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Traveller reviews

Travel reviews by The Sand Martins from Oxon

Review Distribution

Excellent
Good
Average
Poor
Terrible

Total number of trips

8

Countries visited

4

Lodges stayed in

37

Excursions taken

0

First time in Malawi

Malawi between 1 Jul 2018 and 12 Jul 2018

Trip rating: Good
"We went to Malawi after many visits to the RPS camps in Zambia. Whilst we did not expect to see rhinos or big cats in Malawi, we did see many species of antelopes, including sable, roan and nyala for the first time, and also many new birds.

Photography in Majete was more difficult than we had anticipated, because of the dense woodland.

Our impression was that the camps were underresourced in terms of vehicles and guides, and therefore could not offer the standards set by the RPS camps in Zambia. But in each camp, the camp managers were doing their best with the limited resources available to them.

Potential guests should be aware that RPS has no age limit for children in their camps, and wants to promote them as family destinations."

Arranged By Claire Scott


Mkulumadzi Lodge

Mkulumadzi Lodge

"Mkulumadzi Lodge review"

5 nights Arrived 2 Jul 2018
"Access to the Lodge is by a rope bridge over the Mkulumadzi river, somewhat challenging at first (we arrived after sunset), but one gets used to it. The Lodge operates more like a hotel, in comparison to the other safari camps we have visited. Guests have the freedom to choose when to take lunch and dinner, but this restricts the opportunities to socialise with other guests.

The food (lunch and dinner) at Mkulumadzi was exceptionally good. Breakfast was ok, but we missed the porridge and toast around the campfire.

The chalets are spacious and functional, but the concrete construction has little character. Each chalet has a decking overlooking the Shire river, and we enjoyed watching the birds and animals from there.

The miombo woodland of the Majete National Park is very dense. Although we saw a large number of antelopes, including sable, hartebeest and nyala, it is not ideal for keen wildlife photographers. Majete National Park advertises "come and see the Big Five", but this is unrealistic. The few lions and leopards are extremely difficult to spot in the extensive thicket, and the few black rhinos are totally protected away from guests,

When we were there for 5 nights, there were only 2 safari vehicles and 2 guides for potentially 20 guests. Fortunately, the Lodge was far from full (except on our last afternoon), and the camp manager (Dave) made a big effort to accommodate the wishes of the guests with the resources available to him. Dave and Tammy made us very welcome, and we enjoyed wide-ranging discussions with them around the camp fire after dinner."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Excellent
Activities
Average
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Kuthengo Camp

Kuthengo Camp

"New bush camp by the Shire River"

4 nights Arrived 7 Jul 2018
"Kuthengo is a new RPS bush camp that had opened only 2 months before our visit. The four tents and the camp enjoy a splendid location with wide-ranging views of the Shire river. We liked the style of the tents - elegant bush camping with modern touches. Each tent has a decking area with excellent views, ideal for bird watching.

We enjoyed dining under the stars with the other guests and the camp managers Jason and Steegan, followed by sessions around the camp fire. The food was ok, although breakfast was very limited. Lunch and dinner were ok, but (especially at dinner) portions were on the small side.

Whilst we were there for 4 nights, the camp had only 1 safari vehicle and 1 guide, for potentially up to 10 guests. Fortunately, there were never more than 2 other guests during our stay, so this did not become a problem for us. The boat for river safaris was also out of action. However, Jason arranged for a boat from another Lodge to enable us to have a morning river safari. The birdlife along the river was spectacular.

The mopane woodland of the Liwonde National Park has more open areas than the Majete NP, so that it was better for wildlife photography than Majete. However, animal density was often rather low, but we had some marvellous sightings of large herds of both sable and roan antelopes, and a 50-strong herd of elephants. It is unrealistic to expect to see big cats or rhinos in Liwonde.

