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“Worth it for the waterhole!” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Okaukuejo Rest Camp

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Okaukuejo Rest Camp
Gaborone, Botswana
Level Contributor
72 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“Worth it for the waterhole!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 7, 2013

Have stayed previously in Namutoni and Halali, but Okaukuejo remains my favourite as it has an amazing waterhole which is more like a safari theatre. Even during the December-January wet season we still had a wealth of animal and birdlife visit us, entering and exiting like actors in a drama. Fascinating stuff, and a great compliment to the game drives.

The campsite, on which we stayed, was fine. Only complaint was that our camping berth seemed to be a popular thoroughfare towards the ablutions block. It would be good if NWR could demark clear paths to the camp facilities to avoid persons traipsing through our berth at all hours.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Adam_in_Africa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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676 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (121)
Date | Rating
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English first
Bury St Edmunds, England
Level Contributor
23 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2012

My husband and I stayed for 2 nights at one of the Waterhole Chalets, number W28 in May 2012 and we loved it. Having checked in at the camp reception, we found it quite difficult to locate our chalet, as their numbers are at the back and the signage that we saw wasn't good. However, once located on foot, we parked up nearby in the ample vehicle parking areas and acquainted ourselves with our new room. It was a semi-detached chalet with a huge comfortable bed covered by a comprehensive mosquito net arrangement. The bed was covered by lightweight sheets but an additional duvet was also available and the pillows were large. The bed was so large that it was slightly awkward to move around the outside of it, to get around the room. The towels were fluffy and set into different shapes on the bed each evening by the household staff. The bathroom was good, large with a walk in shower and nicely decorated with African-style craft accessories. The air conditioning system was perfectly ample, there was a fridge and tea and coffee making facilities hidden away in cupboards, hanging and shelf space and a suitcase stand with room for one large suitcase on it. There was no safe. Outside the entrance door at the back was a covered porch area with couch and table for guests to relax on, which adjoined the same area beloning to the next door guests. There was also a braai area.
Our chalet was within a very short walk to the large camp waterhole surrounded by a stone wall, and what an amazing waterhole it was. I had stayed at this same camp in 1987 and the waterhole was the same back then, but I'd forgotten how magnificent it was, with such an amazing panorama around it in all directions. Unfortunately our view of the waterhole from the back of our chalet was blocked by the next layer of chalets which were nearer to the waterhole, but 30 seconds skip down the stone pathway from our chalet door (lit at night) led us to this breath-taking spectacle. We saw so much game here over our 2 days stay, from elephant, rhino and giraffe to warthogs, zebra, springbok and jackals. There were lots of spaced out benches for guests to sit on while watching the animals' antics at the waterhole, day and night. There's a fantastic tree to the left of the waterhole (it reminded me of the tree the vultures sat in in the animated film The Jungle Book) and during our stay it was inhabited by an owl who watched everything that went on at the waterhole and would often let out a random screech and swoop down over the waterhole to announce its presence. It seemed to set off the scene perfectly. My only gripe about life down at the waterhole was the other guests and fellow watchers. The majority did not make the effort to turn off the various noises their recording equipment made, so there was a constant sound of beeps, blings and pseudo shutter noises, and occasionally cellphones that hadn't been switched to vibrate would ring intrusively followed by loud one-sided conversations. I found this very annoying and disappointing, as it spoilt the otherwise natural element of the whole situation. Also, although the majority of guests would speak with each other in a murmer, some groups would walk down and past the waterhole chatting away at the tops of their voices, seemingly oblivious to the peace and quiet of the scene they were trampling through. Gggrrrrrrr!
The dinner and breakfasts were served buffet style and were excellent and delicious, with vast choice. However, the organisation of the restaurant was chaotic. Each diner had to check in before being seated to distinguish the paying from the staying guests, and they were expected to do so with the maitre d, a woman who seemed to think herself in charge but in reality wasn't capable of arranging a 'drunken party in a brewery'! She was attempting to check guests in, take payment for those had already eaten, and direct the waiters who were all loitering around her, waiting to be allocated the next set of guests to direct to their table. However, she seemed to only half deal with any situation before turning her attention to the next waiting person, leaving everyone only half dealt with and still waiting. It was madness, and would have been so easily solved by having two extra staff to take charge of the different situation categories. What a shame.
Overall we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at this camp and having subsequently experienced staying a night each at Halali and Namutoni, would liked to have stayed another night here-mainly for the waterhole and range of food.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BrownEyedLady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berlin, Germany
Level Contributor
61 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 27, 2012

