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Great Plains Conservation Duba Plains Camp
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Reviews (168)
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Reviewed 31 October 2006

I stayed at Duba Plains with my mother, nephew and husband for 3 nights in September, 2006. Three generations and we all loved Duba Plains!!! It was the most amazing experience of my life. The "tents" are beautifully decorated, the beds ultra comfy and the staff is just the greatest group of people I've ever met. Don't be concerned about food in Duba - it was absolutely delicious!! Celia made an extra effort to get a recipe to my mother when we raved about her food. Really great. The guides were amazing - Chief was our guide, and he tried so hard to make our days in Duba unforgettable. I will never forget him.

The staff was so incredibly welcoming to all of us. There are only 5 "tents", so there are never more than 10 guests. We were lucky enough to enjoy two evenings of traditional song and dance by the Botswana staff. Can't tell you how great it was.

Things are changing in Duba Plains. The lions (the Duba Boys of the Tsaro Pride) are aging, the cape buffalo herd is shrinking, and the Skimmer Pride is getting stronger and larger. The lionesses are trying to protect their babies, the elephants are growing and the water levels are changing. Just the most amazing place!!!

Days are something like this - get woken by your guide before the crack of dawn, have coffee and a continental breakfast, get in a modified Range Rover with your guide while the sun is rising, go over the "bridge" and off into the Delta! The guides know where the big five hang out, so they try to find as many as they can. At around 9AM, we stop for a "potty break" and coffee and snacks. Then around 10AM, we go back to camp for brunch. The rest of the day is at leisure - there's a pool, a bar, and time for siesta (trust me, you'll need it). Then off we went again at 4PM for another game drive. At sunset we stopped for "sundowners". We call it cocktail hour, but out in the bush sundowners is a perfect name!! Then back into the truck for a ride back in the dark, with our guide shining light to find "eyes" so we could find nocturnal animals. It was awesome!! Then a few minutes to clean up for dinner, and off to gourmet food in the beautiful dining room. Every night some of the staff joined us for dinner so we could eat, chat and get to know a little about them and their lives in Botswana. I went to Botswana for the wildlife, and I came home with the people of Botswana in my heart. They are very proud of their little, peaceful, gorgeous country. The two nights that we were "entertained" by the staff are my favorite memories of our trip to southern Africa. Then off to bed by 10PM unless you choose to stay up for a drink or two. No walking in Duba alone after dark - so ask a staff member to walk you "home". Never know what may be lurking in the dark. We had elephants and hippos outside our tent at night!!!!!!!!!

The biggest draw here is the lions. And when you find them, they don't care - not even a little - that you are there. They don't mind the truck and the guests as long as you don't bother them. Since there is no hunting in Duba or most of the surrounding areas, they don't associate people with danger, and in the truck we're too big to be mistaken as food (thank God!). At one point I could have reached out and touched a male lion we were so close!! None of the animals minded us much, except for the "prey" animals. And don't forget to look for birds - they are gorgeous, too. During times of migrations back to the area, the guides are very excited to see when a bird comes home again, like the lilac breasted rollers and the carmine bee-eaters!!! Gorgeous! And unlike other parts of Africa, there are no crowds in Botswana - the government has decided to limit the number of visitors at any time so it doesn't get like Disneyland in summer (game areas in other African countries have this problem, and it interferes with the survival of the animals, especially the cheetah). There were game drives when we never saw another vehicle.

We had expectations of being hot and that the bugs would be brutal. Well, our experience was not like that. There were some flies (and they were relentless, but not swarms of them like we expected), but the "mossies" were no problem. We thought we'd be covered in mosquito bites, but use your bug spray, and they were no problem at all!!! And hot? Only two days in three weeks was it over 90F in Southern Africa while we were there. Bring your woolies!!! When you are driving in an open vehicle at dawn and at night at 30 MPH when it's under 60F, it's COLD!!! Glad they had blankets on the trucks - yes, heavy, wool blankets!! So, although you can only take one duffle bag, fit in a warm jacket (I would have done anything for ear muffs or a wool hat) and gloves. And don't forget t-shirts, shorts, sunscreen and a bathing suit for the hot afternoons!

I shouldn't tell you this, but......Go to Duba Plains!!!! My husband and I are going back in 2016 for Botswana's 50th year of Independence!!! Unless, of course, we can't wait that long!!!

  • Stayed: October 2006, travelled with family
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14  Thank cbir
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 September 2004

It was like walking into a five star hotel room - except it was a tent! The accommodation here is outstanding in tents built on raised platforms - but with facilities to rival any five star hotel.

There are his and hers sinks, a powerful inside shower and an outside tree shower so you can shower overlooking the Plains and in full view of any wild animal which might happen to pass! The bed could sleep half a dozen people and the room (tent) is one of the largest we have stayed in.

Duba Plains looks like something out of a typical English/Scottish countryside scene - not what you would expect in the heart of Africa. Wildlife is plentiful with herds of Buffalo being the speciality although Elephant, Lion etc are frequently spotted.

The only slight drawback is that game drives are in open topped vehicles which exposes you to the direct sunlight so it is advisable to take hats and sunscreen.

Overall, though, this was an outstanding experience in a camp managed by Wilderness Safaris whom I can thoroughly recommend.

  • Stayed: November 2003
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12  Thank Jonathan Viney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2018 via mobile
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Stayed: April 2018, travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 November 2017
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  • Stayed: November 2017, travelled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 June 2017
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  • Stayed: June 2017, travelled with family
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GreatPlainsConserve, General Manager at Great Plains Conservation Duba Plains Camp, responded to this reviewResponded 12 July 2017

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