Another fantastic African safari thanks to Ute & Roho Ya Chui!
Ute and Roho Ya Chui have been nothing short of fantastic in planning (and re-planning, 3 more times) our trip to Giraffe Manor in Nairobi, AndBeyond Kichwa Tembo in the Masai Mara, Kenya, and Sanctuary Kusini in the Serengeti, Tanzania. This was our second safari with Ute, after our first trip to Okavango Delta, Chobe and Victoria Falls in August 2018. The first experience was so great, we didn't hesitate to book with Ute again...originally planned for only 1.5 years after our first trip because it was so wonderful!
Full disclosure: we never book our trips with third parties, we always book everything ourselves. However, at least in the case of Africa, I really recommend looking to a travel agent. The booking is quite complex with the number of camps, flights, etc, and often the camps aren’t used to booking directly either. There’s also a lot of inside knowledge that you really wouldn’t know without having someone who specializes in African safaris. We actually got lower rates booking with Ute and she organized everything for us, with no extra cost. We booked our trip in 2019 for spring of 2020. Unfortunately, we were scheduled to leave the same week in March that Italy (where we live) shut down for coronavirus. We were not allowed to leave the country, even though Africa was still open at that point. Ute worked tirelessly to convince the camps to let us reschedule. That was no easy feat.
We rebooked for June because we thought the world couldn't possibly still be shut down by then. How wrong were we! Ute was able to help us add 2 extra nights at Sanctuary Kichakani to ensure we would see the great migration, but alas, the timing wasn't possible. At this point, while Italy was doing a bit better, Africa was now shut down. August is a big travel month in Italy, so we rescheduled for then, thinking things may open up for the summer since it's one of the biggest months for African safaris. We paid an additional supplement as many camp rates are higher during this time. Still, no luck. Travel was fairly open in Europe, but much of Africa still closed. At this point, we looked at traveling the following August in 2021, but it was already quite full since many people had already pushed out their travel to the next year. Finally, we decided on December 2020. Between Christmas and a big birthday for my husband, we thought this would be the perfect time.
This means that Ute planned our trip FOUR times. Every time involved changes, contacting camps and updating flights, and extra camp / flight costs, but she pulled it off. Ute did quite a bit of extra work for this trip but at no additional cost. Her communication is always outstanding and she is willing to go above and beyond to ensure everything is planned well. She also negotiated on our behalf a couple of times when the prices began spiraling due to all of the changes. And that’s not all! A week or so before we were leaving, we found out Kichakani wasn’t reopening as they didn’t have enough guests, so we could either move into their Ngorongoro Crater camp, or add a couple extra nights at Kusini. We chose the first option as we were looking forward to 3 camps, and we were glad we did (though it was quite the travel day getting to the crater, particularly with one of the usual airports closed!) We also added a third night at the crater as we didn’t want to travel on Christmas. Turns out that was a good call also. We had great sightings on Christmas Day, and spent the entire day with a picnic lunch in the crater. This allowed us a peaceful day and to save the drive and flight for the following morning. Have you lost count of how many updates Ute made to this trip? I have!
On December 18, we set off on our adventure. We spent 1 night at the Nairobi Four Points airport hotel on our own, then 1 night at Giraffe Manor, 2 nights at AndBeyond Kichwa Tembo, 3 nights at Sanctuary Ngorongoro Crater and 2 nights at Sanctuary Kusini. The trip was nothing short of amazing. One of the best we’ve ever taken. Every place we stayed was so lovely, the people friendly, the food delicious. Because of current times, we had our game drive vehicles completely to ourselves for every one. Usually there’s an up-charge for this and it made for a really special and peaceful experience. Ute knew it was my husband’s birthday during this trip, and we had several special cakes and songs to celebrate - it was a lovely touch! All staff at all 4 of the places we stayed were very professional. Always masks and hand sanitizer, often gloves, and they sprayed our items to disinfect also. I never felt nervous - everyone was so careful, and honestly, it didn’t make the experience any less wonderful. Sadly, camps were at a fraction of capacity, which was nice for us because we felt we had the place for ourselves, but sad for them as they desperately need the tourism to come back. On our last day, we were the only game drive vehicle in the entire southern Serengeti...during the Great Migration!!!
There was a bit of confusion about when COVID tests were needed. We had taken one within 96 hours of arriving to Kenya as required, but Tanzania doesn’t require one, nor does Italy when returning back home. At the Nairobi Wilson airport in Kenya, at first they insisted we needed one when we left to head to Tanzania. I didn’t believe we did and Ute confirmed this as well. The airport then called to Tanzania and they confirmed we wouldn’t need one. But then when we arrived to Tanzania, they then started saying we would need a test to leave Tanzania. We explained we weren’t flying back through Kenya, but there was obviously some confusion as they were pretty insistent. Ute again confirmed we didn’t need one. Finally at Sanctuary Ngorongoro Crater, the camp manager came to us on Christmas Eve and said he received a message from the head office that we needed to drive 3 hours roundtrip on Christmas Day to the local hospital for a test. We kindly pushed back, and Ute again confirmed we didn’t need, and she would have someone call. All along, we were very happy to follow all regulations in place and were quite careful, but there is is still a bit of confusion with the virus and what’s needed, where and when. Ute stuck to her guns and so did we. We flew out from Kilimanjaro airport to Rome with a stop in Doha, and sure enough, not a single person asked about a new test. Instead, we are quarantining for 14 days in Italy following country regulation. This was the biggest complication we encountered on the whole trip, which I would say is quite good considering the current circumstances. It didn’t detract from our trip and we knew going in there would be an added layer of complexity traveling at this time.
There is something so magical and indescribable about the African bush. Our trip was a perfect mix of camps, with different scenery and wildlife along the way. We saw the big 5 (elephant, rhino, buffalo, leopard and lion)...we actually saw more than 50 lions on our trip, everything from small cubs to full grown males. We also saw giraffes, zebras, wildebeest, jackals, hyenas, hippos, impala, many birds and lots more. We even saw one cheetah...every animal on our wish list!
If you are considering a safari, I highly recommend it. I promise it will be a highlight of your life. Even during this time, you can do it carefully and have a really special experience. Options are available for a range of budgets, and Ute and the Roho Ya Chui team will put together a perfect itinerary for your needs. Ute really went above and beyond in this planning, and we look forward to booking with her again when we visit the gorillas in Uganda! I can't recommend her or Roho Ya Chui more highly, and if you are considering booking a safari, now is the time!
Lisa, United States, December 2020
At 62 years old one of my top two vacations of all time. Simply wonderful
Everything was excellent with great transportation, two different type camps both unique, wonderful customer service from staffs & Guides were outstanding as saw all Big Five in first 1.5 days of 5 day, 4 night trip. Ute gave us every type of information we could use & was a phone call or text away with anything I had questions on. Got home just before Virus hit the world so may never have been able to do this again. A trip of a lifetime with my only son.
Thanks Ute, You Rock.
Tony, United States, March 2020
5th Safari with Roho Ya Chui and service provided is 5* as always!
This was our fifth trip with Ute's help, but the first time we have booked a safari in Kenya with her, as we had previously used a Kenyan operator. Given our extremely positive experience with her during the past years for safaris in South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe, we decided to use their services for our trip which combined Kenya with Zimbabwe and everything went smoothly. Given the unexpected rains in Kenya, the camp we had originally booked in the Masai Mara was damaged, but Ute immediately worked to rebook us in another camp which ended up being a much better option since it was in a conservancy rather than in the Mara Reserve. What I love about Ute is that she responds immediately. When I have an inquiry, there is nothing more disappointing than having to wait for a response or in some cases, I've had companies even ignore my inquiries when they think it may not be enough business and don't even bother to respond, but Ute will always respond promptly. She is also very straight forward with her advice and when she thinks something is not ideal, she will also let you know. That's when her expertise is really appreciated. She's a great professional and I wouldn't hesitate one instant in recommending her company to anyone wanting a great safari experience anywhere in Africa. She will always aim to get the most reasonable price and is very detail-oriented in presenting her itineraries and quotes. I hope to be able to book a new safari with Ute as soon as possible!
Carolina, United States, February 2020
Great safari, quick responses, with no mistakes or missing pieces
Ute did a great job of communicating with all the places I was staying and all the guides/transports on the tour. It was really nice that they all seemed to know my next meeting points/times, allowing my wife and I to just relax and enjoy the safari. The safari was great and fully lived up to what we were expecting. During the time we were there, all the guides (Kruger + Notten's) were having trouble finding big cats, but we still were able to track down a fair lion sighting (Kruger) and an excellent Leopard sighting/tracking (Notten's). I definitely don't recommend going any shorter than the 4 day safari as it's too hard to predict what you'll see on any given day and if I were to do the trip over, I would have probably asked Ute to add an additional night at Notten's. We decided to do just 1 there b/c of budget but would have stretched a bit more b/c of how great of an experience it was. Being able to go off the roads at the private game reserve for some of the tracking/sightings is an experience you just can't get at Kruger (though we still enjoyed our time at Kruger). Chestnut Country Lodge was great as well and felt very personal. The staff was very friendly, the food was excellent and I felt the lodgings were a great value. Mandla from GAP tours was an excellent guide (nice/knowledgeable/funny) and it was really nice sticking with him for the 2 Kruger game drives and the transfer to Notten's. We had some great sightings in Kruger, but even during some of the slower times he had plenty of interesting things to point out and could answer all my questions. I highly recommend this safari, and working with Roho Ya Chui.
Kurtis M, United States, February 2020
Expectation exceeded on all aspects of the tour
Seamless communication before, during and after the tour with Ute - email, WhatsApp, call are quick and clear Throughout the trip, all the commutes and stays have been very comfortable and well taken care of. The 3 nights in Machaba Camp is a highlight - excellent services, food and quality of the game drive. We were in honeymoon and with all the stays we were given "surprises" and very nice hospitality to celebrate this lifetime event of ours. That's very nice of Ute and the camps for the arrangements In additional to the arranged tour, Ute was helpful in an incident when we intended to fly out from Maun to Cape Town (outside the tour). She sent a local representative to accompany us in dealing with local airline. That is highly appreciated especially we haven't paid for that part! We will definitely come back to Africa and Ute will be our agent for sure.
SH Law, Hong Kong, February 2020
Unforgettable trip! Everything was perfectly planned and organised.
Ute did an amazing job planning our trip to the Okavango Delta and to Victoria Falls. We pretty much left everything in her hands and she planned an unforgattable trip for us. We stayed two nights at two different camps inside the Delta; the camps were in two different locations which gave us an opportunity to see different landscapes and animals. After the Delta we went to Victoria Falls where we stayed at a great guest house. Everything was perfectly arranged. It exceeded our expectations.
Mariana, Netherlands, November 2019
Excellent safari, and Ute Sonnenberg is a true professional
Our safari in Botswana and visit to Zimbabwe were outstanding experiences. What I want to write most about is how patiently and well Ute Sonnenberg guided us through our choices beforehand and how she was always there for us during the safari. This was our first time going with a custom safari, but I do have considerable knowledge of Africa, so I do have some perspective. Ute has DEEP knowledge of African safari planning and experience. She also was acutely attuned to us. She listened carefully to what we wanted and always followed our wishes, providing guidance and information and never pushing us in other directions. Everything she said in advance turned out to be completely correct. Ute answered every call and email promptly, and when the inevitable minor glitches occurred, she was quickly on the line to provide advice and help. We will go unhesitatingly with her when planning our next safari. As a word to others when planning your safaris, I would suggest doing what Ute helped us decide: go mostly to private reserves/concessions rather than national parks, splash out for at least one higher-end concession safari experience, and have a night or two's rest after arrival before going on safari. And don't always be on the hunt for the big five because that is just box-checking ... by all means choose one concession that has most of these wonderful iconic animals, but also vary your experience with water and desert camps. Lastly, but also firstly, thank you Ute! You will be hearing from us again!
Malcolm, United States, July 2019
Great Safari. Everything went smoothly. Very professionally organized.
We are frequent travelers in Africa and all over the world. This was a very professionally organized trip by Roho Ya Chui. She interpret very well what were looking for during the preparation of the trip. Excellent camps and resort. Wright location for what we were looking for. Hotels, transfers, etc. everything work very fine and smoothly. The choice of camps was very good to excellent in terms of facilities, food, staff and location. Great 10 days photo safari in Kenya and Tanzania.
Vitor Silva, Portugal, October 2019
Ute did a fantastic job from start to finish
Ute did a fantastic job with our trip from arranging everything to helping us when our flight to Africa got delayed and we needed to make last minute changes. Even after a bag was lost and took another 24 hours to get to Nairobi, she figured out how to get the bag to our camp. We would gladly use Roho Ya Chui again.
Scott, United States, October 2019
Best experience ever!
Overall the entire experience exceeded expectations! The booking and communications were both fluent and prompt & there were no concerns or queries upon arrival at Victoria Falls airport to start things off. The first lodge Ilala was beautiful & such a great start. The staff & services were exceptional, and the food amazing. The free time here was easily filled up with tours and walking about the falls & we loved the relaxed nature. The connection to Botswana / Chobe was seemingly effortless. Upon arrival at Bakwena Lodge we were treated like royalty. The location and level of service was outstanding. The food again was absolutely class! We had the honeymoon lodge arranged & this was like a dream. As soon as the staff knew it was our honeymoon they went even further out of their way to make things more special by service up an amazing intimate dinner by the water. The safari experiences were breathtaking, including the cruise along the Chobe River. All in all it was a dream experience. The transfers & flight connections were again prompt & fluent. The next lodge at Machaba Camp on Khwai River lifted the bounds of amazingness even more! This place simply was out of an African dream! The service & food were that good that we both felt humbled. We have never stayed anywhere like this - just thinking about it gives me goosebumps! Imagine a luxury tent where you drift off to sleep to the sounds of hippos literally 30 metres from your pillow, and wake up to the chorus of bird life ( and more hippos!). The safari experiences were like nothing we had ever imagined - words simply do not do it justice. Machaba Camp is like a dream, this was the icing on our African honeymoon. To conclude, we understand now how difficult arranging connections must be in Africa, but Ute @ Roho ya Chui made the whole experience seemless. It was definitely worth the money for the memories we now have. I would whole heartedly recommend booking a special safari experience through Roho ya Chui to receive a level of absolute class. Many thanks for reading to the end!
Newlo, Australia, September 2019
Excellent Service and Attention to Detail Throughout!
From my first contact with Ute at Roho Ya Chui I was impressed with her "can do" attitude and desire to help us have the best safari experience possible. At no stage during our holiday did her arrangements disappoint and I cannot speak highly enough of the accommodation selected for us and the transport arrangements between them all. Once on safari we were blown away by the experience - it really was top notch and I can whole-heartedly recommend Roho to you - they really know how to arrange a brilliant holiday. There were too many highlights to record but if I was to make a recommendation, then staying the 3 nights in Machaba Camp, as we did, will make for a perfect stay - this camp surpassed all expectations in everything it did - I ran out of superlatives minutes after arriving there! Thank you so much Roho and especially Ute - we hope to return with you again in a few years!
Tim, Hong Kong, September 2019
Quickly responded to inquiries and did an excellent job matching our itinerary to our desires.
My husband and I just returned from the most spectacular trip we have ever taken: a 10 day Safari in Tanzania! Ute Sonnenberg gave us an itinierary and arranged accommodations that exceeded our expectations, going well beyond our stated focus to see elephants and the Migration and to learn about the animals and culture of Africa. Ute's attention to our desires, quick responses to inquiries, and accessibiliy throughout our tour was very much appreciated. As we had never been to Africa, it was a little daunting to plan. Along with some research of my own, Ute helped us successfully manage the entire trip, from booking airlines to obtaining visas, to arranging a day lodge before our flight home. Although I must admit I never really had a comfort level with tipping guidelines.... The safari itself was absolutely amazing, in no small part due to our extraordinary guide, Hassan,with Simba Safaris. The company was well organized and efficiently operated. We always felt safe and that we were in good hands. But it was Hassan's passion and expert knowledge of animal behaviors, his knowledge of the country's people, as well as his warm personality, attentiveness to our interests and safety, and excellent driving skills that brought us up close and personal to the Africa we came to experience. This truly was the trip of a lifetime..... Asante sane to Ute, Simba Safaris, and Hassan for making it happen.
Lynn and Rich, United States, September 2019
The communication with Roho Ya Chui was very good. They are very quickly to answer our questions and at the time you make contact via e-mail or WhatsApp they return to me. The service is the best. I don’t have any prior recomendation of that company but I confirm that they are serious and reliable. Everything was very good: the transfer, the Safari,,the lodge, the Guide. I recomend this company.
Maria Figueira, Brazil, September 2019
Everything went well and as agreed
It was very easy to arrange the safari, communication was quick, easy, and all questions were answered. And when the time for the safari itself arrived, everything went as planned. As for Nottens Bush Camp itself, it's a great camp, with good rooms, good food and excellent service. But be aware that there are no electrical lights in the rooms, so they're very dark. I wish the bathrooms were more properly illuminated.
Eduardo, Brazil, September 2019
Excellent support and service
We travelled to Botswana and Zimbabwe. Everything went perfectly. We felt very well advised beforehand on what to expect, always received prompt replies and felt in good hands. We started our tour in Victoria Falls and from being first met at the airport we had seamless transitions and transfers from camp to camp and bush airstrip until being finally met by a concierge at our end destination in Maun checking on our arrival and how things had been. The holiday of a lifetime! Amazing experience and highly recommended agency.
James McIntyre, Australia, August 2019
Friendly, Efficient and would use again
Ute gave excellent advice and dealt with all booking requirements following my requirements/choices. Safari itself at Kampara Southern Camp was fantastic and lived up to my expectations
Alan, United Kingdom, August 2019
We were extremely happy with the organised nature of the Botswana Safaris and Victoria Falls Tour.
Excellent services provided with absolute efficiency. We travelled as a Family and enjoyed the game drives undertaken by one of the best trekkers. The authentic nature of Safari was complemented by the Bushman Operated Tents in Okavango. We also enjoyed our stay in Chobe River lodge which had a wonderful natural settings all around.
Arshad, United Kingdom, August 2019
Communication was great and we could not fault the trip that we booked, accommodations were great and transfers were all included and on time. Ute was very helpful and informative with our options.
Michelle, Australia, July 2019
We are so glad we booked our South African safari with Roho Ya Chui. From start to finish, it was a pleasure having Ute as our travel agent. She suggested a fantastic itinerary with wonderful lodges. I really appreciated her prompt email responses during the planning process and careful attention to detail. When we arrived, all the road transfers were already arranged and everything went smoothly. We are so thankful for her services. We hope to return to Africa one day and if we do, we will surely book with Roho Ya Chui again.
MaryAnn, United States, July 2019
Three weeks in Tanzania and Zambia
My wife and I have just completed a three-week custom trip arranged by Roho Ya Chui with a central focus on Tanzania and the migration. Everything was arranged directly with Ute at Roho Ya Chui with the greatest efficiency despite there being some complexities in relation to the scheduling and other issues. The principal focus of the trip was the Serengeti and Ngorogoro Crater. The other locations selected for us were all different and provided a wonderful variety. On the ground, the service of the various providers was excellent and lived up to expectations. All drivers and guides were punctual, courteous and helpful. We had one guide and driver for 10 days by the name of Jeffrey. He was delightful company and a superb guide. He was relaxed and flexible with scheduling, always had helpful suggestions, and had an uncanny ability to spot animals. While the various places that we stayed varied slightly in quality of accommodation, the common feature of all of them was excellent service, good wholesome food and a willingness to be perfect hosts. We would not hesitate to recommend Roho Ya Chui.
Campbell Bridge, Australia, June 2019
Absolutely smooth and fabulous!
Ute planned our whole itinerary within 2 days with all confirmed camps booking, guides, road and air transfers. We didn't need to worry a thing about the planning at all. The whole trip was smoothly transitioned from one place to the other. There was no delays or disconnects. There was always someone waiting at the airport to pick us up to next camp. Ute picked Elewana collection for all the stays, which turns out to be the most amazing experience on this trip. Ute was always so quick and patient to answer all our questions before, during and after the booking. She definitely took the stress out of the planning and left us the fun part to enjoy. We really appreciated all her efforts and will definitely recommend it other others for Africa Safari trips. Will come back again Ute! Thank you so very much for making our honeymoon a wonder!
Trista, Australia, June 2019
An excellent value and seamlessly run first time trip to Africa
The service offered by Roho Ya Chui and especially our point of contact, Ute, was nothing short of excellent. When we decided to visit Africa we had a rough idea of where we wanted to go, but no idea on how to get from one place to another, we also wanted to have a local expert help choose and arrange the accommodation instead of us relying on online hotel search engines. As is often the case for us when planning a trip, the parameters of what we were planning changed several times, and Ute handled all of these requests diligently and professionally, and after multiple different draft itineraries had been proposed and discussed we finally settled on a final option. The service in country from the local agents didn’t disappoint either, we were met promptly for all transfers by reliable and courteous staff who went above and beyond in providing local knowledge and insight, allowing us to better understand and appreciate the areas we visited. The safaris themselves were amazing, the variety and abundance of wildlife we got to see was staggering, and the high points were too many to list. Our drivers and guides were all deeply experienced, knowledgeable, fun, and most of all patient of the many questions we asked of them. All in all the trip was memorable to a life changing degree and we can’t wait to go back to explore the continent further!
Tamzin, United Kingdom, May 2019
Great service always!
Roho Ya Chui is an exceptional tour company. I’ve travelled with them twice now and never had a problem. Ute is always so helpful and ready to answer all your questions within 24hours. If you are planning on visiting Africa contact Roho Ya Chui, you can’t go wrong!
Thomas, Finland, May 2019
Ute was extremely helpful in finding us the exact safari that was good for us.
I would recommend this company to anyone without hesitation. The communication between us and this company was quick, precise and complete. On this safari we felt like we were taken care of and didn't need to worry about anything (lodging, transportation, time). We were directed to the perfect lodges and area to be for the time of year. We saw so much wildlife! We truly loved our experience and would not change a thing.
Heather, Germany, May 2019
Excellent service, outstanding logistics
We required last minute (three weeks before the actual trip) itinerary for our 8n/9d safari trip. Ute has provided perfect service, we have customised one of the provided tours and our major issue was limited availability. Ute managed to get us places in the great lodges and camps! All transfers between camps were seamless on new little aircrafts. We didn’t have to worry about anything at all during our trip. Everything was sorted and organised by Ute. We will definitely recommend this agency and Ute to our friends and family.
Anton, United Kingdom, May 2019
Our experience: professional, candid & direct guidance, responsive, knowledgeable, trusted advisor
When we were planning our trip to South Africa, we started doing so in a "do it yourself" fashion and soon discovered we were over our head with the task. We needed help and we were directed to Ute Sonnenberg at Roho Ya Chui. After a few emails and calls with her, we knew we had a trusted advisor we could depend upon, not only to attend to helping us create an itinerary but navigate with us the many choices and issues one faces today while traveling to South Africa from the USA. We especially liked her candor and direct advice. At times, we had notions about what we should or shouldn't do and Ute was quick to help us sort them out. We spent 3 weeks in South Africa and all during our travels, my wife and I kept saying to one another "we are glad we had Ute helping us". The lodging she suggested and safari we took were exactly what we had hoped for. The tools Roho Ya Chui provided (app, trip voucher, mobile friendly travel plan) were professional and helpful. Ute's advice on all matters associated with our trip was spot on. We highly recommend Roho Ya Chui and Ute
Captain Chuck, United States, April 2019
Well organized trip with great accommodations
From the beginning of the process, things went very smoothly. While I set the dates and general locations, I left the specific details to Ute and was not disappointed. All 3 accommodations were lovely, smaller properties, with excellent service. On out 3 transfers around Kruger (one with a short game drive) one one full-day game drive, we were fortunate enough to have the same driver all 4 times. It felt like having our own private driver. Particularly in Sabi Sand, we saw an incredible amount of wildlife, including one pride of 10 lions.
George, United States, April 2019
Excellent from start to finish. Great communication and planning
Excellent experience with Ute and Roho ya Chui. We visited Vic falls, Chobe and Okavango and everything was perfect. We were picked up and met on time at every transfer and all of the hotels and lodges were perfect. I can particularly recommend Pangolin in Chobe. It was very easy to plan the trip with Ute through both email and what’s app.
