Reviews of Mwamba Bushcamp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Mwamba Bushcamp review
This bush camp is a really great to stay - surrounded by wildlife with a fantastic hide overlooking a permanent waterhole crowded with birds and animals.
Great guiding, very good food (possibly better than Kaingo).
Mwamba Bushcamp review
Alec took our criticisms on board about Kaingo and certainly our experience at Mwamba (particularly the food) was much better. (First day food was like Kaingo and then it became much improved after our criticism).
As we were alone for 2 of the 3 nights, they arrange for us to have a traditional dinner one night which was great. The rooms were very comfortable. We prefer the bush camp feel to the more barracks-like buildings at Kaingo and the shower was the best we used anywhere (including the Radisson in Lusaka).
Excellent game viewing.
I am torn between giving an overall rating of excellent or good but in the end decided to be generous. It was not as wonderful as Tafika and it's bush camps but I think it still deserves to be categorised as excellent - though there is still room for improvement!
Mwamba Bushcamp review
We enjoyed our stay a Mwamba, I think it was our favourite place to stay at for the trip. As at Kiango the guiding was excellent, as was the 'Last Waterhole' hide next to the camp, perhaps the best hide of the trip.
I'm afraid the food let the place down, I guess it was impacted from the problems at Kiango.
Would I come back ? a big YES
A small intimate bushcamp, with just 4 chalets. Each is well equipped with a large comfortable bed and large outdoor bathroom. The chalet has a screened opening in the roof so you are sleeping in comfort but with a great view of the stars.
The camp staff are very helpful and friendly. The food is delicious and plentiful - amazing when you see the kitchen and their limited facilities.
The game drives are just as good as Kaingo in an overlapping area. The local Mwamba lion pride provides plenty of viewing opportunities. One night some of them wandered past our chalet and made themselves at home in our outdoor breakfast area. Needless to say, we had breakfast elsewhere but with good views of the lions. We wished we had booked more time here.
Good Bush Camp
This camp definitely has the feel of a bush camp.
Being so close to the watering hole means the animals are always close by. Like the time we had to leave the fire pit during first breakfast to allow the lion pride to pass.
Outstanding stay at Mwamba
We had a fantastic time at Mwamba. All the staff were welcoming and friendly, the food was superb and the guiding was exceptional. The rooms were very comfortable and we were impressed with the bucket showers!
One of the highlights was a visit from an elephant who appeared outside our bedroom one lunchtime. The camp have great attention to detail - they went to a lot of trouble to make our stay extra special (we enjoyed the hot water bottles on the vehicle in the morning and their cakes were some of the best we've ever had).
Our guide, Sly, was brilliant - for some of the party it was our first trip and in 3 days he managed to show us all of the more common animals and birds and many unusual ones. We saw several great lion sightings including a kill as well as serval cat, wild dogs and leopard so some new sightings even for the person who has been on 15 previous trips! The camp is in an idyllic spot - we hope to go back again soon!
Lovely remote camp.
We were the only guests this time and were looked after extremely well. Again, our chalet was the one we liked best, although I never quite got the hang of the shower. Again, we loved the relaxing lunches outside our chalet and also the special dinner atop the anthill.
We started to find the game drives a bit too long but we learned to speak up and request an earlier return to camp and also more time along the river.
A nice touch was hot water bottles on the early morning game drive. (Thank you Charlie)
This really is life in the bush !- in comfort
The setup at Mwamba was excellent and we enjoyed the smaller camp and Sly as our guide. Maxwell the scout impressed with his spotting abilities.Read more about the whole safari
Best Guide in Africa
We spent three days at Mwamba Bushcamp in late October 2013 as part of our honeymoon.
This was our first Safari in Africa and we could not have asked for more. The South Luangwa National Park is extremely beautiful and the wildlife plentiful - made all the more enjoyable by our guide, Patrick, who lived up to the reputation that Zambia's guides are world-class. Patrick was very knowledgeable and patient and we enjoyed his terrific sense of humour. We particularly enjoyed our walks and night drives with Patrick.
A highlight was the waterhole hide and hippo hide: Absolutely teaming with life and drama.
While it was very hot; we did not find it unduly uncomfortable. And we were not bothered by insects.
Our hut was immaculately maintained by housekeeping; our laundry done daily. Food was delicious and the service extremely professional.
We would quite happily return to Mwamba Bushcamp.
Mwamba's Last Waterhole Hide was Fantastic
The variety of wildlife visiting Mwamba's last waterhole was incredible! It would have been wonderful to be allowed to come and go as desired, as the hide is very near the rooms. There were times when all was quiet and the heat stifling inside the hide, but with prearranged guide pick-up and deliveries, often we would wait drooping, only to have activity flare just when we were expected to leave. But the experience here was awesome--many of the animals would come within feet of where we were sitting, some with very deliberate eye-contact. Bushbuck, waterbuck, impala, puku, and kudu would come to drink, very skittish, singly and in small groups. Small elephant families drank, bathed, rolled, and dust-bathed. Birdlife was abundant. Two very old hippos appeared to be spending their few remaining days muddying the waters. Though midday light is the worst for photography, we came away with some excellent images taken here.
Maybe it was the heat, and it was HOT, or maybe the nightly elephant raids on the kitchen robbed the staff of sleep, but the staff seemed tired. Only Zimba, an older gentleman who served our meals and helped out around camp, always greeted us with a welcoming smile. The camp manager was continuously warning us of the dangers lurking, not allowing a moment's relaxation or pleasant 'goodnight' in our doorway at night before closing the door, daring us not open it until after the morning drum-roll. We were made to feel almost like prisoners . . .
We felt the guides here were overly interested in cat sightings, often passing other wildlife we'd have been delighted to watch. One afternoon/evening we spent hours bouncing and jarring cross-country. If we'd known they were anticipating lions going after buffalo, we'd have shared in the excitement of such a possibility. As it was, I just hurt. Upon arriving back at camp, I asked that we might go for a walk in the morning--nope, too little staff. I suggested maybe I remain in camp enjoying the hide, again, nope, gotta go out on a drive. Luckily the other couple in camp opted for a shorter drive, and allowed me the front seat where the ride would be smoother. Unfortunately, I misinterpreted bushcamp to mean there would be an emphasis on walking, not so.
We also found on the afternoon/evening drives, the guides and scouts would converse extensively between themselves, not hearing questions or requests to stop. But, the scouts were worth their weight in gold once the sun went down, finding any number of interesting subjects to look at.
The food was generally excellent, though I did get a really slimy salad one-day for lunch. There was a two-day period where we were served eggs breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and although the eggs are of very high quality--unlike American supermarket eggs--and prepared in a different manner for each meal, it did become rather boring. If it was because of the heat or elephant raids spoiling intended meals, fine, otherwise I would suggest alternating with the heavier meals.
We had a great game drive transfer back to Kaingo with guide Mayem. Whether it was because we were his only guests, or he was headed towards a few days off, his attitude was much better than on the couple of previous drives he'd taken us on. He was more talkative, sharing his wealth of knowledge, working hard to position the vehicle so we had the best light and angle on different animals. All-in-all we felt Mayem was an excellent guide, supposing his initial lethargy might only have reflected his being overly tired, as indicated by the camp manager. The guides do work long hours, with minimal time off, during the relatively short safari season in this area.
I hope our experience with Mwamba's manager was unusual. This should be an awesome little camp, but unfortunately during our stay there was a tense undercurrent which prevented our entire enjoyment and relaxation.