Lagoon is one of only two camps situated in the enormous Kwando Reserve, the other being Lebala. Both are owned and run by Kwando Safaris. Lebala is the more adventurous property, but Lagoon is our tip for travellers seeking both land and water activities. In common with Lebala, this camp holds a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence! Accommodation is usually booked on a full-board basis, including all meals, a selection of alcoholic and soft drinks, twice-daily game-viewing activities, and a laundry service. The camp is open throughout the year.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
The camp is approached via 20–30 minutes’ game drive transfer from the local airstrip. It has a lovely location on the banks of a channel off the Kwando river, in the shade of ebony and marula trees.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES AT LAGOON:
Guest accommodation consists of just eight tents, including one for family use. These are spaced along the edges of the water and raised above ground level on wooden decking. A few steps lead up onto the deck, where you’ll find comfy seating and a wonderful view! The interiors are accessed through timber-and-mesh sliding doors. In each standard tent, there’s an open-plan bedroom and lounge area. The lounge is closest to the doors, and it contains a couple of leather chairs, a coffee table, a writing desk and chair, and a selection of reading material. One step leads up into the bedroom space, which features a double bed or twin beds, bedside stands and lighting, an overhead fan, and, behind a partition wall, ample storage furniture, a safe, and a few essential items such as an umbrella and mosquito repellent. The en-suite facilities comprise separate flush toilet, twin washbasins, shower, and freestanding bathtub. Finally, another door opens out to an al fresco shower! The camp supplies a range of toiletries, including shampoo, conditioner, and shower gel. And the family tent offers a second bedroom, with twin beds for children.
Sandy paths link the guest tents with Lagoon’s timber-and-thatch communal structures, which are also elevated on wooden decking. One open-sided building offers a lounge/bar. Here, well-cushioned wood-framed sofas and armchairs are set up around coffee tables, and guests can marvel at beautiful views over Kwando, drink in hand! The space flows out towards the camp’s plunge pool, with sunloungers alongside. Another building has two storeys, the lower level with orientation centre and the upper level offering a charming lounge/library. There’s a dining area too, with chic tables-and-chairs arranged in readiness for the camp’s delicious meals. Early breakfasts are often enjoyed around the fire-pit, as are pre-dinner drinks and sharing of safari stories. Lagoon has a well-stocked curio shop as well, in addition to a viewing deck complete with swing. On a clear day, you can see as far as Namibia!
ACTIVITIES AT LAGOON:
Lagoon offers both land- and water-based activities, the latter dependent on water levels. Please note, any parties containing a child or children aged 6 to 12 years must book a private vehicle. And walks have a minimum age requirement of 12 years.
Expertly guided game drives- The Kwando Reserve is made up of an impressive 232,000 hectares of plains, woodlands, wetlands, and water sources. Game viewing during the dry season is particularly good, as species mass around scarce water supplies. That said, vehicle safaris are first rate throughout the year, thanks to the reserve’s sheer volumes of wildlife. You can look out for predators such as lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, and wild dog; herds of elephant, buffalo, and hippo; and ample plains game, not least giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, impala, and tsessebe.
Night drives- Lagoon is situated in a private concession, so the camp is able to offer drives by night as well as during the mornings and afternoons. Also accompanied by a knowledgeable and experienced guide, these exhilarating adventures involve searching out Kwando’s nocturnal creatures, not least civet, genet, honey badger, and spring hare.
Walking safaris- This activity focuses on Kwando’s plants, insects, and birdlife, again with a guide on hand to answer all your questions. A few notable bird species in the area are ostrich, African skimmer, sacred ibis, slaty egret, and the colourful little bee-eater!
Boat cruises- For a change from land activities, Lagoon offers afternoon cruises aboard the camp’s own double-deck boat. As the vessel glides along the river, you’ll enjoy sightings of a wealth of wildlife – and a sundowner as the day ends.
Fishing- The camp offers fishing all year round apart from January and February, as these months are breeding season. Lagoon supplies basic equipment, but if you’d like to fly-fish it’s necessary to bring your own gear.