Laura, United Kingdom, April 2019
The One-stop Shop for a perfect Safari Experience
If you're looking for a hassle free perfectly organized safari out of one hand, Ute and the Roho Ya Chui Team Provide an excellent service that made our safari an unforgettable experience. Communication has always been effective and timely, the recommendations as to how to organize our safari were extremely valuable and we found Ute to be a very dedicated, knowledgeable and professional. All in all a five star experience that we would recommend to anyone without hesitation. Thank you for everything.
Detlev and Bernd, Germany, April 2019
Very helpful and responded promptly. Tailored a great tour for what we asked for.
I enquired with Roho Ya Chui after reading all the positive reviews, Ute made it a breeze communicating during Christmas holidays. After a few emails I chose not to enquire with any other operators and I now know I had made a great choice. Ute tailored a perfect package to suit our budget after we asked to extend on the advertised safari to another National Park. Our transfer drivers were very organised and on time. The accommodations were fabulous and were beyond our expectations, the best hospitality we have experienced yet. Our safari was nothing short of awesome, the guides were outstanding. Our game viewing was really special, it felt like we saw what you only see on documentaries - Cheetah with cubs, Wild dogs, Leopard in a tree, even Lions in a tree after they stayed the night at the entrance to our camp. It was a dream holiday, I would love to return to any of the accommodations we visited and recommend them all. A big thank to Roho Ya Chui for making it all possible for us.
Jacob Cook, Australia, February 2019
Extremely good at catering to my exact needs while providing terrific value.
Everything lived up to my expectations with this company. The safari tours were absolutely wonderful experiences. Roho Ya Chui did an outstanding job of following up with me in a timely fashion when I was initially booking my trip. During the safari, everything went smoothly and according to plan, although had I needed any assistance, Roho Ya Chui provided me with ways to contact them. They thought of everything and I could not have been any happier with how it all turned out!
Brandon, United States, March 2019
Ute was absolutely brilliant! Very informative and efficient ensuring we had a great tour.
The tour was wonderful and everything worked like clockwork: efficient transfers, great guesthouses, excellent excursions and memorable safaris.
Andrew, United Kingdom, March 2019
Professional service provided in a timely manner
We had an amazing time. All transfers and organisation ran seamlessly. The safari camps chosen were all fantastic in their different ways and gave us 3 contrasting experiences. Thanks so much. It was one of the best holidays I have ever had.
Claire, Autralia, March 2019
Superb organisation at some great venues
After travelling with RYC in 2016 we didn't hesitate to return to them for our recent trip.The pre -trip advice is excellent, the on trip experience, transfers and accommodation seamless and the whole trip was a delight with great guides, great sightings and excellent lodges and camps.We did the 6 night Vic Falls and Botswana trip and found both Bakwena and Machabe camps excellent in their differing ways. The friendliness and attention to detail is apparent and, at Machabe, when I was suffering from badly blistered feet, the team, on their own initiative, served dinner on our tent terrace to save me from walking back to the camp. Not only a great gesture but a wonderful experience and meal.
Glynn, United Kingdom, Januray 2019
Excellent service, would definitely recommend to anyone.
Ute from Roho Ya Chui was absolutely fantastic in constantly communicating with me and keeping me updated on our booking for my very first safari. She helped me pick a lodge which exceeded my expectations, was luxurious, and overall everything I could have imagined and more. The safari was the best part of my brother and I's trip to South Africa. I shopped around many tour companies and I am so glad that I found Roho Ya Chui and would definitely use them again next time I come to Africa (which we are already planning another trip for!).
Tarini, United States, January 2019
Everyday - expectations exceeded
So having just returned from our trip to South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana I can with complete confidence recommend the services of Ute to help arrange your safari experience. Ute is very easy to communicate with, both by phone and email and took the time to understand the needs of our group of 8. She successfully worked with our budget, showed us where to spend a little more and where to save. Everywhere we went we were met on time by local ground operators who knew the plan - including at the end of our trip at Maun airport....... There’s something very special about service culture African style, I could write a whole book on what we did each day. Payment was simple, predeparture infornation comprehensive. What can I say other than we are 110% satisfied with both our safari and the service. Choose Roho Ya Chui, you won’t regret it!
PB, Australia, December 2018
Roho is very patient to our requests and made all the good suggestions for our trips.
It’s has been well arranged trip. We have seen the big 5 and many more. The best experience has been a kill by three cheetahs and a ground encounter of a hyena. We have endless of activities and less sleep time. Our guide suggested Victoria fall at Zimbabwe is a wise choice during this season. We would have no or little waterfall view from Zambia.
Lee Tay, Singapore, November 2018
Amazing trip.....Ute did a great job in organising the trip for us
Quick and informative responses in the preparation of the trip. Whole trip was very well prepared and staff took very well care of us during our trip. All lodges and staff were great and very helpful. The accommodation at Pangolin has exceeded our expectations. The welcome entertainment (singing and dancing of the staff) at the Khwai Bush Camp was heartwarming. Special thank you to our tour guides Aubrey at Pangolin and Sinka at Khwai Bush Camp. They did a great job!
Sylvia x4, United Kingdom, November 2018
Everything was very well organized and accommodation was above expectation.
There was really nothing to complain. Everything was very well organized and I was positively surprised about the accommodations. I would definitely recommend Roho Ya Chui and would always travel with again!
Mona, Germany, November 2018
Exactly what we requested and exceeded our expectations!
Working with Ute at RYC was a pleasure from the start. Of all the companies I contacted she was the only one to take the time for a phone call and listened to everything I had to say. Clearly she heard me and was able to understand the nuances of what we wanted and offered us a trip plan that matched our needs. Not only was the preparation easy and fun but the resulting trip was everything we could has asked for and more! We stayed in 4 camps over a 12 days period. All transport and activities were taken care of with options to tweak on site. The camps and their staff were not only hospitable and a delight to be with but knowledgable and generous with all kinds of information regarding nature, Bostwana and the Bastwana people. It was a true cultural experience. I have already passed on RYC's information to inquiring friends and hope that they too will have the 100% positive experience we did with this superior outfit.
Julia Griner, October 2018, Italy
Outstanding experience for our safari. Everything planned in detail and intimerary followed.
Communication, logistic and choice of safari lodges was to our full satisfaction. What more is there to desire? Many gamedrives, boatsafaries, excellent management and mostly good food and sercvice. Chobe game lodge need to improve service, cooking and undrestanding of international travellers.
Roar Fogstad, October 2018, Norway
FANTASTIC JOURNEY thanks to Ute Sonnenberg's knowledge, expertise, hard work and time
Highly recommend Royo Ya Chui and Ute Sonnenberg. Ms. Sonnenberg will put together a first class trip within your price range. We had been working on this trip for over five months and were about to give it up (because we had already communicated with four travel operators who just didn't listen to what we were interested in seeing and doing while in Africa) when Ute was referred to us. We worked with Ute approximately six months putting the trip together, and she read all our emails carefully and listened to all our requests, ideas, and questions. She gave extremely helpful suggestions and recommendations, and delivered far above what our expectations were. Ute always responded to emails quickly, and even followed us during our trip to make sure everything was alright - we never waited more than fifteen minutes for a response to any text while traveling and using whats app. Ute introduced us to the Trip Plan app, which we referred to several times during our month in Africa because it had the entire itinerary with all the necessary information, and one doesn’t need internet to use it. All the accommodations Ute suggested were excellent (Kirkman Kamp, Qorokwe Camp, Pelo Camp, Chobe Game Lodge and Victoria Falls Hotel and the Rovos Train). We did a total of 20 land, water and walking safaris during our trip, which gave great diversity, and the diversity was a great recommendation from Ute. All, but two, of the safaris were fantastic with excellent guides. We were disappointed with the guide at Chobe Game Lodge and Ute immediately texted us and offered to get us a new guide when she found out. We booked all our flights both international and within Africa, using Ute’s suggestions assisting us with times and airlines, which made it so much easier working with the airlines. Overall it was an incredible trip, and we felt for an incredible price. We are most grateful to Ute for all of her time, patience, knowledge, suggestions, assistance and expertise with the entire trip. Highly recommend Ute Sonnenberg and her company Roho Ya Chui.
A&C, September 2018, United States
Everything went smoothly
What I appreciated the most is that Ute was always very quick to respond to my inquiries. I was a bit worried pick-ups because I had to make changes few times due to flight schedule changes and activity I decided to include in a last minute, but there was nothing to worry about. We got picked up pretty much on time every single time. I will recommend Roho Ya Chui to anyone. I will definitely use them again next time I plan African safari. If I am to give my personal advise to people who are planning to visit Kruger, get an accommodation inside the park. If your budget allows, go to a private game reserve instead of the Kruger National Park. There were too many tourists there, which makes it very difficult to see rare animals. We missed a leopard siting while waiting on a very long queue, and had to wait for a long time to see sleeping lions. It was crazy. I had so much better experience at Sabi Sands.
Yu, Japan, September 2018
Very helpful and always there when we had questions or needed to make changes
Communication and Service was great at all times. The trip exceeded our expectations. The 3 camps we stayed at were very different experiences, which I believe added to our experience. Connections all went smooth and there was a lot of moving around. Trip of a lifetime is a common expression for something like this and I believed it met that expectation.
Stuart Friedman, United States, September 2018
Flawless Safari Experience from an Exceptional Safari Company
Throughout the booking process and up to our departure, Ute of Roho Ya Chui provided expert guidance and put together an itinerary that worked perfectly for our group. We initially spoke over the phone then subsequently completed the transaction via email. Communication was timely, clear and precise. Our 14-day Safari adventure was a dream from beginning to end. We didn’t have to worry about anything. For example, we learned flight departure times often change at the last minute with these short flights and our handlers were well aware of every change. In fact, we stopped paying attention to departure details as we knew someone would make sure we got to our next destination on time. We simply were able to enjoy the Safari experience without having to worry about details. Our handlers worried about details for us. Additionally, everything from lodges to inclusions were as advertised. I highly recommended using Roho Ya Chui to handle your Safari.
Marc Condoleo, United States, September 2018
Ute was very professional, thorough, patient, and prompt to respond to all my questions/input.
Communication was excellent and Ute was very prompt to respond to all my questions/queries. She was also prompt to respond once we arrived in Africa. Pre-trip information packet was extremely thorough and included all aspects of our safari. The trip exceeded all expectations. The accommodations were lovely and our game viewing experiences were excellent. We were completely taken care of and directed every step of the way upon arriving in Nairobi, as well as upon returning to Nairobi for our departure home. Overall, an excellent experience. For those of you interested in more specifics regarding camps, our safari was throughout Kenya. Elsa's Kopje in Meru was excellent. Beautiful with excellent game drives. Managers George and Theresa were wonderful and our guide George was excellent! Sasaab in Samburu was beautiful and we had an excellent guide, Steve Tilas, there a well. However, we felt the manager Nikkie was very pretentious and intentionally made us feel very uneasy and uncomfortable. Bateleur in Masa Mara was nothing short of AMAZING!!! Dennis was an incredible guide as well! Little Joe our butler was excellent. Attention to detail and accommodations were superb! Management was excellent. Sand River in Masa Mara also provided an excellent game viewing experience and Javan was an excellent guide as well. Chris and Debbie, managers, were genuine and caring. However, the outdoor dining area was definitely lacking in terms of the view as well as pesky birds pooping all over the umbrella tables. Also, the pool (as seen on the website) is not yet completed. And, although the outdoor shower is lovely, there is not an indoor shower in the tent. Which could have been an issue if the temperature was any colder. And lastly, Tortilas in Amboseli was beautiful, however, it definitely was lacking in the game viewing arena. The managers, Graham and Candy were lovely and pleasant. However, as compared to all the other places we stayed at, the game drives were very short. So much so, that we even questioned why were back so early. We also seemed to stay fairly close to the camp as compared to all other places. I hope this is helpful to those seeking more detailed information.
Michelle, United States, September 2018
Very responsive to the type of camps we wanted and exposure to game.
We did a "five camp" safari over 12 days in Zambia and Zimbabwe. This was our fifth trip to Africa, and we had not spent an appreciable amount of time in either country. The terrain was dry, as expected. We are willing to trade off the beauty of green flora for the absence of mosquitoes, so always travel to Africa in September. Our camps ranged from older bush camps to newer contemporary camps. The bush camps are due for a "refresh", but the food and staff were both excellent as were the game sightings. This was our first trip that included walking safaris. They lasted about an hour each, and were excellent, giving the guides an opportunity to share their extensive knowledge of tracking with us. We learned a great deal, and highly recommend them when offered. We also did a canoe trip at Chiawa. Majestic scenery and interesting wildlife. I am older, and the guide did the paddling...I never touched one, so it was an easy, peaceful journey. At the first three camps in Zambia we had pleasant surprises with meals, ranging from lunch being served at tables in the river (only about 6 inches of water in September), a lunch on a boat and a BBQ dinner in the bush. While these are surprises, we have come to expect them over the years, and were somewhat disappointed that our two stops in Zimbabwe did not provide that experience. We had hoped to do a bit of fishing, but mother nature delivered some rather strong winds, so we were not able to experience that. I won't go into any detail about game sightings but suffice to say they were plentiful and exciting (especially the cheetah chase down and the hyenas running around with a zebra leg). The logistics on this trip were a bit complicated, and I would pay closer attention to them on future trips. It was my error that we did not spend a night in a hotel when we arrived in Africa, and ended up going on two in country flights and a long drive to the first camp, making the journey about 48 hours. Also, moving from Zambia to Zimbabwe was cumbersome and time consuming. I will definitely take a closer look at that aspect next time. All in all, another wonderful trip to Africa!
Paul Shirley, United States, September 2018
Great Communication, Beautiful Accommodations, Amazing Wildlife
We began working with Ute earlier this year. When we initially reached out, we weren't certain on dates, so in the coming months as we determined our timing, we had to follow-up with Ute several times to find dates that would work with the itinerary we wanted. Ute was very accommodating throughout this process, and planned a great trip for us. Because of the date change, one of the initial lodges she recommended wasn't available, so she recommended Pangolin Lodge in Chobe. We were a bit nervous as it hadn't yet opened, and was only scheduled to open one month before our trip. As it turns out, we're quite lucky we ended up with this accommodation as it was amazing! They offer photo safaris with really nice cameras, and we got amazing photos with the team. We saw all kinds of animals and had a great time. The lodge was great as was the food. Our guide Aubrey was fantastic, as was all of the staff at the lodge. Prior to Chobe, we stayed at Victoria Falls Hotel, and initially had a bit of an issue when we checked-in with two twin beds in each of our two rooms. We didn't believe this had been booked for us as Ute knew we were two couples traveling. After speaking to the Victoria Falls Hotel and also Ute via WhatsApp/e-mail, we were able to get the beds pushed together and it turned out just fine. They also left each one of our rooms a bottle of wine, which I imagine was because of this mix-up - very thoughtful and appreciated. Lastly, we stayed at Machaba Camp in Okavango Delta - likely the best aspect of our entire trip. The staff there are absolutely amazing, our guide Glen was fantastic, the food was wonderful, saw lots of animals. This was one of - if not the best - trips we've ever taken and couldn't be happier with the experience. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Roho Ya Chui and Ute. We would certainly use them again in the future. We never use travel agents and typically book directly ourselves, but glad we booked how we did. Knowing the price of each of the the individual components of the trip, the overall price was completely fair. I believe it was actually better priced to book together with Roho than had we booked each piece on our own (plus the complexity aspect!) Thank you Ute and Roho!!!
Lisa Colella, Italy, August 2018
Extraordinary safari in Zambia at Baines River Camp
This was the second safari that we have booked with Roho Ya Chi. The company is thorough, honest, has great customer service, and excellent attention to details. I am in the process of booking next year's safari with them as this is being written!
Pete, United States, August 2018
Very good advices received throughout the preparation phase which led to a wonderful experience.
Ute was extremely helpful and her advices and recommendations proved to be of real value once we started our trip. The safari tour was just perfect, Gavin and Gap Tours were a solid and reliable partner. We could enjoy our holiday to the fullest knowing that we are surrounded by professionals.
Emanuela, Romania, August 2018
Wilderness Adventurers provides an inconsistent experience
The guide was outstanding. Namibia is beautiful and fascinating. I had three trip objectives and all were met. HOWEVER, Damaraland Adventurer Camp is in major need of refurbishment. One sample: the radio was not functioning. Absent WiFi and cell service, this is a potential safety problem. Another example:the electrical wiring kept failing. I could go on and on. Other accommodations were fine. Tents could benefit from heaters. Long drives, although clearly described, did cut into time available at destinations.
Celia, United States, August 2018
Roho exceeded our expectations with our Safari, from the smooth running to the quality of the guides
Ute was super helpful and incredibly professional and honest in helping us plan and book our safari to meet our travel schedule and budget. Our guides were very good and punctual, we saw the most incredible animal sightings and were able to completely relax and enjoy the safari. I would highly recommend Roho and Ute and I look forward to booking our next African adventure with them.
Marc Grahame, UAE, August 2018
An outstanding experience that gave us the best of all worlds in Kruger
This was our first trip to Kruger, so we really needed to rely on an expert. The itinerary Ute suggested we felt was just perfect. We experienced 3 camps, and each offered something different. As a result, we felt that we got a really balanced view of Kruger, that would have been missed by just going to one camp. Ute was easy to deal with, super helpful throughout, provided great advice, suggestions and support. I would happily go back to Ute if we head in that direction again and would definitely recommend her to anyone looking for a safari.
Scott, Australia, July 2018
We were really happy with the agency and our agent Ute Sonnenberg
In reviewing any company it is the people that you work with that make the difference. Ute was able to not only give us the vacation we wanted, but make adjustments to our personal tastes. She listened to what we wanted and saw that we got it, rather than trying to fit us into her program, she adjusted the program to fit us! Everything went off as planned and without any hitches. Seems Ute anticipated everything we needed and when we would need it. We were really pleased with her service and professionalism! The Tour was lovely...in so many ways! Real attention to details. Top notch resorts, top class details.....Lots of laughs and fun! Plan to use Ute in the future, she is a real find and Roho Ya Chui seems to have all the right connections in all the right places. Would do it all again! ...or should I say "will" do it again.....the palns are in the works!
Cathy, United States, July 2018
WOW! Amazing from start to finish! HIGHLY recommend!!
We were very happy we booked our safari with Ute at Roho Ya Chiu! This site, safaribookings, gave us great info, and the reviews were accurate. Our family was a mom, grandmother, and 11-year old son. We chose a private safari (really the only way to go!), and got an incredible and experienced driver/guide, and fabulous safari vehicle. We spent 7 nights/8 days in late June 2018 in 3 camps/lodging facilities, and we visited 4 parks while in Tanzania. Our safari was customized for us and where we wanted to be (Ute was very flexible when I kept tweaking our plans!). We were coming from a church mission trip in Uganda, so our flight arrived at 1pm (versus coming from the states & arriving at night). I changed from 2 doubles to one triple as my husband decided to not go, and we changed locations, dates, and number of days on safari more than once. So, Ute had to change things around for us more than once, and was always doing it quickly and with a pleasant tone in the email communications (I'm sure it was painful on her end). We were picked up at the airport with our names on a sign, so our driver was easy to find. He stayed with us until HE put us AND our bags on our plane in Senora (Southern Serengeti). We were given choices on our lodging, so I looked up each option in TripAdvisor before agreeing to them. This helped me feel more comfortable and in control of our safari, which is kind of scary when booking (you never know if you are going to get what you paid for -- we did!!). We paid by wire transfer (again, kind of scary for paranoid Americans), a deposit when booking and then payment in full before leaving the USA.
Ute was always answering my many questions and ensuring our requests were taken care of. She emailed us right before and then followed up again right after our trip. She made sure everything went smoothly from start to finish! We did not need to contact her during our trip as we had no issues, but she was available in case we did. Hassan, our guide & driver, was incredible!!! He was always very professional, attentive to all our needs, patient, extremely knowledgeable, and could find animals we could barely see with the binoculars! He could find animals even hidden in the tall grass and up in the trees! We were constantly amazed by his knowledge (every bird, animal, plant, & tree) and his sighting abilities. We looked up animals & plants in our guidebook we took with us, and found him to be accurate about everything. He taught us some Swahili words to use during our stay as well (asante!). He was truly a blessing to have for our first safari experience!!! Our vehicle was a newer, pale yellow Landcruiser with popup roof that was very well maintained. No heat or A/C, but plenty of windows we could open plus the roof, and we were never uncomfortable (we took blankets for cool mornings and a pillow my son used for a nap one day). There were 6 seats in the back area plus a driver and side passenger (some groups required a translator in addition to their guide, which all speak English and Swahili). We had plenty of room to all be on one side of the car comfortably when the animal sightings called for it. Our seats had cushions on them, so they were very comfortable on the bumpy roads (sometimes long drives). We also had a small fridge stocked with plenty of water and could put our Cokes and snacks in it as well. NOTE: We saw several cars with all the seats filled, which looked extremely uncomfortable! Either they did not get a private safari, or they had too many people in their group. Be sure you have enough room to spread out -- you spend a LOT of time in the vehicle! I think 4 people in one car would be the max for comfort, even though there are seats for 6-8. We did request extra binoculars for our car, so we got 2 pair and brought 1 pair so we could all enjoy the sightings (you definitely want them!). We also brought lots of snacks with us as the lunches made by the lodges/camps were not as filling as we needed while out all day. We highly recommend this company and especially Ute!!! Thanks to her for our memorable trip!
Melanie H., United States, June 2018
5-star perfectly planned safari in South Africa and Botswana!
From our first email communications planning our family's first ever safari in South Africa and Botswana to helping locate a misplaced lens rental and its return, Ute's expertise and advice were impeccable! Ute planned the perfect safari for our family, and the intimate lodges and safari tours more than exceeded our expectations! The lodges were absolutely amazing. Food was delicious, even catering to one in our party with serious food allergies. The lodge staff and guides went out of their way to ensure that our safari experience was most memorable. Ute responded promptly to our inquiries and was extremely helpful! Our next safari will definitely be with Roho Ya Chui! Highly recommend Ute and Roho Ya Chui!
Tricia, United States, June 2018
Ute at Roho Ya Chui was very helpful and quick to respond to all of our questions.
Ute was great! There was a slight mix up the how the local flights were booked, the airline was given a name that didn't match a passport but all in all Roho Ya Chui was outstanding. I think using a tour operator in a country like Zambia can make booking a safari much easier. And of the companies we worked with, Roho Ya Chui was among the best.
James, United States, June 2018
Once again Ute delivered an impeccable experience in Africa. Wow! Couldn’t be happier. From inquiries to all the information and questions, Ute always replies fast and helps in every possible way. It would be difficult to build such a smooth and wonderful vacation in Africa, without Ute’s touch. Highly recommend!
Mikko & Nicolas, Finland, June 2018
This was my first safari experience and Ute from Roho Ya Chui was an excellent advisor.
All arrangements where up to my expectations - starting from designing the itinerary, making transportation arrangements, and ending with organizing safari tours. It as a great first safari experience!
Tamara, United States, June 2018
Excellent experience from planning through execution
We had a 6 day trip with Roho Ya Chui including Victoria Falls, Chobe and the Okovongo Delta.
Ute was always very prompt with responses, and planned some excellent accommodations (we especially loved Machaba camp in the Okovongo Delta).
She provided an excellent information package preparing us for all things we needed to take care of, (shots, tip amounts, visas etc), and provided an app to see our travel arrangements offline on our cell phone. She worked with the lodges to ensure my wife's dietary restrictions were accommodated. Everything on the 6 days went off without a hitch, and the wildlife viewing was incredible. The highlights had to be watching two hippos fighting from our cruise on the Chobe. There were lots of little details that we weren't expecting that she planned. In Machaba we were assigned a guide who specialized in photography. At the Ilala lodge there was a bottle of champagne in our room to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. Overall great trip and great service, thanks so much.
David, United States, June 2018
Everything went smoothly, expectations were fully met!
Our entire experience booking our South African safaris with Ute was great! Everything happened as expected, on time, and there were no issues with any part of the trip. We had an amazing trip and couldn't be happier with the itinerary Ute set up for us. It was so simple working with her as well - the booking process was easy, she answered all of our questions and had fantastic communication. We loved our trip to South Africa!
Jason, United States, June 2018
We really liked working with Ute. She tried to find the best solution for us based on our wishes.
