Reviews of Tena Tena
Wildlife sightings and reviews
136 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Tena Tena and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Tena Tena review"
"Tena Tena revisited"
Our guide Julias also remembered us from before and he was a great guy, excellent guide and lots of laughs on safari.
Service was good though we thought the food wasn’t quite as good as it might have been." See all these reviews: 9n in Zambia
"Tena Tena review"
The guides were of very high quality and knowledge" See all these reviews: 7n in Zambia; 2n in Zimbabwe
"Not all so special"
Our tents were modern and comfortable. We shared the mainly outdoor bathroom area which was exposed to the elements with a various creepy crawlies, especially during the night. We could spot various animals between us and the distant river while relaxing on the tent porch.
We enjoyed a couple of leopard sightings on both game drives but animals and different species in that region were generally few and far between. If you wish to see high numbers or a large variety of game then this may not be the camp that suits you.
The all male camp staff didn’t seem to be a close-knit working team. They simply did their jobs without providing the special attention you’d expect from such an exclusive and extremely expensive camp. Meals were an extremely basic, one meal fits all, with no choices. This was in extreme contrast to our previous days at Flatdogs Camp where excellent menu choices were available all day. My vegetarian daughter had negotiated suitable food alternatives with a camp manager on arrival but for dinner she was presented with a meat dish, mashed potato and cooked carrots, none of which she eats. She left the table extremely upset and went to bed unfed. Definitely not good enough from Tena Tena Camp, and certainly poor when the same single menu offering is presented to all clients in this day and age of food preferences and allergies.
Camp management would be well advised to consider the following options.
1. Identify the dietary requirements of clients during the booking process and definitely when clients arrive at the camp.
2. Ensure that all clients are provided with suitable food options for their needs at each meal.
3. Be aware that when a separate “vegetarian” dish is supplied that it also becomes a food choice of non-vegetarians, so vegetarians can still be left without a sufficient meal.
4. Provide a greater range of menu choices rather than a meat dish and two vegetables. It’s unimaginable that a group of ten clients would all be satisfied with exactly the same three food choices.
5. Be more aware that if all food supplied is consumed then there probably wasn’t sufficient in the first place. Hungry clients can become unhappy clients." See all these reviews: 6n in Zambia
These problems haven’t, to date, been something that we’ve come across at the RPS camps, but we are really sorry that it was a problem during these travellers’ stay. We’ve spoken further with RPS and they are looking into this and adjusting how they work, both in terms of communications, and also quality and quantity of the food, especially with note to specific dietary requirements.
While we always request the dietary requirements of each traveller on our booking form before the trip, we’ve also recently initiated a new form for any of our travellers with more complex dietary requirements – we realise that small gap on the booking form may not be appropriate for some of our guests’ dietary needs, and so it will give people more space to explain what they need in more detail and length, if they wish, which should hopefully head off issues like this in the future as we’ll be able to pass on any details that may not have been fully explained prior to travel thoroughly to the camps.
We’re really glad that these guests had some enjoyable leopard sightings during their trip - we'd expect this for the South Luangwa, especially for those camps outside the relatively busy Mfuwe area. The game seen by these guests is typical, and perhaps slightly above typical, for a small bushcamp in South Luangwa, especially early on in the season, and so we’d suggest that travellers wanting to see higher number of game, or a wider variety, should probably seek a different park rather than a different camp.
We've discussed at length with these guests, and also RPS, and are glad that the issues were resolved and the camps have taken the feedback on board to ensure this isn't an issue for future travellers. We are glad that these guests enjoyed the rest of their stay, and that the issues with the food provided didn't impact on the rest of the trip.
"Very comfortable and spacious tents"
Although the camp was fairly full we never had more than three guests in our game drive vehicle. The guides from the camp were great at finding leopards on evening drives and hidden from our view in trees or the bush in the mornings. A pack of African wild dogs including several very playful puppies were regular sightings not far from camp and our guide willingly took us to the area near the Nsefu camp so that we could see the Nsefu pride of lions.
The guides and their night-time spotters were successful on 3 consecutive nights in finding predators: although we did not see the moment of kill, we were close to the action when a leopard took an impala, the pack of dogs chased a number of impala at incredible speed and eventually caught one (not a pretty sight), and finally when, after a kill possibly also involving hyenas, a leopard sought refuge from the dogs up a tree before successfully fleeing to another tree where she could hide better." See all these reviews: 8n in Zambia; 2n in Kenya
"What a lovely spot."
"A short walk from Nsefu...."
The camp location was perfect and we were wonderfully looked after by Jenny and her team. Relaxing by our tent in the afternoon felt as if we were in amongst the animals as they wandered down to the river in front of us.
Our safari in South Luanga finished here but we resolved to return as soon as we can to see the park after the wet season." See all these reviews: 9n in Zambia
"Wow the safari experience gets better!"
Our guides who were Bertrum, John and Chris, were all very knowledgeable and with Jenny made us very welcome and our stay a memorable one. Our Safari experience was just as we had hoped and we saw many Lions, Leopards, Elephants and Buffaloes. We had been given a record entitled "Mammals of the South Luangwa" and also " Birds of the South Luangwa-checklist"by Shannon at Nkwali and we ticked off the animals and birds that we saw in our record as we came across them. Unfortunately we saw so many species of birds that we lost track in our record but managed to record the memorable ones.
As well as the Big 4 ( Rhinos were not present in our locations in Zambia) we saw wonderful animals-Hippos, Hyenas, Giraffes, Zebra and other smaller animals together with many varieties of birds. We had a great time at Tena and would highly recommend that camp and accommodation also. Our Guides were Bertrum and John and they were first class guides who went the extra mile to make our holiday experience a memorable one. Guide Chris is a comedian and he was great fun also,- he never stopped laughing when we were in his company!" See all these reviews: 8n in Zambia
"Tena Tena review"
The game drives were excellent with good sightings including elephants chasing wild dogs a definite first for us! It was unfortunate for us that you could only do 4 hour walks, not a shorter 2 hour that both of us could enjoy.
The tents were good but we didn't like the fact that you could see the next tent from the washing sinks area. It also seemed odd but not critical that there was nowhere to sit in the tent at night as the only chair was full of the cushions off the bed. The lighting is also very dim so their and our torches were very useful.
Jenny. our host, was particularly kind when I felt unwell. She also arranged a champagne sundowner on the banks of the Luangwa river to celebrate a wedding, an anniversary and birthday of the guests during our stay." See all these reviews: 15n in Zambia
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