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“Fabulous Camp”

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Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 6, 2008

I cannot say enough about Little Mak. Wilderness Safaris has done a wonderful job of trying to preserve a "classic" style safari here. The camp is small, only 5 tents maximum 10 guests. But we were the only ones for 2 days. Food was excellent, which surprised us considering the difficulty in obtaining many staples in the country. Charles the manager was fabulous and one of the best guides we have ever encountered. The wildlife here is outstanding. There was recently a reintroduction of rhinos to the area and we were priveledgesd to have 2 sightings during our stay here. The guides here are not just safari guides, they teach you about the life and habits of the wide variety of life found here, at times you feel as though you are with a Nat'l Geo researcher, they themselves are still fascinated by their "studying" the wildlife even after many years as guides. The tents are simple yet beautifully appointed and attention has been given to provide guests with all necesary comforts, albeit the camp lacks electricity (which we loved)...don't bother with modern conveniences like hair dryers... Charles' idea is to put you in the back of a vehicle and take off at high speed... if you need that kind of modern living go to a different camp... seriously this camp is for the serious safari enthusiast, not prima donnas. The main gathering area is very quaint (retaining an old english feel) and there are ample reference books for the guests. Your view from both your porch and the main area is of the waterhole, which has constant activity. In fact the hide (a bunch of logs at the water hole) was one of our favorite spots during siesta time... talk about up close and personal with the ellies! We had some incredible sightings during our stay, including an albino baby elephant, a very large blind older male elephant (he looked as though he had developed cataracts, but he felt his every step with his trunk, it was fascinating), a mating pair of lions as well as the 3 bachelors in the area. We would awaken during the night to the sound of the ellies lightly stepping all around out tent, and find evidence they had been there all night when we would awaken in the early hours to head out on our game drives. This place was wonderful, and we hope to return once the situation within the country stablizes. We truly loved the staff and the location... one of the TOPS in our books!

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled as a couple
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Thank Cindy-Milford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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113 - 119 of 120 reviews

Reviewed April 19, 2008

Makalolo Plains, a sister camp to Little Makalolo, is an elevated tented camp, with everything built on stilts off the ground and no fense surrounding the camp. It overlooks a waterhole with outstanding morning and evening wildlife viewing.

The rooms are tents over permanent wooden frames built on top of a wooden platform, almost like a treehouse minus the tree. When the staff serviced the rooms in the morning, they opened the tent flaps over the windows for good views, and during dinner, they would turn down the sheets and lower the flaps again, to keep the room warm. The beds were comfortable and the bathroom well equipped (hot water, plush robes, thoughtful amenities.)

Meals were oustanding. Breakfasts were had on returning from the morning game drive, with a light lunch during the day. Afternoon tea at this place was an especially good spread, as were the sundowners while out on an evening game drive--racks of glassware and different wines and a white tablecloth...right next to a watering hole. Dinners were outstanding multi-course events, in the tradition of everyone sitting at a candle-lit communal table, telling tales about what they spotted that day.

The staff and guides here were the best we encountered on our safari. Zimbabwean guides undergo extensive training and testing to earn their guide certification, and it shows. These guides could go into national-geographic-level detail about the animals, the land, the ecosystem, and wildlife / land-use politics.

With so many pump-fed watering holes, there are endless opportunities to see different game at different locations at different tiems of the day. There were two camp-owned hides that you could be driven to during the day (one treehouse, one waterhole.) Elephant viewing and lion viewing was outstanding, and yes, we really did see some elephants drinking out of the swimming pool just before dinner. The camp is self-contained on stilts, so animals are free to wander through the camp. Armed guides escort you back to your tent at night, just to be on the safe side. A pride of lions even camped out for two nights about 50 yards from one of the tents. Incredible. I can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed: October 2007, traveled as a couple
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Thank Magala
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 29, 2006

We love adventure travel, and have been all over the world, but have never had such an adventure as we did at Little Makalolo! It is truly a "luxury" tent camp, and they even catered amazingly to my extremely strict vegan diet.
The tents are on ground level, and you'll be amazed when you are woken at 3:00 am with an elephant 3 feet from your tent door, munching on twigs and leaves! We had hyena and elephants come straight through camp at all hours of the day, in addition to many other critters.
The watering hole, which sits about 300 yards in front of camp, is the only water for miles, so all day long you'll have animals coming through for a drink. There is a tree hut near the pan that you can sit in and watch the action or - if you're really adventurous - you can go and sit in the log pile which is right at the water's edge! This will allow you to get within feet of elephants, buffalo, lions, or whatever else comes through for a drink and a romp in the pool. You'll be amazed at how the elephants all time it in the evening so they show up at the watering pan together - almost like all the families have a big reunion planned at 5:00 pm, and they all show up promptly! We video taped about 70 elephants in one long line running to the pan, and there were others coming from different directions - about 120 in all, splashing and playing in the mud. The tiny babies are the sweetest.
Of course, your guide, Sacha, will take you out for game drives and even walks in the bush if you're up for it. He's pretty amazing! Tamlin, your hostess, will see to it that you are always comfortable, full and happy. We couldn't recommend this place more!

  • Stayed: October 2006, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank AdventureTravellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2005

Little Makalolo was our first stop on a wonderful 10 day safari vacation. We stayed for 3 nights. There are 5 tents at ground level but the level of comfort provided managed to be better than many hotels I have stayed in. The staff is fantastic. We never had to ask for anything and they anticipated everything we could think of. Food was great and location even better. Lots of animals and the (always wet) watering hole is apx 300 yards in front of the camp allowing for great watching of the daily animal parade thru the watering hole from either the common tent or your own tent. Of the 2 camps we stayed in this was by far the best.

6  Thank Hayesworld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 4, 2016
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  • Stayed: August 2016, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank gabiprantl
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WildernessSafaris, Public Relations Manager at Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo Camp, responded to this reviewResponded September 14, 2016

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Reviewed August 30, 2015
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Room Tip: Alle kamers zijn uitstekend. Kamer 6 ligt wat afgelegen en heeft een zeer mooi uitzicht op de waterp...
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  • Stayed: July 2015, traveled as a couple
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Thank ericvandenbempt
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WildernessSafaris, Manager at Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo Camp, responded to this reviewResponded September 2, 2015

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Reviewed February 27, 2015
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  • Stayed: November 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank Valerii A
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WildernessSafaris, Manager at Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo Camp, responded to this reviewResponded March 3, 2015

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Additional Information about Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo Camp

Address: Hwange National Park, Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe
Location: Zimbabwe > Matabeleland North Province > Hwange National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 24 Specialty Lodging in Hwange National Park
Hotel Class:4 star — Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo Camp 4*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Charming and intimate, Little Makalolo's location in the south-east of Hwange lends it a sense of seclusion and remoteness. Nestled into the treeline, the camp overlooks a productive waterhole that draws large numbers of wildlife, observed up close from the log-pile hide. Elephant, buffalo, giraffe and zebra are regular visitors, while special sightings include sable, roan and eland. The area is best explored on game drives and guided walks, with special extras like an unexpected pizza or a night spent under the stars on the Madison Pan star-bed platform. • 6 tents (1 family) • game drives • nature walks • Madison Pan star-bed • log-pile hide • village visits ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Little Makalolo Safari Camp Hotel Hwange National Park

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