Communications with roho ya chui, namely with Ute, were great, with no delays or problems. We always received feedback immediately or very soon. Ute was very helpful, working with us patiently and was always offering suggestions or other solutions. As we booked the safari very last minute, this was very helpful. The safari tour itself was wonderful and exceeded our expectations. We just came back but wish we stayed longer!
Jirina, Czech Republic, June 2018
Excellent service fast response and just great tour operator!
I could recomend this operator to anyone planning for a unforgettable experience and memorys for life! The service was excellent and everything was way over expectations, i would for sure is this operator next time aswell!
Patrik M, Sweden, June 2018
Great experience with a skilled operator
Ute at Roho Ya Chui arranged a beautiful week of travel for our group. Very responsive, gave great info & context on all elements of trip, and appreciated willingness to customize the tour based on our timing and interests. All transport, accommodation, and tours went very smoothly, and our resulting experiences were spectacular.
Doug, United States, May 2018
Absolutly fantastic organized with a lot of experience and many helpful recommendations.
What we really liked was that Ute called us directly after our first mail. We get the chance to hear more about her experience and she gave us a lot of recommendations to make sure we really plan our vacation as requested. We also loved how quick she was. That's sometimes something really crucial to decide with wich travel agent you will book. This Vacations was one of our best we ever had. From A-Z was all perfect organized all our Lodges was just amazing and the nature absolutely gorgeous im May. You spend a lot of money but it's really worth to do it. Every Camp were totally different and also the nature and the region. That was a point was we really loved. So you are never bored and you see so many things. The Water Camp Jacana was something what we never expected to see. Palm trees, so many sand, birds, calm and water. All the water Safaris which you can do in May are fantastic. The view is different and it's so relaxed. The Food and Wine of the hole Safaris was excellent. And we were anytime really happy with all our Guides and the knowledge. Oh yes and not to forget the donation for the lights we really liked and also all Camps are very eco-friendly. We are sure we will coming back to book another trip through Africa. We can really recommend this Travel Agent.
Astrid, Switzerland, May 2018
Totally professional, superbly organised and well communicated in all aspects.
My wife and I have recently completed a 16 day tour of Southern Africa (our first), 12 of which consisted of a tour organised by Roho Ya Chui (through Ute Sonnenberg) comprising visits to Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe) and the safari camps of Muchenje, Ghoha Hills Savuti and Machaba in Botswana. In the initial stages we acquired quotes and itineraries from two agents in Australia and two in South Africa. By comparison, Ute's was not the cheapest quote received nor was it the most expensive however we found her to be the most comprehensive in her ability to match the parameters we had set. Most importantly however was Ute's responsiveness to our contacts and her adaptability to several changes we made throughout the process. It also helped that we were able to undertake a Skype session with her where many of our questions were answered and the ease in which we were ultimately able to book and pay. In so far as the tours went themselves, all our road transfers and light aircraft flights (3 in total) went to schedule and all the venues chosen exceeded all our expectations. We also had the pleasure of meeting Ute in Johannesburg on the last day of our tour and found her to be just as excited about what we had just experienced on our trip as we were. We can only suggest that if you are planning a trip to Africa make sure you visit the Roho Ya Chui website and really consider organising and undertaking your trip with Ute. You will not be disappointed. Thanks Ute. We hope to travel to Africa again in the future and will certainly use your services again when we do. Best Regards Barry and Karen Blue Mountains AUSTRALIA
Trustworthy, timely, and helpful experience with Ute!
Ute was a wonderful consultant. I would highly recommend her to anyone looking to book a trip with accommodations, transfers, and safaris in South Africa. Everything in our itinerary was smooth, timely, and as expected. We chose the Blyde River Canyon / Panorama Route / Kruger National Park itinerary for 6 days and 5 nights. Ute responded to emails quickly and was very helpful and kind. The only thing I did not enjoy was that I was booked for two days at the first lodge (Blyde River Canyon) but there were no planned activities. This is usually not a big deal however we did not rent a car, instead relied on planned transfers between locations, so not having a car at this particular lodge was a disadvantage as we could not leave the property to go on activities as nothing was within walking distance (I later learned that other lodges such as the Forever Resort had hikes and sight-seeing within walking distance). When I relayed this to the lodge's manager she seemed surprised that we didn't have a vehicle and made it seem as if we should have known better. She did end up helping us arrange some activities but it seemed like such a hassle to her to help her lodge clients. The service in general at Blyde River Canyon Lodge felt stiff and forced. I would not recommend that particular lodge again (Blyde River Canyon). We also went on the Panorama Tour with a great guide and it was peaceful way to see South Africa's gorgeous scenery. Our second lodge was so much better - Chestnut Country Lodge in Hazyview. It was worlds different than our first lodge. The hospitality was top notch, the managers/staff were so helpful and welcoming, and the food and service were definitely 5 stars! We greatly enjoyed our two day game drive in Kruger Park as well as the Elephant Sanctuary on the last day.
Ann, United States, May 2018
Great adventure at amazing Kruger
I did not have enough time to plan my trip properly so I just chose an 5 stars rating company and booked a 3 nights trip to Kruger and Sabi Sabi. They had everything perfectly planned. If I had to change one thing in the trip I would have chosen a different Lodge other than Umkumbe. The Chestnut lodge was perfect.
Jeries Tadros, Jordan, May 2018
This is our second time booking with Roho Ya Chui and there is a reason why we came back... just excellent.
Jen, Kuwait, May 2018
A Babymoon beyond all expectations!
My husband and I both travel for a living and pride ourselves on our independence (whether we're visiting Yogyakarta, Lofoten, or even just London.) But after our plans for a Babymoon in Vietnam and Cambodia fell through due to a sudden resurgence of Zika, we found ourselves with less than a month to put together another itinerary and turned to Roho Ya Chui and Ute. While this was our first experience working with a travel agent, Ute was extremely patient and thorough, developing multiple potential itineraries based on our collective brainstorming (and we did bombard her with ideas!) Her research and advice on each of the stops was incredibly helpful and informed, which is particularly important since this year's rains would have made stays at some of our suggested destinations less than ideal. Our final route ended up based on the Victoria Falls/Botswana itinerary, but with added time at the luxurious Camelthorn Lodge in Hwange, Zimbabwe, and a stopover in Tsodilo Hills to see the cave paintings (just to add some variety to our activities.) Each lodge offered its own adventure, with its own unique character and game viewing, and Ute ensured all of our transfers were as seamless as possible. I have never traveled without first working out all my flight times, carriers, etc, but I quickly learned how luxurious it is to let someone else handle all of that! (Even in Maun, Roho Ya Chui sent someone to the airport to make sure we transferred to our international flights without a hitch.) We came for our Babymoon, thinking this would be a once-in-a-lifetime trip. While it certainly was, we now find ourselves eagerly counting down the days (/years...) until we can bring our son back to see even more. We're so very grateful to Ute for all of her patience, persistence and professionalism in making this trip happen for us!
Kate Sutton, Croatia, April 2018
Well Organized, great people, reasonably priced, and wonderful experience
Ute Sonnenberg was very responsive to my emails and even did a WhatsApp call with me from the U.S. She explained everything well and it was just as described. When we got there, Edward, our tour guide was wonderful and very informative. He knew a lot about the animals and seemed very passionate about the park and his work. We were very glad to have him as a guide for Kruger. At Sabi Sands we stayed at Nottens Bush Camp which was a wonderful camp. We got really close to the animals in their natural habitat. The lodging was really accommodating and felt very homely as we had dinner at a long communal candlelight table with the other guest. Every aspect of it was wonderful. The cost was not cheap but a lot less expensive than the other safaris we looked at.
Tara C., United States, April 2018
Detailed, prompt and professional
I had a few unfortunate experiences when I started contacting tour operators for my trip. Tour operators were slow to reply, were not interested in my business because they felt my budget was too small, or had snarky responses to some of my questions. Although I was not hopeful after those experienced, I contacted Roho Ya Chui and was pleasantly surprised. As other reviewers have noted, Ute is really helpful and amazing to work with. She answered all of my questions in a timely and professional manner. If my questions were dumb or naive, she never let that on in her replies. Everything was explained in documents that she provided, and I really just needed to show up at the correct time and place because all transfers had been arranged and were professional. I don't typically use an agent, but her help made this trip very easy to plan. The accommodations were good although one hotel was perhaps a 4 or 5 star by African standards, but possibly not by western standards.
Ellen, United States, February 2018
Competent, knowledgeable, cheerful & handled seamlessly
All details handled up front & safari went as planned without a hitch. Completely met expectations (my safari #5). See my reviews of each lodge in TripAdvisor under LucyLu_Texas.
Janeen, United States, March 2018
Roho Ya Chui thought of everything.
We booked our safari vacation with Roho Ya Chui on Christmas, left mid February. We were first timers and booked on a whim when we finally got a break in our schedules. We had done little research, Roho Ya Chui thought of everything for us. We were provided with visa information, packing list, itinerary etc. All our transfers were seamless and our accommodations were excellent. It was really an amazing holiday, every detail was taken care of.
Chana, Netherlands, February 2018
Smooth as silk
Ute, our contact, has helped us in very possible way, organizing the safari, booking internal flights and arranging payments.
She always answered quickly and gently.
Thanks! It has been a wonderful experience, which we will do again in the future, maybe for more days.
Simone Avanzini, Italy, December 2017
Ute Sonnenberg setup our safari to Kenya and Tanzinia. We stayed at Elewana Collection properties which overall were wonderful. Ute made setting up the safari and all the logistics that go along with it completely painless and easy. Everything went as planned and was effortless....no surprises. It was a wonderful trip!
Ted, United States, November 2017
Another amazing experience designed by Roho Ya Chui
This was our second flawless vacation designed by Roho Ya Chui. Ute always goes above and beyond to make sure the trip exceeds all expectations. The first trip we didn't know what to expect but for this vacation our expectations were very high and even then they were exceeded. Every transfer, every detail, every celebration was carefully mapped out and implemented. Wow, what a great time. AndBeyond was our safari provider and they were also 200%. Ute did a great job mixing the accommodations so we experienced all types of lodging. Although they were all different they were also all fantastic. Luxury Pure. So many fantastic memories. We will for sure use Ute at Roho Ya Chui and AndBeyond again and again. We can't wait to see where the next trip takes us.
Cheryl, United States, November 2017
A wonderful trip with seamless coordination at every step.
Initially, I was concerned that all of the transfers, flights and hotels would not coordinate. Much to my delight, we were met by helpful people (at least four at Maun airport!) at every step who helped us along our journey. The selection of camps was superb and we enjoyed a unique experience at each of them. The hotels in Johannesburg and CapeTown were well appointed and situated for easy access to restaurants. Without exception, the staff at each place we stayed was welcoming and accommodating. At Tau Pan, for example, they stored some medication for me in the refrigerator because of the heat outside.
Susan, United States, October 2017
Once again, an unforgettable safari holiday !
We have been going for safari holidays every summer since 3 years ago, and have chosen Roho Ya Chui every time. From our first experience, Ute has been so kindly helpful, catering to our taste and responding immediately to all questions. Our destination this time was Zambia (after experiencing South Africa and Botswana in the past), and we had a little more special requests as to the itinerary and the lodges. Ute rapidly provided us with very good alternatives and options, and we are so thankful to her as our trip in South Luangwa and Lower Zambezi turned out to be another unrivaled experience of our life.
Those (including myself) who love the nature and animals never get bored of being in the African wilderness even without spectacular sightings…but our trip this time gave us the memorable chances of seeing a leopard hunting, wild dogs hunting, porcupines, honey badgers, as well as a colony of beautiful southern carmine bee-eaters, not to mention all other big popular animals (except the cheetahs which are unfortunately non-existent). The boat and walking safaris in the serene Lower Zambezi not only made us discover a new world of African nature but also was in itself very exciting with lots of animal/bird events.
Safari trips are not inexpensive but as always we felt that the actual experience was totally worth the costs. Even after coming back from the trip, Ute cares how our trips went along and is attentive to our feedback. Sharing the experience and giving her the feedback is indeed a part of our safari pleasure.
Iwao, France, August 2017
The Best of Zambia this time went through the Republic of South Africa...
We were entirely satisfied under each point of view by the professional work of Roho Ya Chui. The lodges as well as the safari tours were completely corresponding to our expectations. We highly appreciated your immediate reaction (Ute) at Lower Zambezi where we faced a small misfit with Kiambi Lodge management team at the moment of paying our final account with them.
Philippe, Switzerland, October 2017
Great Sambia tour, top organisation, well planned
Ute from Roho Ya Chui organized a trip for my father and me to Zambia. This included all transfers in Zambia and the accomodations - which all turned out great. Communications with Ute were always were fast, friendly and professional. She took care of all our wishes, and we had a wonderful trip. We had a nice Lodge in Lower Zambesi (Kanyemba) and the probably best camp in South Luangwa (Flatdogs) - both with very good and professional guides. As for transfers we did road transfer by car, 20 passengers flight by plane (ProFlight) and 2 passenger flight in a tiny plane - and were kept very safe in all of them.
For my next trip i will contact Ute again and recommend Roho Ya Chui to everyone who would like to visit there as well.
Roman, Germany, October 2017
Simply perfect - southern Tanzania
We visited many countries in Africa and were in northern Tanzania 13 years ago. This safari was simply great and so it was obvious to us to explore southern Tanzania as well, followed by a few days on Zanzibar.
The planning of this tour with Roho Ya Chui was highly professional and always a pleasure, as a lot of experience and valuable information from Ute Sonnenberg have designed our safari perfectly.
The southern circuit of Tanzania was beautiful and perfectly organized by Roho Ya Chui – it doesn’t get any better, summa cum laude! If you want to see the South: Dar es Salaam is not an African gem but still worth a glance. From Dar SAL (Safari Air Link) flies with Cessna 208 to Mikumi, Ruaha and Selous.
All three parks are absolutely worth seeing but different, you stay comfortable in best furnished Lodges of Fox Group. Ruaha, however, was our surprise: an extraordinary national park, quite different from many others, which we have already visited. Many elephants, hippos, impalas, lions... all in front of grandiose scenery. We will certainly return to this amazing place. If you are looking for a small and quiet top hotel on Zanzibar – we recommend to ask Ute Sonnenberg also.
Our next trips to Africa we will plan with Roho Ya Chui again! Thanks again and see you soon.
Nicole & Torsten, Germany, October 2017
Seamless operations, perfectly planned trip!
Everything exceeded expectations. This was our first trip to Africa and Ute did an amazing job planning it. The communication was very easy and she was available for any questions we had. All the transport for the activities and between lodges was extremely smooth and punctual. We loved the lodges and the activities Ute booked for us, in particular devil's pool in Victoria Falls, Bakwena lodge in Chobe, and Machaba camp in Khwai. Our guide at Machaba Camp, Moreri, was terrific. Our drives with him were the highlight of our trip. We also really enjoyed the mokoro activity at Machaba. We highly recommend Ute and the itinerary she booked for us. Thank you!
Nahal, United States, October 2017
Trip of a Lifetime!
Ute helped my friends and I plan our dream trip to Southern Africa - Victoria Falls, safari in Botswana, and Cape Town. The trip was exactly what we wanted and more! We stayed in lovely accommodations with the most incredible staff. We were made to feel like VIPs everywhere we stayed. The safari was amazing - we would never have thought we'd see as many animals or have the type of experience we did. We did several of the excursions in Cape Town and felt like we saw it all in a very short time. It was truly the trip of a lifetime.
Ute was amazing and planned everything perfectly. We didn't experience any hiccups at all on the trip - all of our pickups occurred without problems, all the lodges were expecting us, and all of the excursions went off without a hitch. Ute went above and beyond to accommodate us when we decided to cancel one of our activities at the last minute. I would not hesitate to use Roho Ya Chui for a trip in the future.
Jen P, United States, October 2017
Best vacation ever
We were late in booking our safari. As I travel several times a year to Africa, mostly with one month - or less - notice, it didn't occur to me that many (most?) people plan their safari months in advance.
After some back and forth with Ute Sonnenberg - and being on a "waiting list" - we spent six days/nights on safari in and around Kruger National Park in South Africa. Communication/updates were frequent and efficient and as indicated above, my wife and I who have traveled the world agree that this was the best trip ever. It was not our first safari, but it seemed that everything was hand picked and that we were the center of attention.
The highlight were the wild dogs and the leopards. But then there was the 18 member lion pride... and soo much more
Michel P, United States, September 2017
Excellent communication and service with Royo ya Chui
I worked with Royo Ya Chui to book a tented camp safari at Beyond Kichwa Tembo. Ute at Royo Ya Chui was extremely easy to work with and provided excellent communication through the process. Our stay at Kichwa Tembo was one of our best vacation experiences to date. The camp pays great attention to all details to ensure you have a wonderful stay. The lodging, food, safari drivers, are all top notch. You will not be disappointed if you book a safari at &Beyond with Royo Ya Chui.
HJ & CJ, United States, September 2017
Very helpful with bookings. The safari tour itself was superb, all arrangements and transfers worked
Much better than expected. Lodgings were superb and the way the safari was organised worked really well.
Would highly recommend this tour to anyone and you will have a great experience
John, Ireland, September 2017
Where do I start, Ute was great, we got our whole experience by default, and we loved every bit of it. First of all where we wanted to stay was fully booked so Ute suggested doing 3 Nights at Nottens Bush camp, this place was excellent, such a personalised experience, the owner socialised and ate with us, we loved this and got alot of information from this experience, our guides here were wonderful. For the second half of our stay Ute suggested 1 night at Rhino Post Lodge, with A Game Drive and 2 nights at Rhino Post Camp with one of these nights in a sleepout with us doing Walking Safaris. But for some reason I thought it was the other way round with the Game drive, I thought I didn't like walking Safaris. The Rhino Post Lodge tried everything to change it for me, but couldn't as they were totally booked. Although it turned out we had the camp all to ourselves on the first night and we were told we could do a part walk and part drive if we wanted to.
All I can say is that I loved everything about it, our walking/drive Safari was awesome. We came across some Vultures in a tree so we decided to head in that general direction, as we were going in we then saw a Hyena hanging around and we started to get excited, by this time all of our senses were on edge, we then saw this massive Lion, as soon as it saw us he took off, we did manage to see the remains of his kill.
Moe, our guide was awesome, a very knowledgeable man, very nice and respectful, what an assett to this company.
I must say I am still not a big Walking Safari fan but I absolutely love the Walking/Driving Safari that we were offered. But that is just me.
We then had a night at the Sleepout, boy was this an experience, sleeping out under the stars, actually not much sleeping was done with the Lions and Hyena calling all night and the Elephants that feeding all around us, crashing trees.
We saw loads and loads of animals and I would not hesitate to recommend this trip to anyone, we would definitely do this trip again
Sheree, Australia, September 2017
South Africa and Zambia Safari
My wife and I and our son travelled with Roho Ya Chui to South Africa and Zambia for a 17 or so day safari. We have travelled to Africa on numerous occasions and have a base with which to make comparisons. The safari was flawlessly organised and the recommended camps - Nottens and Ngala ( And Beyond) in South Africa and the bush camps InZambia (The Bushcamp Company) provided superb game viewing and photographic opportunities.
We would happily recommend Roho Ya Chui as an operator and the services provided. Ute was extremely responsive to all our questions.
Hans, New Zealand, September 2017
Very professional, personal and pleasant throughout
Our experience with Roho Ya Chui was extremely positive and exceeded our expectations. Our communication was with Ms. Ute Sonnenberg who was very responsive from the start and helped us plan the vacation experience we were looking for from A to Z, and everything worked very smoothly and according to plan. The safari tour itself was an unforgettable experience. We would definitely recommend Roho Ya Chui to all our friends.
Zeina, Austria, September 2017
Another Flawless Trip
This was our second trip with Roho Ya Chui and hopefully won't be our last. We were always well informed about our trip from the planning through the end of our trip. Her accommodation recommendations were exactly what we wanted and she worked with us in planning to make sure that we had the experience we expected. We had several locations for our travel in Tanzania and Kenya and the drivers and in country flights were timely. At the end of our time in Tanzania, we were met by a driver who expertly guided us through immigration in Kenya and onto our flight to Kichwa Tembo. Our driver from the local Nairobi airport to the international airport back to the U.S. was an expert in getting us through the confusing Nairobi traffic. All of our safari expectations were met and especially exceeded at Kichwa Tembo. Anyone thinking of an African Safari should definitely contact Roho Ya Chui.
Beverly, United States, September 2017
Experience and professionalism; punctuality, accuracy, friendly; expert travel advice; exceptional!
From start to finish, this was the best travel experience I have had (and I've been to 63 countries and on two previous African safaris). Communication via e-mail was virtually instantaneous and everything on the safari was delivered exactly as arranged for. Not to mention, the safari itself was superb! Ute at Roho Ya Chui is an absolutely amazing, organized, and dedicated professional who truly made this safari the wonderful expedition that it was. All I can say is, thank-you Ute!
Pete, United States, August 2017
Loved our Experience
I was a little nervous initially of using an agent from a foreign country (I am in USA). But, Royo Ya Chui - Ute took good care of us. Ute provided us with some good options for lodging in Victoria Falls and some safari camps in Hwange. Every detail of the itinerary was performed to perfection. From beginning to end, it was easy to enjoy our African experience.
Jerry, United States, September 2017
Everything was perfectly planned with great service
This was our first safari and we were overwhelmed by the thought of planning the trip. Ute made all of our worries go away. She organized our trip perfectly and kept us informed throughout the process. Our accommodations were amazing with service that exceeded our expectations. We saw all of the big 5 and many other incredible animals on our game drives. We would definitely recommend Roho Ya Chui for your next safari.
Stacy Pool, United States, June 2017
Ute and Roho Ya Chui are the very best!!
This was our fifth trip to Africa. We have booked with different operators, until we heard of Roho Ya Chui when planning our trip to Victoria Falls and Botswana last year. Our trip last year was absolutely wonderful, so we didn't even consider booking with another agent when we started planning our trip to South Africa this year. Ute was able to recommend the very best camps/lodges for our stay and I must say this has been our very best trip to Africa. It exceeded all our expectations. All the accommodations were wonderful, excellent guides, and food! We are already considering our next trip with Roho Ya Chui as soon as we are able to save up a bit! Ute is extremely responsive which I love. She will respond almost immediately to any queries I have. When we were able to add 3 extra nights to our trip at the very last minute, she made wonderful recommendations and was able to book one of the camps I had just hear about and ended up being are very favorite! She's flexible and offers different options to fit each budget. She's extremely organized. The electronic itinerary on Trip Plans was great. No need to refer to print outs when we could see everything on our iPhone or iPad. I highly recommend Roho Ya Chui for any safaris you have planned!!
Carolina Griffiths, United States, August 2017
An amazing way to experience Botswana
From the first email all the way through to the end of our trip, our interactions with Ute and Roho Ya Chui have been great - fast responses and accommodating. The trip that was planned for us was seamless, all transportation, lodging and safaris were well organized and we felt welcome everywhere we went.
Ute was so great that when we first reached out to her for a quote, we mentioned we were planning our second honeymoon and she made sure to pass that along to our lodges/hosts who very graciously surprised us with romantic meals and perks - it was very considerate.
I would highly recommend booking your African safaris with Ute and Roho Ya Chui.
Kevin, Canada, May 2017
Fantastic, well organized trip
I used Roho Ya Chui to plan part of my trip to South Africa. Ute was very helpful and responsive in arranging lodges and transfers between Kruger, Blyde River Canyon, and another greater Kruger reserve. The whole experience was perfect, from booking to payment to the trip itself. The lodges and game drives she arranged were great, and all the logistical details went smoothly. I would wholeheartedly recommend Roho Ya Chui when planning a trip to southern or eastern Africa.
Andrew, United States, July 2017
Great experience. Definitely would recommend this trip to anyone.
Overall service was good, it surpassed our expectations. The safari tour itself was just fantastic.
Benji, Switzerland, July 2017
If you wish to travel to South Africa, this is the group to plan with
I was more than impressed with the quick service and excellent selection of sites for us to visit on our two week stay in South Africa, particularly handling the private game reservations and the reservations to Cape Town, including transportation. Everything worked beautifully. However, my strongest recommendation for your services is because you are "local" to the region and when I needed questions asked or help, such as reserving my airline seats, Ute was there, in my time zone, to assist. Would definitely rebook through Roho ya Chui on my next trip back!