The travel time between Kuthengo and Blantyre airport is 4 hours, even with a very fast driver."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Average

The South Luangwa in the Emerald Season

Zambia between 1 Mar 2018 and 11 Mar 2018

Trip rating: Excellent
"As always, our trip (our sixth to the South Luangwa) exceeded expectations.

In the Emerald Season, all is green and lush, whilst the game and the birdlife is as splendid as ever, with wonderful lighting for photography. Freddie Sutton organised our trip with his customary highly efficient and friendly way.

This was our tenth trip with Expert Africa - thank you all."

Radisson Blu Hotel

Radisson Blu Hotel

"Overnight stop in Lusaka at the Radisson Blu "

1 night Arrived 1 Mar 2018
"At both the beginning and the end of our time in Zambia, we stayed for one night in this hotel, as we have done on previous trips. We find the Radisson Blu works well as an overnight stop, and is very conveniently close to the airport.

The rooms are spacious, comfortable and quiet: the service is friendly and efficient.

We enjoy relaxing by the poolside with a Mosi beer as the sun goes down, and then moving to the restaurant for dinner."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Nkwali

Nkwali

"Welcomed back to Nkwali"

3 nights Arrived 2 Mar 2018
"Arriving at Nkwali for our sixth visit, we had a wonderful welcome from Kiki and his team. The chalets at Nkwali are spacious and very comfortable, with a fine view directly to the Luangwa river.

It was a delight to see the river so full following the recent rains, and we boated across to meet the vehicles left on the other side.

Seeing so many elephants with their youngsters was a treat, especially when we saw one baby that Kiki estimated was only one week old. The lions Ginger, Garlic and their pride we saw several times. Compared to the dry season, the air is so clear at this time of year that the photos we took show a full spectrum of colours."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Average
Facilities
Excellent
Nsefu

Nsefu

"Idyllic Nsefu on the Luangwa"

3 nights Arrived 5 Mar 2018
"It is a difficult decision, but Nsefu is our favourite RPS camp. The location, on the wide bend of the Luangwa river, provides a sweeping vista from the camp at any time of the year. With the roads around the camp impassable, one reaches Nsefu in an exhilarating ninety minute journey by boat upriver. This was our sixth visit to Nsefu: it was particularly special for us as, this time, we were the only guests. We were delighted that Braston was there to guide us, along with Chris (the scout): both Braston and Chris have looked after us on previous visits, and we appreciate very much their skills.

In this Emerald Season, activities involved exploring the river and its myriad tributaries and side channels (fun to boat along channels that we have crossed by vehicle in the dry season). Chris selected a safe place for the boat to be moored, then we got out and started tracking lions, wildebeest, buffaloes, zebras, giraffes etc. Watching the animals from a safe distance on foot is a unique experience. The river level was so high that on one day Braston and Chris were able to take us by boat all the way to the famous stork colony, where we gazed up at the multitude of yellow-billed storks and herons nesting in the ebony trees completely surrounded by water.

Sundowners by the river are always special. Returning in the boat just before sundown on our last evening, Chris skilfully tied to the boat to a dead tree emerging from a sandbank in the river. A pod of hippos was just in front of us, displaying their dentistry at frequent intervals. With the low light from the 'golden hour' behind us illuminating the hippos, it was a photographer's dream setting. And we had a glass of chilled sauvignon blanc beside us as well!

Our dinners at Nsefu were memorable. We dined at a table in the bar area, with Braston and Sebastian. We also know Sebastian well, and so it was almost a family affair. The quality of the food was a exceptional, and we note that it had to be carried some distance from the kitchen area to where we were seated.

On our previous visit to Nsefu in September 2016, we were concerned at the high level of lighting in the camp at night time. We were very pleased to note that the African night had returned."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Luangwa River Camp

Luangwa River Camp

"Two nights at Luangwa River Camp"

2 nights Arrived 8 Mar 2018
"After our three nights at Nsefu, we returned downstream by boat to LRC for the last two nights of our trip in the South Luangwa. The main area of LRC has a splendid river front location. The five chalets are a little further away, but our chalet also enjoyed a river view. The chalets are spacious and comfortable. The camp is very well organised by Daudi and his team - we have known Daudi for many years when he ran Nsfeu. Dining is a pleasure, with excellent food.

