Ntanda Girls on Safari in Zambia
Updated: Mar 8
Desperate to get back to South Luangwa we were.
Kerry and Camilla planned a fam trip (16 lodges) and then 4 girlfriends decided to join us. #girlsonsafari. We glamped it for the first 3 nights, then ramped it up for the last 3 nights and yes we made our friends join us on the working part of our holiday in the wild.
Set off from Ndola airport and some of us had a night stop in Lusaka for various reasons.
Wild Dogs Lodge very close to Lusaka airport (they do arrange for Covid testing on site) was the perfect stopover – very comfortable and a great dinner. I could not figure out how to use the coffee machine in the dining room when I needed the midnight cup – so do make sure you figure this out before heading off to bed.
Camp checks - If you are on a budget we recommend all of these for lots of reasons but get in contact with us for exactly what is best for you www.ntandaventures.com .
Marula Lodge – Jenny does some amazing work for Raise-a-smile Zambia and has built a fantastic library for the kids at school (http://www.raise-a-smile.org/) , fantastic dessert, bonus to bump into Choti an old client now working to save snakes with Ken in South Luangwa (https://savethesnakes.org/donate-zambia/). Lots of bushbuck in the gardens but we just missed the Ellies that stroll through camp. My favourite project of Jennys is the Baobab Craft Shop…but more about this later.
Track and Trail Camp – excellent value for money, with specially fitted safari vehicles
for the serious photographer and fabulous rooms overlooking the Luangwa.
Pelican Lagoon – great new intimate lodge to add to our portfolio.
Croc Valley Camp - caters to all budgets, a fab swimming pool and famous for their pizza.
Wildlife Camp – another favourite in a great location with lots of wildlife in camp.
No trip to Luangwa is complete without a visit to the Conservation and Art Projects – all girls need a little shopping and supporting sustainable tourism at the same time make for good feeling. We spent a whole morning visiting projects and then went back for more.
There are so many conservation and local projects to support so please do find all our ideas and links here. https://www.ntandaventures.com/sustainable-tourism-zambia
We just loved the Baobab craft shop and made their day when we bought out all the stock of the hand carved fruits from the Palm trees. We use them as giveaways so you are helping us to support sustainable tourism them when you book.
Project Luangwa, Conservation South Luangwa and Tribal Textiles are all worth a stop. Frederick Phiri is the junk king and his works of art using scrap metal are incredible. He calls his work ‘The heart of Art”. I guarantee you will buy a piece even if it is only a piece that will fit into your suitcase.
Next stop Mulberry Mongoose – hand crafted jewelry made from animal snares and had to use the credit card as we bought so much stuff! Great fun was had by all especially trying to see if we could twist the wire the way they do. Try the test for yourself…. www.mulberrymongoose.com . Thank you to Bushride Car Hire for all your patience with the shopping and dropping!
Back to work
Kafunta River Lodge is another of our favourites (5 star service with the 4 star price)
And really offer a full safari experience. The lodge swimming pool and its natural hot spring tub overlook a huge dambo always with game, a special treat to dine in the tree tops or try a star bed in the Bushcamp.
Mopani Camp caters for the Halaal community and an alcohol free camp with incredible views over the Luangwa River with the Chendeni Hills as a back drop. Very large rooms for families.
Chinzombo Safari Lodge is a 5* property and an incredible bar with a gallery of its history and Norman Carr the founder of the original walking safari.
Here you can certainly ditch the beach and bask in the bush in your own private dipping pool.
Nkwali Camp, Robins House and Luangwa House are another special treat in the bush. Luangwa House is spectacular for family safari holiday.
Flatdogs Camp is another favourite and great value for money. Accommodation varies from family chalets to luxury safari tents and the luxury Crocs Nest for families with its private pool and another reason not to kill time on a beach when you can watch a lion kill from your private pool deck. (next bucket list stop for me once Covid allows my family to visit). They offer a dining experience not to be missed in the bush.
Mfuwe Lodge for overnight stop, what a night this was…We were the first to see the new Kuyenda Bush Camp and highly recommend this as a combo with Mfuwe (or any of their awesome other bush camps each with their own unique style – cant give too much away –come and see for yourself) Camilla got her bucket list tick, wild dogs.
Not often found in the bush was the fantastic wine list (a bit too fantastic) and a wow Gin bar – you name it they have it! The new Directors House (another bucket list family stop for me) is awesome and has its own private pool. Don’t forget to a book a spot at the SPA overlooking the lagoon with lots of birdlife and resident Hippo. BEST OF ALL BOOK Mfuwe Lodge and the Bushcamps in 2021 and get 50% discount AND we will give you a 10% discount voucher for the Bush-Spa.
Next stop the newly open Shawa Camp and yes we did get that pontoon across the river but spent the afternoon lazing by the pool just watching the world go by. All girls need some downtime!
Shawa Camp offers the silent game drive with its battery operated, eco-friendly vehicles.
Outdoor showers and sunken baths in these tree top chalets make for special treats in the wild. Watch out for the Ellies in camp. Some of the team managed a morning bush walk and loved it – if you are brave enough this is the way to see all the little things the bush has to offer including the “GREEN FIVE” and the “LITTLE FIVE”.
Quick stop into Kakuli Bush Camp another little gem in the bush and love the staff here.
Chikunto Safari Lodge – Luxury in the wild. Spent a little pool time in the salt water pool (it was hot) and then off for a night safari. Great game viewing and an evening to remember forever. Sundowners on the riverbank and listening to the night sounds of the bush. Dinner was 5* dining (perhaps too much food).
What can we say except WE WILL BE BACK and to all the staff and the people in South Luangwa THANK YOU for your friendly hospitality. Nothing was too much for anyone.
Do follow the Ntanda Ventures facebook page for lots more of our adventures
All bookings for 2021/22 will receive a complimentary Cook and Conserve Cook Book from Ntanda to support Conservation South Luangwa.
Please help us to help them they have been so hard hit by Covid-19 lack of tourists. (Most of the staff at the lodges had already had their first vaccines by the time we got there)