So, my first Protea experience is a mixed bag, but, as always, it's great to have more options in more countries on more continents, so...
I just enjoyed a brief stay in Windhoek, Namibia at the Protea Furstenhof hotel.
Less positive reactions:
* For better or worse, my conference (and the reason I am here) is not far away, at the Hilton (which is where I'm now staying). I'm guessing that - unless you're purely a budget-driven traveler - most of the folks who are active on this site would find this (the Hilton) more in line with their expectations.
Having said that, the Internet at the Hilton is (objectively) sub-standard. It's slow, inconsistent, and irritating - both in the guest rooms and in the conference rooms (and I'm stunned the conference organizers aren't complaining more), and nothing short of useless in the two restaurants I've eaten. The Internet at the Protea was unimpressive, but at least met minimum standards. At the Hilton, not so much.
As an aside, I had very little time for tourism (although, yes, I did check luggage because I brought my camera equipment), but I did squeeze in an efficient game drive at one of the private reserves. Frankly, an incredible experience.
OK, to be clear, I have never been anywhere near that close to a rhino with no wall/moat separating us before. Absolutely incredible. (Yes, the guide/driver knew these rhinos, we approached slowly and behaved as instructed. But, still... we could not believe how close we were....)
And a few more pictures
although, on second thought, I liked this one better:
and for all of the Baby Boomers who remember the bad (supposed to be Beatles) song from the original animated Jungle Book movie:
Also, I just learned that I happened to be here for World Rhino Day - #worldrhinoday - so it would be a shame not to celebrate the next generation!
I booked my (private, half-day) tour through a local vendor, Kangaroo Traveler: Tour Namibia and beyond, Namibia Tour Operator in Windhoek - I was picked up at my hotel in a comfortable SUV by a sophisticated, pleasant guide/driver/companion. Incredibly convenient, reasonably priced, and I would call Kangaroo again if I was returning to the area.
Message was edited and photos added by: ssindc
Thanks for the review, ssindc. I don't know if we will ever travel to Aftrica, but if we do, we will definitely take advantage of the photography options. Were you really this "up close and personal" with the rhino or did you have a big lens? Please tell me you didn't check your cameras, only your tripod, battery chargers, etc. Please share more pictures.
Don't worry, razorbackfan,