- Only three guest villas
- Rhino Tracking
- Fantastic bungalow style accommodation
- Waterhole hide out
Little Ongava is an intimate lodge in the south of Etosha National Park, North Central Namibia. One of four lodges in the private Ongava reserve, this is the most exclusive with only three villas available to guests and fantastic views across the plains.
This modern, private lodge is run by a professional team of staff and offers an easy, laid back safari experience. The main thatched building is reached via connecting boardwalks that wind around large boulders and trees. An all inclusive camp, meals are served in the traditional safari style around a single dining table, although private dining options are available. Also in the main building is a cosy sitting room and outdoor terrace with views over a floodlit waterhole (albeit not in as close range as at Ongava Lodge).
Activities at Ongava help guests explore the local area and include good game drives in the immediate vicinity and longer drives into the main Etosha National Park. Experienced guides point out wildlife including white rhino, lion, leopard, spotted hyenas and black-faced impalas. Day and night game drives are both included in the programme as well as rhino tracking on foot. Good bird watching and walking safari can also be enjoyed and there is an impressive hide out by the waterhole for avid photographers to get that perfect shot. All four lodges in this reserve are under the same ownership so you can expect the same high quality activities to be run from each.
Some of the largest accommodation you will find, Little Ongava offers three exclusive thatched villas, that offer total seclusion and privacy. Each villa is reached by a wooden boardwalk and features a wrap around verandah, private plunge pool, sala and open sitting room. Light open rooms include a cosy sitting room with fireplace, a king sized bedroom and an ensuite bathroom with double basins and indoor and outdoor showers. Although there is no specific family villa, sharing with children is easily accommodated. Accommodation here is the height of luxury, perfect for romantic getaways.
There is a minimum age of six years old to stay at Ongava and twelve years old to take part in the guided safari activities. Whilst the guides do their best to tailor the experience to their guests, there are no specific children’s programmes and constant supervision will be needed in these wild landscapes.
Little Ongava is a perfect choice for those looking for solid safari viewing from a peaceful and luxurious lodge. The accommodation here is some of the best you can find in the area, and although possibly not as remote as some other options, offers some reliable and unforgettable wildlife experiences.
The safari trip was excellent! The stay, the food and the people were all very nice. We were happy to have Ryan and Stanley as our game drive guides they brought us up close to the animals and Ryan gave very good information throughout.
Would definitely recommend to friends who are interested in safaris :)
Also, thanks much for your help, particularly keeping the room for my Brother and his wife they’ve enjoyed the safari very much too!
Woan Chyi L reviewing Cape Town & Kruger Safari on 16 October 2019
We had a fantastic time and all the arrangements worked perfectly.
We were very impressed with the quality and service levels of all 4 locations visited and it was truly a holiday of a lifetime.
Thank you to you and to Lisa for giving us this experience.
Particular highlights for us – really the whole experience, but of particular impact:
Breathtaking scenery at Cathedral Peak Hotel
Rhino Ridge game drives incredible, thanks to guide (we had their head guide, Hala, who’s knowledge, enthusiasm, kindness, interaction, ability to spot wildlife was out of this world)
Luxury of Rhino Ridge (shower, food, views, service)
Immersion in nature, torch lit meal on last night and beach trip at Kosi Forest Lodge
Level of service, quality of food throughout
Catherine F reviewing South Africa Safari, Beach and Wetlands on 04 September 2019
We had a fantastic time. Thank you and it went smoothly in the main except for British Airways!
The trip had the right degree of luxury and relaxation (for me) and adventure (all of us).
A few points:
Driving directions to Umlunghi Lodge were slightly wrong. The driving directions should read at the 4th roundabout take the first exit and turn right over the railway. We loved it there. Anton, Bianca and her son and Harriet were very informative and entertaining. The snake talk and handling, night walks and seeing scorpions and the walk in the bush and "bumping" into a giraffe were really special. The kayak trip to Makuzi pan that the lodge organised was good and Tomaz was very informative and kept a respectful distance from the hippos.3 nights was plenty.
Rhino River Lodge game reserve was incredibly luxurious and we felt very looked after. The lion siting in camp the day we arrived sent an extra frisson of excitement down our spines. It was easy to forget there were predators that could attack us with all that luxury. The staff and guides (Karl) were knowledgeable and invested in their set up. We saw rhinos with baby, cheetahs with young, porcupine, Genet, wildebeast, Impala, Lion with young, buffalo, a puff adder, ostrich, zebra and giraffes. 4 nights was also plenty.
They all served great food but I felt Ghost Mountain Inn topped the lot. The variety was amazing. We arrived at 10.30 but could not get into our room until 2 ish. The service was not so personal I guess because it is larger (far more than 50 rooms). We had been a bit spoilt at Rhino River! My daughter and I had some treatments at the Spa and loved it. We also went on a large boat trip on Jonzi and had a closer encounter with a large bull hippo and also a hike up Ghost Mountain with Patrick who was very informative and passionate about his people and his country. Isaac the other guide there took us on the boat trip and pointed out the sugar cane harvest on the way. he was very informative also.
Lastly, Lalaria Lodge was fabulous and we all piled into the surf of the Indian Ocean. There was hardly anyone on the beach. It was "too cold" according to the landlady. The view from her terrace was of the ocean and whales breaching in the distance. I could have sat there all day. She very kindly provided us with a Scrabble board of her own for us to play. We took a Microlight ride from Ballito over the coastline in the hope of seeing whales and dolphins but no luck. If we had stayed longer we might have gone on a boat trip from Durban. We had a meal at a restaurant called Mozambique which was great fun with vast portions, plenty of carbs and fresh seafood!
The value of the Rand to the Pound was excellent and therefore we felt that we got excellent value which also played a large part!
Katrina P reviewing South Africa Bush & Beach Safari For Families on 02 September 2019