Little Ongava Lodge was the last lodge we visited as a family of 6 during a trip through Namibia in the winter of 2013 (July), and even after almost 2 weeks of experiencing this beautiful country and its very luxurious lodges, we were still deeply impressed by this place.
Little Ongava seduces from the very moment you arrive. It is situated on top of a hill, above the larger Ongava Lodge, and therefore gives you the best views over the region, and on the drinking hole set in the valley at about 100 meters away from the hill. You enjoy these views from the main building, which is tastefully decorated and where you'll find plenty of very interesting books... and Michael, the manager. Michael is a very interesting, well-read and warm-hearted man and anybody who is open for long conversations about politics, history, culture or nature in Namibia, Africa or the whole world can spend hours with him without ever getting bored.
When you go from the main building to the rooms, you encounter the only slightly less pleasant item about Little Ongava: room 1 is at about 50 metres away from the main building, but rooms 2 and 3 are quite a walk, up to 380 meters for room 3. The reason for this is that they are rather far apart so that every room enjoys optimal privacy. But Michael told us that extra rooms will be built during the low season which will be so far they will have to adapt the walking boards so that they can accommodate small golf carts to make the distance less of a strain.
The rooms themselves are overwhelmingly spacious and luxurious and each one offers stunning views over the Ongava Private Game Reserve. Small birds come to drink from the infinity pool (which unfortunately is unheated and therefore too cold to use during winter time), klipdassies walk around as if they own the place and the large windows give you a great feeling of being part of the surroundings. Nevertheless, Little Ongava is one of the few Wilderness lodges with hot water boilers, so that you can take warm showers or baths whenever you want - a luxury we appreciated very much after several lodges with less effective sun boilers. There even is a second outdoors shower with the same spectacular view as every other place in this lodge.
But I kept the best for last. All the staff at Little Ongava are very kind, gentle and warm, but apart from Michael, no one can outshine our guide Franco. He was available to us at every time of the day and displays a enthusiasm for his job and for the place where he works as if he has just arrived himself. He will be just as much impressed as you are when you stumble upon a large pride of lions or a big white or black rhino. He knows everything about every animal and plant. And he has a gentle and kind spirit that charmed us all deeply.
In short: Little Ongava is a very, very special place, made better even by the people who work there. A small piece of paradise on earth.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Little Ongava is perched on the crest of a hill commanding magnificent vistas of the plains beyond. Arguably Namibia's most civilised and certainly most comfortable accommodation, Little Ongava offers an extraordinary experience as the focal point of an Etosha journey.This intimate camp has only three spacious suites each with its own plunge pool, en-suite bathroom, sala, and outdoor 'al fresco' shower. These and the lounge and dining area have wonderful views of the waterhole below the camp and the latter lends itself to relaxed, stylish dining under the African Sky. Guests at Little Ongava share a dedicated guide and vehicle, ensuring the best possible nature experience at one of Africa's great wildlife destinations. Day and night wildlife-viewing drives, visiting hides overlooking waterholes, walks and rhino tracking with experienced guides can all be enjoyed exclusively on this reserve. Game drives and day trips into nearby Etosha National Park are also offered. ... more less