Activities involved boating across the river to pick up a vehicle stationed at the other side. Daudi guided us with his skill and experience. One of the highlights was to see, at a very close distance, a pack of about twenty wild dogs. We found then firstly in the morning, relaxing in the shade of trees by the roadside. Returning after lunch, they became more active, moving out of the shade. After some time, they decided to move on slowly. This was the best sighting of wild dogs that we have seen at any time during our six visits to the South Luangwa."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Radisson Blu Hotel

Radisson Blu Hotel

"Radisson Blu review"

1 night Arrived 10 Mar 2018
"Please see our report on our stay at the beginning of our trip."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good

Back to Zambia once more

Zambia between 27 Aug 2016 and 10 Sep 2016

Trip rating: Excellent
"This was our ninth safari trip to Africa (all arranged by Expert Africa) , and we chose to return to the South Luangwa for the fifth time. The game viewing and guiding at all the Robin Pope safari camps was superb, and we had a wonderful time. Our two nights bush camping was a very special experience which exceeded our expectations.

All aspects of our trip worked perfectly, including the stopovers in Lusaka and the efficient transfers by Tours Africa.

Many thanks to Freddie for his help in making all the arrangements for us."

Radisson Blu Hotel

Radisson Blu Hotel

"Overnight stop in Lusaka at the Radisson Blu"

1 night Arrived 28 Aug 2016
"The Radisson Blu is ideal for an overnight stop in Lusaka, being close to the airport, with spacious, quiet and well-equipped rooms.

We have stayed here on previous occasions, and as before, we relaxed by the pool with a Mosi beer whilst we watched the sun go down.

It was a Sunday night and we had an excellent dinner in the hotel restaurant."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Nkwali

Nkwali

"Return to Nkwali"

3 nights Arrived 29 Aug 2016
"We had a wonderful welcome from Kiki and the team at Nkwali on this, our fifth visit. The camp has a superb location on the east bank of the Luangwa river.

The view across the river from the open-fronted chalets is splendid. Quick and easy access to the more remote parts of the National Park is assured by boat, pontoon, or simply driving across the river when the level is low enough, as it is at this time of year.

We enjoyed excellent game viewing, with five leopard sitings on one of the days."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Nsefu

Nsefu

"Fifth time at Nsefu"

2 nights Arrived 1 Sep 2016
"Nsefu's splendid location on a bend in the Luangwa river allows superb views from the rooms, which have a unique rondavel style. We watched herds of elephants regularly coming down to the river to drink. The game density is very high, and we appreciated the excellent guiding skills of Chilumba. As well as many lions, Chilumba took us very close to a pack of wild dogs. Wild dogs have eluded us on previous visits, so this was a very special sighting.

One afternoon, the elephants passed through the camp, just behind the rondavels. And then, on our last morning, we had lions in camp at breakfast time. Not content with occupying the bar area, two youngsters pulled off the rope from the outside loo, and proceeded to use it to entertain us with a 'tug-of-war".

The food at Nsefu was again very good. Ruth is much more than a hostess: she manages the camp very well indeed and we enjoyed insightful discussions with her around the bush TV.

Nsefu has a great atmosphere, but the river bank is slowly being eroded, and the camp may have to be moved sometime in the future. Go to the existing Nsefu whilst you can!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Robin Pope Safaris bush-camp

Robin Pope Safaris bush-camp

"Expectations exceeded with the bush camp"

2 nights Arrived 3 Sep 2016
"This was a very memorable experience - on this occasion we were the only guests, so it was particularly special. We walked between the two excellently located camps with our guide Braston, whose guiding skills are exceptional, whilst Chris the scout kept us safe.