Bernadine, United States, June 2017
Agent Ute Sonnenberg very responsive/pleasant to deal with/knowledgeable or found out info promptly
Flexible re communication across time zone difference to USA. Prompt responses both prior to trip and while on trip. Totally seamless transfers and tour arrangements- excellent companies chosen. (So different from all the troubles we had with another agency on a different trip to Brazil/Argentina). Safari experience amazing- Highly recommend kirkmans kamp. Agent Ute Sonnenberg tailored trip to meet my exact requests. If she didn't know something, she researched it and got the answer. Would absolutely recommend Ute and Roho Ya Chui.
Gail, United States, July 2017
Kruger / Sabi Sands Safari's
When you plan trips over the web, there is always the uncertainty that your expectations are higher that what you will experience once you get there. Absolutely not the case.
Working with Ute from Roho Ya Chui was great. She was flexible, answered all my questions and helped us through all the areas of arranging our trip including adding an additional day in the Sabi Sands. From our flights into Skukuza airport in Kruger park to our return flights from Skukuza to Johannesburg, everything went as smoothly as I could hope for. Everyone we encountered worked hard to ensure we had a great time.
My hat off to Mandla who was our guide through 2 days in Kruger and a long drive along the Panorama route taking in Lisbon and Lone Creek Falls was tremendous. Our stay at Chestnut Country Lodge was extremely comfortable with absolutely 5-star accommodations and dining.
The second half of our trip was at Notten's Bush Camp in the Sabi Sands where everyone is extremely well taken care of. The staff there is delightful to talk with and hear their stories about living in that environment. the food and accommodations are absolutely fabulous. We had both walking and drive guided safari's that were a different adventure every time. Lions, leopards, wild dogs and about everything else you could ask for. From the Big 5 to the Ugly 5 and almost to the Super 7, I can't recommend Notten's enough.
Absolutely a great time. Tough to come home.
David Hamel, May 2017, United States
4 locations over 9 days and everything went perfectly
Ute handled all the details well for us. She contacted me with updates prior to the trip and responded quickly to questions I had asked. The tour package she put together was excellent. All of the ground and air transportation was on time and we never felt unsure of what was going to happen next. Everything went according to schedule. We had personal guides at Chobe and Pom Pom that were very friendly and knowledgeable. All the accommodations were beyond our expectations, along with the food and hospitality of the staff. The safari tours were spectacular. Each day was filled with activities but not overwhelming so.
John, United States, May 2017
Fantastic, smooth trip.
My family of four enjoyed a tremendous trip from Vic Falls, through Chobe and the Okavango Delta. We requested a few itinerary adjustments from Ute, and she nailed each and every one. Our guide, Charles, was extraordinary, and the quality of support and comfort exceeded our expectations. We'll certainly work with Ute and Roho Ya Chui on any future visits to Africa and recommend her to our friends as well.
Ken, Thailand, July 2017
Roho Ya Chui met all our travel needs; including 5 star accommodations in Cape Town Beyond Kirkmans
Roho Ya Chui was always quick to respond to emails. We could not have asked for better accommodations as we were booked at Table Bay Hotel (5 star) in Cape Town and Beyond Kirkmans Camp in Sabi Sands. In fact the accommodations were better than we expected! Our safari guide and tracker were very knowledgeable about the animals and Sabi Sands. The safari was fantastic as we saw the Big 5 within 2 days. Our guide was determined that we each were thoroughly satisfied with our safari experience. The food, staff, and room was awesome at Kirkmans. We would absolutely recommend Ute Sonnenburg to any of our friends or relatives interested in the best vacation ever!!
Patty, April 2017, United States
The perfectly executed last minute African adventure
I contacted Ute about 14 days before my husband and I wanted to travel to Africa. We had a last minute window of being able to take time off of work. Ute was the perfect person to reach out to! She was very quick in her responses, was very thorough, and gave us the time (even though the trip was approaching quickly) for my husband and I to review the options.
She is very knowledgeable of the different areas to travel, travel times and the best way to get the most out of every day, and met exactly what we wanted.
All we gave Ute was a budget, key places we wanted to visit, and the dates available. She quickly came back with a full itinerary, & was open to conversations on potential adjustments.
We went to Victoria Falls, Chobe, Okavango Delta (Moremi specifically) ,and Phinda private reserve in S. Africa. We had never heard of Phinda, and to be honest, was a bit nervous about the sighting potential & quality (as you always hear about Kruger, etc). I was 100% incorrect in having any nerves. Phinda was actually our favorite part of the trip- from the lodge, to the guides, to the sightings, it was absolutely amazing!
It was Ute's deep knowledge of the different parks and areas of each country that made our 2 week experience absolutely perfect! If we are lucky enough to come back to Africa again, we will book through no one other than Ute.
Kendall, United Kingdom, April 2017
Amazing Botswana Trip
I can't say enough about Roho Ya Chui. The trip was absolutely incredible. Ute was always responsive, worked with us within our budget and picked places in Botswana that fit exactly what we were looking for. The trip was seamless- picked up and transferred right on time. We even had someone meet us at the airport when we were leaving to check in with us and ensure we made it on to our next destination. The lodges were amazing and so luxurious- food and people were incredible! Will absolutely be using Ute when we return and will be referring her to friends and family as well.
Adam, United States, June 2017
Fantastic Safari Experience!
Ute was very communicative in helping to organize our safari. All of the pickups/light aircraft transfers were as planned, and the accommodation we were placed at were fantastic! The Chobe National Park safari in particular was incredible. Once in a lifetime.
Matt, April 2017, United Kingdom
I would choose Ute Sonnenberg and And Beyond for ALL my future travel (safari).
I had previously been on safari in Tanzania with another organization and I really believed it could not be beat. And it truly was. Ute's choices and recommendations for us were so spot on, the number and choice of camps, how many days at each, giving us the perfect variety of game to visit. She was always responsive, adjusting our trip to accommodate our seemingly endless needs, and rather last minute too. She was amazing, booking our wonderful Cape Town Hotel as well. The consistent quality of And Beyond, (we did 4 camps, two in Phinda and 2 in or near Lion Sands) the incredible talent and training of our Rangers and trackers, was unfathomable, as was the hospitality throughout. We've only been home a week and can't wait to start planning our next trip. Way beyond expectations.
Sharon, United States, February 2017
Terrific experience going through Roho Ya Chui to book my South Africa trip. She was patient with my questions and helped me ensure every detail was handled. We did the first part of our Sabi Sands safari at Londolozi and it was perfection. When we left and arrived inCapetown, every transfer and tour was taken care of and we never had to figure out where we were going. Highly recommend for booking travel.
Heather, United States, May 2017
Good combination with excellent value for money
We had a great time doing the seven days trip to Vic Falls, Chobe and Okavango with Roho Ya Chui. It allowed us to see the "must's" of the region within our limited available time. We particularly enjoyed the time at Bakwena Lodge and Machaba Camp in Botswana.
Markus, Austria, March 2017
Best trip we have done!
Ngala Safari Lodge is the best travel experience we have ever had. Thought this would be a one off but we are already planning to come back in the future. Staff were amazing especially Allyn at the lodge.
Jake, Australia, April 2017
Well planned and executed!
Ute did an excellent job of choosing the places we stayed and the safaris we took. Our driver for 2 days was excellent and we were able to see 3 of the big 5. The last day was in Sabi Sands. We hit the jackpot. On the first night drive, we saw 4 out of 5. We enjoyed the day in Sabi Sands the best because we didn't have to travel for almost 2 days to see the big five. Both accommodations were good and the food was excellent.
Pam and John, United States, February 2017
This was our first time to South Africa and our first safari tour. I wanted this to be unforgettable experience and Roho Ya Chui made it happened! I was always surprised at the speed at which I received responses for my inquiries. Ute made sure to fit the most into our 4 days trip, but also work with our budget. The two lodges we stayed at, were very nice, clean and had a very unique design. This safari had far exceeded my expectations, the tour guide, Edward had so much knowledge about the wildlife, it was a pleasure listening to him. We loved our trip and we owe it to Roho Ya Chui, and our trip coordinator: Ute. Thank you!
Ewa R., April 2017, United States
Our safari experiences were many and varied seeing fabulous wildlife with experienced guides thanks!
Ute was terrific. She accommodated our family's particular needs and our desire to make our own choices right from the start of our planning. When our flight was delayed, she was at the end of an email to help sort things out immediately. It felt like Ute was there traveling with us. She had a knack for understanding what was important and connecting personally even though all our interactions were via email. Thanks Ute - we had a great 3 weeks in Africa. A very personalized service. Would highly recommend. We are looking forward to our next African adventure and using your services again.
Jo, Michael, Shannon, Kelly, Nat and Jacob, Australia, December 2016
Great experience on Blyde River, Kruger & Panorama tour
We booked the 6-day Blyde River, Kruger & Panorama tour with Roho Ya Chui and were not disappointed. Communication was always good with quick and helpful responses before and while travelling. A great selection of lodges and local operators as well as the stunning views along the Panorama Route and the amazing wildlife of Kruger truly made this an unforgettable experience.
Jens, Germany, December 2016
Exceptional experiences at Ngala and Kirkman
Well organized safari by Ute from Roha Ya Chui to Ngala and Kirkman. Transfers to and from the lodges was flawless. Importantly the driver that took us from Ngala to Kirkman noted a riot on our way and found a back road to take us to Kirkman. Another couple that was driving themselves on the same route that day was not so lucky. Their car was attacked, hit by stones and pushed from side to side, when they passed the burning tires on the road. We found another couple on the road driving in their car who were desperate as they were completely lost as there are no road signs at all. All of this is an indication that it pays to use a professional for your local travel needs and Roho Ya Chui did that flawless. The safaris at both Ngala and Kirkman were very exciting. It was like you were participating in your own documentary. We will go back for more.
Martin, United States, March 2017
Excellent safari with pleasant staff and ensuring the Big 5
From the beginning, Ute has answered all our questions within hours: big or small, everything was helpful and answered all our doubts. As soon as we got into Skukuza airport, the pick-up was very smooth and we went immediately on our first game drive, seeing elephants within 30min of our landing in Kruger. The two days in kruger were excellent to get used to the new enviroment, while the 1 night in Nottens could not have been any better. The food was great, the staff very nice but the game drives are on a different level of anything else. Driving up to anything you would like and expect to see within meters, allowing yourself to enjoy the wildlife and nature in its best while learning a lot from the rangers knowledge and guidance. Definitely recommend this to anyone, from couples to families.
Roald, November 2016, Netherlands
Outstanding, beyond what we expected, simply superior
Ute made the whole process easy and painless, from analyzing the dates to available locations and understanding our expectations, she created a unique and tailored package for my wife and I to enjoy and remember the rest of our lives. I will not hesitate to recommend her to my friends and associates. We will use her skills again in another location in Africa. Africa is to large to go to the same places twice!
Chris and Lisa, United States, December 2016
Amazing 3 night safari in Kruger
My husband and I booked our safari through Roho Ya Chui. Couldn't have asked for a better experience! We decided to do 3 nights, 4 days. When I emailed Ute about this, she was very responsive and helpful. She planned the thing for us: our flights into and out of Kruger National Park, our accommodations during the safari, and our road transportation. We got 2 unique experiences: 1 beautiful lodge for the first 2 nights and then 1 night in an all-inclusive fancy bush camp within the park. We saw the Big Five, and SO MUCH more! It was just incredible.
Manasa, United States, February 2017
Excellent game drives at Kruger and day trip to Swaziland.
We had an unforgettable time at Kruger NP. The game drives and the guides were excellent. We saw all of the big 5 every single day (4 game drives) plus loads of other interesting animals (e.g. wild dogs). The guest house Laughing Waters was also great (big room, lovely garden and great food). Learning about the culture and history of Swaziland on the day trip was also very interesting.
We had an amazing experience with Roho Ya Chui, who were always extremely helpful.
Mark, October 2016, Switzerland
Big Five the First Afternoon Was Just the Beginning
Ute Sonnenberg's recommendations led to a stellar experience starting at Kirkman's in the Sabi Sands reserve area. On arrival at the camp, the staff immediately connected with us to assure us that we were in excellent hands. On our first game drive in the afternoon, they delivered two male lions, a full pride of lions, rhino, elephant, cape water buffalo and after dark there was a leopard chowing down on a water buck. Of course, we encountered lots more wildlife - our guides Joel and David made sure of that including a visit to a den of hyenas. In addition to the tiny one month hyena that emerged - we saw lion cubs, young giraffes, a baby hippo and more. Lots of birds including the rare ground gray hornbill and Scopes owl. The food was superb including the outdoor "white buffalo" buffet breakfast. We then moved on to Zambia and again Ute's recommendation gave us a chance for an all day safari to Chobe National Park in Botswana. The drive to the park gave us a chance to see the countryside, and then by boat and range rover we encountered so much more including the herd of elephants we were hoping to see. We rounded up our trip with a visit to the Leya visit in Livingstone. Everything went according to plan which was the result of numerous emails back and forth with Ute over several months. Our only disappointment was that we were not in Jo'berg long enough to thank her in person.
Paul and Peg McDonough, October 2016, United States
100% professional experience. Loved our safari experience.
We travelled as a family of 6. From the very beginning the service and communication was excellent. Thank you Ute for your patience with my many emails.
We safari'd at Kirkmans Kamp and Ngala. Loved both. Food at Kirkmans exceptional. Our guide Garrith and tracker Chris did an awesome job. Saw all of the big 5. . Pool and facilities at Ngala better. We loved our guide Allyn at Ngala. Really great with our kids and went the extra mile.
Rebecca, Australia, December 2016
Considering we are an ocean and continent apart our service was without any problems and worked out
Sabi Sabi Little Bush was absolutely delighful, perfect and beyond our expectations. The accomodations were well appointed, comfortable and certainly 5 star. The ranger and guide were polite and knowlegeable beyond our expectations. The food was great and each evening the settings were all different for the four nights that we were there. The staff were polite and accomodating in every respect. If Little Bush wasn't 22 hours of flight time away we would revisit again.
Arne, Canada, September 2016
This was one of the most memorable experiences of our lifetime! Ute did an amazing job of removing all the stress associated with such complex travel arrangements. She was very responsive throughout the process and once we were on the ground in South Africa absolutely everything went off without a hitch. We had very high expectations and they were somehow blown away! We already want to go back and will absolutely use Ute again.
JP, November 2016, United States
Tailored the perfect safari experience for our family.
Thanks Ute for organising an experience that exceeded our expectations. Ngala Tented camp was amazing, all the staff were fantastic and so very welcoming, our guide Mike and tracker Ernest made our twice daily safaris experiences we will never forget, they were also so amazing with our children. Thanks to MK for being such a warm and friendly butler.
After Ngala we didn't think things could get better, then we went to Kirkmans Kamp. Our new guide Brett and tracker Kholin were equally as fantastic as the Ngala staff. Sonnyboy who looked after us at the lodge was so very friendly and welcoming it was a pleasure to stay here.
Management in both camps are extremely friendly and were a pleasure to talk to. The food was exceptional.
The highlights were of course the animals, from elephants drinking out of the swimming pool(yes, nearly a daily occurrence) to the smallest reptile, the guides and trackers were so knowledgeable, interested and engaging. Of course we saw the big 5 in both camps, sometimes within an hour, but it was all the other animals such as painted dogs, hippos, hyenas and the new born pups. The excitement the trackers and guides showed when tracking animals was contagious.
Our family had high expectations and it is with much pleasure that we can say all our expectations were exceeded.
Which camp was best? I couldn't say but I recommend everyone experience both and come up with your own answer.
Thanks again Ute, everything you organised ran like clockwork, perfect organisation for a perfect holiday.
Damien, Kim, Ethan & Luca
Damien, September 2016, Australia
Wonderful safari in Kruger and Victoria Falls!
We couldn't have asked for anything more- did 2 weeks in Cape Town, Kruger, Victoria Falls, and Botswana! It was certainly an experience of a lifetime for us, and everything went as smoothly as we could have hoped! Ute helped us in organizing all the details, booking all the activities and transfers, and it all went off without a hitch. Made planning the trip a breeze- I would certainly use her again! All of our accommodations were top of the line, and far exceeded our already high expectations! &Beyond Ngala in Kruger is unbelievable- would highly recommend to anyone wanting to safari in South Africa!
Sarah, United States, September 2016
Very good organised-Thanks to Ute. Arrangements were perfect, everything was on time.
The camps we stayed were all good, specially Savute under Canvas was just great!
Roger, November 2016, Switzerland
Excellent service, superb safari locations.
Roho Ya Chui delivered on all aspects of our safari. The safari lodgings and locations were superb and all of our transfers were on time and as promised. When one non-safari lodging turned out to be less than ideal for travellers without a vehicle, Ute was able to ensure we were provided with complimentary transportation for our essential needs.
I would recommend Roho Ya Chui to anyone interested in a safari. Their experience and knowledge were indispensable during the planning process and their pricing was the best I found for trips of a similar nature.
Don, Canada, August 2016
Excellent service - in case of questions very quick answers
The Safaris and Transfers were very well planned and pick ups were in time.
We had really a wonderful time.
Jutta & KH Stern, November 2016, Germany
Excellent safari operator
In contrary to any other trip we made along the years, arranging a safari trip without assistance for the first time is not straightforward. While there are many fancy websites with great photos and grading for each camp, I still found it difficult to understand the differences between each area and camp as well as the transfer arrangements. Ute was perfect for assisting with all the choices we made. Her responses were prompt before and even once during the trip when we were not certain about a transfer flight she was immediately available on whatsapp. I also found it a superb service to be able to communicate with one person and not with different representatives of a larger company that may or may not be available when you need them. absolutely recommended.
Peer Dar, United States, August 2016
From the beginning we felt very comfortable with Ute Sonnenberg and she fulfilled all our wishes. The 2 Safari Lodges (Maratabe and Madikwe Lodge) have exceeded our expetations and the Cape Cadogan is such a charming and nice hotel. Many Thanks to Ute for this great experience!
Beatrix, Switzerland, September 2016
I don't even know where to begin. The overall experience right from coordinating with Ute on my requirements up until experiencing the trip was extraordinary. Ute has been very helpful in planning this trip and helping out by providing as much information as possible. The trip was as per schedule which was perfect since we knew what was happening each day. The accommodation was luxurious and comfortable and the hotel staff was amazing in every aspect. The safari guides whether to Kruger or to Sabi Sands were very informative and helpful and ensured that we had the best experience ever. I would recommend Roho Ya Chui and Ute Sonnenberg to anyone as I had my first best experience with them and I'm sure that this won't be my last experience with them.
Siddhanth Jayaraman, October 2016, United States
High professional service having as a result a memorable trip to Cape Town and a great safari.
It is a pleasure to recommend Roho Ya Chui for the high professionalism: timely communication, quick response, supply all the necessary information related to the trip ( visa documentation related, health & safety, safari info, trip plan, etc ), overall leading to a high return on the trip cost. The experience of this trip have exceed our expectations in terms of the touristic guidance provided in Cape Town and surroundings as well as during the safari. The location itself, Kirkman's Camp and the people working there were just great. They know how to make the safari experience a memorable one, going beyond standards with their friendly and caring attitude.
Monica, Romania, August 2016
Simple and Efficient
We chose Little Bush Camp in Sabi Sands from reviews on the internet and then contacted Roho Ya Chul to undertake the bookings. Our first dates were not available but rather than try a place us at another lodge they found alternative dates that worked well with our overall vacation. The lodge was perfect and the new dates actually worked better for us than our original selection. We always communicated by email and Ute, our agent, responded almost immediately. Excellent service and I would recommend them to anybody booking a safari.
DouglasD, September 2016, United States
Amazing Safari Experience
We booked a 6 night safari and 4 night beach vacation with Roho Ya Chui. The communication when booking our trip was excellent enabling us to have a fully customised itinerary. Our vacation was wonderful! The two safari lodges were both more than we imagined. The staff were friendly and knowledgeable leaving us feeling both comfortable and safe with all the wildlife. The beach resort was lovely as well. We'll definitely consider using Roho Ya Chui in the future.
Nadia K, Bermuda, August 2016
Utterly Professional and Genuinely Caring
Our recent trip to Africa incorporated travel to three countries: South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Zambia. Every connection, tour, and accommodation came off without a hitch or a glitch! This included many flights and even a train trip from Cape Town to Johannesburg. In planning the trip Ute offered many worthwhile suggestions and her response time to my many inquiries was unbelievable. It never took more than a day to hear back from her and usually she got back to us in a matter of hours (despite the time difference). She even went so far as to arrange a special surprise for us, on our anniversary, at the lodge at which we stayed. It's hard to know who to chose as a safari planner, but from our perspective and experience, Roho Ya Chui and Ute Sonnenberg were excellent.
Glenn, United States, September 2016
Very serious company with a clear tour program which is the same as it is in real
Great thanks to Ute Sonnenberg for the good communication
All lodges were real nice ( Ilala Lodge, Bakwena Lodge and Kadizora Camp)
great thanks to KB from Bakwena Lodge and OC from Kadizora Camp they were excellent guides.
Bernhard Kaufmann, September 2016, Austria
Another unforgettable safari experience…
Following our safari holiday in Botswana which we so much enjoyed last year thanks to Roho Ya Chui, we booked again for this August another safari holiday, this time in South Africa. Just as the last time, Ute’s responses to my inquiries were very quick and helpful, trying to make sure that we would be getting exactly the kind of safari we wished to have.
We initially intended to stay 4 days in Sabi Sand and 4 days in Phinda, but Ute suggested (partly because the lodge in Sabi Sand was getting full) that we spend more days in Phinda, mentioning that the latter was extraordinary in terms of wildlife and landscape. And we were absolutely happy that we did so. Not that Sabi Sand was less interesting than Phinda (we had beautiful long leopard sightings almost on our every drive in Sabi Sand), but Phinda was just marvelous. We enjoyed to our heart’s content seeing, among others, lions, cheetahs, white and black rhinos there.
And the lodges and their services and the confort were amazing, too. (All the 3 lodges were from « & Beyond »). As to the rangers and trackers, they were all unbelievably experienced and profossional. All of them were lively, pleasant and caring, and talking with them about wildlife was a gift of the holiday as fulfulling as the animals themselves.
Africa is immense. There are a lot of other places we would like to visit for safari. We would certainly come back to Roho Ya Chui for our next safari holiday.
Iwao, France, August 2016
Wonderful 3-days safari in the Kruger Park area
My feedback with Roho Ya Chui is very positive. The trip has been perfectly organized, and the exchange of information with Ute has always been fruitful and collaborative. The accomodation at the Chestnut Lodge is really pleasant, and the staff of the Lodge are very professional and friendly at the same time. The organization and planning of the safari fully reflected our expectations. Guides from Gap Tours and Transfers were absolutely perfect, Mr. Mandla in particular with whom we spent almost all the time during these three days. He gave us an impressive amount of information and told us several stories of animals and men. He was really great! Also, we spent only a couple of hours with Trevor during a car transfer but it was enough to learn from him a lot and to feel his sympathy. I strongly recommend RYC!
Luigi Cucci, Italy, September 2016
I just returned from a great trip to Namibia .
This trip exceeded my expectation . My booking agent Ute was wonderful. She took care of all the details and was very responsive to my questions. I highly reccomend this company.
Sighle, United States, September 2016
Southern Africa Safari
This trip far exceeded my expectations. I had done basic research and had a general idea about where I wanted to go. The accommodations selected were superb, our flights went off as planned and our drivers all showed up when they were supposed to. We received great communication about exactly what was supposed to happen. We were even greater in Maun by a representative to make sure we got onto our connecting flight. As for the trip itself, we are fabulous food, saw lots of animals, stayed in great facilities at prices we liked. My only complaint was Credit card fees and being charged in Pounds pushed the trip up a bit higher. I would book through Roha Ya Chui again.
Michele, United States, June 2016
Our first visit to South Africa - A truly unique experience
After a very difficult year in which my wife experienced a serious illness, my father passed away and I suffered an awkward accident, we decided to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary with a somewhat different trip: instead of doing one of our beloved cultural marathons, we decided to indulge in the amazing fauna and flora and the breathtaking landscapes of South Africa. Our goal was to recover, enjoy and relax.
After screening the numerous travel agencies offering taylor-made tours, I decided to contact Ute Sonnenberg from Roho Ya Chui whose website gave me that gut feeling of confidence and professionalism which was confirmed immediately after my first contact with Ute.
We had some 12 days to spend and wanted to make the best out of it. Also, we wanted to be pampered and did not shy away from topping-up our budget if we felt it was worth it.
