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Offline Zatopek

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Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« on: August 02, 2016, 11:01:39 am »
Hi

We are planning a family trip to Namibia for next June.
We want to stop over at Ai-Ais for two night.

Has anyone been there recently? What is it like these days?
Trip Advisor, for what it's worth, does not give it very good reviews.

I don't want to "upset" the wife by taking her somewhere that is not up to standard.....
(My standards and the wife's standard are not always the same)

Thanks
« Last Edit: August 02, 2016, 11:54:02 am by Zatopek »
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Offline ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS

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Re: Ai-AIs Advice/review ??
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2016, 11:38:56 am »
If your wife does camping she would be fine with Ais Ais. :deal:
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Offline Takashi

Re: Ai-AIs Advice/review ??
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2016, 11:47:25 am »
That all depends on what your wife is used to.
I was in Ai-Ais a week ago.

Will you be camping or staying in the rooms?

The camping ablutions are a bit old but well maintained.
The hot water pool is amazing to relax in.
There are stoves and an oven to use in camping area.
A lot of hikers will be camping there the night before and after hiking the fish river trail, this entails people up and about at the oddest hours and sleeping on the grass out in the open.
This is normal for Ai-Ais.

The shop/bar/restaurant is usually well stocked but can on occasion run out of certain things.

If your wive is used to 4 star and up luxury this is not the place.
If she is happy with less then Ai-Ais is the place to be.

 

Offline Zatopek

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Re: Ai-AIs Advice/review ??
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2016, 11:51:53 am »
Hi

Thanks, we won't be camping.
Sounds like she might survive.
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Offline Takashi

Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2016, 12:00:02 pm »
The entrance to the rooms are located inside the hot water indoor pool building.

Ask for a room further away from the entrance to the pool facing towards the front.

The back rooms face the mountain.
The front rooms face the camp sites.
 

Offline TT

Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2016, 02:26:38 pm »
We stayed over for 2 nights. 1 night would have been sufficient. I would next time stay over at Canon Roadhouse. The restaurant was a let down for me. The staff was not really friendly and the food very expensive (We wanted something light to eat, but they were waiting for a tour group and said we must return later) . The flat/room was nice though - one door opening on the pools and one to the outside. Undercover parking for you vehicle by the room.

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Offline Snafu

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Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2016, 02:49:15 pm »
Was there last week.

Like all Namibian wildlife resorts (NWR), staff and stock is typical government. Not well maintained, not friendly at all. Seems like everything is an effort. We only stayed one night, avoid room 7, it smells like something died in there. We eventually stayed in room 11, which is to the back, ground floor and facing the pools. A second night would have been a waste.

Private lodges in general is a bit more expensive, but definitely not in all cases. I.E. NWR lodge at Sesriem compared to others in the area, is actually very expensive.

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Offline ClimbingTurtle

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Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2016, 03:03:10 pm »
There are Self Catering Chalets as well - these would be my choice over the lodge rooms, as said they open onto the pool area, and being a hot-water pool, everything is very muggy....

I always camp there - be careful of the baboons, they are humanised and will climb in your car/van/tent - take a Kettie, the sight alone makes them sprint for the hills.

Campsite is pretty standard, ablutions are clean, if a little old. I really enjoy the place, if you are their and it's relatively empty it's magical - sunrise is awesome.
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Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #8 on: August 16, 2016, 04:07:27 pm »
We camped there a few weeks back - the outside 'cold' pool was as warm as a hot bath - didnt bother with the indoor pools.  We took a walk down the river and had some good swimming there too.  Lekker vibe in the camping area with the other travelling bikers.  We stayed two nights and really enjoyed it.
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Offline Nelis+

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Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2016, 06:26:05 pm »
We camped there a month ago, and was overfilled with campers everywhere.  No control whether guests actually had bookings.  Kids had a ball.  I would stay one night, and rather stay at Canon Roadhouse for another night.
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Offline AntonDP

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Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2016, 08:24:58 am »
Just came back from the fish over the weekend.  Ai Ais is ok for a night.  Most of my fellow hikers went to the roadhouse to rest.
 

Offline Takashi

Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2016, 08:51:59 am »
Just came back from the fish over the weekend.  Ai Ais is ok for a night.  Most of my fellow hikers went to the roadhouse to rest.

How was the water levels on the hike?

We went into the canyon on 20 July and the water was already a bit low.
 

Offline AntonDP

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Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #12 on: August 22, 2016, 11:35:27 am »
Just came back from the fish over the weekend.  Ai Ais is ok for a night.  Most of my fellow hikers went to the roadhouse to rest.

How was the water levels on the hike?

We went into the canyon on 20 July and the water was already a bit low.

Levels were low, not really a concern.  You would have been ok if you carried only 2 litres of water to about 40km, never dropping below 1 litre.   With the shortcuts at 45 and then again at 50 onwards we carried as much as possible.  Heat was a serious concern.
 

Offline Kortbroek

Re: Ai-Ais Advice/review ??
« Reply #13 on: August 27, 2016, 07:37:06 pm »
Spent some time all over Southern Namibia for work over the past 4 years.

Camping at Ai-Ais is ok, staff is not overly efficient but not unfriendly. If you only want to spend some time in the pool then stay one night. If planning on a day hike spend two. Poorly maintained but clean. They are finally building a new waste water treatment plant as well.

We also camped at the Hobas campsite above the northern part of the Canyon. Great clean campsite, good facilities and super friendly staff. The lady in the cafe even bakes amazing vetkoek on demand. I would rather camp here than AiAis. You also have access to the viewpoints.

Also got to hike the fish river from there all the way to the Orange River for work  :biggrin: . There are big mountains and other canyons as large and impressive as the Fish in the area but completely inaccessible to the public. Amazing place.
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