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Reviewed December 14, 2014

As soon as you land at the airstrip and see the landscape and the palm trees and the delta, all you want to say is that “I have arrived”! I spent a week (7 nights) at Abu in November ’14 and wish I would have stayed longer. Riding the elephants and playing with the Naledi never gets old. Working with the Mahouts and feeding the elephants never gets old. I’ve stayed at several premium camps that wilderness has and a few top camps in Kenya and Abu is certainly is a step above. It’s impossible to describe how Abu can be better, but it just is. The food, rooms, and staff make the best hotels around the world subpar. The reason Abu is so wonderful is that you are on a massive conservancy so you can drive for days and not see another car, the interaction with the Abu herd, and the service of the staff is over the top.

The main attraction here is certainly the elephants and luxury service but while I was there for a week I saw a few lions, leopards and hyenas. From personal experience, for a first time safari I’d go to Abu and also combine it with Vumbura, Mombo, or Kings Pool.

The staff also makes this place what it is. The manager Aaron is very attentive to the guests without being intrusive. You can also tell he’s a good leader because the rest of the staff is working in harmony with joy. After being there a week I can say that they work consistently for their guests. There have been some reviews that have said they don’t have enough trucks to take you on a game drive. Not true. When I was there, they had 3 trucks and Ras and I took a truck on a game drive all day with a packed lunch. When you go, be sure to get to know Kabelo “KB”. He’s really someone who is special. With that said, I fully enjoyed getting to know him, Qwest, Bee, Owner, Simon, and Rees. My guide was Ras and true to the wilderness standard he was superb. He goes above and beyond and works hard to track animals. The other guides Taps and BT are also kind and competent.

Another group you’ll get to know are the Mahouts. They take care of the elephants in the boma. The lead mahout is Bee and he’s got a great team with Witness, Frank, Mike, Onx, and Onx #2.

Kind Regards, Glen Weaver

Date of stay: November 2014
  • Trip type: Traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank johnglen1976
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WildernessSafaris, Manager at Abu Camp, responded to this reviewResponded December 16, 2014

Dear johnglen1976,

How wonderful to have you back in our camps and thank you for your awesome review of Abu Camp. Naledi our little "Star" as you know recently celebrated her 1st birthday and we hope that you were in camp over that period. It really is a special story and we are so happy that this little elephant is doing so amazingly well. We are so glad that you got to see some of the other animals on the conservancy but as you say the highlight is of course the elephants.

Thank you for your lovely words about the staff in camp as we pride ourselves on these gems who are in the end have such a vital role in a guests stay and we are pleased to hear that they exceeded expectations.

As a seasoned Safari goer we hope that we will have the pleasure of your company again in the not too distant future, but until then stay safe and kind regards,
The Abu Elephant and Human Team (With a head butt from Naledi)

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Reviewed October 12, 2014

To be clear, this place is expensive. Really, really expensive. And to be fair, for the money we spent we had high expectations. Really, really high. In short, those expectations were absolutely met.

We spent three nights. We had tent 3. Actually, calling it a tent is a disservice. It’s a high end room in the bush with all the 5-star amenities you’d expect. The property doesn’t disappoint - from spa services to onsite cardio equipment, which we enjoyed with a baboon while viewing some nearby elephants. (Those guests certainly make it the most original workout ever.) One of us enjoyed a massage, which is performed in-suite.

The staff to guest ratio is high and the camp wasn’t full when we were visiting. You will not go any real length of time without someone asking how they can make your stay better. Actually, on a few occasion we felt like we didn’t need to be continually asked but if that’s one of the only pieces of constructive criticism you can offer that’s a great problem.

As elephant lovers, we selected this camp because of the elephant experience. The love and care for the onsite ellie crew is evident. If you are considering this property and have been to elephant sanctuaries in South East Asia, be sure to inquire as to what you can and can’t do with the ellies at Abu. Your personal interactions may not be the same as you’ve experienced in those countries. And the camp doesn’t offer, understandably so, some of the historic elephant interactions you may view on YouTube. That’s in no way a complaint. Just a way for folks to manage their expectations. We loved the rides, walks, mud bath viewing, etc. And we thought the handlers were top shelf - completely professional and totally engaging with the human guests. A+ gentleman.

We slept on the stardeck lounge one night. Really unique and special way to have a semi-quiet morning moment with the ellie family. Be forewarned about the natural “aroma” of the sleeping area. You can get use to it quite quickly.

T-Rex was one of the most enthusiastic guides we’ve experienced in all our years on safari. You’d be fortunate to get him as a guide.

Management may want to offer a takeaway snack bag for guests heading out on travel. We wound up at a connection in Maun which doesn’t have any food vendors at the airport and it would have been nice to have quick access to some provisions, which many folks adjacent to us did. Take it as a compliment, Abu, as your food was outstanding.

Onsite management is doing a super job with this gem.

Date of stay: September 2014
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
3  Thank AnnFran20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WildernessSafaris, Manager at Abu Camp, responded to this reviewResponded October 17, 2014

Dear AnnFran20,

Thank you for your Ele-Fantastic review, we are absoloutley thrilled to see that every element of our camp and activities not only met but exceeded all your expectations. Our staff can sometimes get overzealous when trying to accommodate our guests but we think this is their way of trying to steal some of the spotlight away from the Elephants.

With daily temperatures hovering in the mid-30°s C (around 100˚F), you are almost guaranteed to be treated to the daily occurrence of the Abu elephant herd mud bath. The addition of the young Naledi to the herd has already enhanced the cuteness factor, and her partaking in the mud bath with her sisters delights everyone who witnesses it. We hope you were not one of the mud sprayed victims of Naledi and her playmates Warona, Paseka, and Lorato.