We learnt to distinguish between the droppings (both white) of hyenas and crocodiles, as well as that of many other animals. Seeing elephant shrews in daylight at close quarters was a first. We will remember for a long time how we saw a pride of lions 150 metres away, and then slowly approached them to a distance of about 25 metres.

The food was amazingly good; coq au vin one evening, and barbecued steaks, sausages, vegetable kebabs and jacket potatoes on the second night, together with a full bar service including ice! The lunches were also good, and we had Zambian cheeses on one occasion - the goat cheese was particularly good.

The whole bush camp experience was wonderful and faultless. We appreciate very much the efforts of the whole team involved in the operation of looking after us, and moving the camp from one location to the next."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Nsefu

Nsefu

"Two days at Nsefu after the bush camp"

2 nights Arrived 5 Sep 2016
"We spent two more days at idyllic Nsefu after our bush camp days.

Please see our report and comments for our 1st - 3rd September stay at Nsefu. [Ed: see below]"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Luangwa River Camp

Luangwa River Camp

"Two nights at Luangwa River Camp"

2 nights Arrived 7 Sep 2016
"This was our first stay at the Luangwa River Camp. The bar and central area of the camp has a splendid view over the river, whilst the individual rooms are more enclosed and ours lacked a view of the river. The rooms are very spacious, with an enormous bathroom, but without much natural light.

The Camp was exceedingly well run by Daudi, whose guiding skills are very good, and Yvonne. Access to the National Park is very quick as the river was low enough for vehicles to drive through. We saw much game, and lions and leopards each day.

We congratulate the chef and his team for the excellent dinners and lunches we enjoyed."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Latitude 15

Latitude 15

"Friday night at Latitude 15"

1 night Arrived 9 Sep 2016
"Latitude 15 is a smallish (18 rooms) boutique hotel that makes an interesting alternative to the Radisson Blu. The journey from the airport took rather longer (about 40 minutes) through contrasting parts of Lusaka. The public areas of the hotel were very busy, perhaps because it was a Friday evening, with the pool, bar, and restaurant being extremely noisy. There was also a lot of noise from nearby construction sites.

Clearly many non-residents had come for dinner, with the consequence that the service in the restaurant was very slow, although the food was good. In contrast, we saw only a handful of other guests at breakfast the next morning."
Excellent
Location
Good
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent

Back to Zambia again

Zambia between 17 Sep 2015 and 4 Oct 2015

Trip rating: Excellent
"This was our eighth safari trip to Africa (all arranged by Expert Africa), and we chose to return to Zambia.

We love the Robin Pope camps in the South Luangwa, and our fourth visit to them met all our expectations. The game viewing and guiding at these camps is exceptionally good, making our time there so enjoyable.

Chiawa and Old Mondoro are both very special, in different ways. We had visited them five years ago, and wanted to return. Staying at both of them provides complementary experiences of the Lower Zambezi, with superb game viewing and guiding at both. Our walks with Paul Grobler at Chiawa were one of the highlights of the whole trip.

All the arrangements worked perfectly, including the stopover in Lusaka and the efficient transfers by Tours Africa."

Radisson Blu Hotel

Radisson Blu Hotel

"Overnight stop at the Radisson Blu"

1 night Arrived 18 Sep 2015
"This hotel is located a short drive from Lusaka airport, and was ideal for an overnight stay.

Our room was spacious, quiet and comfortable. We relaxed by the pool with a Mosi, watching the sun set before moving to the restaurant, where we had a good dinner."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Nsefu

Nsefu

"Return to Nsefu"

3 nights Arrived 19 Sep 2015
"This was our fourth visit to Nsefu, and it was as enjoyable and rewarding as ever. The camp has an idyllic location on a bend in the Luangwa river, with superb game viewing close by.
We were delighted by the warm welcome from Daudi, who manages Nsefu so well, and Braston, whose guiding skills are exceptional. He is an expert at "reading the bush".

