Reviews of Nkasa Lupala Tented Lodge
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
A hidden gem.
Due to the prolonged drought, this lodge is not on an island as it would be normally. However, this did not detract from our wonderful experience here. This eco friendly tented accommodation is something special, really giving the feeling of being one with nature.
The tents were well equipped and excellently maintained. There was adequate hot water supplied by your own solar heating. A really nice touch was the hot water bottle each night which was really appreciated.
The food was imaginative and well presented by attentive local staff who went out of their way to do every thing they could to make your stay special. The Italian owners were so helpful and know just what it takes to make this place so special!
Game drives are well organised and the drivers really know their stuff!
Pleasant stay at Nkasa Lupala lodge
Good set up for guest parking during stay. Transfer quite bumpy (African massage) so good to be in their 4x4 jeep.
Tents very nice. Comfortable bed and nice warm shower.
Food was good. We enjoyed the group table at dinner as a way to meet other guests. Roger was a good host. Very chatty at dinner table - shared information on the country and animals.
Other activities were very expensive, especially the walking safari. Unfortunately we didn't see a lot of wildlife in this area.
Loved the central deck area for rest time.
A real feel for the safari
The raised tented accommodation was of an environmentally friendly design, surrounded by free roaming animals which gave it a real safari feel.
Accommodation, food and facilities were excellent - although some of our party experienced logging on to the Wi-Fi.
The manager was friendly and knowledgeable without being intrusive.
Beautiful architecture & good service/food.
A beautiful lodge with attention to detail and great evening meals where everyone was involved in discussion over great food out on the open deck. Very comfortable with excellent service.
Roger, the manager, was attentive and was supported by friendly and very competent staff. Great systems in place here. The wildlife was a little disappointing however this is not something one can control. We enjoyed an informative walking safari.
Transfers from and to the Lodge from the village where we parked the car were seamless.
Beautiful remote lodge
The lodge was so remote and beautiful, despite the drought they are experiencing.
It was sad to see that the lagoon out front was completely dry and that the hippos there had moved elsewhere. Thanks heavens that Maruska advised us to stay at least two nights as the drive in was rough and very long!
We saw a lioness cross our path right on our way to the camp! We had to travel a good distance to the water to see wildlife while on safari, but once there saw elephants and hippos as well as zebras and many others. Beautiful birds everywhere.
I suppose some people would not like the remoteness of the lodge, but those who seek it will be rewarded.
Nkasa Lupala Tented Lodge review
This was a more basic lodge but we particularly enjoyed the opportunity to visit the local village school/ health centre and homestead with our guide.
We had close up encounters with elephants actually entering the lodge compound.
We would not have missed this for its wilderness setting or its game drive/boat trip, but its ecological ethos removed home comforts such as facilities to cool down. It claimed more facilities and creature comforts than it actually provided.
However the service was excellent, the food was good and the setting incredible and remote.
We thoroughly enjoyed our stay here and would happily recommend it.
Remote Nkasa Lupala.
This was a lovely remote lodge with an hours drive down a potholed track. The manager, Simone, is very environmentally aware, power is provided by solar panels as is the case in many lodges.
We arrived too late for lunch after a long drive but nothing was provided for us to eat until tea time.
It was very hot here, our tents were in full sun most of the day and unbearable to be in until the sun went down. There were no fans to alleviate the heat and no pool either despite the lodge's advertising, which also mentions fans, mosquito nets, laundry, swimming pool, tea and coffee stations (there is only one in the main lodge, and no free cold drinks available) and an in room safe, none of which exist. We were also disappointed to have to buy water in plastic bottles despite the heat. - both economically and environmentally unsatisfactory. Perhaps this is to be expected in this remote location, but it was very disappointing to be promised things in the lodge's advertising that simply didn't exist. We stayed in a number of lodges for 2 nights and this was far and away the most expensive.
The trips were good, we went out in the afternoon with Simone who is very knowledgeable about all aspects of the area. The next day we did a combo which was delightful. We watched elephants eating in the reed beds which was very exciting. We also saw huge herds of buffalo. A very enjoyable trip with a good informative guide called Moses.
It was lovely to eat dinner at a long table overlooking the water each night.
Nkasa Lupala Tented Lodge review
This lodge was disappointing
The transfer to the lodge (11kms) from the main road (in their vehicle) was pretty horrendous and took over an hour. We were late arriving because of this, and were required to make an immediate decision to go on an evening game drive, which we joined, but turned out to be lackind in game. wiith only 3 types of mammals. and a rather diffident guide The lodge communal accommodation was nice but the bedrooms were pleasant but tight on space. The dinners were fine and the first night my vegetarian food was good,. On the second, I was given lentils as my main course, which was OK but a little uninspiring, You cannot walk around outside the grounds in case of predators, so this limits any self birding etc
Our main criticism of our stay at this lodge is that the road there is poor and long and that we did not see much wildlife from teh truck on the first afternoon. This location is especially dependent on good rains supplying water for animals. They do offer a boat cruise unless you do the drive first as the river was too low . This part of was fine much better than the dry afternoon drive.,
When it came to paying the bill, we had to remind the owner that the fees should as on his website for dates after November 1.. He agreed.
Nkasa Lupala Tented Lodge review
As we had returned our car at Lianshulu we were collected for the drive to Nkasa Lupala by the very bubbly KK. This trip took longer than we had anticipated as the roads deteriorated significantly after about 15km. On arrival we were greeted by Simon, the owner, and arranged our first activities.
Arriving at our tent we found it stiflingly hot, particularly the bathroom, but next day we discovered that this could be prevented by leaving the tent flaps down so that a breeze could flow through. As the tents are mostly very private they could also be left down at night if it is not too cold. We found there to be little storage space in the tent – just a few hangers on a pole in one corner. This meant that we were effectively living out of our bags for the 3 nights we were there. There would easily be room for a small set of drawers in the corner of the tent. In addition the lighting in the tent was very poor (this was a major topic of conversation at the communal dining table one evening) which meant that a torch was required to find anything in your bags after dark. It would be a relatively small job to move the main light from the front of the tent to the back of the bed where it could illuminate the shelf where bags are placed. We fully understand the eco-friendly ethos of Nkasa Lupala but solar powered lighting does not mean having to grope around in the dark!
Moving to the positives, the bed was comfy, towels great and it was delightful sitting outside the tent watching the world, especially a large herd of eles passing by. We loved the ‘Combo’ activity, combining a game drive and boat cruise followed by lunch in the bush. Unfortunately the water was too low for boat trips to run from the lodge itself but we took two game drives on which we were lucky enough to spot the lions.
The food at the lodge was very good, particularly the oryx steak and there was a good wine list of mainly South African wines. Simon was an excellent host and we very much enjoyed chatting to him in the bar after dinner – and even gave him our dead batteries for recycling. Erika was delightful and we very much enjoyed talking to Laura about her plans for the village kindergarten.
On our second day we discovered a very useful leaflet in the bar which, among other things, revealed that each tent had a 12v charger which could be used for charging mobile phones (or Kindles!); if this was publicised it would free up the charging station in the bar for charging camera batteries rather than it being clogged up with mobiles; why not put a copy of the leaflet in each tent?
Nkasa Lupala grew on us over the three days and we were sorry to leave.