Chiawa Camp (Lower Zambezi National Park) Zambia
Set deep inside the Lower Zambezi National Park, Chiawa Camp enjoys the prime location in the Lower Zambezi. This area is still unspoilt as it is new to Tourism and is afforded a high level of protection from the Zambian Government and the local tour operators. It was only declared a National Park in 1983, and the Cummings Family, who own and operate Chiawa Camp, brought the first Tourists to the Park in 1990.
Only licensed operators may conduct safaris in the area, and only the few lodges situated within the Park may conduct river & canoeing trips there. Visitors to the Park are thus assured of seeing very little human activity. With over 300 bird species, lion, leopard, vast herds of elephant and buffalo, prolific hippo, gigantic baobab trees and magnificent stands of acacia, the Lower Zambezi National Park and Chiawa Camp have become one of Africa's most exclusive safari destinations.
Resting peacefully on the river bank, in a grove of mahogany and acacia trees, the lodge is constructed essentially of natural materials, and is designed to ensure its idyllic setting can be fully appreciated. All tents are under thatch, have en-suite facilities with hot & cold running water, twin or double beds, insect screens and solar powered lighting. 16 guests can be accommodated in 8 well- appointed safari tents, each on a raised timber deck with private veranda.
The spacious lounge and bar area has an observation platform built into its roof, providing one of the best views in the valley. Of course the dining area also looks out onto the river and the animals which regularly come to drink and feed at and near the lodge. Enjoy barbecues and refreshing cocktails under starlight in our reed-enclosed boma while your hosts oversee your comfort and the preparation of Chiawa's renowned cuisine.
Naturally vegetarians are catered for however please give us advance notice of any special culinary requirements. Another viewing platform has been constructed in the quietest corner of the lodge, overlooking the confluence of the Chiawa & Zambezi rivers. Sip a cup of tea or a Pimm's while watching nature move at nature's pace and savor the tranquility of Real Africa.
Game Viewing & Activities:
Chiawa Camp employs enough guides and maintains a sufficient infrastructure that ensures maximum efficiency and flexibility. This means that guests will enjoy levels of choice & convenience not found elsewhere. The guides at Chiawa Camp are experienced and qualified to help you get the most from your visit to the Lower Zambezi National Park. All boats and vehicles, canoe trips and walks carry first aid kits, and are linked to Chiawa Camp with our extensive VHF radio network.
Chiawa Camp communicates with the rest of the world via HF radio. Chiawa Camp is best experienced when a customized itinerary is made up of any combination of these activities. These itineraries are ideal for Corporate Team Building, Incentive and Group Travel. For groups of 4 or more a personal guide and vehicle is provided, although smaller groups may book this service in advance for an extra charge (contact us for details).
This is the safest and most effective way to view big game. Drives are conducted in open 4wd Toyota Landcruisers that have been specially adapted for safari use. Usually departing in the early morning, drives can last anywhere from 2 to 4 hours depending on what's seen and the requirements of the guests. In the late afternoon drives set off for an hour or so before stopping at a scenic point for sundowners.
Once the sun has set and it is dark enough for the powerful spotlights to become effective, night drives commence. Zambia is one of the few countries that permit night drives, perhaps the most interesting of safari activities. This is an opportunity to see nocturnal creatures such as civet, porcupine, genet, and also to see some of the larger predators on the move. It is not uncommon to see a pride of lions on a kill or a leopard stalking through the bush. Again, these drives can last up to 4 hours depending on the action!
Pioneered in Zambia, bush walks are essentially a "micro-safari". An armed ranger will guide you through the wilderness on foot, interpreting spoor, identifying the various flora and fauna, and highlighting conservation issues.
The pace is leisurely and the duration is determined by guests' requirements. Typically, a few hours is sufficient.
One of the great aspects of a visit to Chiawa Camp are the activities offered by virtue of our presence on the Zambezi river. Chiawa Camp is one of the few lodges permitted to conduct waterborne safaris within the National Park, and our 8m motorized pontoon is ideal to take advantage of this. Enjoy midday cruises through numerous channels, viewing hippo, buffalo, elephant and prolific bird life. Also on offer are sunset cruises, or breakfast served on board, anchored in the middle of the Zambezi.
Expert guides are on hand to assist you in finding the notorious Tigerfish (camp record 8.75kg, average 2kg) and other species that abound in the Zambezi River. Chiawa Camp is currently the only lodge offering professionally guided sport fishing inside the Lower Zambezi National Park.
These waters are free from netting and are hence your best bet for lots of big fish. Naturally we enforce a strict catch & release policy. Best months for Tigerfish are September - November.
Monster Tiger caught at Chiawa Camp, Lower Zambezi.
Although the Zambezi offer many activities, perhaps it is best known for canoeing. No where else is there such a combination of breathtaking scenery, varied wildlife and such interesting channels to paddle through. Tranquil yet exciting, these trips through waters such as the Chifungulu Channel are an excellent way to best appreciate the Zambezi. /p
Canadian canoes (6m long) are used and these trips may last anywhere from 1 hour to 1 day. Our most popular canoe safari is 90 minutes long where guests paddle (always downstream!) from the lodge to "Sunset Strip" for sundowners and then a night drive back to Chiawa Camp.
Accommodation Rates:- From $650 per person per night sharing. Please contact us for a quote and suggested itinerary.