The Nsefu cooks produced memorable meals on every occasion. We will be back!"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Tena Tena

Tena Tena

"Tena Tena at last"

3 nights Arrived 22 Sep 2015
"This was our visit to Tena Tena - like Nsefu it has a splendid location on the bank of the Luangwa. The new tents are very private and spacious.

We enjoyed excellent game drives and a memorable walk with Bertram, where we came close to many giraffes towering above us."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Nkwali

Nkwali

"Back to Nkwali"

2 nights Arrived 25 Sep 2015
"After 3 nights at Nsefu, followed by 3 nights at Tena Tena, we moved along to the wonderful Nkwali. It was our fourth visit here, and the contrast in river level between this time and our last visit in March 2012 was dramatic.

This time, one could simply drive across the river. We enjoyed excellent game viewing with Kiki who guided us superbly."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Chiawa Camp

Chiawa Camp

"Luxury on the Lower Zambezi"

4 nights Arrived 27 Sep 2015
"We first stayed at Chiawa five years ago, and were keen to return to the Lower Zambezi. Chiawa is a very luxurious camp, with the highest standards. It offers a wide range of activities on land and on the river, including canoeing and sunset cruises. We had two memorable walks with Paul Grobler: he is an outstanding walking guide, a true naturalist whose breadth of knowledge of the natural world is awe-inspiring.

The camp was excellently run by Peter and Anita, who produced some wonderful "Chiawa surprises"."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Old Mondoro Bushcamp

Old Mondoro Bushcamp

"Elephants at Old Mondoro"

3 nights Arrived 1 Oct 2015
"This is a wonderful, intimate, bush camp with just four tents. We stayed in the same tent that we stayed in five years ago.

The pods of the acacia tree overhanging the tent are an irresistible attraction for elephants, so we experienced some splendid close encounters. Old Mondoro has excellent guides and, like Chiawa, offers a wide range of land and water-based activities. Drifting down the Zambezi at sunset is idyllic.

Compared to Chiawa, there are more open plains which make spotting easier in some respects."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

A million wildebeest in the Serengeti

Tanzania and 1 other country between 10 Sep 2014 and 22 Sep 2014

Trip rating: Excellent
"This was our seventh safari trip to Africa (all arranged by Expert Africa!), but our first trip to Tanzania. We had very much hoped to see a crossing of the Mara river by the herds of migrating of wildebeest, and we were fortunate to do so. A lasting impression is of the huge herds of wildebeest, zebras, buffaloes and elephants that we saw both in the Tarangire and the Serengeti.

All the arrangements worked perfectly, and we enjoyed our trip very much indeed.

Two general comments regarding safaris in Tanzanian National Parks:

(a) the need to be back in camp before sunset does not allow for the sundowners in the bush experience that we have enjoyed in other African countries, such as Zambia;

(b) in our view, the open vehicles available at the camps, are essential to enjoy a true safari experience. As Tanzania does not allow open vehicles outside of National Parks, many guests 'safaried' in closed vehicles, having driven from airports / other National Parks."

Arranged By Elizabeth Chapman


Ole-Sereni

Ole-Sereni

"A short night in Nairobi"

1 night Arrived 11 Sep 2014
"This was a very conveniently located hotel for a brief overnight stay between arriving late evening at Nairobi airport, and our departure early the following morning.

The staff were very obliging in arranging for the breakfast buffet to open at 05:30 for us, 30 minutes earlier than normal."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Good
Oliver's Camp

Oliver's Camp

"Amongst the elephants at Oliver's Camp"

4 nights Arrived 12 Sep 2014
"This is a lovely camp in a remote area of Tarangire National Park, far enough away from the main entrance. We spent 4 very enjoyable days and nights at Oliver's.

Tent 2 had superb views over the river valley, and was excellent for sunset viewing. The camp managers, Justin and Jacky, are excellent, creating a welcoming and friendly atmosphere. Enthusiastic about the wildlife, they had rigged up two motion-sensitive night cameras in the camp, and it was fun to watch at breakfast the parade of animals passing through the camp at night. Our guide Emanuel was enthusiastic and knowledgable. Whilst the camp itself was free of tsetse flies, the last couple of kilometres back to camp were heavily infested.

