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“Not a Typical Safari Camp”
Review of Jack's Camp

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Jack's Camp
Honolulu
Level Contributor
37 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Not a Typical Safari Camp”
Reviewed June 23, 2013

Jack’s is very luxurious, but not your typical safari camp. We were there in the dry season so the animals are very limited. But it has its own charm and niche in Botswana because the camp has so much history and offers unique desert experiences. Don’t miss the quad bike ride into the pans, it was fun. Also the walk with the San people is one of the best native cultural experiences we’ve ever had. Cobra is such an interesting person and famous too!

Management SHOULD make sure that this Camp gets the best guides and vehicles since it’s the highest price one. I’m told that the activities are the same as the other camps (San and Camp Kalahari).

The food is the best we’ve had on safari and the staff was great. KB, the camp manager was very funny and social. The tents are very nice but bring a headband flashlight so you can find things at night and in the early morning.

Room Tip: Numbers 6 and 8 are at least a 5-7 minute walk from the main area. They are very quiet, but a bit f...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Wanda J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Del Mar, California
Level Contributor
37 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed June 20, 2013

Old style, super luxurious, tented camp but you must know why you are there. If it is the dry season (as it was for us), don't expect large numbers of animals. Instead concentrate on the desert, the sky, the small things and the incredible harsh beauty that is all around you. If you want to see animals you must go there before the migration is over. There are lots of places to see animals, but very few that can show you what is well described in the book "1,000 places to see before you die." It is expensive, but worth every penny.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank TomN_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wilderness South Africa
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 8, 2013

We had the absolutely privilege to experience this gem of Botswana. We work on the Chobe River and we were astounded at how different the pans and surrounds are to the river area of the Chobe. Game viewing, guiding, time with the bushman & meerkats interaction was phenomenal. The camp itself was such a grand experience and the staff, meals, service and general ambiance was 5* at all times. Thank you for a life experience.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Wildman01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
36 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2013

This a great camp, very old style British (have a gin and tonic...). Beautifully decorated tents and main dining room, very nice and welcoming people: Super, of course the master of safari, and Claire who just arrived and made us feel great. Also excellent food, really excellent! And all of that in a beautiful setting.
But, and for us it was a big but, we saw very few animals. A lioness with her two cubs was top, but otherwise very little to see. We were told that when the migration passes by, it is impressive, but it had already passed. The meerkats are great fun, but is feels more like a circus than a safari. And the Bushman's show made us feel bad: it was like a circus again, but with human on show...
Plus it was by far the most expensive place we stayed at: not sure it is worth the money...

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Philippe47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok
Level Contributor
223 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 120 helpful votes
Reviewed April 8, 2013

We went there just to share the experience of being guided by Super.
He is a very experience guide and his love and commitment to the bush is unbelievable.

The camp is very nice, room are fine and the food and service really nice.

The bushman experience and the meercat is making the trip a memorable one.

We were looking for some very elusive lion. One night we heard some roar and off we went to try to spot the giant but fail. During the night the lion came near our camp it was 4am. I kind of knew that Super will not be far, i wake up my wife and we dress up. 10' later he was asking us if we were awake and wanted to go find the lion which we did.
We found a lioness and cub and one male which was a fantastic experience.

On the next day we found the brown Hyena with pups, the art wolf and the art walk.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank marcnus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gibraltar
Level Contributor
42 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2013

Far far away from wifi, mobile or any other necessary equipment you are really there just to enjoy yourself. The 0530 wake up knock knocks were not my favorite however the coffee on the terrace made up for it, and specially the game drives afterwards were super. Thank you Super, Brian, Ralph and all others for having such a great time in Botswana. Also the Trance dance and the Bushman walk are something I will never forget in my lifetime.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled solo
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Helpful?
3 Thank inez1500
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Appleby-in-Westmorland, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
52 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed February 23, 2013 via mobile

We had booked to stay at Camp Kalahari but shortly before departure were upgraded to Jacks which is under same management, as Camp Kalahari was closed for renovation. We arrived late afternoon because of flight delays and after the briefing were taken on a very long walk to our tent. They are all lined with fancy material and furnished with old furniture and lots of knick knacks so not much room for you own stuff. The beds are so high they provide steps to get up there, what we had not been told was that there is no electric light, only paraffin lamps. Unpacking by the light of these is no joke! Luckily we had a torch to light our way to the bathroom in the night but having these lamps lit for several hours made the tent even hotter. We appreciate the desire to create a historic ambiance but maybe a few battery powered lanterns could be provided. Next day we were transferred to a tent nearer the mess tent as the distance to walk was going to make us late for the activities.
We really enjoyed the trips into the pans where areas were quite green after the rains and there were herds of zebra arriving. On the last day we even saw two large Kalahari lions, the first time they'd been seen for three months. We learnt so much about this harsh environment from our guide Brian and the owner Rolf who runs a guide training school and is heavily involved in helping the bushmen to preserve their way of life. Our walk with them did not seem at all staged. On the contrary they seemed genuinely pleased to show us how they could survive by hunting and using plants etc. That evening we were privileged to attend a so called trance dance where the shaman gets in touch with the ancestors and lays healing hands on those seated in the circle. Rolf explained all of this to us beforehand.

The pool under an awning was a great place to spend hot afternoons and the food and service was good.. Just be aware that this is a camp like no other and make sure it's what you want before signing up for it.

Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank Cathy S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Jack's Camp

Property: Jack's Camp
Address: Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, Botswana
Location: Botswana > Central District > Makgadikgadi Pans National Park
Amenities:
Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Makgadikgadi Pans National Park
Hotel Class:4 star — Jack's Camp 4*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Jack's Camp is an oasis of style and comfort in the middle of Botswana's Kalahari Desert. An authentic, 1940's style tented safari camp, which houses a private museum, shop, drinks tent and pool pavilion. Spectacular vistas, creative surprises, expert guiding, old-world safari styling and superb cuisine all come together to create an experience that is completely different to any other. Activities vary, combining wildlife with culture, history, archaeology and geology. Activities on offer all year round include: interacting with incredibly friendly habituated meerkats, walking with Bushmen Guides, game drives to experience unique desert wildlife, Chapman's Baobab - one of the oldest and biggest trees in Africa, birding and night drives. Dry season activities: 16h April - 31st October Quad bike across the saltpans Wet season activities: 1st November - 15th April Zebra and wildebeest migration ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Jack`s Camp Hotel Makgadikgadi Pans National Park

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