Ute gave us a couple of suggestions and in the end we managed to pick out the ones we thought suited us best and fitted into a feasible i.e. not too tiring travel schedule, taking into account the limited time.
Disembarking from our plane in Johannesburg we were welcomed by a special handling agent who swiftly took us through immigration and customs bypassing all the other passengers of a fully booked Boing 747-8, ushering us to the white Mercedes Limousine waiting outside. Our stay at the Four Seasons Hotel in Johannesburg was just perfect. What a nice start-off! The Four Seasons is a calm retreat in the outskirts of the town with luxurious rooms, a great pool and spa and an excellent restaurant. We simply loved it.
2. Sabi Sands Private Game Reserve
After a relaxing day in Johannesburg we were taken once again by a white Mercedes Benz (water, refreshments, hand cream etc. on board) to the airport where we embarked on our flight to Skukuza, the amazingly beautiful (yes I am not joking) little airport at the southern point of the Krueger National Park where we were picked up by a driver from Kirkman's Kamp, the lodge where we were going to stay for the next 4 days. Well, no words to describe, or if so, it will be too much reading for you: just to say that we were stunned by the luxury of our room, the beauty of the whole compound, its location, extraordinary staff and amazing food. The game drives (2x per day) were quite an experience: we saw the big five, we were pampered with a lush breakfast in the bush, an open air bar at sunset on the margins of Sabi river, everything prepared by the rangers at the end of our game drives, just amazing.
3. Victoria Falls
From Sabi Sands we were taken to Nelspruit airport from where we flew to Livingston. Following Ute's advice, we stayed at the Royal Livingston Hotel which is the only 5* Hotel right close to the Victoria Falls, located in the natural reserve. You can hear the thunder of the Victoria Falls sitting on the terrace of your room and watch the "spray" at sunset while sipping a drink on one of the hotel's wooden decks along the Zambesi River. And you can simply walk to the falls and visit without paying as hotel guests have free access to the falls. The rooms are extremely tasteful and well appointed. The hotel is an island of beauty and calm. Zebras are strolling on the lawn. Al fresco dining on the terrace over the river is yet another must... Unforgettable.
4. Cape Town
From Livingston we flew via Johannesburg to Capetown where we hired a car and stayed at the Vineyard Hotel which is located on the backside of the Table Mountain, not far away from the Botanic Garden and has some amazing gardens itself and an excellent outdoor pool. We had a junior suite facing the little river running through the gardens. An island of peace and calm. Visiting the centre of Cape Town and the Harbour area is easily doable by car. There are good parking facilities all over. During our 3 days in Cape Town we visited the Table Mountain on a most beautiful sunny day, the Botanic Gardens, the Cape itself and the region around Cape Town. We loved the delicious seafood and oysters at Houtbay and had an excellent dinner at a wine estate in the Cape region. We definitely feel we need to come back.
We drove to Franschoek taking the coastal road (R44) through the Hottentots Mountain Holland Catchment Area, Pringle Bay and Betty's Bay, indulging into the stunning landscape and seaside views, wow! Ute recommended us to stay at the Grand Provence in Franschoek. Well, yet another highlight. We stayed in the owner's cottage, had our own butler who would light 2 dozens of candles around the pool for an evening swim and, of course always keep the fire burning in the living room. The property not only grows excellent wine but also offers a Michelin starred restaurant which simply cannot be missed. We stayed for 2 nights to discover the wine region but would have loved to stay longer...
From Capetown we flew back to Johannesburg for another day before taking the plane back to Europe. The white Mercedes limousine was once again waiting for us at the airport upon arrival taking us to the Saxon Hotel, yet another top recommendation of Ute. This former private residence of one of the richest men of South Africa is an all-suite hotel with beautiful African art works all over the place, a mega outdoor pool and - of course - a private butler for each suite. It is totally secluded and calm. We had a bottle of champagne in our suite upon arrival. The food was excellent, so was the service. We visited the Apartheid Museum (a must, very impressive), Nelson Mandela's house in Soweto and his Presidential residence.
This first trip to South Africa exceeded our expectations and we want to thank Ute for her excellent and professional advice and perfect organisation. We couldn't have asked for more.
Dirk, Belgium, March 2016
Perfection, best vacation by far
Finding a travel agent to help with Africa package was first a little difficult. Luckily we found Roho Ya Chui, Ute's expertice and help & quick response in all the questions was priceless. We booked the Victoria Falls & the Best of Botswana package and it was excellent! All the transfers went so smoothly (all the border crossings went easier than in US) and all the lodges (& Beyond) were amazing, pure luxury - 5 stars. We will definitelly use Roho Ya Chui again and already dreaming for the next African vacation, Kenya & Tanzanya) Best vacation by far!
Mikko, Finland, June 2016
Very attentive to my needs and great follow-through!
Communication was excellent. Ute answered our questions/concerns quickly and concisely. The entire trip exceeded our expectations and with every place we visited or stayed, we felt welcomed and in good hands. Blyde Canyon is a must see destination and the lodge accommodations were superb. Vicky (owner) was wonderful and informative. Her staff was friendly and lovely. Our safari guides (Marten & Quintin) were knowledgeable and adventurous. Our accommodations at Laughing Waters Lodge were also wonderful. There were a few snafus, but the staff made-up for them with professionalism and friendliness. A must do experience and adventure!
C. Young, United States, September 2016
We had a fantastic time because of all the arrangements being top notch.
Ute did a really good job with the back and forth emails. she responded very quickly. the safari itself was beyond words. it was awesome seeing all those wild animals up close. we will have wonderful memories to share with family and friends. it was beyond our expectations. the accommodations were very satisfactory. the transportation arranged was excellent except for one glitch, but Ute took care of it very quickly. we will recommend this operator to anyone we know who is going to south africa.
Sandy, April 2016, Canada
Africa Safari: Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe), Chobe (Botswana), Okavango Delta (Botswana)
I am really pleased with the communication, service and arrangements from Ute at Roho Ya Chui. Ute was always quick to respond to emails. I loved that she provided a detailed itinerary that provided information about each location, what to expect when you arrived at each location, and the activities included with our stay. She even provided information regarding additional activities that could be selected in Victoria Falls. She sent follow up emails regarding important updates about our trip, she even sent a quick email wishing us a good trip before we left. I thought that was a really nice personal touch that made us feel like she really cared about our trip and our experience. Our trip was seamless. Our airport pick-ups and drop-offs were always punctual, the accommodations were amazing - especially Kadizora Camp in the Okavango Delta! You must experience this camp! Overall, we were extremely happy and would definitely use this safari operator again. I've already recommended it to someone.
Diana, United States, August 2016
Whole process of planning, deliverance and execution was smooth, seamless and very pleasant.
After a lot of research and with very helpful and timely suggestions and feedback from Ute, I decided to book 2 of Roho Ya Chui's safari tours, to explore Namibia and a small part of Botswana, with a couple of days at Vic Falls in between. The complete process was really very positive and enjoyable. A couple of days out from leaving Australia, we were notified of an upgrade to a different camp for our last couple of nights in the Okavango Delta (which ended up being a great camp). There was one hiccup with our first meet and greet, however this was quickly and efficiently 'sorted', with emails and phone calls quickly delivered. Our trip was fantastic, with all guides/drivers, camps, experiences exceeding or living up to expectations and providing a stress-free and totally enjoyable holiday. With magnificent scenery throughout Namibia and spectacular wildlife experiences in both Namibia and Botswana, our trip was truly fabulous, with no unpleasant surprises along the way at all. I would certainly use Roho Ya Chui's services again and will probably do so sometime in the not-too-distant future, to return to Africa and continue my 'addiction'. Thanks Ute, we had an awesome time with some unforgettable highlights.
Liz, Australia, June 2016
Botswana and Zimbabwe Safari
I am really happy with the communication, service and arrangements from Ute at Roho Ya Chui. Ute was always quick to respond to emails, providing detailed itinerary, information about each location and the activities included with our stay. We have faced an issues since one of our flight was cancelled due technical reason however we have received a excellent assistance. All the rest of our transfers went smoothly. Each of our hotels/lodges was the perfect choice for the location. Of special note was Machaba Camp, which was amazing. I'm sure this will not be our last with Roho Ya Chui and I look forward to a future trip organized by them
Enrica, Italy, August 2016
A big disconnect but all went well
We landed in Botswana but no one was expecting us. UGH! But a few phone calls and one temper tantrum, and all was well again. Ute was very responsive in email communications and her suggestions were well heeded. Great facilities and wonderful time!
Stephen Durham, United States, May 2016
Ute was very good about responding to my questions during the trip planning process. I've traveled quite a bit and this was not my first safari, but first time to this area and it had been a while since I was last in Africa. Our accommodations were good and the staff at the lodges/camp were helpful and responsive. Kadizora Camp was especially nice. All the logistics worked very well - people were there to pick us up, make transfers, etc exactly as promised. I took my 20 yr old niece and we both said it more than met our expectations. I would recommend Roho Ya Chui to others.
Yvonne, United States, August 2016
Excellent First Experience in the Great African Safaris
Ute was very knowledgeable, clear and efficient in her work and email recommendations. She was also accomodating to our requests including a few changes in dates. Communication was highly effective, everything went smoothly without a hitch and the tour was thoughtfully created with our special occasion in mind (I received two birthday cakes at two different locations!), to give that personalised touch and a great variety of experiences - from the luxurious to the more adventurous. The tour package was also suitable and value-for-money for our budget as well. Overall, the trips to three different safari locations (including a wonderful sleep-out in the treetops) were well paced out and enjoyable. Our transfers arranged by Ute arrived on time with friendly, reliable and safe drivers, and the domestic flights booked were great for our overall schedule as well. Overall, it was such an unforgettable first trip to South Africa and the safaris! We would highly recommend the services of Roho Ya Chui to anyone. Thank you Ute and team!
P.Q. Singapore, May 2016
Ute was very helpful and always quick to respond to my many questions; everything went perfectly.
Everything was easily communicated by email. We had many questions about the experience with this being our first time to Africa and Ute promptly answered all of them. We were able to choose our locations and lodges based off her recommendations. One of our camps was cancelled and she upgraded us to a beautiful lodge that turned out to be our favorite place. We were nervous being in a different environment where everything was arranged over the internet but the transport was timely, the staff very friendly, and we had many great game drives. This was one of our favorite vacations full of the perfect amount of activities as well as relaxation.
Amanda, United States, May 2016
The perfect honeymoon!
Earlier this month we went on our 10 days African honeymoon organized by Roho Ya Chui. We visited Botswana (Chobe), Zambia (Victoria Falls) and South Africa (Kirkman Kamp). Ute did an outstanding job at organizing everything for us, completely lived up to our expectations . It was absolutely perfect. She's very professional and goes the extra mile to understand what exactly is what you want on your trip to make sure you get that at a minimum. Communication was swift, replies to emails happened in less than 24 hours. Detailed itinerary is given to you so you know exactly what's happening during your trip. All locations we visited were fantastic. In summary, it was the perfect African adventure!
Luis Carlos & Jessica, Australia, August 2016
Trip to Sabi Sand reserve
Roho Ya Chui was fantastic in planning our trip - everything went extremely smoothly, including airline and hotel bookings. The &Beyond Exeter River Lodge and Kirkman's Kamp booked by RYC provided amazing opportunities to experience the incredible wildlife and birds of the region. I would definitely use RYC again!
Russell, April 2016, Australia
Deliverd a well organized travel programme (with continious back up) for three groups of four.
Service and comminucation were immaculous. The 11 days road safari in three 4 by 4 landcruisers met the full expectations. This is a very reliable company that you can trust and which is very knowledgable about the Namibian scene.
Kors van Wyngaarden, Spain, August 2016
Roho Ya Chui delivered the trip of a lifetime!
A visit to South Africa including a safari has been a life-time dream, and we were thrilled with how it worked out. We considered several different organizers and were impressed with Ute's responsiveness and knowledge. She guided us in our selection of safari lodge. Some were too rustic, some too expensive, so based on her recommendation we decided on Kapama River Lodge and were delighted. It exceeded our expectations, was great value, and we saw all the Big Five. Ute planned a week in Cape Town for us, and again her hotel recommendation was perfect for us. We stayed at the Victoria & Alfred on the Waterfront and were delighted with the location, the views and the yummy breakfasts. Ute was a wonderful communicator and took care of every little detail. Our transfers worked like clockwork and our whole adventure went off without a glitch. She gets my highest endorsement and I would use her again in a heartbeat.
Denise, United States, November 2015
Amazing Tanzania Safari and Zanzibar Vacation Thanks to Ute and Roho Ya Chui
An African Safari has been one of our dream vacations and after extensive research we came across an itinerary by Roho Ya Chui that sounded wonderful which was a 14-day Tanzania & Zanzibar vacation. Ute was our booking agent and was highly responsive from the beginning to all our questions, concerns, etc. She takes care of everything including booking the hotels/lodges and all the transfers. She also provided flight information so that we could easily book the flights. During our vacation that we just completed, everything and I mean everything went smoothly. There was always someone there to pick us up from airports, lodges, etc. We always felt safe along the way. All of the lodge bookings (tented camp sites & beach stay) were amazing. We cannot say enough kind words about the African people who work at these tented camp sites and lodges. Everyone is so hospitable and kind and they will all go out of their way to take care of you to assure you have the time of your life! If we do another Safari (and I hope we do), I would definitely book through Ute again.
One last thing, Ute booked us in the Next Paradise Boutique Resort in Zanzibar for our beach portion of the stay. This place is amazing, especially if you are looking for a quiet - relaxing place to reflect back and recover from a busy Safari. The food is amazing and the people are amazing. It is a small 20 room resort and I am so happy that Ute selected this place for us.
Mark Humphrey, United States, July 2016
Don, United States, February 2016
The dream comes true
The overall trip was truly fantastic, there are no easy words to describe the experience but I will give it a shot. I had a dream to come to Africa and live, feel the soul of the fantastic wild life of this wonderful continent, it all came true for me, thanks to a wonderful trip organized by Roho Ya Chui. Every thing was perfect the lodges the people the game views, all in all a perfect trip for me and my daughter. Thanks to every one who organized the holiday of a lifetime, I fell in love with Africa and I shall be back soon enough. Thanks to everyone.
Alfredo Vinci, United States, September 2016
Two different safari camps in Kruger - both excellent in their own way - fantastic animal sightings!
I found Roho through a Google search of safari operators. Although there was a list of packaged safaris Ute was very good in custom designing a trip for us and handling all the logistics associated with the transfers. She was excellent in communicating information and following up on questions.
The airport hotel exceeded my expectations. The Sabi Sabi Earth lodge was first rate with the accommodations and food being first class - the game viewing was excellent in the open bush. I had lower expectations for the Ngala tented camp but was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the accommodations, the friendliness of the staff and the great rangers that they had there. If anything the game viewing was better at Ngala but part of this may have been that the main safari lodge was closed so there were only a few people in a big private reserve. All in all probably the best adventure type vacations we have taken.
Martin, United States, March 2016
Amazing first trip to Africa!
We can't say enough about our trip to Africa. I started planning late and it was overwhelming to try to decide where to visit and how long to stay in each place. I used one of Ute's tours as a starting point. She helped me to tweak it slightly to fit our travel dates. She handled booking the hotels/lodges and transfers. Also, she gave me the flight information so that I could book the flights. Throughout the process Ute answered all of my questions quickly. All of our transfers went smoothly. Each of our hotels/lodges was the perfect choice for the location. Of special note was Kirkman's Kamp, which was amazing. Although this trip was planned as a 'once in a lifetime' 'bucket list' trip, we fell in love with Africa and would love to go back. When we do, I will rely on Ute's expertise to plan another wonderful trip!
Kristen, United States, June 2016
Ute worked with me for weeks as we put together a wonderful trip. Everything was taken care of and even when a few issues came up the response was immediate. I would recommend Roho Ya Chui to anyone and have recommended Ute to our friends.
Steve M., United States, January 2016
Fantastic Support for South African trip and safari
We cannot say enough good things about the support Ute Sonnenberg provided to us for our trip to South Africa, including our safari. Ute understood even better than we did what our needs would be and exceeded our expectations every step of the way. Ute's responsiveness was nearly immediate and always helpful. We had many questions, and Ute patiently walked us through each decision point in our process. The safari she selected for us (& Beyond Kirkman's Kamp) was truly outstanding and customized for our family, as Ute secured us a private vehicle, since we were a family of five. It was truly the trip of a lifetime, and Ute was a wonderful partner the entire time. We are grateful to Ute for all her assistance and leadership, and would recommend Roho Ya Chui to anyone!
Eileen M., April 2016, United States
Experience of a Lifetime
My husband and I went for our honeymoon and it truly was an experience of a lifetime! The communication to coordinate our trip was easy, everyone was extremely friendly and the experience was unforgettable! This trip was beyond our expectations and worth every penny! Everyday on our safari was an adventure, we saw something different and exciting everyday. Our ranger and tracker were extremely passionate and knowledgeable about the area and animals. Our hotel lodge and tented camp experienice was also incredible! The service was excellent, food was delicious and everything was very clean! Hotel staff was more than accommodating. I would love to go back and do it again one day. Amazing trip!!!
Hilda, Unite States, November 2015
Nice experience, great people
Everything was well arranged and on time. The accommodation was lovely - great hosts looking after us, with nice food. The tour guides were experienced and informative. We saw all of the big 5 during the 3 days.
Aron Lancos, Hungary, June 2016
Fantastic. Service was the best quick and un complicated and to the point . And always available.
The best cant say enough about Roho Ya Chui and the venues we went to. Just a special thanks to Nicolene ( Schoeman ??? at Kirkman) she organized a camera lense shutter out of nowhere that fitted the required lense which we picked up at K.M.I.P. late one evening.
Roger Ryan, Zambia, April 2016
Thanks to Ute's great organization, to her knowledge and follow up we had one of our best experience for a travel so far. Everything went as expected and Ute was there all the time to answer any inquiry that we had. Our Safari led us to the most amazing places ranging from South Africa, Zambia to Botswana and we can't wait to go back there. If you want a great safari experience make sure to book through Roho Ya Chui, you wont regret it.
Thomas, Switzerland, October 2015
Ute was very helpful setting up the safari, arranging transfers, and answering our questions. She made the planning experience easy. Ute's recommendations for the safari exceeded our expectations.
Ben, April 2016, United States
Very well organized safari with interesting itinerary. Professional and helpful service.
Our experience with Roho Ya Chui was very good with lots of helpful pre safari correspondence. We had both a very good guide and were happy with the first class accommodation provided. Good standard of accommodation and food. Our guide was particularly helpful and informative and paid special attention to looking after our 7yo daughter. He also was a very safe driver which was important to us.
The itinerary around Ngorongoro and Serengiti was very good and we saw most of the animals we expected to see. Basically a well organized and enjoyable safari.
Brian, Qatar, September 2015
Fabulous trip. Ute has a magical way of creating a special experience unique to your specifications.
We chose Roho Ya Chui to help us plan a trip for my husband's 50th Birthday. He decided on an African safari but beyond that we lacked direction so we reached out to Roho Ya Chui & Ute. It was the best decision ever made. We saw so much more than we dreamed of, never back tracking and stayed at the most amazing lodges and tents. At every stay we felt very special and the 50th Birthday was celebrated before, during and after. The service was 5 Star Plus. We were very fortunate and saw the Big 5 the first 24 hours of our first safari stop. We had such wonderful communication with Ute. She was flexbile, supportive and helped with many naive first time questions we had. I never dreamed that 2 weeks in Africa with 9 flights, 4 different stops and several cultures would be the easiest and most amazing trip of our life but it was. THANKS so much !!!
Happyat50, Germany, March 2015
Personal and professional
I loved working with Roho Ya Chui to coordinate my safari because Ute not only made the whole experience very easy, but was diligent in answering all my questions and managing our trip in a very personal way. I came away very much feeling like I was speaking to another human being rather than being treated as a nameless faceless customer. The actual safari and hotel were also phenomenal. Laughing Waters Guest House made us feel comfortable and valued as guests, and served amazing food. The safari guides were fun and informative and really made the experience that much better (we absolutely loved Mandla and Mishak). Thank you for such a great trip!!
SRay, March 2016, United States
Worry-free S. Africa with RYC
Having had some unpleasant experiences with tour operators, we were initially cautious and hesitant when enquiring with Roho Ya Chui. These worries were unfounded - Ute was extremely helpful, responsive, and happy to address our concerns, including providing us with Roho Ya Chui's satsa accreditation.
Needless to say, we had a wonderful time in South Africa, and our mum had a most thrilling birthday trip. Ute's itineraries are well-planned; she gave us good advice on scheduling our programme - it's tempting to squeeze everything in a day when there's so much to do - and all transfers were smooth and comfortable. While in South Africa, Ute was also readily contactable to resolve a slight hitch in the timing of one of our transfers.
We'd gladly recommend engaging Roho Ya Chui's assistance for a truly seamless holiday - they really take care of everything so you can focus all your energies on soaking in the wonderful country that is South Africa!
Rebecca, Singapore, August 2016
We think that what you organized about our safari was that we hoped to get
We find that the 10 days together with our guide Jimmy from Wilderness Safaris was so well organized. The tent camps in Kulala and Damara Land was so exiting to stay in and the staff in the camps treated us so well with theirs lovely meals out in the wilderness. Our guide Jimmy was so informative about Namibia’s biology, geology, history, and the fight for independence And we saw a lot. The stay in Hansa Hotel was also very fine and a nice big contrast to the camps. Andersons camp , Ongava Game Park and Etosha was very fine too, only 1 day to short we think. 11 days would have been better then we could have enjoyed the area around the camp better.
Lone, Denmark, March 2016
An Exceptional Experience
Ute helped us with our honeymoon trip to South Africa, we wanted to do a safari and a visit to Cape Town. Ute had been very patience with us throughout the planning phase and she has an outstanding organizational as well as coordination skills. From the time we arrived in South Africa everything was well planned and prepared, we did not have to worry about a thing. We stayed at the Phinda Mountain lodge which was an exceptional experience. The staff, service, accommodation etc were just great. We spotted all the big 5s in Phinda, so the game viewing was amazing, this is definitely a place to visit. After the Safari we headed to Cape Town and stayed at the Table Bay Hotel - the location was very convenient, we really enjoyed our time in Cape Town.
We highly recommend Ute for your future trip, you wont be disappointed!
Suad, United Arab Emirates, August 2016
Our Best Vacation Ever
When we started planning our safari in South Africa we really had no idea where to begin. We found Roho Ya Chui through browsing on the internet. This greatly facilitated the planning of our trip. Everything was clearly explained and the many questions we had were answered quickly and accurately. As everything was very well arranged, our trip went smoothly and completely stress-free. We stayed at the Ngala and Kirkman's Camp lodges and loved every minute. The customer service and friendliness was of a level we had never seen during our travels. The game drives were some of the best experiences of our lives. This was also one of the few vacations when we were really looking forward to getting up at 5 am every day to join the game drive. We had a truly fantastic time and have already started thinking about planning our next safari. We can fully recommend Roho Ya Chui for helping you to plan your safari and recommend staying at the Ngala and Kirkman's Camp lodges. Suzie & Axel, April 2015.
Axel Viaene, Netherlands, April 2015
Very well organized from the beginning till the end
From my very first E-Mail, Ute the Safari coordinator was really great and helpful. Any question that I had was answered within less than a day! All the information were accurat and she was very friendly and I also got the feeling she was happy for us that we were able to see the Krüger.
The trip itself was unbelieveble. Our guide Trevor made sure we were comfortable, explained everything we questioned, was very funny and just the best guy to be around. He was very experienced and well connected to other guides so whenever there were rumors of seldom annimals - we were one of the first to see it.
The lodge Laughing Waters was a great place to relax. The food was excellent and the two owners made sure we felt at home!
In total it was an unforgettable journey and trip. The organization of the trip was perfect (that coming from a German ;-)
Daniel, Germany, February 2016
A never to be forgotten African adventure
We booked a two week Tanzanian safari with Roho Ya Chui and our experience from the beginning was exceptional. We researched many different companies and costs and our interaction with Ute was always informative and honest, which we appreciated. We were very clear about the itinerary we wanted, and our needs, and she successfully put together a programme that exceeded our expectations. The lodges were all very different - some more modern, some more basic - but they all catered for our needs and everywhere we went the people were incredible. Despite our dietary requirements, we were looked after well and always with the kindness and hospitality that east Africa is famous for. Our guide was an excellent driver, addressed all the administrative needs of the trip, was easy to be around and took care of all our needs and requests. We travelled with our two daughters, who were well looked after wherever we went. My favourite accommodation was Serengeti Kati-Kati, which was 'simple' but a beautiful 'Out of Africa' experience and the most phenomenal wildlife sightings. Another highlight was climbing Oldoinyo Lengai near Lake Natron - which was very challenging but a wonderful accomplishment. We celebrated some significant family moments on this trip and it was a truly well organised and magical experience.