All meals taken in the camp were excellent. However, the breakfast and lunch boxes for meals taken on drives were not up to the same standard."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Lemala Ngorongoro

Lemala Ngorongoro

"Lemala Ngorongoro review"

2 nights Arrived 16 Sep 2014
"The Lemala camp enjoys a superb location on the Crater rim, inside the Park. We spent two nights there. Like everyone else at the camp, we had travelled there with our own personal guide.

The tents were very comfortable, with bucket showers on demand, and generally well equipped, although lacking a torch. It was quite cold at night, but we were comfortably warm in the tent with a gas heater and hot water bottles. The camp staff were friendly and helpful, although on occasions needed prompting, for example restocking the camp fire after dinner.

The camp's location enabled us to be one of the first people in the Crater, before the crowds arrived. The setting of the Crater floor is spectacular, and it was certainly worthwhile to spend one day there, but we have had better game viewing elsewhere. The vehicle density at sightings was uncomfortably large."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Facilities
Average
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Ubuntu Camp

Ubuntu Camp

"Amongst the wildebeest at Ubuntu"

4 nights Arrived 18 Sep 2014
"Ubuntu is a lovely bush camp with wide views across the northern Serengeti. We were surrounded by huge herds of wildebeest which "mooed" us to sleep each of the 4 nights we stayed there. The tent was very comfortable and there were bucket showers on demand. The camp is very well run by David, and the atmosphere was excellent. The food in the camp at Ubuntu was also excellent.

Our guide Goodluck was the best we had on this trip, and one of the very best guides we have experienced on our many safari trips in Africa: he could really "read the bush". We were fortunate to witness three spectacular crossings of the Mara river by wildebeest and zebras, virtually without any waiting around, and on one day we spotted a total of 33 lions in different prides."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Onsea House

Onsea House

"A day room at Onsea House"

1 night Arrived 22 Sep 2014
"After flying from the Serengeti to Arusha, we spent a very welcome short afternoon at Onsea House before our evening flight out of Kilimanjaro. The staff were all friendly, and we had an enjoyable lunch on the terrace with a view of Mt Meru."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent

Nkwali and Nsefu in the Emerald Season

Zambia between 15 Mar 2012 and 24 Mar 2012

Trip rating: Excellent
"Having visited the South Luangwa, and these camps, in the dry season, we wanted to experience them in the Emerald Season. The trip exceeded our expectations. We saw many different birds, and although the animals are, in principle, harder to spot in the lush bush, we were rewarded with some spectacular sightings, due to the skill of our guides: Braston at Nkwali and Daudi at Nsefu.

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

I can't think of anything to add!"

Arranged By Claire Scott


Nkwali

Nkwali

"Nkwali in the Emerald Season"

2 nights Arrived 15 Mar 2012
"This was our third visit to Nkwali: the first time in the Emerald season. It was a very special experience to see the bush in green, and particularly good for photography with clear, dust-free, air.

Braston was a superb guide with an encyclopaedic knowledge of the birds and wildlife. Highlights included seeing a juvenile bataleur in full display, a daytime sighting of the usually nocturnal Sharpe's grysbok, a young male lion calling for the pride and a spectacular sighting of a leopard up a tree eating her freshly-killed impala.

Kiki is an excellent host: he and all his team at Nkwali looked after us so well and gave us a welcome "like coming back home"."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Nsefu

Nsefu

"River safaris at Nsefu"

3 nights Arrived 17 Mar 2012
"We had visited Nsefu twice before in the dry season, but visiting the camp in the Emerald Season was a very special experience, and quite intimate with a maximum of 6 guests. The river safaris provide unique opportunities to complement dry season game drives. The bird life was very diverse, with a highlight being the walk to the stork colony. We had a spectacular thunderstorm one night, but the days were dry.

