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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by Mrs M from Mill Valley, CA

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

1

Countries visited

1

Lodges stayed in

5

Excursions taken

0

My trip to Zambia

Zambia between 31 Aug 2017 and 17 Sep 2017

Trip rating: Excellent
"Our trip to Zambia was great.

The only things I would do differently next time would be to specify which guide (now that I know them) I wanted at Chongwe (Troy) and Shenton camps (Patrick), and I would not go to Tafika again."

Arranged By Claire Scott


Latitude 15

Latitude 15

"Latitude 15 review"

2 nights Arrived 31 Aug 2017
"Latitude 15 was a great place to rest up before our safari.

The rooms were lovely as were the hotel and grounds.

The food was excellent and so was the service."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Chongwe River Camp

Chongwe River Camp

"Fantastic camp and guides"

4 nights Arrived 2 Sep 2017
"I have nothing but good things to say about this camp and its people. We stayed here from 9/2-5. The camp itself has the most wonderfully scenic setting. It's on the confluence of the Chongwe and Zambezi rivers. This insures cool breezes, lovely vistas, and lots of hippo noises at any hour of the day/night. When they say they have animals in camp, they aren't kidding: elephants, hippos, impala, water buck all make frequent visits at night and, sometimes, during the day (mainly elephants). Despite that, and because of the ever-vigilant staff, we never felt at risk, just thankful to have the opportunity to interact with these marvelous creatures.

The guiding was superb. Our guide was Troy. He was very knowledgeable, funny and accomodating of our wishes. Because of his skill in tracking and interactions with the animals, we had memorable close encounters with lions, leopards, and elephants. Leon, a guide in training, was also a great asset.

Lastly, the camp staff were fantastic. Special mention to managers Flossie and Allen along with Dottie, Nezzie, Yvonne, Chiza, and Chef Mike, all of whom were so welcoming and friendly, They made the job of running a camp look easy and seamless."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Kaingo Camp

Kaingo Camp

"Kaingo Camp Review"

4 nights Arrived 6 Sep 2017
"Despite having a rocky start to our stay due to some confusion over the level of guide that we had requested (we wanted a level 1 guide who could lead us on both walks and game drives but were assigned a level 2 guide who could only do game drives), once we were assigned Patrick, everything went smoothly. It's not clear how this misunderstanding occurred. When we expressed our concern about the guide assigned (Noelle), we were introduced to Derek Shenton who didn't acknowledge the problem but, rather, tried to assure us that Noelle was the "best level 2 guide in South Africa. They then gave us the option of spending the rest of the day with a Zambian guide who turned out to be a capable, but junior level guide. That evening we said that we would prefer Noelle and spent the next day with her. Later that day, Agata and Gerard told us that they were going to assign us to Patrick who was returning from a conference that evening. So, hence the "rocky start" comment.

The redesigned chalets were lovely and very comfortable. The staff were very competent and friendly. Special thanks to Gerard and Agita for getting our guide situation worked out as quickly as they could. The food was fantastic; chef Catherine took great care in tending to my husband’s lactose intolerance.

Our guide, Patrick, was absolutely wonderful. We were fortunate to have him for the remainder of our stay at both camps and couldn’t have been happier. We had many wonderful sightings of the Mwamba-Kaingo lion pride, including the aftermath of a buffalo kill, several amorous couples, and an “initiation ceremony” to introduce a lion cub to several members of the tribe. In other words, we saw lions in action, not just lolling around. We also had numerous sightings of the various leopards that live in the area and 2 wild dog sightings. Two of our group are birding enthusiasts, and Patrick’s birding knowledge kept them informed and excited about all the sightings. I could go on, but won’t. Suffice to say, we loved our stay at Kaingo.

Advise on which chalets to stay in: not #1 which is close to the kitchen and dining area and can get noisy in the early morning."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Mwamba Bushcamp

Mwamba Bushcamp

"Mwamba Bush Camp Review"

3 nights Arrived 10 Sep 2017
"The camp itself is lovely. We overlooked what was then a dry river bed which led to "the last water hole,” so we could see lots of animals both leaving and arriving at the hole just by sitting outside our chalet. The camp is managed by a wonderful couple, Craig and Lindy, who were very knowledgeable, personable and attentive to all our needs.

As with Kaingo, the food was fantastic, all the more wonderful from having been prepared in a bush camp. Patrick continued to be our guide, and we thoroughly enjoyed our walks and game drives with him. Special mention needs to be made about “the last waterhole.” We had a wonderful time watching scores of buffalo, wildebeest, zebra, impala, and elephants coming down for a drink, sometimes one group right after another. And the birds were just as interesting.

And, now that we're home, we can see what's going on at the hide by viewing their webcam."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Tafika

Tafika

"Tafika Review"

4 nights Arrived 13 Sep 2017
"Tafika has a lovely setting on the banks of the Luangwa River. The chalets are attractive and roomy. They are thatched and open at all times, with mosquito netting around the beds at night. This means that you will find more than the usual number of insects and other critters (e.g., mice, dragon flies, small frogs, small snakes) in your chalet.

The owners, John and Carol Coppinger are very gracious and good hosts, joining their guests for most meals. The staff is attentive and helpful. The guides, led by Brian, are quite good. They don’t use radios in their vehicles (except for emergencies), so if one guide finds something of interest, there’s no way to share that information with the others. However, as Brian pointed out, without radios, the vehicles are quieter, and there’s no chance of the guides’ abusing their use.

The camp is located in the Nsefu sector of the South Luangwa Park, and it seemed to me and my group that the area covered in the game drives is quite a bit less than at other camps (Kaingo and Mwamba, as examples). This led to our retracing our steps in almost every drive. Granted, you still see different things, but sometimes the scenery felt repetitive. That said, we did see a lot of different birds and animals.

Alex was our guide. He was easy to be with and very knowledgeable; however, at times he was unnecessarily aggressive with animals in order to get them to react (e.g., driving fast through a group of buffalo and again through a group of elephants). Also, the guides, as a group, seemed to be competitive toward one another, rather than mutually supportive as we found at other camps."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

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