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Chiawa

There are a few camps in Africa that have everything just right....Chiawa is without doubt one of these, regarded by us as one of the top lodges anywhere. The guiding is phenomenal, the location perfect and the fact that this place is run by the family who are the main reason for the Lower Zambezi's success as a National Park, means that Chiawa genuinely does excel in everything it does. The activities on offer are more diverse than virtually anywhere and with the lodge's recent upgrade there is no doubt in our minds that Chiawa is the best lodge in the park.

Chiawa Camp - The Details


1989, Chiawa Camp opened up as the first photo safari operation in the Lower Zambezi National Park. Today, the camp's first-class reputation has gone on to make travel headlines around the world as a great safari lodge for both families and African honeymoons.

Located in the heart of the Lower Zambezi National Park, Chiawa Camp is superbly sited to enjoy both the cool shade of a grove of mahogany and faidherbia trees, and the denim expanse of the mighty Zambezi River. From the open-sided central lounge to the floodplain fire-pit; the tents’ private teak decks complete with outdoor showers and daybeds to an inviting plunge pool overlooking the Zambezi, every aspect of the camp is designed to encourage engagement with the stunning surroundings.
 
Accommodating a maximum of eighteen individual guests, Chiawa Camp has recently received an upgrade and has superior tents, constructed almost entirely of locally-sourced, natural materials and benefits from comfortable beds, solid furnishings, 24 hour hot water & lighting, raised decks, and an enviable view.

The game here enjoys free access between the Lower Zambezi National Park and Mana Pools National Park on the Zimbabwean banks of the river. Wildlife, from elephants to lion, commute across the Zambezi, often through camp, and the area boasts a tremendous cross-section of mammals, reptiles and birds. To best appreciate the park’s inhabitants, Chiawa offers first-class guiding with its "Best in Africa" award winning team – both on land and water. Safari activities include game drives morning and evening, guided bush walks towards the towering escarpment, canoeing along the lily-clad channels (stupendous for a crocodile’s view of the resident birdlife) and sedate aqua-safaris aboard the camp’s comfortable pontoon boats. For both the novice and experienced angler, there’s also the chance to catch Tigerfish.
 

AT A GLANCE

Guide price: $1180 per person
Price guarantee
Pay 4 stay for 5 nights

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[100% based on 2 reviews]

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Absolutely fascinating to meet Grant Cumings, the owner, who was being transferred from Old Mondoro up to Chiawa with us.  He was clearly a little sensitive about the arrival of Anabezi on the scene and that we would feel that Chiawa was dated. To a certain extent he was right but that did not take into account the wonderful atmosphere and friendliness of the staff that we experienced throughout our stay.  We were only at Chiawa for 2 nights and I would say that this area of the game park looked rather worn and well-trodden compared to Anabezi and the guides had to work a little harder to find game.  Having said that we had some amazing close-up viewings of leopard and our canoe trip was a brilliant experience - slightly nerve-wracking at some points but the reassuring experience of our guide managed to keep me calm! Food gets 5 stars and we really enjoyed dining together, sharing stories and listening to their lovely choir.  Having mentioned that it was our 25th wedding anniversary holiday, they arranged some lovely, personal touches; lunch floating on the river, private dining in our tent - we felt very touched and very well looked after.  It seems like a camp that has a loyal following for good reason but perhaps Grant is right to think that he needs to keep on his toes.
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