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“Real African luxury wilderness experience”

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Ishasha Wilderness Camp
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
39 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Real African luxury wilderness experience”
Reviewed October 3, 2012

We stayed here for just one night as part of a Wild Frontiers tour of Uganda (booked easily through World Primate Safaris in the UK), really wish we had stayed longer for several reasons. Firstly this bit of Queen Elizabeth National Park is excellent and I'm sure we would have had more great sightings if we had done more game drives. Secondly the camp itself is a wonderful place to relax, with a comfortable lounge are and a nice deck over the river on which to sit back and take in the sights and sounds

The rooms are more chalet than tent, ours was extremely spacious with a lovely king sized bed, complete with mosquito net, and a large and well lit bathroom. There are no fences to keep wildlife out, so you need to be escorted to and from your room at night for safety reasons - this adds to the wilderness experience and excitement of staying somewhere like this, though in the end the only animals we saw at the lodge itself were birds and monkeys, with a buffalo visible on the far side of the river. Elephants apparently make fairly regular appearances - we saw an enormous herd quite nearby on a game drive so find this easy to believe

This is part of the Uganda Exclusive Camps collection and, like their other property (Buhoma Lodge) that we stayed in, the combination of fantastic views, great service, delicious food and perfect location adds up to a very special experience. Like Buhoma, laundry and massages are offered as part of the service, though we didn't make use of either during our short stay

As well as the lack of congestion found further North in the park, the Ishasha sector is well worth visiting for the wildlife itself - in particular the cats up trees. We may have been especially lucky, but even in our short stay we managed to see lions up trees, lions not up trees and a leopard (up a tree, of course), as well as a good variety of other game and birdlife

Highly recommended - and try and make sure you have at least two nights there!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1 Thank OL_london
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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190 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (46)
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Luxembourg
Level Contributor
113 reviews
88 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 113 helpful votes
Reviewed September 27, 2012

Just coming from the big "Mweya Safari lodge" in the northern part of QENP, this lodge really looked more like my own idea of a genuine safari bush camp. The tents were spacious and pleasant as well as the camp but not luxurious (which is OK). The nice thing is that the tents are not too close to each other and they are well set along the ishasha river. Besides that the staff was very gentle and the dinner quite good.
This lodge is an ideal location to look for the famous "tree climbing lions" which is something rather rare (you can possibly see that in Lake Manyara in Tanzania as well). Finding the lions is always very nice (be it on a tree or on the ground). We got lucky to see 2 lionesses and 4 cubs in the same tree.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank jboule
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kampala
Level Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed September 17, 2012

If you are looking for the superlative bush camp experience, Ishasha Wilderness Camp offers it in spades. I first stayed here two years ago - when it became my favourite bush camp experience of Uganda. I revisited recently, and was delighted to find it surpassed my memory of the place and has improved considerably across the board - in areas where it never seemed lacking before!

Its location is amazing - wild plains in southern QENP - away from the hustle and bustle of the northern sector around Mweya. The tents look right over the river - where there is lots of birdlife and the odd bigger thing too (elephants occasionally cross and hippos live nearby) and are roomy with massive beds and rush matting and kitenge crocheted rugs... the bathrooms were fine before but have become much bigger, with built in shower structures (hot water on demand - bush style - but piping hot and plenty of it) and flush eco-toilets and the best toiletries I've seen (they sell them in the gift shop - but for the weight restriction on the flight home I would have definitely bought some).

The bar and restaurant area is huge but has cozy nooks and corners to relax the day (or evening) away. The food is excellent - really excellent, with every element of the meal thought through and done to perfection, and plenty of original choices for the location - and the atmosphere/dining experience lived up to the grub itself.

The camp is serenity itself. You can lose time here perfectly happily. Go out for game drives when you want to, or stay back at base and enjoy the peace and quiet of the Ntungwe river. It's an amazing place and has always made me feel quite at home - I certainly will not be leaving it two years before the next visit. I went for just one night after a weekend in Bwindi - curtailed due to work commitments - but when I next visit I'll try and make time for three - I can't ever imagine getting bored of it.

Room Tip: All tents have river views, but if you prefer to be set back slightly with a wider view, with the ch...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank dontgiveupthedayjob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kenya
Level Contributor
57 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed September 13, 2012

This camp is the only accommodation in the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park so they have no competition but that does nit mean theyhave rested on their laurels.