Calm, January 2015
Great service and locations with Roho Ya Chui!
The tour booking on the internet was very smooth and Ute answered all queries very rapidly. The information, tour prospectus etc sent was very informative and the tour experience certainly lived up to expectations. You can't do better than close sightings of the 'Big Five' on each of three game drives!! The drivers (Mishouk, Trevor, Danie and Quentin) were all first-rate, knowledgeable and delivered the goods! It was very interesting to compare the different modus operandi in Kruger national park compared to the private reserve (Sabie Sands). The only disappointment is that it is impossible to reach Bourkes Luck potholes, Blyde River Canyon and Three Rondavels during a half day Panorama excursion, as indicated by the RYC blurb. These are just too far away from Hazyview! It should be made clear in the itinerary that this is only possible with the full day option, to avoid disappointment, and offered on Day 3 when customers have satisfactorily 'bagged' the Big 5 on previous days. Otherwise, brilliant, and will certainly book through you again!
Tim Pharaoh, United Kingdom, September 2016
Amazing guide, amazing trip
We had a stellar experience on the safari designed and set up by Roho Ya Chui. Ute was very responsive to questions, and all the transfers between airports and camps were handled smoothly. We felt well taken care of. Our guide Manu was very knowledgable, personable, fun and patient with our million and one questions about what we were seeing. All the lodgings were lovely, the food great, the staff responsive. This whole experience was beyond my expectations.
Sara, United States, February 2016
Once in a lifetime trip, safaris were amazing, transfers were perfect and the lodgings were superb
We went on a 3 country 9 day adventure. Our trip involved 4 light aircraft transfers, one regular flight, two road transfers, one of which was a road to ferry to road transfer. Every single one of them occurred smoothly. The one hotel and two lodges we were booked at were fabulous and first class. The two sets of safaris we went on were once in a lifetime adventures and in both locations we saw the big five (once in one drive!) plus numerous other animals. Ute Sonnenberg was there every step of the way before we left with immediate answers to the numerous questions we had. She planned an amazing trip.
Steve & Michelle, United States, December 2015
Due to very last minute booking, communication with Ute at RYC went smooth, gave great confidence.
Communication with Ute went very well, quick answers, to the point and within very short we agreed to do the tour.
The tour itself was a great success despite our wide experiences in Kenya and Tanzania. Logistically everything was well arranged, tickets, transfers, accomodation etc etc. It is always good when during the tour you have no questions. Next to that Botswana, and i have to highlight 1 place " Kana Kara", was terrific. Chobe Safari Lodge and A'Zambezi River Lodge were perfect as well but in another category. "Kana Kara" is a place due to its basics, location and people you never forget. Thanks Ute, well done.
Wim de Wit, Netherlands, December 2014
An excellent combination of Kenyan lodges, with superb service and connections.
The tour organised by Roho Ya Chui was perfect. I normally do not use tour operators and thought this time I wanted an expert. I accepted the tour as presented and it was only once we completed it that it became clear that the combination of different lodges, landscapes and experiences had been carefully considered and was a great balance. It was a first class experience with an authentic and very private and personalised tour with more wildlife than we could ever have imagined.
Michael, Australia, November 2015
Everyday was Absolutely Awesome!
Ute Sonnenberg from Roho Ya Chui is amazing! Each and every day of our trip was awesome.
The airport pickups/transfers were on time, courteous, and professional.
The accommodations were in prime locations, and were absolutely gorgeous with great staff.
The activities that she helped us plan were incredible. Each of our activities was booked with a top-notch operator. Our expectations were blown away.
If you're thinking of going on a safari to Africa, want to explore Cape Town, or have always wanted to visit Victoria Falls - do yourself a favor and book it through Ute Sonnenberg at Roho Ya Chui.
This trip couldn't have gone smoother.
We couldn't be happier.
Seriously... stop reading this, and book your trip!
Hillary Timm, United States, September 2014
Me and my wife decided to book our honeymoon with Roho Ya Chui after speaking to Ute over email, she was the only one who put together an itinerary to match our requirments and her communication was amazing! Ute organised everything perfectly and to our exact requirments! From the first contact to the end of the trip everything ran smoothly. Out safari at Kirkmans Kamp was unbelievable, we saw everything and more, our guides were amazing and so were all the staff! On the second part of the trip we stayed st the luxurious Royal living stone near Victoria falls. The hotel and location were amazing as were the staff!
We fell in love with Africa and we will definitely be back! And when we do return we will be contacting Ute for sure!
Danny Evans, United States, June 2016
Perfect organized tours
Roho Ya Chui did an excellent job. All question were answered immediately and the organization of the tours was perfectly done. All my wishes and requests were fulfilled and I had a wonderful time in Mpumalanga. I did a 3-day safari tour and a 1-day panorama tour. Both were marvellous experiences which I will never forget in my life. Thank you Ute and Carol for the organization and special thanks to Mandla, the best experienced and open-hearted guide ever.
Josefina, Germany, November 2015
We booked the Best of Kruger and Cape Town trip for our Honeymoon through Roho Ya Chui (Ute). We had a wonderful experience on every part of our trip. Ute handled all of the travel details of the South Africa part of our trip including ground transfers, lodge bookings, in country flights, hotel, and even the day trips we took from Cape Town. The safari lodge that Ute recommended (Ngala) was amazing, a wonderful accommodation, excellent staff, and animal siting at every turn (including the Big 5 in the first day!). The stay in Cape Town was equally wonderful with attention to detail and perfect recommendations for trips from our hotel. This was our first experience in Africa and we can't wait to go back! We would highly recommend Ute and Roho Ya Chui for any travel plans!
Kurt H, United States, September 2015
Best trip ever!
This is the fourth safari I've been to, but the first time working with Ute from Roho Ya Chui. My experience with her was just perfect. She was extremely professional, very organized, and responded right away to the many questions I had. Everything worked flawlessly, from the road and air transfers, to the camps and lodges used, the vegetarian meals we had requested, and even nightly anniversary celebrations and gifts provided by the camps and lodges we stayed at as Ute had notified them about our anniversary. I loved the app she used to send us our electronic itinerary. I loved working with Roho Ya Chui and my family and I are very grateful for the excellent organization and the wonderful trip we had. I'm sure this will not be our last with Roho Ya Chui and I look forward to a future trip organized by them.
Unique experience in South Africa
Roho Ya Chui has organized our trip to South Africa on very short notice, but with great attention to detail in selecting the most appropriate tour, hotel and connection flights. It was a very unique and relaxing experience, as every piece fell into place, every booking was made correctly, every partner chosen was competent and friendly.
I very much can recommend RoHo Ya Chui for Safari Tours.
Willibald S., Austria, August 2015
Roho Ya Chui provided exceptional advice and service in tailoring the perfect safari experience
Prompt, informative, helpful and friendly. Roho Ya Chui met our all our specific needs for information and a high level of detail to help us plan and understand our safari choices. Our flip-flopping between lodging choices was met with patience and understanding. Provided helpful travel options between camps. Most of all provided priceless on-the-ground information to ensure that we made the right choices for us. Was a real joy to work with and strongly recommend Roho Ya Chui as your agent for planning an African experience.
Mary, United States, October 2014
From Pro to GoGoGo
Our Roho Ya Chui safari experience went from pro to gogogo. Ute took us through all aspects of the booking like a pro: following up on emails and calls quickly and thoroughly. Even when there was a miscommunication between the company and the driver on the first day, it was resolved in a way that did not detract from the trip. The safari in Kruger Park and in the Sabi Sands private game reserve was a flurry of activity -- three days of gogogo excitement. The high point of Kruger was seeing a rhino flop, spin, and reflop in a puddle one car length from our jeep. The high point of Sabi Sands was stalking a leopard across the moonlight. Honeymoon couples seem particularly welcome at Roho. My husband and I had our own poolside table for the final dinner at Sabi Sands! I would strongly recommend the company -- I actually already have, to my friend Ben. ;)
Colin Verbicar, USA, August 2015
We booked a 7 day tour in Botswana through Roho Ya Chui and our experience was wonderful! Ute was able to help us with great amount of questions and provided recommendations relating to the lodges, order of the lodges to stay at, timing of the trip, etc. I cannot praise Ute enough as she had to deal with us a lot, answering multiple questions and changing our bookings twice for no additioanl fee! We decided to stay with &Beyond and chose Nxabega, Xaranna and Sandibe. Ute advised to stay in this particular order and we think it was perfect as we had experienced absolutely different accomodations (from tents to a sort of villa) and safaris. All of the lodges were great with exceptional team members. We were able to see the big five and much more. Special luck with the cats in Sandibe where we were able to see cheetah with a kill, many lions and 3 leopards. Sandibe stood out as it was just re-builta year ago and they are now using solar power (with generator's back-up) which is available 24/7 and you have wi-fi coverage thoughout the lodge and rooms. Otherwise, all 3 lodges were great with outstanding personnel, cannot fault any member of the lodges, they did a great job with acomodating our requests and were just great people to chat with.
Ekaterina, Russia, July 2015
Well organised, fantastic experiences and the big 5!
Roho Ya Chui were fantastic in organising a bespoke Sabi Sands and Kruger NP tour which was tailored to fit my requirements. Ute was great in communicating and organising all the tours and accommodation - I did not need to worry about a thing. The safari experience was amazing. I love doing amateur photography - I was able to get some fantastic shots of the big 5 and a plethora of other game. The guides were extremely knowledgeable and were able to get to some great spots. All in all - it was a fantastic experience!
Matthew G., UK, November 2014
A Most Magnificent Safari Experience
From the first contact to our departure for home after a most magnificent 4 week trip, the organization and communications with us have been nothing but first class.
Every enquiry sent during the planning stages was replied to within 24 hours at the most - usually within one hour.
The combination of the 3 &Beyond safari's combined with alternate style Pakamisa resort provide a good balance of safari experiences. Whilst we finished up doing 21 three to four hour safari's, we never got tired of the wonderful experiences each trip provided.
The 1 week car hire and our drive through Swaziland was another different, yet enjoyable facet of the trip.
The hotel accommodation in Jo'burg (Clico and Four Seasons) and Cape Town including the upgrades were exceptional complete with unbelievable inclusive breakfasts.
Thanks Ute for an unforgettable safari experience, provided at a very realistic price.
Gilesgolf, Australia, March 2015
A week in paradise
We had the perfect safari in South-Africa: the only thing we needed to take care of was our plane ticket to Johannesburg. As of the moment we arrived, everything was perfectly organized: somebody was waiting at the airport, quick transfer to the little plane (wonderful experience) taking us to Ngala. When we left the plane, our ranger was already waiting for us, and drove us to the beautiful lodge. Delicious food, extremely friendly people, we have seen the most amazing animals and birds during our 3-day stay there. We were sad to leave Ngala, but Kirkman's Kamp (also 3 days) was another wonderful experience - the "and beyond" organization stands up for its name, it is truly an "and beyond experience"! Everything is included, if you don't buy anything in the souvenir shop, there is no additional cost to the package price (there are no "hidden costs" - mini bar, all beverages, meals, bush aperos, ... are included)
Ute from Roho Ya Chui is a great travel agent, and she was extremely helpful, all questions we had before leaving were answered quickly! We can warmly recommend her!
Sofie Vandendriessche, Switzerland, April 2014
Roho Ya Chui is the most reliable and trusted safari company I have ever experienced.
My safari tour in kruger National Park was well organized and everything was done perfectly exactly as I expeted.
Suliman, Saudi Arabia, August 2015
An amazing and unforgettable safari experience with Roho Ya Chui! Ute is wonderful!
My husband and I wanted to include a safari, prior to our tour to Cape Town for a cricket festival. After quite a bit of research, I contacted Roho Ya Chui and Ute to help plan our Safari. It was the best decision we could have made. It was our first time on a safari and I can honestly say it was perfect. We saw the big five in the first 24 hours. Arathusa safari lodge is wonderful. Our guide and tracker Roy and Chris were extremely knowledgeable. The accommodation, food and staff at Arathusa are all five star. Ute is a wealth of knowledge, made very helpful suggestions and is a pleasure to deal with. Thanks Ute!
Judy, Canada, March 2015
What a fantastic experience Ute arranged for us!
This was our first experience in South Africa and we totally relied on Roho Ya Chui for the whole organization of a three weeks trip there: initially Ute gave us the proper suggestion on how to better employ our time, based on our expectations and budget, and than she selected for us four different first-class lodges for safaris in different locations and one charming boutique hotel in Cape Town. The trip was perfectly organized in every single detail with timely and accurate communication. Thank you Ute for your highly professional support, there is nothing we can complain except … that the trip is just over now and we already miss SA!
Maurizio Pavesi, Italy, August 2014
Our trip was too amazing to begin to qualify. From the Saxon, to Londolozi, to The River Camp, to Cape Grace, it was totally amazing.
All along the way we met some great people and had a huge time
with all of them.
Thank you for your efforts in planning the trip for us.
We hope to come back to amazing Africa someday.
Ken & Sandy Lenoir, Memphis, USA, January 2013
Many thanks to Ute; she was awesome from the first contact till the end. Great organisation and communication... she made us feel very comfortable with our choice to book the Safari. We enjoyed it soooooo much! On our first Safari day we were able to spot 4 out of the Big 5; an unforgettable experience!!!
Isad, Germany, January 2015
First African Experience .......memorable!!!!!!!!!
It was my first safari in Africa and it couldn't be better! The trip was really well organized.. Everything was wonderful... the camps, the people, the sightings....Thank you Ute !!!!!
Sarah, Italy, August 2014
Roho Ya Chui gave us ULTIMATE safari adventure unlike No Other!!
You gave us a "True" African adventure and exceeded our expectations. Had we gone to So Africa and Botswana on the first leg of our trip, we would have been Very Disappointed that the rest couldn't match what you provided. Our only regret was that we did not stay longer. Our permanent tents were luxurious; our non-permanent tent was comfortably rustic and took us back in time. The food and staff at Every site was Excellent; we especially loved the true Botswana lunch prepared special for us by Judy at Okavango Delta. A special Thanks also to Sunny Boy at Sabi Sands.
Bob and Elaine Mitchell, United States, September 2014
South Africa Honeymoon
We had some pretty high expectations for our honeymoon, and Roho Ya Chui went above and beyond to make our trip amazing. Our agent was Ute, and she put together a perfect itinerary. We wanted to make a few modifications and she was very attentive and helpful to work with. We were able to do and see everything that we wanted and the itinerary had everything planned out perfectly. If we were to go on another safari, we would definitely work through Roho Ya Chui.
Jason, United States, October 2014
Ute from Roho Ya Chui offers a very friendly, pro-active and personalised service and during the course of our communication developed a very good feel for what we are looking for which enabled her to personalise our trip to our wishes.
Ute put a lot of effort into getting the most out of our budget, her knowledge of the camps and regions was very good, one can tell she has actually been to the areas. All the communication was very friendly, fast and efficient. Roho Ya Chui was very caring for us throughout the journey and the 'after the trip' service we received from Roho Ya Chui was as good as the 'before the trip' service.
Roho Ya Chui was recommended to us by a friend and after our experience with Ute we would be more than happy to recommend her service to everyone else.
Claudia, Germany, March 2014
The experience we had was much better than anything I expected.
My daughter was living and working in South Africa. When I suddenly found an opening in my schedule I contacted Ute at Roho Ya Chui and asked if she could put together a Safari for my daughter and me. My only parameter was that it would be memorable. We ended up spending three days as the Phinda Reserve at the Phinda Rock Lodge and three days in Sabi Sands at Kirkman's Lodge. The entire trip was amazing.
In working with Ute I found a true professional who really cared about the quality of our stay. She took care of everything from the time of arrival in South Africa to my transfer back to Johannesburg. She was fully accessible and immediately responded to all my questions. I cannot find words to fully describe this wonderful adventure.
Jim Flynn, United States, April 2014
We had excellent expierence with Roho Ya Chui (more than five star - seven star )
Ute, as always did more than her best to get us accomodation at Londolozi after very short notice.
We had a wonderful stay at SABIE SABIE BUSH LODGE on the 28th, my birthday. Ute made sure that they take notice of it and for the first time in my life I had an unforgettable birthday in te bush. Wild dogs, abeatiful leopard and her cub as a present and to fullfill my day Louis and I was special treated at dinner. We had champagne and a birthday cake specially baked for me. The staff were really great. Thanks to the management and the rest of the team.
At Londolozi we had a warm welcome home back. Garrit, the manager of Fonders camp and his team are very special. They went out their way to let everyone feel at home. While on our bush drive with James as our ranger (excellent) we were suprised with a real colonial bush sundowner treat. What a treat, it was so special and all the tourists of founders enjoyed it so much.
As always Londolozi s the one and only. We had a wonderful two days stay. Nice company on the vehicle
and the rest is history.
We will go to Londolozi in 2015 again for sure.
TERSIA AND LOUIS BOTHA
Thank you Ute for all the arrangements, Ute. You did it very well. We can refer anybody to you.
Tersia Botha, South Africa, October 2014
Excellent, every time again, very good organized, fast, friendly and very professional contact.
The organisation of our tour was very professional. The tour was very good planned on a high level showing an interest in our wishes and giving us better suggestions. The contact and responses to our questions and wishes were fast, very friendly and intensively. We have received a lot of very helpful informations in advance.
An experience we will never forget. We will choose Roho Ya Chui again for other tours in Africa and we recommend this organisation very warm. Absolutely the best!
Karin, Berlin, Germany, August 2014
Roho Ya Chui was fabulous
I very much appreciated how responsive, easy to communicate with, and accommodating Ute was throughout the planning of the trip. This was our first safari and it surpassed all our expectations. An incredible experience. Everyone we met on our trip was helpful, professional and welcoming. I can highly recommend Roho Ya Chui.
Annette, L.A. United States, August 2014
I want to take the chance to thank you for the wonderful safari and great care you gave me on my photo safari last week. This was a remarkable photographic adventure for me as well as all support around in analyzing and reviewing the pictures I took, while you gave just the advise I needed at the time I needed!
I must say that I am an experienced photographer since many years and also have done numerous safaris some time ago. But nothing came close to your knowledge about capturing scenes especially in wildlife environment and also deep understanding of things far beyond pure photography!
This will definitely not be my last photographic excursion I have done with you and I only can recommend to anybody to try one of Ute's classes out personally - you will definitely be very happy with what you get!
Ute, please feel free to publish this on your website.
Many thanks indeed
Peter Tomsu, Vienna, Austria, January 2013
It was very amazing
Very good organization, amazing and exciting safari!! The lodges Ngala and Kirkman's are comfortable, food is very tasteful. I really recommend this travel agency!
Roman, Russia, August 2014
The trip far exceeded our expectations. We’re now going through over 2000 photographs trying to pick our favourites!
Communications with Ute were excellent. She offered help with our airline reservations (which I had made myself) when things got a little messed up.
We had no knowledge of how to plan our trip, or what to expect. Everything we had hoped to be able to do, we accomplished. The safari itself was stunning, wonderful accommodations and extremely professional and knowledgable guides. The assistance and advice we received made our trip memorable.
John & Marcia Martin, United States, January 2014
A well organized and fabulous safari
Every phase of our trip was meticulously organized. The lodges were excellent and the staff were highly professional and personal. We were well looked after and entertained throughout our trip. This was a truly memorable safari and we strongly recommend Roho Ya Chui for safari excursions.
Hovik Yekiazarian, May 2014
First African Experience Was Overall Good ++
Following is a review of the places we visited this past month (June 2014). Roho Ya Chui helped us plan and book the trip. It was a group of 5, with 3 of us being newbies and and the other 2 old hands at African Safaris. Ute Sonnenburg was a delight to work with, and she went the extra step for us on several occasions.
I thought I'd give you my reviews of the places we visited.
Lawhill Apartments: I think this was a good choice, though a bit spartan in amenities / furnishings. Great location at the Victoria & Albert Wharf. Dionne (spelling?) was a good guide and flexible to our suggestions. I really liked Cape Town and Stellenbosch. Next time I might do 2 nights in Stellenbosch as it is quite a nice little town.
Xigera Camp: This one was my favorite. The staff were incredibly friendly and the whole "vibe" was inclusive. When new people came we were all introduced and had a communal table for dinner. And in one of life's little coincidences there was a couple that lives 1/2 mile from where I used to live in Hermosa Beach, California. Our guides, Onx and Rider, were very personable and knowledgeable. And for our last two treks we did game drives rather than the boat. The management at Xigera, Olivia and Masha, were very accommodating. This was my very first experience at game drives/floats (?), so seeing that first elephant, or hippo, or giraffe, or Cape Buffalo was really amazing.
Getting to Victoria Falls: This was an odd experience, from the airport near the Botswana - Zambia border, being dropped off at a small boat on the river to cross over to Zambia, then the wait at the border while the guide / drive had our passports processed. It was a bit unnerving for some of us.
Royal Livingstone Hotel at Victoria Falls: This was a very deluxe place with a head doorman with his hand constantly out for tips. The service in the dining room was excruciatingly slow. There is relaxed dining, and then there is "I should have brought a book" dining. The falls were at full flow and beautiful, and we had the chance to get pictures in the evening and the ensuing morning.
Moving on to Nelspruit, it was a long drive after our flight, BUT we did see a cheetah along the side of the road when we entered the Londolozi reserve.
Londolozi: Obviously a first class 4-5 star facility. The staff that we met were very friendly and accommodating. The "vibe" here was more exclusive, no attempt was made to introduce us to other guests, nor did the other guests seem inclined to socialize. But the rooms were very nice, the meals plentiful and tasteful, and the hot water bottles in the Range Rover for the morning game drives were a much appreciated touch. Will Ford, the camp manager, and the assistant assigned to us, Jeremy (I might have this wrong), were great, as were our guides, Alfred and Chadrock. The butler, Stanick, was always there for us in the dining room. Will Ford arranged a sundowner wine tasting for just our group one night which was a special treat. And we saw the Big 5 in our very first trek! The game here was more numerous than in Xigera. A great experience all around.
Jo'burg: The guide, whose name escapes me, was a disappointment. He met us at the private general aviation lounge at the Jo'burg airport and managed to snag a bottle of water for himself, but not for us. He had a tour he was determined to make and there was no flexibility in his schedule. We probably could have used an extra day in Jo'burg, but not with this guide.
Michaelangelo Hotel: This was a very nice place with big comfortable rooms (apparently if your AC was working which it didn't for the Browns). I was a bit disappointed in the restaurant, or at least the menu. But we had a chance to meet this delightful woman who had booked our trip, oh yeah, that would be Ute. So that made the evening good all around!
Serena Lake Victoria - Entebbe / Kampala: As previously noted by Stephanie, this hotel was too far away for a one night visit, and arduous to get to. And the staff didn't seem to know how to register guests, or at least were very inefficient at check-in and check-out. The restaurant was basically a buffet cafeteria, and not very good, a big disappointment for a property this beautiful physically.
Sanctuary at Bwindi: Same comments as Steph's. I didn't think it was dirty, just more rustic than what we had experienced. The staff was pretty indifferent with the exception of our server, Barbara. And if you weren't trekking, there was not much to do, though I managed to finish a terribly written book on the day I declined the first trek. I must say I am very proud of my fellow travelers for completing that trek and then the "easy" one two days later.
And you know all about the high drama with Qatar Airways, but even that turned out okay eventually, but it was handled very poorly by the airline.
One lesson learned by me is that I don't like the one-night stands (Jo'burg, Lake Victoria, Victoria Falls) because you never really relax and unwind. I'll keep that in mind in the future.
All in all it was an enjoyable trip with delightful travel partners.
Pierce Smith, United States, June 2014
The Safari in Serengeti NP was exciting, not only by the wild encounters, but also by the guidance of Ute of Roho Ya Chui.