Thank you again for your great review, we hope to have you return to us soon. And hopefully we can do something about keeping the smell away.
The Abu Team

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Reviewed September 3, 2014

We spent three days at Abu two weeks ago. The rooms are lovely, with comfortable beds, and
a great bath area. The outside tub is amazing on a warm afternoon after a long day!
Spending time with the elephant family, with fifty year old Kathy as the matriarch, and baby Nilady, is worth the trip there! We spent one afternoon on a game drive, and in an hour saw Wildebeest, Zebras, Giraffes, and a Leopard! The managers Jamie Rose, and Aaron, her husband are energetic, and do a great job trying to cater to everyone's needs. The food was very good, and the chef had no issue catering to my food allergies, which made my stay even better. I miss the old days at camps when everyone sat together, and shared their stories of the
days sightings. It seems that most of the camps have gotten away from that, and I think that is
unfortunate. The only time we interacted with the rest of the guests, was when we met before
going out on the afternoon adventure. Our guide Raas, was very knowledgeable, and pleasant.
I think the camp needs another vehicle, so that there can be more options for activities, but I would definitely go back to Abu, and hope the same team is still there!

Date of stay: August 2014
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank GTH46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WildernessSafaris, Guest Relations Manager at Abu Camp, responded to this reviewResponded September 8, 2014

Dear GTH46,

Thank you very much for your fantastic review, we are so glad to see that you had such a good time with the staff and our Abu Elephant Family.

With regards to the dining styles at our camps these differ depending on the category of camp and unless otherwise requested dining styles are buffet at classic with communal dining and a-la-carte at Premier/ Collection with individual seating. Should you wish to change this please do not hesitate to mention as such to management and as long as the other guests are in agreement we can transform this into communal seating.

Thank you again and we look forward to seeing you soon,
The Team at Abu

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Reviewed August 17, 2014

Abu Camp was an exhilarating experience. We spent three nights here, living with and becoming a part of the elephant herd and this should be part of everyone's Okavango experience. The game drives were exciting with both land based and waterborne trips. The camps' location was breath-taking and every day and night we were treated to animals roaming in and out. All the staff were exceptional and KB our guide was superb, but at the end of the day it is the elephants which are the stars and Nilady, the baby elephant, steals the show!

Date of stay: July 2014
  • Trip type: Traveled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Peter C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WildernessSafaris, Guest Relations Manager at Abu Camp, responded to this reviewResponded August 28, 2014

Dear Peter C,

Thank you for your beautiful review, we are so glad that Abu exceeded your expectations and that you had such fun with Naledi.

The light, airy villas of majestic Abu Camp nestle below ancient sycamore figs overlooking a permanent lagoon. Dappled shade and lush surrounds create an idyllic environment in which the sophistication of the lounge and dining area with well-stocked library and anticipatory personal service is at ease with a relaxed home-from-home experience. The same is true of the culinary offering, five-star haute cuisine side by side with pizza straight from the traditional oven. Encounters and activities with the Abu Elephant Herd provide magical moments whether in camp, or out in the
natural splendour of the Delta. Abu’s floodplains and islands host herds of red lechwe, zebra, giraffe and tsessebe, while clans of spotted hyaena, secretive leopard and even prides of lion are the predators in chief. Spend an evening curled up near the elephants in the unique “star-bed” while the herd slumbers below.

Thank you again for your feedback
The Team at Abu

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Reviewed August 9, 2014

We visited Abu Camp in June 2014 and there really are not enough superlatives to describe our stay there. You arrive at the camp via a charter flight on a small Cessna, be aware there's not a lot of luggage room and even although we had small cases we were asked to move our luggage into soft bags which the company, Wilderness Experience supplied (they stored our cases and were waiting for us on our return). On arrival you are met by your guide, in our case Newman, who was absolutely fantastic. We drove to the camp, which took about 15 minutes and could hear the singing before we arrived. Each guest to Abu is met by all staff singing a traditional song, a cool drink and a refreshing flannel. The staff, without exception, were all friendly and so willing to help. The management, Liz, Jamie-Rose and Aaron are genuinely interested in each guest and always on hand to make sure that everything is perfect.

The 'tents' are spacious. and without doubt more luxurious than many of the top European hotels that I have stayed in. Food, drink and even hot water bottles are all
included, as part of the service. The standard of food, of which there are copious amounts, is excellent. Again, the chef was introduced to guests and advised us
just to ask if we had any special requests.

Abu is a truly special place and has to a must if you are travelling to Botswana.

Date of stay: June 2014
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Gingersheep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WildernessSafaris, Guest Relations Manager at Abu Camp, responded to this reviewResponded August 14, 2014

Dear Gingersheep,

Thank you for your fabulous review, we are so glad to hear that you enjoyed all aspects of our camp.

Abu Camp is set in a pristine pocket of riverine forest and blends in seamlessly with the magnificent surrounding hardwood trees. Looking out over a large lagoon, an imaginative use of canvas has created a unique and luxurious style of tent. Each of the six en-suite units has its own distinctive furnishings and fittings, imparting an air of opulence in the bush. These airy tents feature an indoor and outdoor shower, an outdoor copper bath and a generous elevated teak deck.
Well-lit pathways link the guest tents with the main lounge and dining area and a well-stocked library and study, gym and swimming pool will keep you entertained while at camp.

Thank you again
The Abu Team

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