I believe the tents are all new and they are great, plenty of space in both bedroom and bathroom, sold floors and a great view overlooking the river. The noise of the weaver birds at dusk was so enjoyable tio listen to. They have a new flushing toilet system which works very well and only uses a very small amount of water. For a shower the tent attendant will get the water to you preference and they pour it into a 20 litre jerry can which they hoist up for you to use. Works well but you can not linger in there.

Food was very good and so was the service.

There is wifi in the restaurant but it is only available during certian times and has very limited bandwidth, you are in the middle of the bush after all.

Neil the manager is very good but he can be a little casual at times, but we enjoyed talkig to him.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank chui101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kamapala
Level Contributor
28 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed August 29, 2012

We felt like we were on our second honeymoon! Our favourite part of our stay was a private table that was set under the stars for us to enjoy a romantic dinner. We didn't even ask for this and it was a very welcome surprise.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank miss_giraffe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kampala
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 1, 2012

Just a tremendous wilderness experience. The ten new tents are replete with reusable eco-friendly bathroom supplies, (hot) showers, romantic bedding and upholstery, tasteful room decor, and a fabulous view of the Ntungwe river from the bed, bath and beyond. The night sounds at IWC are off-the-charts, with eerie critters, predators and primates all within earshot at times during the blackout. The food and experience at the camp are also first-rate. A morning wake-up call begins the deluge of pampering, with hot coffee and biscuits brought right to your front door. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all served by gracious and knowledgeable staff, with the food and view as the real main attraction. No other place in Uganda - with the possible exception of Apoka Lodge in Kidepo - can offer such a wonderful marriage of feral beauty and creature comforts as this place. Neil does a great job coordinating all the desires of his guests and makes you feel like you have the power to do whatever you want, be it game drives, nature walks, sleeping, eating, or relaxing in your room. The Ishasha sector of QENP itself is spectacular, with verdant plains and abundant wildlife in both the northern and southern sections. We spotted a lion and lioness in the southern section resting in a fig tree, while spotting multiple elephants at three separate occasions on two drives. The southern section is a bit worse (wetter, with more ruts) than the northern section at the moment (April 1, 2012) so take a 4WD if you're planning on driving yourself. I'd also recommend taking the route from Mweya/Kyambura gorge rather than the route from Rukingiri, as the latter has a lot of steep terrain and uneven roads, which extend your journey. Don't miss this place!!!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank mattesol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Strood, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
164 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
Reviewed February 27, 2012

We stayed for 2 nights with Neil and his team and loved Ishasha. I'm not sure what happened to the previous reviewer but our stay was brilliant. We stayed in one of the new tents and couldn't fault it. We had no problem getting hot water - in fact the member of staff was waiting for me to finish my shower to refill the bucket for my husband. If you're in Africa you have to appreciate that facilities aren't the same as Westernised places and that's all part of the appeal.
The food we had here was the best we had all holiday and Neil spent a lot of time answering my husband's questions about the solar power and even gave him a tour of the it's workings. My husband gets up early and the overnight guards he chatted to were really friendly. We had the coldest beer of the whole holiday here which was really welcome. There is a lovely fire pit area by the water where we would sit and chat before dinner. We even saw two elephants crossing the river right by the camp and one of our group had Henry the friendly hippo sleeping outside her tent one night. We saw loads of wildlife and birds on our game drives - even the rare Shoebill. Overall a wonderful place to stay and an amazing experience.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Jo M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ishasha Wilderness Camp

Property: Ishasha Wilderness Camp
Address: Wild Frontiers Uganda (G&C Tours Ltd), Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda
Location: Uganda > Western Region > Queen Elizabeth National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 32 Specialty Lodging in Queen Elizabeth National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Ishasha Wilderness Camp 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Each of the ten spacious framed canvas rooms, situated in the wooded area besides the river, is comfortably furnished and with its own private en suite bathroom and dressing area providing running water, solar hot water 'bush' showers and a flushing eco-friendly toilet. We also offer "Fly-in" safari packages which include transportation to and from nearby airstrips as well as game drives and other activities included within the rates. Please inquire with us for more details. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ishasha Wilderness Camp Hotel Queen Elizabeth National Park
Ishasha Wilderness Camp Uganda/Queen Elizabeth National Park

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