Kafunta River Lodge

Kafunta River Lodge: Our full report

8 chalets and 2 suites
Traveller's rating
Excellent (96%) From 10 reviews
All year

Opened in 1998, Kafunta River Lodge is about 9km from the main road between Mfuwe Airport and the bridge. It stands beside the river and was built from scratch by a team including Ron and Anke Cowan, who now own and run the camp. Its central dining/bar area under a huge thatched roof is very impressive – built around a wild mango tree and quite grand. Half is a bar-lounge, the other is for dining, and both sides overlook the river beyond a floodplain. There's lots of space and beside the bar is a small swimming pool, and nearby is a natural hot tub supplied by water from the local hot spring.

Kafunta's rooms are nicely situated overlooking an open dambo area. They're thatched, square wooden chalets built about a metre off the ground on stilts. There's a large reed mat on the smooth wooden floor, and built on to the corner of each room is an en-suite tiled bathroom, containing a shower (hot and cold), wash basin and flushing toilet. The two three-quarter beds lie under a large, walk-in mosquito net. All the rooms have minibar/fridges, coffee makers and ceiling fans – powered by mains electricity. Their windows are gauzed and each chalet has a veranda overlooking the river. All are comfortable, spacious and airy, though their steps made me feel somehow 'separated' from the land around. We understand that Kafunta has recently built two double-storey rooms – watch this space for pictures!

Activities from Kafunta centre around 4WD game drives (day and night) and walking safaris. Kafunta is only about 1.5km from the Nkwali Pontoon (an entrance to the park for safari operators' vehicles only), which makes access to the area south of Mfuwe very swift, but it's further from the Mfuwe Bridge.


Location: South Luangwa National Park, Zambia

Ideal length of stay: 2 - 3 nights

Directions: South Luangwa is an hour's flight from Lusaka and Kafunta is about a 45 minute drive from the airport through the bustling villages of Mfuwe.

Accessible by: Fly-and-Transfer

Key personnel

Owner: Ron and Anke Cowan.

Food & drink

Usual board basis: Full Board

Dining style: Group Meals

Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining

Cost of meal e.g. lunch: Included


Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended: Yes

Dangerous animals: High Risk


Disabled access: On Request

Laundry facilities: Full Laundry Service - Included