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“Spotted Hyena's at Stanley's Camp”

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Sanctuary Stanley's Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Wassenaar, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
124 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 141 helpful votes
“Spotted Hyena's at Stanley's Camp”
Reviewed July 12, 2010

We stayed at Stanley's Camp in July and enjoyed the superb hospitality of Evelyn and Harry. They even allowed the soccer fans amongst our 7 teenagers to watch a match on their own television in the evening. Loved the cakes for tea provided by their Austrian chef. The main lodge is very stylish and has an Out of Africa feel. Campfire + marshmallow roasting in front of the main lodge. We did not see an abundance of wildlife but managed to find 4 spotted hyena, plenty of buffalo, giraffe etc.
The heated beds are a real treat and you will need them as it gets very cold at night (in July). Stanley the elephant was a very frequent visitor and hearing him near your tent at night is something you will have to get used to.
I would not recommend this for families with very young children as you can's leave your tent after dark without a guide to escort you through the dark!

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank MarinaBahrain
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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167 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (34)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Oxford
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed March 22, 2010

I have just come back from a short stay here and it was excellent. The staff instantly made me feel at ease as they were so friendly and seemed so happy to be there - we heard them all singing one afternoon whilst we were going on our game drive. The suites are perfect - nothing too fussy and everything you need. The pillows were the most comfortable I have ever come across. The main area was refurbished late last year and I think it has made the camp look even better as it is much more modern and lighter. I would not hesitate to recommend this to anyone looking for an authentic, quiet and totally charming safari experience.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Oxfordtraveller77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saugatuck, Michigan
Level Contributor
53 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed October 22, 2009

Having gone on several safaris, I now believe that the most important part is the quality of the guides and the guides here are the best. Plus this camp is on a private reserve so you can go off-road unlike others in a national park. The guides were not only incredibly friendly and warm but also found us an incredible variety and number of animals, no drive ever disappointed. Plus the level of service from all of the staff here is amazing starting with a cool, scented towel each time that you arrive. The food is awesome and the German cook is great. My only small complaint is with the one "BBQ" night...I'm guessing that it's the chef's night off...the food quality dropped noticeably. But they feed you all day long from the moment they wake you. Totally loved the "rustic" platform tent room overlooking the delta. Spent one lazy afternoon at their small pool with a crowd of baboons for company and then a nap in the hammock on the deck of our room. It is truly a remarkable place that is right out of "Out of Africa". It is an adventure without any of the hassles.

  • Stayed May 2009
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank lawtraveller56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
Level Contributor
138 reviews
72 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 205 helpful votes
Reviewed October 8, 2009

We selected this camp specifically for the Elephant Experience it offers. I am thrilled we chose Stanleys over Baines (which is a much more sophisticated and over the top style camp). Stanleys evokes the traditional or classic safari style camp. Our tent was a basic tent with a very comfortable bed and soft linens and en suite bathroom with a shower. We had a small porch with a hammock on it for siesta time. The gathering area was lovely with a view of the marshy delta where you regularly heard hippos. As simple as the camp is - the service was EXCEPTIONAL! On arrival we were greeted with song by the staff. Our guide was Carter, who was always eager to please us, finding little gems in the wild. Our hosts Evelyn and Harry, made us feel as though we were visiting old friends, we loved them. One evening they even prepared a lovely romantic dinner for my husband and I poolside. While the animal life here is not as abundant as in other parts (ie around Chiefs Island), there were still an abundance of giraffe and other plains game. Carter even found us a den of baby hyenas who chewed on our tires and doors one evening. I cannot say enough positive things about everyone here, the staff was simply fabulous and made the camp special. As for the food, it was 5 star! (Thanks Harry for accomodating my husbands bizzarre eating habits). Of course, anyone that comes here, should opt for the Elephant Experience run by Doug and Sandi. It was without a doubt the most educational elephant experience we have ever had. You learn a great deal about these beautiful behemoths that win your heart over. Jabu and Marula are our favorites - he (Jabu) is a gentle giant and she (Marula) is a delicate flower. We love the ellies and for anyone who has a soft spots for these intelligent and beautiful animals this is a MUST DO.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Cindy-Milford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed July 31, 2009