Okaukuejo was our third and last stop in Etosha. I have to say that luckily all three camps do not differ much as far as amenities are concerned: there is a bar and restaurant along with a little souvenir shop. Camping is spacious with clean and numerous toilets and showers. best of all: the showers are hot!
There is also a water hole at all three camps, In Okaukuejo we saw elephants and rhinos. But I fear that was mainly due to the fact that the light was turned off...
There is also a wonderful pool.
As always in Etosha: make sure you get into camp on time. Otherwise you'll have to pay hefty fines...

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Carola B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Zeewolde, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
16 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 20, 2012

We stayed in a waterhole chalet for 2 nights. The chalet was fine, with a nice big bed. But I expected it to be closer to the waterhole. But we also had to walk to the waterhole, just like guests from other parts of the camp, so the only advantage is that is that it's a very short walk. And breakfast and dinner are included with the waterhole chalet. But I guess with the other chalets there is a braai, which would also be nice. Dinner was buffet, which was ok, nothing special. But maybe we were a bit spoiled because we had stayed at dolomite camp the night before, which is more luxury. Overall it's a fine place to explore Etosha.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Nathalie V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East Mids
Level Contributor
72 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 27, 2012

Okaukuejo is the biggest and no doubt the busiest of the Etosha camps. The bungalows are good though I understand the double rooms were very cramped - our group had a mix of both and so feedback was equally mixed. The food was OK though the restaurant service a bit chaotic. Overall facilities were good and of course it is really the waterhole that makes a stay here worthwhile and special. You do have to drag yourself away for the following day's (if you manage it before midnight!) game drives. In fact there was more going on after returning from our early morning drive than there was at night with a good range of grazing mammals plus mongooses and many birds. Not the best of the 3 camps we stayed in Etosha and not the best waterhole (that was at Halali) but stilll not to be missed. Our game drives from the camp were very rewarding including many elephants and a large pride of lions.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank SeasonedTraveller055
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
245 reviews
108 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 106 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 27, 2012

We had a couple of nights in a double room in a terrace of six or seven rooms. It was comfortable, if a little cramped, with a decent-sized bathroom. The restaurant also catered for a wide variety of tastes and a lot of people and as such the menu was not very adventurous and repetitive. The quality was perfectly acceptable and chefs were prepared to cook meat and, for breakfast, eggs to order and taste.Service was good. However, the highlight of the camp is the surroundings and the ability to reach waterholes outside quite quickly. The camp waterhole was great, with a wide range of animals and special momennts with hundreds of namaqua Sandgrouse coming into drink and a Verreaux's Eagle-Owl nearby. The view from the Tower is also splendid, giving one a tremendous idea of the varying habitats in this part of Etosha. A convenient, comfortable and busy place.

Room Tip: Try to get a room away from the camper trucks!
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Diomedia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reading, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
51 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 11, 2012

We had 1 night here and I wish we could have had longer. We had a room by the waterhole which meant we could walk there in 2 minutes from our door. On arrival we left our bags in the vehicle and rushed down to see 8 elephants splashing in the waterhole, then spent most of the afternoon there. The room was small, but attractive and well designed with everything you needed including a fridge, mosquito nets, and spare blankets. Dining didn't live up to the experience of the accommodation. It was busy and noisy, and the buffet style meant we separated quite a bit during dinner.

Room Tip: Try to get a waterhole room!
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank By_Sharon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Okaukuejo Rest Camp

Property: Okaukuejo Rest Camp
Address: Anderson Gate | Southern Entrance, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Location: Namibia > Oshikoto Region > Etosha National Park
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
Ranked #20 of 35 Specialty Lodging in Etosha National Park

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