Our safari party of 4 arrived via plane. There are no “formal” airports in this part of the world, just desert air strips and a gas pump or two. The pilots are amazing and make the flights/landings seem effortless. We are greeted by a giraffe at the fence. Keep in mind we’ve just come from another resort where we spent days (and lost vital organs and maybe some teeth) bouncing around in jeeps on rocky “roads” trying to find a giraffe.
Our butler loads our luggage into our Rover and off we go to the resort.
If ever you get a chance to visit Little Ongava splurge and stay in one of the three mountain-top villas. The villas sit on volcanic rock. This is a “private” reserve as opposed to “public”. So, you have private vehicles taking you out to view the animals. At this point in the trip, we’ve done both. When touring in a public reserve, you are one of maybe 30 rovers parked on the side of the road looking 75 yards off into the bush to see a lion. When in a private reserve, you are the ONLY vehicle out in the bush. The animals are spectacular and the “sundowners” and food amazing! Willie, our butler and guide had been conducting these tours for years and even let us walk with a mother/baby rhino!!!!
Each night a feast with it’s own wine-tasting was laid out. The staff and main dining area was beautiful. The first night there we’d just gotten into our villas when we got a “911” call from Willie telling us to get to the Rover deck immediately. We got in and took off in the pitch black bush. Moments later we were escorted into a “hunting blind” and were able to see a white rhino mother bring her baby down to the watering hole (pic above). It was thrilling to be within 10 feet of these stunning animals. This kind of thing happened again and again! Another huge advantage to a private reserve/resort.
Game drives were twice a day with just the 4 of us and our guide. We were up close and personal with lions, giraffes, elephants and rhinos. We were able to walk with white rhinos ( the much less aggressive cousin of the black rhino ) and one evening were surrounded by a pride of 11 lionesses and cubs as they headed out for their evening hunt.
Again, everything was all inclusive including all meals, fine wines, game drives and sundowners! http://ongava.com/little-ongava-lodge/