We came here mainly for the Elephant activity, which is a wonderful opportunity to interact with three elephants trained by a transplant from the States. However, our stay at Stanley's wasn't that great, especially considering that the other camps we stayed at were considerably cheaper (~$200/person/night), had similar quality accommodations, and much better guides and game viewing. The game around Stanley's was not great, but I attribute much of that to bad luck. However, our guide was terrible. The extent of his guiding consisted of pointing at the animals and saying their name, but he added nothing else the entire time. One drive we didn't even have a tracker, meaning that the guide meandered about, unable to find anything interesting (a tracker is a must in this area). If you are a honeymooner or a family of kids looking for a comfortable vacation, maybe this place is for you (this seems to be 90% of the clientele who booked through Abercrombe and Kent). Or if you really like elephants and are willing to pay $200 extra for the stay and an additional $300 for the activity, you should only stay one night. But if you're there for the safari experience, go elsewhere.

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank saxaholic9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
So. California
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 7, 2009

I stayed in Stanley's Camp for 4 nights/5 days in late June, and it was a phenomenal experience. On my first day I was the only person in camp, and they treated me like royalty. Every attention to detail is met, from the wonderful tent accomodations, to the game drives, to the excellent cuisine. All this was especially important as I am a 50's-something woman traveling solo, but I never felt alone at Stanley's.

My guide Alan was terrific. Even though the Delta was flooded while I was there, we still managed to find numerous animals, and I always felt safe with Alan. His knowldege of the flora and fauna was impressive, and his passion for his work even more so.
The cuisine, organized by the chef Harry, is superb, and abundant. There was everything you could possibly want cooked to order, plus afernoon tea at 4pm.
The management, headed by Evenlyn, Francis and John, were always around and available, joining in around the boma in the evenings, and for dinner.

A special highlight of my visit was the Living With Elephants encounter with Doug Groves, where you get to be really up close and personal with 3 semi-habituated elephants. While this activity seems a little expensive at first, don't miss it. It is worth every penny.

I can't wait to go back to Stanley's - I felt as if I have many new friends there, just an indication of how personal and caring the staff really were.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank jdeansma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
English person in Wales!
Level Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed June 19, 2009

Cannot speak highly enough of this camp. The best staff on the planet, fabulous food, SUCH an experience. Rooms more basic than some safari lodges but clean with ensuite and running water. All have decks overlooking the savannah and wildlife is abundant and close. If you only visit one place in Botswana, this MUST be it - it is a total gem!

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank traffords-parents
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sanctuary Stanley's Camp

Property: Sanctuary Stanley's Camp
Address: NG32 Game Reserve, Okavango Delta, Botswana, Botswana
Location: Botswana > North-West District > Okavango Delta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #25 of 71 Specialty Lodging in Okavango Delta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sanctuary Stanley's Camp 4*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sanctuary Stanley's is a classic tented camp with just eight tents built under an imposing African Ebony tree on a private concession overlooking the Okavango floodplains. Sanctuary Stanley's Camp is built on a 260,000 acre private concession in the renowned Okavango Delta. This traditional safari camp has a large lounge area and dining area with incredible views over the floodplains in front of camp. The main area features a bar from where refreshing drinks are always served with a smile, a small library area and curio shop. From the swimming pool - a real treat after a hot day of game viewing - guests can watch giraffe and other plains game march across the savannah and sometimes catch a glimpse of rare wild dogs. Everything about Sanctuary Stanley's Camp is built to the highest ecological standards so that we don't damage this highly sensitive area.The intimate camp features only eight safari canvas tents, each individually designed, furnished with African antiques that exude a classic and understated elegance that harks back to the explorers and colonialists of the 19th century. Each tent has a large wooden deck providing private areas where you can relax in a hammock while soaking in the surrounding sights and sounds or enjoy cocktails, before dinner is served in the spectacular dining mess. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sanctuary Stanley`s Camp Hotel Okavango Delta
Sanctuary Stanley's Camp Botswana/Okavango Delta

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