Utes mission, vision, operational abilities, transportation, lodges, were excellent, and her attention for details in service, philosophic attitude and wisdom were an extra gift. She is a photo-genius. She knows how to touch and snap the essence. Ute is a ‘’Wildwhisperer’’, empathetic in locating, meeting, and ‘’culture’’ of animals, including birds. She can make animals at ease and curious. Up to: ‘’listen what they tell you’’. I give her 5 stars!
Kees, Netherlands, March 2013
You have opened my eyes to a hobby I knew nothing about, nor did I imagine I would love it so much. This is just the beginning of my journey to discover how to capture a beautiful picture. I hope to have the pleasure of seeing you in the near future, perhaps in the rainforest!
NYC, December 2011
Great Service from Ute at Roho Ya Chui
Excellent communication and itinerary work by Ute. She was very friendly and always accessible to answer questions and ensure everything was ready for our trip. All accommodations were as expected and the trip was better than expected.
Bob, Georgia, United States, May 2014
Thank you for the insight into the “soul” of Africa. Learned a lot!
God bless, Lizanne
Cape Town, December 2011
Great Safari Trip
Good planning and suggestion from Ute. Family had a good time in Kruger. Would recommend her to guests. Everything turned out as planned.
Charles, Singapore, November 2013
Very personal and exceptional
The introductory discussions were very useful for a group that had not visited South Africa before for a holiday and doing their first safari in Africa. The initial bookings were handled very well. Then the e-mail system created a problem with final payments. What impressed me most was the way Roho Ya Chui retrieved the bookings and got our group of six to Ngala in time to celebrate my wife's 60th birthday.
Ittira Davis, May 2014
Happy Kruger Visitors
Back in Jo-berg after a great time at Kruger. Heading back to Ireland tomorrow night. Anyway I would like you to thank all the staff at Hippo Hollow they were all very helpful and friendly and we really appreciated everything they done for us. The food was also very good.
Two people in particular we would like to thank, the first being Brian our driver who drove us to Kruger and back again . He was excellent even through adversity,mainly potholes and burst tyres. He was friendly and informative and we really believe that his employers should realise they have got a gem in Brian.
Secondly our guide Moses Ludwig, what a character. He epitomises everything that is good in South Africa. He is clever, informative and has a wicked sense of humour. It is obvious to anyone that he has a wide understanding of the animals in Kruger and also the needs of tourists like ourselves. We decided that he should be called King Ludwig the first of Kruger. !!!!!!
Anyway please forward our comments to all people concerned
Sally and Irwin
It was all outstanding!!!!!
Excellent organisation, very well chosen lodges, fantastic locations, incredible landscapes, lovely staff, assisting for all our wishes, very helpful, a varied safari with lots of love, empathy and knowledge of the wildlife, time to watch the animals at the sightings, simply ingenious and created the desired to repeat the adventure!!!!
Christine & Lothar, Germany, November 2013
Great experience at Kruger
The trip was very well organized even with only a two day in advance booking. The resort was great with very friendly staff, and the guide at Kruger was a lot of fun and shared a lot of his knowledge about the park and its wildlife. Overall a great Kruger experience!
Rene Fassbender (posted on safaribookings), March 2014
Liebe Frau Sonnenberg,
Vielen Dank, dass Sie mir die Safari Tour so schnell und toll organisiert haben. Das war eine ganz großartige Erfahrung für mich. Einen Leoparden konnten wir leider nicht entdecken, aber sonst war alles dabei.
Das war bestimmt nicht mein letzter Besuch in Südafrika...
Nochmals herzlichen Dank und viele Grüße,
Rene Fassbender (per email)
I just wanted to thank you again for such an amazing weekend - I really had an incredible time. From a photographic perspective, I have learnt so much – you really encouraged us to be creative and I have felt that not only in terms of the pictures, but also in terms of myself as a person. I seem to look at the world differently now and even found myself staring at the light falling on the cars in the traffic yesterday morning!! It seems I have photography on the mind, which is a wonderful thing. Thank you for your kindness and encouragement and for taking us to such a special place, not just physically, but on other levels too. As for Pakamisa, Isabella’s kindness, the hospitality we received from everyone and last, but most certainly not least, the spectacular horses, all made for a destination that will certainly remain with me for a long time to come. I look forward to returning one day.
Publisher: National Geographic Traveller & Custom Publishing
8 INK MEDIA
t 021 412 2931 f 021 421 8880 m 082 922 9679
Equine photography with Ute Sonnenberg
Last year I had the pleasure of meeting Ute Sonnenberg at Pakamisa stud for an equine
photography workshop.So this year I attended a second workshop as I had immensely enjoyed the first workshop, had added it to the top of the list of outings I really like.
The choice of location and subject was as close to perfect as can be found in South Africa and the arrangements for the weekend had been coordinated very effectively by Ute.
I found the pricing to be reasonable and the value for money excellent.
Working with Ute is a real pleasure.Her approach to tuition is primarily concerned with working with people whilst sharing her strong knowledge and teaching participants skills in an effective manner. Contact with Ute reveals a sensitive and perceptive personality whilst she has a very effective approach to assessing the people she is working with individually and being able to thus work with each person in what is almost a one on one basis even though it is a group activity. Ute concentrates on improving the feeling with which one is carrying out the task which was photography but that the camera is a tool and the story about the horses and their environment is what we needed to capture and create.
Assistance on using the camera was available from Ute, but she stayed away from complex
technical detail on using equipment as far as possible.All the emphasis is on connecting and bonding with the subject which is different to any other photography or art courses I have attended before.
This really enhanced the experience of taking a hobby and combining it with an interest or
passion whilst being guided smoothly by Ute and her great sense of humor.
27th July 2010
Wondered about safari for a long time. Everything was arranged nicely which helped make the trip as pleasant as possible.
NYC, December 2011
#9 Gleneagles Court
27 Second Avenue
New York, USA
I am writing to say how pleasantly surprised I was to receive the book, "The Leopards of Londolozi ", feeling like finding a Christmas present in my room. It was one more example of how the many little touches you put into the trip made it so special. The book will always
remind me of the beautiful leopards, particularly "Shorty," the "drama king of Londolozi." His tenacity in trying to protect his kill was amazing. He was like a huge spotted acrobat swinging from the tree, trying unsuccessfully to unlodge his kill. And to see the six lion cubs and then their mothers off in the night to find food for their babies was wonderful.
The rangers and trackers were so well organized that I feel as if I had seen every species of animal on the reserve. As for the rest of the ambiance, the food was first class, the accommodations were amazing and the staff and guests made the entire trip a delight.
When I got home, my friends commented on how relaxed I looked. The bush and a well organized fascinating itinerary certainly can do that.
Best of luck on your future trips,
Dr. Barbara Fisher. October 2011
Brian Khumalo, Leaders Unlimited, Johannesburg, South Africa
I’m the chairman of my company Leaders Unlimited. We provide integrated leadership solutions going from recruitment of executives to board advisory. We do leadership development, executive coaching, mentoring and assessment of leadership behaviour.
I have a great interest in what provides competitive leadership behaviour. I have a great interest in communication and how leaders communicate and how they inspire others. I call it consciousness. When I read about Ute’s course which looks at communicating at an energy level as a form of communication like on a body or a mind level, I got very interested because it responded precisely to my interest in consciousness management.
One of the guys who work for me attended a course where he met Ute and talked to her. He got very interested and excited because he knows about my passion around consciousness.
The key message for me was that communication takes place at three levels of humanity. Just as we are human beings with three dimensions – the body, the mind and the soul or the spirit – communication takes place at a body level through body language. We are all very familiar with body language and using it. The communication also takes place at a mind level through verbal communication. Speaking, reading and writing are the language of the mind. This form of communication is most widely used in the world. The third dimension of our being is the spirit, the soul, the energy level. We never really focus on this dimension. What I found fascinating about Ute’s program is that it focuses on bringing this level to life and activating our communication skills at an energy level.
To carry her methodology and her message across in educating people in communicating at an energy level Ute uses photography and light. Therefore you have to do it in a place which offers endless possibilities for capturing moments. In the wilderness you can capture nature and vegetation as well as wild life. The nature provides a high energy vibration because it is widely untouched by human beings. It is appropriate to connect to an energy level.
Absolutely. The biggest lesson I took was that at an energy level the message normally is derived from the silence. It is derived from you being silent and bonding fully with everything that is around you. I attend to explain things and to bring about logic in understanding things. Ute kept reminding me that the less is the better if you want to benefit from energy communication. Go into your soul and derive messages from the silence in the depth of your soul and your spirit rather than from external messages.
The second big lesson I took was to make aware that at the core of my being I am one with all of life and creation on earth, I’m one with vegetation, mountains, rocks and animals. At the core of my being I am made of that one divine substance that makes everything health on earth. Therefore I could communicate at that level kept into the consciousness of everything that surrounds me, which is made of the same substance as me.
In my daily life it has influenced me dramatically. I become more aware of my body and my being. Therefore it has increased my own intuition. Things you become aware of without any logic. You are aware that something is wrong or something doesn’t align with your being. Normally I would look for external evidence, logic and reasons on the basic of which I would conclude that something is not good for me. Nowadays I listen to that feeling instead of logic and reasoning. And my experience is that it turns out correct.
Photography is a great media for energy communication. As I said earlier about the substance everything is made of vibrates at the frequency level of light. At the end of the day we are all made of that energy level, of the energy vibration of light. Photography has to do with light. When you capture moments around you using the magic of light and you are communicating with light you are tapping into the consciousness of light and you make the consciousness of light communicate with your consciousness at a light level to capture a moment that then reflects a certain message to you. The photography is the best medium for people to engage at the level of light which is the level of their core. That is the significance of photography to me.
It is also fun to do. I never had interest in photography until I went to Kenya. I picked up that interest and became more knowledge about photography which is a great hobby. You are out there in the wilderness and then you come back with all of those moments captured through photography and you can put them on the table and can reconnect with them, you can analyse those moments and you can derive messages from what nature and light were communicating to you. In that way you start to develop your energy communication skills.
It is not easy and it is a lot of work to do. No physical work but it is a lot of inner work. It takes a while before it all starts sinking in because we are so conditioned by the mind. Our mind clicks in immediately trying to make sense of things. One of the things that Ute does is to keep reminding you to snap out of your mind. That is where and when energy communication takes place. When you silent your mind your energy dimension comes to the surface. You have to stop thinking and that is the most difficult thing to do because from the time you start going to school you are told that the mind is all. When somebody tells you that it is not a part of your soul and tells you to let go of your mental capability it is frustrating in the first place.
Who do you think should do the trainings?
Every human being on earth. I believe that life on planet earth is at the stage where the third dimension of our being – the spirit and the soul – is going to be the source of competitive advantage. The last 300 years were the era of the mind where mental and intellectual competitiveness was the source of competitive advantage for humanity. That era had run its course and the 21st century is the era where the spirit and the soul are going to be the competitive advantage.
Are you still interested in the topic?
It is my profession. I am in the profession of helping people tapping their full potential. This is especially good for leaders from all walks of life – political, religious, economically. All leaders have to understand that to lead in the 21st century is going to require more than intellectual capability.
Viktoria Susovits, Talk at Nyenrode Business University, Jan. 2010, Netherlands
On January 25th 2010 Ute Sonnenberg was invited by Prof. Paul de Blot of the Nijenrode Business University to give a lecture on her training about communication on energy level. Without any prior knowledge I listened to her with great curiosity.
Ute’s training is based on Quantum Consciousness, which integrates modern physics, Buddhist wisdom and Western psychology. One of its central ideas is that everything is made out of energy; this chair, my arm, an anxious feeling, a positive thought. It is all energy, but in different forms. This is the same energy you sometimes feel when you walk into a room with other people. In the 4 day training in the beautiful nature of Kenya, the focus is on this energy in forms of communication. In our daily life we are conditioned to communicate in a one dimensional way and usually don’t pay attention to unconscious aspects of our communication. These aspects will come to light through different techniques Ute uses in her trainings, like photography. By focusing on body, mind and soul, she tries to capture and explore communication on energy level as wide as possible.
Like Quantum Consciousness, Ute’s training is an experience more than a concept. In order to know and feel what the real impact of the training is, it is not sufficient and satisfying to listen to some words explaining it. It is not a spectator sport, it is an experience. This makes it difficult to answer all the questions raised by the audience. Because the strong sense of curiosity couldn’t be answered as expected, it transformed into a cascade of confusion and emotions. With this, Ute pulled the audience out of their comfort zone and created a whole new energy that would have been felt immediately by someone stepping into the room.
Ute picked Samburu in Kenya to be the best place to experience her training. This place has a very special energy with its red coloured earth, beautiful nature and wildlife.
Her presence and short words were enough for me to decide to step into this experience and join her training in October.
This weekend has grounded my love for photography once again & simplified it. I went back to the basics & focused on enjoying the moment & being creative.
Thank you very much, Tilana Otto.
Liebe Frau Sonnenberg,
Von der Safari waren wir alle restlos begeistert. Zumindest Ivonne und ich haben nie zuvor solche Tieransammlungen gesehen. Erstaunlich war auch, dass wir den Tieren so nahe kommen konnten. Dies umso mehr, weil man sich ja im Gegensatz zu Safaris in Kenis an vorgeschriebene Wege halten muss. Uns hat das Afrika-Fieber voll erwischt und wir werden sicherlich wieder nach Afrika reisen.
Die von Ihnen ausgewählten Lodges waren genau richtig für unsere Zwecke und übertrafen teilweise sogar meine Erwartungen. Am besten gefiel uns der Aufenthalt im Mbuzi Mawe Camp und in der Lake Manyara Tree Lodge. Hier hatten wir einfach den direktesten Kontakt mit der afrikanischen Tierwelt und Platzangebot als auch Ausstattung ließen keine Wünsche übrig.
Unsere beiden Begleiter von 4x4 Adventures waren die idealen Tour-Guides. Zum einen profitierten wir von der optimalen Orts- u. Tierkenntnis, andererseits auch von deren stetem Bemühen, unsere Erwartungen zu erfüllen. Die beiden waren immer darauf bedacht, dass wir uns rundum wohl fühlen und die "big five" zu sehen bekommen, was uns auch gelungen ist. Außerdem waren die beiden immer gut drauf und haben uns zum Abschied sogar einen "sundowner" geschenkt. Es war einfach atemberaubend schön. Und wenn ich wieder nach Afrika fliege, würde ich gerne wieder mit den beiden unterwegs sein.
Sansibar war wie erwartet klimatisch sehr tropisch. Das Hotel liegt abseits der Hauptstraße und ist nur über eine Zufahrt zu erreichen, bei der man nicht vermuten würde, dass sich an deren Ende überhaupt noch Zivilisation befindet. Wir waren anfangs etwas erschrocken und dachten wir werden irgendwo aus dem Auto geschnmissen und ausgeraubt. Aber dem war natürlich nicht so. Das Z-Hotel wird im Grunde gut geführt. Nachteilig ist, dass es über keinen großen Hausstrand verfügt und der öffentliche Strand nicht wirklich gepflegt ist. Begehbar ist der Strand sowieso nur bei Ebbe. Dann kann man tatsächlich kilometerlang am Strand wandern und den Fischern beim anlanden bzw. bei der Reparatur ihrer Boote zusehen und schöne Bilder machen. Die Verpflegung ist etwas einseitig. 14 Tage Urlaub sind m. E. dort nicht zu empfehlen. Da wir aber nur 6 Nächte verweilten, konnten wir uns mit der Situation doch gut arangieren. Man muss seine Erwartungen auf Sansibar im Vergleich zur Safari
tatsächlich etwas zurück nehmen.
In den Reiseführern wird außerdem immen die Altstadt von "Stone Town" gelobt. Dieses Lob mag mal früher seine Berechtigung gehabt haben aber inzwischen verfällt alles und man erkennt auch keine Bemühungen, dieses sicherlich ursprünglich wertvolle Erbe erhalten zu wollen. Als ich unseren dort vor Ort gebuchten Guide daraufhin ansprach reagierte er sehr gleichgültig obwohl er ja damit seinen Lebensunterhalt verdient.
Zusammenfassend also ein ganz klares ja für ein Wiedersehen in Afrika. Sansibar wird aber nicht mehr von uns angesteuert.
Liebe Frau Sonnenberg, wir möchten uns nochmals ganz herzlich bei Ihnen persönlich bedanken. Dafür, dass Sie uns diese tolle Reise zusammengestellt und so tolle Lodges herausgesucht haben, danke aber auch dafür, dass Sie jederzeit für uns erreichbar und stets bemüht waren, unseren Aufenthalt in Afrika zu einem wirklichen Erlebnis werden zu lassen. Wir werden diese Urlaubsreise bestimmt nicht vergessen.
Bitte geben Sie unsere überaus positiven Eindrücke von dieser Reise und insbesondere auch die von 4x4 Adventures an unsere Begleiter weiter. Die beiden haben dieses tolle feedback wirklich verdient.
Schöne Grüße aus dem frostigen Deutschland
Ivonne und Thomas Lang
Coming to Africa and Kenya especially was a dream come true. The photography experience made it all the better! It was so much fun to be able to share this with friends and to make new ones.
NYC, December 2011
"Ute is an exceptional photographer. She has that special ability to see the extraordinary within the ordinary. Her website is really inspirational. I found her workshop at Pilansberg so helpful. It was relaxed and easy going, and as we drove around the reserve she shared with us her special ability to spot a good photo. She helped me to experiment, to break from the conventional and try something new. I look forward to the next one..." Lara Kay
“Ute’s workshop stands out for the following reasons:
Small groups and very personal attention and assistance
Attention to detail
Her passion for nature and the work she does is addictive
An amazing breakfast
I will go back over and over”
First let me thank you enormously for my learning experience this morning. I feel totally motivated and hugely excited to start playing and exploring with my camera.
I cannot believe what a wonderful experience I had. I am looking forward to moving forward in leaps and bounds.
Thank you once again
Regards Margie Dane
An inspirational journey of learning the beginning of painting with light. The promise of a lifetime of adventure with the camera ahead. Thanks so much for the wonderful inspiration in the best setting ever!
This weekend has been a very deep experience, connecting with all levels of nature, myself, and being able to express it in the photos I took. You have made us look at ourselves and reflect on the beauty of nature and how connected we are to mother earth.
Looking forward to doing another trip with you in the future.
Kind regards, Noel Otto
P.S. You were like a conductor of an orchestra, not trying to teach us how to play our instruments, but continuously pointing us in the right direction and trust our instruments and ourselves.
“My husband and I attended one of Ute’s horse photography workshops and followed that up with a trip to the Pilanesberg. We had both become overly concerned with the technical aspects of operating a camera and Ute helped us to refocus on the pure enjoyment of photography, using instinct and intuition to achieve a good photo. She explained how to take photographs in situations where we would normally not have done so and taught us how to experiment with the conditions at hand, achieving some interesting effects.
Ute was an excellent hostess, keeping the trip light-hearted and fun. We can definitely recommend her workshops.”
Regards, Claire & Dirk
Gregor Gersen, Kenneth Smit Trainingen, Netherlands
Have things changed for you after you did the training?
I am more relaxed. I always had the pressure to get to results and had stress to finalize and arrange something. In the training I realized more and more that going with the flow is even better. Things come on your path and you can use them or not. I am more open to use the things by looking, listening and experiencing.
Who do you think should do the training?
I think it is very good for people who are in the top of organizations, in management positions. But I can also recommend it to people who want to learn more about themselves, who want to become more conscious and want to do something with it.
Are you still interested in th topic?
Yes. I’ve changed my way of living by using my cell phone as a camera when I walk around and make pictures of special moments, events or nature. When I need them I download them, look at them and learn. That gives me the possibility to continue.
To my teacher, my guide and my new-found friend. Your presence and your compassion have moved and shifted me in ways I could only dream about. How do I adequately thank you for this?
I learned a lot about photography, not only from the technical side, how to use the camera and which settings to use. The biggest learning was that you really don’t need to have the finest technical equipment to have nice photos. You can reach the spirit no matter how the camera is.
I am writing to thank you for a wonderful experience at the Photography Workshop. Everything about the environment was extraordinary. It was breathtaking to be perched on top of the mountain. The accommodations really were five-star; staff were helpful and friendly. I was so pleased with the members of the workshop. They were the type of people who are unpretentious, very open and enthusiastic, and talented. Though I required more attention than normal, no one ever acted like they were being "put-upon" when I needed help, including you.
You were right! In those four days, I completely relaxed, though I worked hardon learning about photography. I forgot about all of my deadlines in the city. I felt more rested than I had in a long time and the days just flew.
And what a stable of horses! I haven't had much experience with horses but they were wonderful to watch and to shoot. Because the shooting assignments were so unique and challenging, the follow-up discussions were also illuminating. I was very sorry I was unable to ride Samurai, the horse with whom I bonded but hopefully I will come back when I am better physically and get that opportunity.
Again, I thank you for all of your hard work and your commitment to facilitating the best possible experience for participants.
Dr. Barbara Fisher
Perfect organisation of our tour
Everything was perfect organised. Thank you very much Ute. If we come back to Africa, we will book again with you
Hans Loretz, April 2016, Switzerland
Botswana and Victoria Falls Safari
This was our first Africa trip and it more than lived up to our expectations. Ute arranged all of the lodging and transfers and everything was perfect. Everywhere we went the people were incredibly friendly and helpful. We visited four different lodges in Botswana which each had different terrain. Wildlife was spectacular at all locations. I would highly recommend Roho Ya Chui if you are planning a trip to Africa.
Paul, United States, June 2016
Trip Of A Lifetime!
My husband and I went to South Africa, Zambia, and then Cape Town for our honeymoon. The South African Safari at Kirkmans Kamp was absolutely amazing! We hadn't been to Africa before and didn't know where the best area to visit would be at. Sabi Sands game reserve had everything! We saw leopards, Serval, wild dogs, rhinos, and many more. It was amazing. All of our travel arrangements were excellent and waiting for us perfectly. The Royal Livingstone was beyond our expectations and the Cape Town hotel (Table Bay Hotel) was the perfect location!
Becky, United States, June 2016
Absolutely Amazing Experience with Roho Ya Chui
Booking our first trip to South Africa and Zambia with Roho Ya Chui (Ute Sonnenberg) was the best thing that could have happened to us. Ute set up an amazing experience with us that started in Cape Town, took us to Kirkman's Kamp for safari, and then onwards to Victoria Falls in Zambia. The accommodations she picked at all the locations were top notch. In addition, the safari lodge she chose was great in every aspect. The lodging, people, food, and experience was great. We had a blast and saw the Big 5. Thank you Ute!
Ravi, United States, May 2016
We worked with Ute in planning the safari as part of our honeymoon. Ute was very responsive in catering to our requirements as she customized the safari for us based on our interests and duration. The whole package including the lodge and the safari tour was great; special shout out to Laughing Waters Guesthouse for their amazing hospitality.
Rimple Gadhvi, April 2016, United Kingdom
"Perfect" is insufficient a word to describe the experience and Ute's service
Every detail was handled from beginning to end with a level of professionalism second to none. Ute took our interests, desires, and timetable and put together a program that was amazing. Her experience with the lodges, ground transport companies, and charter air companies made all aspects of our 12 days in the bush seamless leaving us to only enjoy every moment of our amazing journey. By the second day my wife was so impressed with the experience she was asking "When are we coming back?" Tip: Let Ute handle all your transport from your arrival in country to your airport departure to remove any chance of stress and distraction so you're left to only enjoy your safari.
The four &Beyond lodges we stayed at offered a level of luxury and service we honestly could not believe. Everything to the smallest detail expertly handled with the brightest and biggest South African smiles. Game drives with their ranger/driver and trackers were extraordinary with up close encounters with so many animals we couldn't keep track. We need to go through the thousand or so photos we took to make a list. Food was excellent and offered something like eight times a day so expect to gain a pound or two.
Just a few tips: The lodges do your laundry so it isn't necessary to over pack. South Africa has a electrical plug that is different from what most of the adapters we've used all over the world so be sure you either bring one with you or buy one on arrival. Pack a lightweight windbreaker that resists rain and packs down to nothing for use on the early morning drives as the wind created while driving in the open vehicles can be chilly but as the morning warms just pack it away. One warm jacket is a necessity as the weather will change and don't get caught short. Be prepared to have your face in a constant smile, your eyes startled, your brain over stimulated, and your heart warmed.
