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“Great safari, good value” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Thornicroft Lodge

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Thornicroft Lodge
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Along the Luangwa River | Between Kakumbi village and the park entrance, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia   |  
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Hotel amenities
Lusaka, Zambia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Great safari, good value”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2014

Just got back from a long weekend at Thornicroft and am really very happy with the experience. David Kelly is a top-notch manager and really great guy. All the staff were attentive and pleasant. The driving safaris in the park (which were included as part of our stay) were stupendous. Our guide, Rogers, is an ace. Great memories and very good value, compared with other places in the area. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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88 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    68
    15
    4
    1
    0
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29
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5
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Adelaide, Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2014

To David Kelly and his A Team .. Thank you all for making our 3 night stay at Thornicroft a relaxing time. David leads his staff in a very pleasant way and they provide friendly assistance in every task. The food was plentiful and well presented.
Our guide was passionate, knowledgeable and keen to show what the park can offer and we were rewarded with watching wild dog at close range.
The location of our chalet right on the river was exciting especially the visit by three elephants at our front door in the early hours!!
Thank you all for a memorable visit and we encourage anyone considering a trip to this part of the world to book into Thornicroft Lodge. Pauline and Peter

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2014

Thornicroft far exceeded my expectations. As soon as we arrived we were greeted by David, the manager, who oriented us. Then we sat down for one of many delicious meals. We went to sleep in very comfortable tents and the next morning were upgraded to more luxurious chalets for the remaining four nights. While at Thornicroft we went on seven game drives, all led by Godfrey, an extremely knowledgeable and patient leader and all around nice guy. With his many tracking skills he saw to it that we saw as many different things as many times as was possible. He had a broad range of interests and knowledge. He always tried to get us in a position where the light was right for photos. The rest of staff went out of their way to be helpful in many small ways and were always friendly. This included alerting us to game sightings nearby, baking a birthday cake, taking care of charging our electronics and anticipating our wants and needs. In addition to game drives we were able to take in a tour of the neighboring village and spend a day at Tribal Textiles creating our own "masterpieces". Prices were very reasonable. Give Thornicroft a try. I think you'll be glad you did.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tel Aviv, Israel
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2014

I stayed at Thornicroft Lodge for three nights at the beginning of June and enjoyed every minute of it. The lodge is located on the bank of the luangwa river, with its lawns spreading up to the bank. Everywhere you sit you enjoy a view of the river with hippos and crocs in it, and see the animals wandering on the opposite bank (and sometimes crossing over!!). I liked the design and decor of the lodge and the garden, my chalet was nice and comfortable and the food was great. But what made the place really special was the friendly and attentive atmosphere - David and his team make you feel welcome and taken care of! The safaries too were excellent! I went with Godfrey, the experienced and talented guide, who has a vast knowledge of animals and plants. We had a great time tracking and following lions and leopards, and saw of-course, plenty of other animals and birds. the walking safari was very interesting too, giving a different perspective of the bush and its inhabitants.
Thank you David, Godfrey and the rest of the team for a great time!

Stayed June 2014, traveled solo
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

From the moment we arrived until the moment we left, we were made to feel at home. David, the manager, made certain our plans for all seven game drives were met, and helped our group plan trips to local villages, schools and Tribal Textiles, where we made our own African-designed fabrics. Godfrey, our superb guide (best in all of South Luangwa) with Superman eyes and ears, tracked animals, and showed us the signs to look for. He helped us identify at least thirty kinds of birds. Most exciting, on two occasions, we spotted leopards in a tree with their dead impalas. Night drives were really exciting. Thornicroft is an unbelievable bargain. Oh yeah, the food was great, too. The chef made a birthday cake with just an hour's notice! I'd recommend to anyone! Couldn't be better!!

Room Tip: All the rooms are great...hippos and elephants sauntered through the camp at night! Night guards ma...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2014

My sister and I stayed at Thornicroft Lodge for five nights at the end of April. The entire experience was absolutely special. Thornicroft doesn't pretend to be a luxurious mega-fancy spa-type safari destination. Rather, it is a clean, comfortable, and perfectly situated lodge, right at the end of the S.Luangwa River where animals wander right into the property's lovely trees and lawns. David and his capable, sociable staff are delightful. They took great care of us, provided specially selected meals with delicious local ingredients, shared their knowledge and experiences in the park and beyond. They made us feel like family and genuinely at home. The chalets were great--simple, spacious, convenient, clean and comfortable. Steps from the door is the teeming S.Luangwa River with its constant parade of hippos, elephants, impala, crocs and fabulous birds. Our safari guide, Rogers, was extraordinary. He readily shared his encyclopedic knowledge of the park's magnificent animals, fabulous array of birds, and its flora, geography, and vistas. He is the best driver we've ever experienced, delivering us to perfect views of a pride of lions, leopards, elephants, hyenas, wild dogs, giraffes, baboons, wart hogs. The list goes on and on--hippos, zebras, several deer species, crocs, countless birds, right down to the small night critters--civits and chameleons. Go to Thornicroft....you won't regret a single moment. Annie and I send many thanks to David, Rogers, and all the staff for a most memorable experience. We'll be back!

Room Tip: The chalets are all great, spaced along the lawn and trees above the river. We did not experience t...
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wexford, Ireland
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2014

We stayed at Thornicroft Lodge for three nights and were delighted with the safari and the whole experience. Our guide, Rogis was very knowledgeable and we learned lots about the birds and animals. The accommodation was comfortable and situated beside the river. We had a special treat one afternoon when we saw four elephants swimming in our river, wonderful entertainment.
The food was excellent. including home baked bread, scones, muffin and pizza. Lunch was severed by the river, complete with white tablecloths Our stay included breakfast, coffee at 9 on safari, brunch at midday, sundowners at sunset and dinner at the lodge.
David and all the staff were most helpful, courteous and efficient.
Thank you all for a wonderful three days and six safari trips.
Tony, Marion, Síle.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Thornicroft Lodge

Address: Along the Luangwa River | Between Kakumbi village and the park entrance, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
Phone Number:
Location: Zambia > South Luangwa National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #22 of 41 Specialty Lodging in South Luangwa National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Thornicroft is an intimate bush-style lodge set on the banks of the Luangwa River with spectacular views over the Park. At Thornicroft you can explore South Luangwa National Park on unforgettable game drives with our expert guides. On our drives you will explore one of the best parks in Africa to see lion and leopard, not to mention all the other birds and animals that make this valley so unique.Our nine charming bush-style chalets are spread out along the banks of the Luangwa River. Each of our intimate en-suite chalets has fabulous views of the South Luangwa National Park. The chalets are designed for 2 people, but on request we can add a third bed. However if you are looking for a more affordable way to safari we have eight permanent safari dome two-person tents with shared bathroom facilities near the lagoon. The tented camp is closed from January – March.Thornicroft can also arrange transfers from Lilongwe to Thornicroft Lodge. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Thornicroft Lodge Zambia/South Luangwa National Park

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