Daudi reigns supreme as the heart and soul of Nsefu: a superb guide, and an excellent manager of the camp who made our stay so enjoyable and so memorable."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Nkwali

Nkwali

"Return to Nkwali"

3 nights Arrived 20 Mar 2012
"We returned to Nkwali for another 3 nights after our time at Nsefu.

Please see our comments for our stay from 15-17 March. [Ed: see below!]"
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Taj Pamodzi Hotel

Taj Pamodzi Hotel

"Overnight stay at the Taj Pamodzi Hotel"

1 night Arrived 23 Mar 2012
"We stayed one night here prior to catching the early morning BA flight back to London. The hotel is a good choice, and is only about 20-25 minutes from Lusaka airport by taxi."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good

Sand Martins return to Zambia

Zambia between 12 Sep 2010 and 27 Sep 2010

Trip rating: Excellent
"We enjoyed to return to the South Luangwa. The Lower Zambezi was new to us, and was wonderful.

The holiday exceeded our expectations. Thanks to Lucy and all the team at Expert Africa.

Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:

We suggest that you include a mention in the Guide to Zambia about the opportunity for visitors to the South Luangwa to help support the Kawaza school and Project Luangwa, if they so wish."

Arranged By Lucy Copson


Nsefu

Nsefu

"Return to Nsefu - long awaited!"

5 nights Arrived 13 Sep 2010
"We visited Nsefu 2 years ago and wanted very much to come back to this lovely camp. We were not disappointed - on the contrary. Fantastic wildlife sitings every day and superb guiding by Braston and Sebastian.

The camp location by the river is idyllic, with also a mud pool that attracts big elephant herds on a daily basis close to the bar area. A new experience was the very early morning excursion to the hot springs with a bush breakfast - worth getting up at 4am for this!

All the camp staff were superb and the food was probably the best we have had in all the four camps that we visited. The accommodation in the original rondavels is very good, but they are a little on the small side compared to rooms at other camps."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Good
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Nkwali

Nkwali

"Nkwali review"

2 nights Arrived 18 Sep 2010
"Unfortunately, our schedule meant that we only spent 2 nights at Nkwali, and hence only one full day here. That is not enough time to explore the area.

We arrived at Nkwali after an exciting transfer from Nsefu (crocodile and lion kills, plus crossing the river by boat). The rooms have extended since we were here in 2008, and are even more spacious. We appreciated the traditional "Sunday surprise".

Future guests should not miss the opportunity on the way back to Mfuwe airport to stop by at Tribal Textiles, which is interesting, informative and a chance to buy unique souvenirs."
Good
Location
Excellent
Service
Good
Activities
Good
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Chiawa Camp

Chiawa Camp

"Chiawa - luxury by the Zambezi"

4 nights Arrived 20 Sep 2010
"Chiawa is a very luxurious camp in a spectacular location. The Lower Zambezi with its ephemeral sandbanks and well established islands provides many additional activities - sunset cruises, thrilling canoe excursions etc.

The guiding was superb and highly professional, and we had excellent sightings of lions. The camp managers Steve and Lynn took great pride in making our stay in Chiawa a very special experience and together with the whole camp team they delivered a truly unique experience. We were bowled over by a very special dinner on a sandbank in the middle of the Zambezi - a very memorable evening.

The camp is relatively large with 9 tents and up to 18 guests, but game drives, bush walks, boat excursions etc were never crowded."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Old Mondoro Bushcamp

Old Mondoro Bushcamp

"Surrounded by elephants at Old Mondoro"

3 nights Arrived 24 Sep 2010
"We loved Old Mondoro!

The camp has a lovely, intimate atmosphere and is very well run by Etienne and Leana and their team. Our guide Levy must be one of the top guides in the country - superbly knowledgeable and very personable. We had frequent and excellent sightings of lions and leopards, but also of rarer animals e.g. porcupines, Scharpes Grysbok and grey mongoose. We enjoyed particularly the walks - the open woodland and the adjacent open plain are ideal for this.