Scott Leonard, United States, September 2015
We had an amazing time on our safari booked with Roho Ya Chui. It was so convenient to have the option to fly into Skukuza airport and arrive straight into Kruger. Laughing Waters lodge where we stayed was lovely - Gavin and Carol were so hospitable and the food was delicious. The itinerary for the safari was very good - 4 Kruger drives, the Panorama Route and a nighttime game drive in Sabi Sands. The drive in Sabi Sands was magical and we really appreciated being able to do it without having to stay in a private game reserve. Our dealings with Roho Ya Chui were very good - Ute was very helpful and very responsive. Overall a fantastic experience.
Amanda, New Zealand, March 2016
Professional and slick
Booked our first 'taster' safari with RYC with 3 nights/4 days in Kruger, including an evening game drive at Sabi Sands. Organisation was seamless and the experience excellent. Not really knowing what to expect I can only say the whole experience exceeded every expectation thanks to Ute and the team.
Glynn, United Kingdom, February 2016
Safari and Zanzibar
This trip was planned to perfection by Roho Ya Chui, every connection, flight and accommodation was perfect. My safari guide was very experienced and helped me get the best of my trip. Zanzibar was a perfect come down after the excitement of chasing chui's!! I would recommend Roho Ya Chui for their excellent arrangements and the personal touch- answering stupid questions from Safari novices!
Karen, United States, December 2015
Amazing Safari Experience!
We did the 4 day Safari in Kruger park, Sabi sands and the panorama route and it definitely exceeded our expectations! timings were perfect, vehicles used were great and we had a wonderful stay at the laughing waters lodge. I totally recommend Roho Ya Chui and i really appreciated how they were so flexible in adjusting some things in the itinerary for us. We had an unforgettable experience and we did see the big five all in close encounters!
Hayam, Egypt, November 2015
We absolutely loved our safari with Roho Ya Chui.
The organization, responsiveness, and service by Ute was absolutely perfect.
Each of the three destinations was very special and completely different to the one before both in terms of accommodation and as a destination.
It is worth while to research the destinations before booking as not everybody likes tents in the middle of the wilderness with bucket showers and elephants around your tent or a lodge that is about 5km from the Victoria Falls but for us it was absolutely perfect and did completely match our destinations.
HCS, United Kingdom, September 2015
A perfect package of safari experience for Botswana
From the moment we showed our interest in one of the safari tour packages offered by Roho Ya Chui, Ute was very efficient in helping us organize what we had dreamed of. Several questions we asked by e-mail over the first few days were immediately answered in person by her, and it was this responsible reaction which made us decide on the tour rather quickly. Being immediately convinced that we were getting a reliable package with the best itinerary, we didn't even search for any other operators or tours.
The safari trips itself in Botswana (Okavango Delta, Savuti and Chobe) was a succession of unforgettable experiences. Even compared with our previous safari trips in Kenya and Tanzania, this time gave us much more diversified animal and landscape sightings, and we were extremely impressed by the quality of the safari guides offered at each of the camps we stayed. We saw all the animals we wanted to see to our full content (except for a cheetah).
Iwao, France, July 2015
Roho Ya Chui were very easy to deal with from the booking stage and throughout the tour.
The communications from start to finish were first class and very professional. The service as a whole was very good and I can't fault them on anything. The tour itself more than lived up to my expectations. The accommodations were very good, the tour guides were friendly and informative and all the transfers and tours whether by boat or vehicle were excellent and without a hitch. The locations and the animals I encountered are memories I'll cherish forever.
Steve Park, Australia, July 2015
Wonderful Family Safari in SA
My family and I were very excited to go on safari and I went online to do some basic research. Although I am an experienced traveler, I had never been to Africa and was overwhelmed with the options available for a first safari. Luckily, I found an itinerary by Roho Ya Chui with fantastic reviews that fit perfectly into our schedule. Four nights in a safari camp and three in Cape Town.
I sent an inquiry and was contacted by Ute, who was immediately helpful with my planning. Although she was in South Africa and I in New York, we arranged a mutually convenient time and spoke on Skype to arrange the itinerary. She was very flexible, especially when we added a fourth person last minute.
The trip itself exceeded all my expectations! We spent four nights in Kirkman's Kamp, an intimate luxury camp in the Sabi Sands reserve. We were paired with a tracker and ranger for the duration of our stay, and they took us on game drives to see animals twice daily. We saw all the big 5 and more. The quality of the game viewing was more than I could have hoped. We had a leopard walk right by our vehicle! The ranger was also very knowledgeable about these animals, which meant we learned as well as saw.
Having booked through Roho Ya Chui, we didn't have to worry about internal flights, airport transfers or the hotel in Cape Town. It was a wonderful experience and my only regret is I wish I had stayed longer.
Fernanda, United States, July 2015
Thank you for booking us a safari trip in South Africa to remember by. It was an amazing experience for the whole family. The flight connections were so well organized that everything went smoothly without any delays. The two private game reserves that you booked for us at &Beyond were exceptional in accommodation, service, food and safari experience. We got to see the Big 5 several times at Ngala and once at Phinda and during the 6 days there, we saw the Big "baby" 5. Highlights of our trip included seeing the rare wild dogs (and their 17 pups) and 4 sightings of the rare black rhino (one with a baby). The 5 cheetah babies were adorable and we had to go back a second time to take more photos. The sunsets were amazing to watch over the horizon. The beauty of watching the animals in their natural habitat was breathtaking! We also experienced the struggles of the animals in the wild - the mother cheetah who had her kill "stolen" initially by a hyena and then by a male cheetah, a male leopard who was limping due to a snare caught in one of its hind legs (and obviously in great pain - hopefully Habitat was able to find him and remove the snare), 4 lion cubs separated from their mothers and siblings who patiently waited for a reunion (they eventually got reunited the next morning). The lodges also celebrated our daughter's high school graduation and our son's 16th birthday with champagne and cake out in the bush. Both our ranger guides were excellent (Roan at Ngala and Matt at Phinda Mountain) - they made each safari an adventure filled with fun and laughter. Our tracker Musa at Phinda was outstanding in spotting the animals from afar. Actually, the combination of Matt and Musa at Phinda in finding and tracking the Big 5 amazed us at every turn (the other vehicles would give up but Matt and Musa persevered and managed to spot the black rhino, the mother cheetah with 5 cubs, the lion cubs separated from their mothers and the injured leopard with patience and knowledge of the animals and of the lay of the land). We could not have asked for more from this trip and would like to thank you Ute for organizing it and making the recommendations that you did. Definitely would highly recommend your services and the &Beyond Private Game Reserves to anyone wishing to experience South Africa in a once-in-a-lifetime way.
Gina, Lloyd, Laura (18), Adam (16) & Rebecca (13.5) from Ottawa, Canada - July 2015
Our trip was flawless in every way with diverse experiences from five star safari to tent camping
Communications were timely and very detailed. The service from our initial email contact until the first airport pickup was impeccable. The trip lived up to our expectations and more. Our tour was a mix of a five star private game reserve, to a quiet and upscale riverfront lodging, to tent camping, ending with a stay in a Leading Hotels of the World in Cape Town. We experienced absolutely no problems in services provided from various transportation companies, being met timely, escorted through various customs offices and even a trip by small boat across the river from Zambia to Botswana. We had individual service in all cases and never had to wait for a connecting driver from country to country. I don't know how it all worked out but obviously the planning by Roho Ya Chui made it all come together.
Beverly, United States, September 2014
One of the most memorable trips we ever made
We booked “Kruger, Panorama Route & Sabi Sands” Package (4 days) with accommodation at Rissington Inn.
We would book it again. This package is perfect for everyone who is looking for a first safari experience. Everything was nicely arranged and the guides provided very interesting information and made our game drives to unforgettable adventures.
The Rissington Inn is a nice place to stay. The rooms (bungalow) are huge and very quiet. The cuisine of Rissington Inn is top and the staff really cares about the guests.
M+J Bruengger, China, January 2015
A Very Positive Experience
Having arrived in South Africa on Dec. 26 without anything planned, we needed to move fast. Ute could not have been more responsive or helpful in facilitating delivery of an excellent safari experience. She took our preferences into account in providing myriad options for us to consider and did so in incredibly short order. For that, as well as her recommending Kirkman's Kamp, we could not be more grateful.
Justin & Sarah, United States, January 2015
South Africa HHW
First we would like say thanks to our Agent Ute Sonnenberg. She organized us an amazing travel with a lot of experiences and challenges. The first section in Kruger Park with a Photo session with Ute was a very nice time with a lot of animals (we saw all Big 5 and additional the 2 other Big's like Hippo and Shitas and as special highlight the Wild dogs where only 146 dogs exist in Kruger) and friendly people from the "Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge" and "Kirkman’s Kamp". Also the relax time in Swaziland where we walked a little bit and the treatment time in the "Pakamisa Private Game Reserve", on Rocktail Beach (direct on the Indian Ocean) with a beautiful beach with very less people and the New Year celebration in the "Lily Pond Country Lodge" were a very nice vacation variation. And the travelling and stay at last station in Cape Town (staying in the Abbey Manor lodge at the foot of Table Mountain) showed us the vastness and beauty of South Africa.
Even a short-term desire for a trip modified on first Christmas Day was executed immediately.
Because we were traveling with a rental car only the travel route planning, we will do better next time (shorter distances because it takes more time than expected between the stations).
We never had the feeling that it was dangerous for us in South Africa
Many thanks for the great vacation.
Hella and Hans, Germany, December 2014
Family Safari Extravaganza
At first we were a little apprehensive booking such an expensive holiday over the Internet but Ute was responsive and knowledgeable and gave us confidence things would go to plan.
We chose three safari experiences, all with And Beyond including Ngala, Chobe Under Canvas and Xudum lodge in the Okavango Delta. We separated Ngala and Chobe with a short stay at the Royal Livingstone Hotel in Zambia which was well worth the stay, a little qwerky, old worldy and had great access to the Victoria Falls.
Each safari park gave a different experience, Ngala with its variety of animals (we saw the magnificent 7 within 2 days) and the real benefits of a private park, Chobe with the sheer numbers of wildlife, and the Xudum with its variety supplementing drives with boat trips and traditional "mekoro" canoe outings.
And Beyond impressed with its quality service and attention to detail, well worth the money paid.
All in all a great trip we will all remember for the rest of our lives.
Steve Mac, Australia, September 2014
Very professional and flexible safari operator with contacts to the very best lodges.
The communication has been great through the entire process, always quick and good replies to our mails. We were very impressed with all the information provided before hand and everything has lived up to our expectations. Our stay at kirkmans camp were extremely pleasant. Great location, great accomodation, great food and staff, and not the least amazing safari-experience. Our guide was very professional and knew so much about the wildlife! We also had a good stay at the ngala lodge but felt it was a little bit less intimate and personal primarily because of its bigger size. The staff also seemed less engaged, but still great accomodation, great food and amazing wildlife experience. All transfers went as planned so it was easy for us to just relax and enjoy!
Anna and Peter from Denmark, October 2014
Roho provided invaluable local knowledge, allowing us to experience quality safaris and accommodati.
All excellent. Service and accommodation selected exceeded expectations. Staff at the lodges made us very welcome and were experts in their field.
Phil, United Kingdom, July 2014
The most incredbile African Safari
We had the good fortune to find this amazing company on safaribookings, and I feel so glad that we traveled with their expert planning. The very best part was the entire trip was customized to our exact preferences, including travel dates, lodge choices and activities planned. We enjoyed seeing both Kruger Park, and Pilanesberg Park as they were both filled with so many species of animals. We would highly recommend both the lodges we stayed at as well:Hippo Hollow Estates, and Bakuabung Lodge. A highlight of our trip was our safari guide, Muzzi. He made our trip extra special with his animal spotting expertise and good humor throughout our travels with him. This company is extremely professional and as a customer you will always feel safe and well cared for! We can't wait to return with them.
Heather C., United States, October 2014
Excellent experience, very helpful and accommodating.
Ute was fantastic, gave us a great trip. Very helpful and always responded to emails quickly. Safari was for 3 days, 4 nights which was perfect for us. Will recommend to friends and family
Donna, United States, September 2014
Amazing life experience in Kruger!
What an amazing trip. We were picked up at our hotel in Joburg and took the sightseeing drive to Hazyview. (Definitely stock up on the smoked macadamia nuts along the way!) Gods window and another great stop at a waterfall. Great sights. We arrived at Hippo Hollow and enjoyed staying in one of the garden chalets... it would have been nice to have a river view to watch the hippos at night and the elephants by day but all in all we were only 10 meters from the view so all was fine. We were picked up at 4pm for a night safari (it gets cold in April!) and actually saw a leopard eating an impala in a tree! Super rare and makes up for our not seeing a lion during the rest of our trip. The full day trips were very nice. less activity during mid-day but it was really nice to turn off the truck and soak in the sound and view from time to time. so peaceful.
What we did:
-1 night safari - Was ok but would not repeat. basically you shine a spotlight and drive slowly looking for eyes reflecting back at you. 99% are impala. we did a larger group with 10 people (strangers) and would not opt for that group size again. you lose all peaceful elements of the drive
-2 full day safari - definitely recommend a private tour or going with another couple you may know. its a long time to spend with strangers you may not care for
-1 1/2 day morning safari - this was fine as we were leaving for Joburg afterwards
What I would change...
-I would consider adding in a hike through the park with one of the trackers. This looks VERY cool!(and safe)
-I would consider staying at a camp inside the park. I actually would like to get deep into the [park and stray at one of the small camps... by camp I mean a small fenced in area with permanent tents and toilet. bare bones but very down to earth. May as well get very acquainted with the local beasts!
Ute and Roho Ya Chui did a great job and were very attentive of our needs during our trip. Its a fear that once you pay the broker is done with you but this was not the case with Ute. She is attentive and fast to respond during our trip. This is worth a lot and when we do another safari Ute will be receiving a call from us.
Enjoy your trip!
** Oh, one more thing. If you choose to do everything bay car/truck you cont need to buy all the safari gear listed on various sites. a tan shirt is more than enough. the animals cant see your legs in the truck and there are so many people moving through the park that you could have a flashing light on top of your head and the animals wouldn't care. okay, maybe that's an exaggeration but you get my point.
Christian Ratteree, USA
Roho Ya Chui provided all the support I needed to make my safari trip the best experience ever.
From the very beginning I received all the information I requested and all my questions were cleared really quick (even with the time difference since I live in Mexico).
Ute, my guardian angel and travel agent, was 100% supportive and she was always open to any concern I had. She kept a warm and open communication at all times.
She also arranged an incredible dinner as part of the wonderful experience - my boyfriend and I were celebrating our 10th anniversary and it was a magic night!
The service provided exceeded my expectations: all the bookings were done timely without problems, both logdes were wonderful, the staff was always kind and willing to help. The food was amazing and our guides/rangers made the whole safari experience the best trip of my life.
Emilia Cruz, Mexico, May 2014
Excellent client service experience from start to finish.
I would like to thank you for putting together an amazing itinerary.
Everything went very smoothly even when there were changes to the schedule - this could only happen with excellent communication and coordination between the different parties. This allowed me to focus on enjoying the safari experience!
Jan Yamamoto, United States, January 2014
One of the best holidays we've ever had! 5 stars!
We had an amazing holiday! AndBeyond safari lodges were fantastic. We were blown away by the high standards and superior service. Everyone remembered our names, and all staff were wonderfully friendly. Nothing was too much trouble. The accommodation in Exeter River Lodge was a real highlight. A truly stunning suite, and although it was a bit too cold to use the private plunge pool (we missed the 40C day and had 25C weather for much of our stay), we did enjoy sitting outside watching the Nyala, warthog, monkeys and lions wander by. This is absolutely the place to go if you're on honeymoon or want a romantic getaway.
The AndBeyond game rangers and trackers were excellent - both at Exeter River and particularly at Ngala, where I'm sure because of our tracker (Fanny) we seemed to see more wildlife than anyone else! Rhino, lion, several leopard (incl. cubs), buffalo, dwarf mongoose, cheetah, wildebeest, African wild dogs and pups, hyena and pups (they were surprisingly cute!), elephant (incl. lots of babies), yellow-billed hornbills and lots more.
Additionally the food was an unexpected highlight of our stay in the AndBeyond lodges. Every day we were impressed at the spread and quality of the food. We asked for many of the recipes and ended up buying their recipe book. Really, it was divine! If there was any criticism it would simply be that there was too much food and it was too irresistible - we came back weighing 1-2 kg heavier than before we left :-)
The staff were incredibly helpful and welcomed us warmly and professionally with airport transfers from the remote airport (where part of the Ngala rangers role was to chase any animals off the airstrip!). The short flights (10mins) between lodges were definitely the way to go (saved a 2-3 hour drive through uneven terrain). We really didn't want to leave when our guide and tracker returned us to the little bush airport (well, runway) for the final time.
We then had 3 days at Royal Chundu in Zambia to see Victoria Falls. Royal Chundu River Lodge was amazing! It was a bit of a treck to get there - an hour's drive from Livingstone, mostly along an unfinished and very bumpy road. By the time we arrived we were feeling slightly motion sick and starting to wonder whether it would all be worth the long drive there. But it absolutely was! When we stepped out of the car and into the resort it was the most serene and peaceful place, instantly dissolving any doubts we may have had. There was an infinity pool overlooking the Zambezi, the restaurant tables also overlooked the Zambezi. There was a welcome drink waiting for us and a beauty therapist ready to give us a shoulder massage whilst we completed the paperwork. The chef at the Royal Chundu was amazing - he trained under a 2 Michelin star chef and I have to say the evening food was divine - both in presentation, innovation and taste. And the room was amazing! Both Royal Chundu and Exeter River were stunning places to stay - probably the nicest places we have ever stayed at before.
The only slight disappointment with the Zambia trip was that the Vic Falls were very dry when we went (mid-late October), as the rains hadn't started yet. So it was a little like looking at a regular waterfall. So the views from the helicopter ride were not the stunning gush that we had hoped for, and there was no roar of water from the falls. But being in low season did mean we got to swim in Devils Pool - right on the edge of the falls, which was very very good! Apparently you can't do that in high season as I guess there is too much risk.
This trip has honestly been one of the best holidays we've ever been on, which is saying a lot as we are both well travelled. We can't recommend enough the lodges we stayed at: Exeter River Lodge, Ngala Lodge and (in Zambia) Royal Chundu (River Lodge). We also thoroughly recommend Ute Sonnenberg of Roho Ya Chui for organising this amazing holiday. She was enormously helpful and even added a wonderful personal touch of collecting us at the airport when we returned from the safari. She truly helped to make this trip so great.
Sharon & Simon from the UK, September 2013
Excellent service and quality
Roho Ya Chui, Ute, helpt us in a wonderful to organise a perfect trip to Johannesburg in combination with a safari. Quick response, good hotels, perfect service, helpful and great advise on the variations of safari camps. She helped us to combine our wishes to the perfect location. We left South Africa with a very good feeling and Roho Ya Chui made that possible.
Richard, Netherlands, January 2012
A great help
It is almost impossible to plan a first trip to South Africa without the expertise of a travel agency that is based in South Africa. However there is always an unsafe feeling doing business with someone living in another continent. To do everything in confidence it was good that a friend advices us to contact Roho Ya Chui which is an agency based in South Africa however also in Europe, the Netherlands. So planning the trip was very easy and all financial stuff was done very correctly. We had a great trip.
Jan Keteleer, Belgium, August 2013
Amazing well planned photo safari
My safari at Phinda was truly life changing for me. It was my first time in Africa and I was there on business and I only had a few days to spend on a game reserve. I chose Roho Ya Chui because of their great reputation and their attention to detail. Ute Sonnenberg organized everything and left nothing to chance. The accommodations were excellent. Food was top notch. I am a photographer and this was my first photo safari. Ute was very helpful in making sure I was prepared with all the right gear. I got spectacular images and had an equally spectacular experience. I hope to return soon with my family, so they can experience Africa with Roho Ya Chui too!
Joel, USA, July 2013
A Fantastic journey-Serengeti Migration
A dream of me and my husband, both photo enthusiasts, was to go to Tanzania's Serengeti National Park, to experience the Serengeti migration and to make some good pictures.
We knew that over a million animals participate in the Serengeti Migration. So without experienced guides it would be rather impossible to cover it in 2 weeks time.
Ute Sonnenberg of Roho Ya Chui is such an experienced guide. With her help, tips and advice this adventure became an experience for life.
Catharina Koopman, Belgium, July 2013
Thank you again for creating a wonderful experience of narrative through pictures. I heard many comments of appreciation about your soulfulness and sensitivity. The journey of photography towards exploration of self and others have truly been rich and rewarding.
Momentum, SA, February 2012
Thanks for a wonderful weekend. I have learned a lot. You are so kind to learn us everything. I also enjoyed Linda’s company.
Kind regards, Tersia Botha
Pakamisa, SA, May 2012
This was an amazing experience, both seeing the animals & the Masai Mara & discovering I really like photography. Absolutely unforgettable.
NYC, December 2011
You have awakened a new passion in me for Africa, a place I had only moderately thought of. I now want to come back and back and back.
Thank you for everything.
NYC, December 2011
IT WAS AMAZING !... truly amazing.. We saw two crossings, some parts were emotionally intense.. A 4.5 - 5 metres long croc drowned a baby zebra, pulled her into the muddy waters right in front of us.. I am sure everyone felt it for her..
I have also done the balloon safari, costs 480 USD as an addition.. I enjoyed the ride as the sun came up in the horizon, very serene trip it was.. We were in the game drive sometimes 8-9 hours in a day, pretty exhausting but it was worth it. Safari Air was good, in time, no problems. Staff at the camp were very professional and gentle people. The guide, balloon safari pilot, alles good..
I don't know if I'll enjoy visiting Kruger Park after now on :), I saw more happening in the past few days than I've seen so far since I moved to Africa..
Thank you again for providing me such an amazing experience, much appreciated.
Babur Yakar, Johannesburg, SA, August 2012
What journey Ute!
Thank you for guiding me along the way, for your compassion + your honesty. I have learnt so much - about how I see photography + about how I see myself. This place nurtures & you do too. I have gained some insight into now. I need to change - mainly to just relax and “be” more.
Although it has been a journey of ups + downs, this place + all I’ve learnt … ends on a high. I definitely feel “lifted up”.
With gratitude + thanks, Lynda Smith
We had a most inspiring afternoon with you and spent much time talking about what we had learnt. Game was very sparse for the rest of the week but we had a new interest in looking for scenes which caught our eye. ...
Thank you again for a fascinating experience.
Tony and Brenda
Everything was wonderful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! J
The Camp, the people the sightings, everything was amazing!
Dankjewel voor de mooie dagen hier in de Masai Mara. Echt een geweldige tijd: de grootsheid doet je enorm nietig lijken, maar tegelijkertijd ook weer zo gigantisch, dat je werkelijk iemand bent en dankbaar mag zijn al deze ervaringen mee te kunnen maken.
Nogmaals dank! Heel veel liefs, Shirley
Samen setzen, wachsen lassen und Früchte ernten in nur 4 Tagen. Es war sehr bewegend, habe mich so geborgen, so wohl gefühlt in all dem Neuen. Dein leiten führen hat es mir sehr leicht gemacht. Darf neben meinen vielen Fotos so viel Erfahrung und Eindrücke mit nach Hause tragen. Fahre mit einem sehr warmen Gefühl und Lächeln nach Hause.
Vielen Dank, Alexandra
Vielen Dank an Ute, die uns nicht nur fotografieren sondern auch viele Lebensweisheiten mit auf den Weg gegeben hat.
Es waren 3 wunderbare Tage in der Masai Mara.
Gehörtes ist gut - doch selber sehen ist besser. (Afrikanische Weisheit)
Vielen Dank, wir werden uns wiedersehen.
It was a great experience! I felt that each day I learnt more about myself, photography and nature. The lodge is phenomenal - great accommodation and phenomenal wildlife experiences. I really enjoyed the small team as I think it helped to bond and grow as a group. The camera and technical lessons were informative and helpful. I learned more about my camera, different techniques and the art of photography, which I will take with me on my future photographic experiences. As a real city girl, I fell in love with mother nature!
Overall, fantastic trip!
Thank you! xxx
I’ll never forget this passed weekend. I enjoyed each moment of it.
Thank you so much for the most amazing horse photography workshop ever. It really was very special being around all those wonderful horses.
Sometimes we let the technical aspects get in our way while taking photographs, your workshop showed me that if you don't focus on the technical aspects you still get awesome photographs and it goes into a much deeper spiritual and emotional level.