportunity to host you at Chameleon Hill.
Thanks once again for the positive comments.
Kind regards to the mother city
Doris

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