Reviews of Tafika
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Great birding on the saltflats at Tafika
Our main guides Alex and Rory were excellent. During a trip to the saltflats with Rory we saw huge flocks of Crowed Cranes and several types of eagle (including the Martial) plus all four types of vulture you would expect in the region.We asked one morning if we may see a Purrple Crested Lourie and of course Alex found two for us.
The camp set up was good as in encouraged interaction between the guests, particularly drinks before meals where everyone mixed and the use of two round tables instead of one long table. The rooms were very good but the only adverse comment I would make was that because of their open aspect it was difficult to take a midday snooze without being pestered by insects.
great viewings and good guide
Alex was an extremely good guide, good day and night viewings, lunch was very good but dinners not so good.
Good opportunity for microlight flight
We came back and nearly stayed for ever
No more words are needed........... just thanks to some very nice people.Read more about the whole safari
Expert Africa comments
These travellers stayed at Tafika at the start of their trip - 4-6 October. See below for their comments.
Tafika is a really lovely location with friendly and efficient staff, a perfect venue to begin our safari experience with the bonus opportunity of a mircolite flight.Read more about the whole safari
The Tafika experience is hard to beat..do it!
It is hard to be objective about the Tafika experince since everything was just so perfect. We were lucky/clever in going in October at the end of the dry season when all the game was close to the river. We thought that the staff might be a bit burnt out after months of clients but we could not have been more welcome if we had been the first clients of the year.
The guides and all the other staff were so attentive it was almost embarrassing. How the guides could explain the role of the sausage tree to us and make it fresh and exciting having done it a hundred times already was remarkable. While we expected the guides to specialise in a subject we were delighted that they all seemed to know the flora and forna in depth.
The food was amazing, so good, the rooms clean, fresh and inviting and the setting of Tafika just perfect. One reason that we had such a perfect holiday, saw so much game, had such interesting walking safaris is that Tafika has limited numbers, we think 12 clients at a time. We wanted a holiday Safari experience of a life time and we got it. Tafika is a premium experience but we would definitely say one gets excellent value.
The only problem we had during our stay was finding a plug to charge the camera!
We took a flight into Tafika instead of coming by road..........an excellent move and we suggest it to everyone.
In retrospect the game was a little too available [unafraid]........but I can not really believe that I am complaining!
A great pleasure to return to Tafika where one is made to feel very much at home by the personal attention of John and Carol Coppinger and you are made to feel part of their bush home and life.
A slight downside is that the game drives tend to always go into the same direction as this is defined by their location at the top end of the viewing territory. On this trip, as we had not previously visited Nsefu or Tena Tena, we combined all three and this combined grouping did not produce enough variety of scenery or environment to be fully successful. (For example, by the end of our fourth day, which means 8 separate game drives, we had been to see the same group of mating lions eight times!).
I would not attempt to classify the rooms in terms of luxury accommodation as they are rustic and localised style but nonetheless are clean and comfortable for where we are.
great base camp
John & Carol run a truly professional and very friendly set of camps. Tafica is ideal to start with as you can get all the photos from close up to animals from the vehicules. Later in the bushcamp they are further away and not so easy - but different - to photograph. We felt folk who started in the bush camps took far too long with impossible photo attempts as they did not go to a base camp like Tafica first.
The staff are all excellent and unlike at Kaingo we got introduced to each and could readily chat with them. The microlight flight is a must and John was wonderful to let me fly it - for those with windsurfing experience it is much the same.
The only very slight -ve is that the evening/night drive at 4 hours is a bit long as not much happens from 1600 to 1700 before the sundowner. 3 would be fine.
The lodges and food were excellent, and the menus transferred to the bushcamps work really well.
The guides are all excellent and knowledgable. We much liked the rule that vehicules should not radio to each other so that animals were not tracked by more than 1 vehicule. cf. At Kaingo there were radio contacts all the time and once 5 trucks tracking 1 leopard and cub. We found this upsetting, noisy and totally out of keeping.
Although it was nice to see another safari operator we felt that Coppinger Safaris have it perfectly for base and bush camp combinations. The flights and handovers to Kaingo were organised well .
It is nice being so far North and away from other camps. I would guess Mfuwe camps would be all over each other in the Park, whereas we saw no one else. Now to see if June/July 2009 is possible visit in the "greener" season.
Tafika has everything. All of the staff at this lodge were great - helpful and friendly at all times. Very good leopard sightings, and excellent lion and serval sightings, as well as all other expected wildlife. Great birdlife as well. Guides were very knowledgeable and respectful for the welfare of the wildlife. An early morning ride in the microlight was a very unique treat and a highlight as well.
Meals were excellent.
I would love to visit this lodge again.
Tafika and environs
Lovely location overlooking the Luangwa River, excellent food and guides. In particular Rory (top birder) and Bryan added considerably to our growing understanding and appreciation of the animals and avifauna from their in depth knowledge.
Night drives exceptional, several leopard seen including one with a cub, serval, porcupine, and loads of civets and genets. Other guests saw honey badger aswell whilst we were there. My impression is the Nsefu sector has fantastic game day and night. John and Carol Coppinger were most hospitable and my complimentary microlight flight for adjusting our booking was very enjoyable. John might wish to know that my film proves conclusively the vulture nest is a that of a Lappet.
An administrative error - mix up caused a slight downer and some inconvemnience at the end of our stay but these things are usually one-offs and can happen anywhere from time to time. I have already recommended Tafika to friends and colleagues my comment of sans pareil (in my African experience to date) jotted in the guestbook is a fair reflection.
Another very enjoyable stay with the Coppingers in all three camps.
The food was reasonable and the staff and guiding was outstanding.