Reviews of Kapamba Bushcamp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Kapamba Bushcamp review
Good Lodge, but we missed the water in front of the campRead more about the whole safari
This was my second bushcamp and the transfer from Bili took only 20 minutes. This camp located along the Kapamba river with lovely views from both the deck and the chalets. The chalets are more substantial with stone construction. The bathrooms are big and the bathtub is more like a small plunge pool!
It was hosted by Claire, a Zimbabwean, lady who managed the camp well in her understated way. The guide is Fanuel Banda, a young enthusiastic guide. Fortunately I had good company with a couple from California who were keen birders like me. We ended up spending better part of a morning near a lagoon watching storks, ibises, hammerkops and even fish eagles going about their business. Last evening I was the only one in camp and hence spent the evening and the next morning with 2 male lions followed by some serious birding.
All in all a good camp, but it utilises the same area as Bili. In retrospect, I would have preferred to spend one more night at Bili and one night more at my next camp (Kuyenda) giving Kapamba a miss...
Kapamba Bushcamp review
Big spacious rooms overlooking a shallow river bed. The rooms are open with no curtains and watching the sunrise from the bed was magic.
A whole family of elephants in camp one afternoon. One young bull came trumpeting and charging towards our cabin. The whole family came and ate right beside our deck. We didn't see as many animals in this area as we did ifrom some of the other camps but I think that's just a matter of luck as we did hear lions and hyenas at night.
The food was good but more basic than the other camps without as large a selection of salads and fruit.
The 3 1/2 hour drive from Mfuwe Lodge was tedious in an open vehicule. The camp is one of many Bushcamp Company have set up along the south end of the Luangwa river.
The facilities are very solid and safe but over the top for a bushcamp in our view. Plenty of running water and electricity of course, but everything tiled and elaborate. The tucked in mosquito nets were annoying as they prevented any movement. The food was standard fare with limited choice and lacked fresh fruit. The service was attentive and the manager Amy was always very helpful.
Dealing with 8 guests with only 1 guide means all have to agree what to do. This is tedious. But Fanuell is an excellent guide who made the very best of it on the walking trips. His detailed explanations of tracks was fascinating and entirely the right thing to do with so many in the line.
Animals seemed scarcer than elsewhere. The roof over the 4wd limits the view, day and night, and also traps the tsetse flies. The 2 night drives were hopeless with a poor spotter and nothing found.
An amazing experience
Our first experience of a bush camp, and what an experience! Zilla, the acting manager was hospitality itself, and all of the staff were most helpful.
Our room was perfect and we loved the great bath! Our guide Fanuel was fantastic, so knowledgeable and passionate about his subject - we learned such a lot from him. We were the only guests for two of our three days and we really felt we were on a very private safari. Food was fantastic - how do they do it with the logistical problems. Returning one evening to a darkened camp, we were dined on our own terrace under the moonlight - wonderful.
Game a little sparse at this time of the year, but made up for by the wide range of other things we learnt about tracking, plants and poo!
walking safaris are excellent
thoroughly enjoyed walking safaris with very knowledgeable and personable staff. Evening game drives were also freat. Liked this camp as didnt see any other vehicles or tour groups during our stay. Definelty feels "more remote" than other camps in south Luanga.
Accomodation is excellent and the staff and manager were very helpful. Chef also caters very well for vegetarians!
We had elephant vistor ouside our chalet in early hours of morning! also saw lots of game on drives.
Kapamba - Excellent!!
Brilliant wilderness location, Outstanding food, Excellent guiding, Superb room, Great hosting.
Loved the fact we didn't see another vehicle on drives.
Really couldn't fault this camp.
Loved our three days/nights there.
Brilliant 4 days at Kapamba
This was a great stay. Started with wild dogs who had kill in the river just up from the camp. Lots of elepphants etc. Also watched lions from our room. That evening watched 3 lionesses and when we left for sundowners we heard a squeal as they killed a warthog. We went to watch it and watched as it disappeared! One lioness disappeared and came back with 4 cubs who proceeded to quarrel over the kill. Quite a sight. Evening finished off with a very bright shooting star.
The watched lions the following evening as the cubs played on a sand bank,
Great walks with lots of variety, through the bush one day, in a mopane wood the next day and to the confluence of Luangwe and Kapamba the next. On that walked disturbed a crocodile on land that sounded like a galloping horse.
Dean was a great guide. Took time to watch and take this in rather that rush around ! Ollie was a great host. Food was great with variety., especially lunch on our own in the river and on our deck in the evening, very romantic.
The baths were very welcome on a hot day.
Kapamba is a great remote camp which is exactly what I was looking for. All the facilities and staff were great and they couldn't do enough for me while I was there. The guides were as good as anywhere I've been before and I felt the walks I went on were particularly well run and I felt safe at all times.
The only point that should be perhaps be raised with less experienced safari goers before they choose Kapamba is that the rooms are open to the elements at night (behind cage gates). Whilst its fine by me, some may be uncomfortable with what could perhaps make its way into the room at night!
Kapamba - magical.
Ollie and the crew at Kapamba matched the level of service from RPS, but the isolation of Kapamba and their excellent chalets (and baths!) and the attention to detail, made this the best part of the holiday. We can't speak highly enough about Ollie and the team, especially the chefs, Davy and Georges, and not forgetting excellent guiding - in difficult circumstances - by James. We would have liked more walking at Kapamba, but the weather didn't help.
We saw a fair cross-section of wildlife, although they were very scarce and skittish. The elephant contendedly feeding outside our room in the middle of the night is something we'll never forget.
Being hyper-critical, the only little niggle was that we wonder if the Bushcamp Company are pushing it a bit by extending the season at Kapamba and Billamongwe. Basically, the rains greatly curtailed how far we could travel from Kapamba on game drives or walking safaris. Our options were quite limited because we couldn't ford the river, and it did feel as if we had a very restricted range for our game drives. Also, wildlife was harder to find than we anticipated.
We'd definitely want to come back to Kapamba, but maybe next time will be in the dry season!