Davison's Camp is shaded by the leaves of an African rosewood forest…
Davison's Camp: Our full report
Davison’s Camp spreads out in the intermittent shade of a sparse woodland of African rosewood (Guibourtia coleosperma) trees, in the south-east Linkwasha Concession of Hwange National Park. The camp was named after Hwange’s first head warden – Ted Davison, and it overlooks an open plain containing a permanent water-hole which seems popular with game. When one of the ‘Expert Africa’ tem recently visited Davison’s Camp, the solitary buffalo grazing around the pan’s margins seemed to have become a permanent fixture. Elephants and a variety of other big game are often seen from camp too.
Davison’s Camp consists of nine tented chalets, each with a concrete veranda decked out with a couple of metal chairs and a table, and overlooking the waterhole. The chalets are fairly basic but clean and comfortable, with twin beds or a double, ceiling fans and concrete block floors covered by two or three rugs. A canvas roof provides protection from the elements while extremely wide and broad mesh windows give high and wide vistas of the pan.
One of the chalets at Davison’s is a family chalet, similar to the normal double chalet, but with a second en-suite twin bedroom. It’s worth noting that the camp is often willing to provide an extra mattress on the floor of a twin or double room to allow three people per tent.
The chalets all have tastefully decorated en-suite bathrooms with an indoor shower (with hot and cold running water), a deep soapstone sink and a flushing toilet. There is also an impressive varnished-wood partition that separates the bathroom from the rest of the chalet and provides storage space too. Good-quality complimentary toiletries are provided.
A well-worn elephant path links the chalets to Davison’s main area,
which forms a V-shaped structure with a dining room in one wing and a comfortable, fan-cooled lounge area with a small bar in the other. It’s very open and airy with solid concrete floors largely covered by substantial rugs. The wood-and-canvas walls on one side of this area conceal the entrance road to camp while opposite, one completely open side allows views of the pan in front of Davison’s. The dining room consists of a long table (everyone usually eats together), with tea and coffee available throughout the day from a side table.
One quite fun and unique feature that Davison’s had on display last time we visited in December 2011 was a near-complete giraffe skeleton, which was being used on educational days hosted by the camp for local children. This acted as a kind of life-sized wildlife puzzle as children and guests alike tried to re-assemble the muddled bones of the animal.
A welcome addition on our last visit to Davison’s was a newly installed swimming pool.
Davison’s Camp usually offers two activities per day: one in the early morning and another in the afternoon/early evening. Options centre around 4WD game drives in open-top Land Rovers. Evening drives, when spotlights are permitted as dusk falls on the return to camp, afford the chance to see the nocturnal side of Hwange’s wildlife. In the morning, Davison’s also offers excellent guided walking safaris, escorted by an armed guide with a professional Zimbabwean guides’ licence.
Davison’s is a small camp which is functional and well maintained but not as luxurious as other camps in the region. Nevertheless it has some interesting features and is in a good location for game.
Ideal length of stay: We would recommend Davison's Camp as a great place to stay for a couple of nights in southern Hwange.
Directions: The best way to access Davison's is to transfer by road from either Makalolo or Hwange Main Camp airstrips.
Owner: Wilderness Safaris/Safari Adventure Company
Food & drink
Usual board basis: Full Board
Dining style: Group Meals
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Drinks included: Drinks are NOT included! Typical bar prices when we last visited were: Cokes / beers U$2 Spirits U$ 2-3 Wine U$2 per glass Mineral Water U$2
Attitude towards children: Davison's Camp accepts children aged 6 and above.
Special activities & services: The camp usually insists that guests with children hire their own private vehicle for game drives.
Generally recommended for children: We don't recommend Davison's Camp for children under about 16; it is an open and unfenced safari camp through which dangerous game is likely to pass.
Notes: Children must be under a parent's supervision at all times.
Power supply: Generator
Communications: There is no mobile phone signal here, but the camp can communicate by Satellite phone in case of emergency.
TV & radio: No
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: Yes
Medical care: The camp has a basic first-aid kit. The nearest doctors are probably in Victoria Falls town and Bulawayo.
Dangerous animals: High Risk
Security measures: The camp is patrolled at night by unarmed security guards
Fire safety: Davison's has a fire extinguisher in each room and a further few dotted all around the camp.
Disabled access: Not Possible
Laundry facilities: There is a complimentary laundry service included, although for cultural reasons, women's underwear isn't accepted. Washing powder is provided for guests who wish to do this themselves.