The camp should really be called 'old Elephant' as they were a constant presence, 'joining' the guests for tea, for a shower etc."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent

In the land of big cats

Zambia between 10 Sep 2008 and 23 Sep 2008

Trip rating: Excellent
"This was our third trip with Expert Africa and it was wonderful. We were hugely impressed by the game density in South Luangwa NP. It was good to stay in the camps which are more isolated and consequently we saw virtually no traffic from other camps.

We are already thinking about our next trip . . .

Suggestions for improvement:

We would have liked to have brought gifts for Kawaza school and perhaps the Expert Africa team could bring this possibility to the attention of future travellers to Nkwali."

Arranged By Lucy Copson


Kaingo Camp

Kaingo Camp

"Kaingo Camp review"

4 nights Arrived 11 Sep 2008
"Overall an excellent experience! Idyllic location with 'private' views across the river; Huts very comfortable; open air bath fantastic; lunch was taken on a pontoon terrace deck on the river - excellent; We visited the hippo and carmine bee eater hide several times - outstanding and absolutely wonderful for photography; Other highlights include a walking safari where we came very close to a pack of hyenas gorging themselves on a buffalo, with vultures flying in from all corners; the sky was as busy as Heathrow on a Friday afternoon.

We were also fortunate to have Derek Shenton as our guide for the last couple of drives, a true master !

The camp staff were excellent - special thanks to Gail who looked extremely well after us and everybody."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Good
Facilities
Excellent
Nsefu

Nsefu

"Nsefu review"

3 nights Arrived 15 Sep 2008
"Wonderful location with wide sweeping vistas across a bend of the Luangwa; huts very cosy and lovely style; Simon was an outstanding guide and companion. We were impressed with his knowledge, ability of 'reading the bush' and his enthusiasm. We also appreciated our night spotter (David) whose party trick - spotting the impossible e.g. tiny camouflaged chameleons and a Pels fish owl - was just amazing.

Highlights include a leopard feasting on an impala, watching a never ending buffalo herd coming down to the river to drink and the daily lunchtime appearance of an extended elephant family and their 'interactions' with the resident hippo in the camp waterhole ,

The scenery of the Nsefu sector was quite different from other parts of the Luangwa NP - with sidearms of the river, forests etc.
The camp staff were excellent and so was the food; we enjoyed particularly the evening dinners al fresco with candle light."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Nkwali

Nkwali

"Nkwali review"

4 nights Arrived 18 Sep 2008
"The location on the river was again excellent. It was not really a problem that Nkwali is outside of the NP. The transfer across the river either by boat or across the pontoon added on occasions a certain 'frisson' to the journey and we had plenty of siting of wild animals even outside of the park. Highlights include many spectacular sightings of lions, leopards and even the rare view of a civet. We appreciated very much having Prince as our guide for the whole period. We also enjoyed our walking safari with Musambo and Jackson and Lazaro - very informative, close to nature and - as highlight - the close encounter with two warthogs.

The camp staff, in particular Rails and Kiki - were superb and couldn't do enough to make our stay as enjoyable as possible. We appreciated very much their flexibility to start the afternoon drive earlier so that we could benefit longer from the lovely afternoon light. We still think fondly of the surprise sundowner on our last evening!

The hut was lovely, very spacious and with a wonderful semi-open bathroom. The food was excellent throughout our stay."
Excellent
Location
Excellent
Service
Excellent
Activities
Excellent
Rooms
Excellent
Food
Excellent
Facilities
Excellent
Taj Pamodzi Hotel

Taj Pamodzi Hotel

"Taj Pamodzi Hotel review"

1 night Arrived 22 Sep 2008
"Only spent barely 12 hours there; location was very convenient for the early morning return flight to the UK.

The transfer with Voyages Ndola worked well."
Good
Location
Good
Service
Good
Rooms
Good
Food
Good

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