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“lovely stay”

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Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp
firenze
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“lovely stay”
Reviewed August 27, 2013

a very lovely experience at Mwamba Bushcamp, stay only 2 night but I had great gamedrives and lovely bush walk. Expectional the Hide!!!. Great guide Myem. So cute to sleep with the open-roof, complety safe with the mosquito's net, you can ear all the sound of the bush!!! Hyenas...lions...and others!!!
Stephane

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank stephane m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ShentonSafaris, Manager at Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp, responded to this review, September 13, 2013
Dear Stephane,

Thank you very much for adding this review following your stay at Mwamba Bush Camp.

I'm so glad you enjoyed the room layout with the big skylight, it makes it quite special indeed. And most particularly the photographic hide within camp, overlooking the water hole. It is also my favorite place comes August!

Hopefully you will get a chance to come back soon.

Sincerely,
Izzy
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Gloucester, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
41 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed August 10, 2013

Although more basic, rustic and 'open' than Kaingo, Mwamba camp still utterly delivers in every single way to provide a level of comfort, quality and service that I'm still staggered about so many months later.
The main camp is based around a tree (with the bar table literally wrapped around the trunk) with the chalets splintering off in an arch. Once again, considering the limitations of the environment, terrain and the logistics, I was completely satisfied with everything the camp had to offer. The rooms were well thought out and the bathroom / shower area is a fenced outside area which, although left you open to attack from bugs, was a great way to make you feel more immersed in the bush. Nothing says Africa like showering with a Vervet monkey watching you overhead!

The standout for this camp, which gives it a unique twist over Kaingo, is it's hide. It's a bit small and was incredibly humid but the range and consistency of animals visiting the waterhole we overlooked was incredible. Elephants, lions, varying antelope, monkeys and dozens of different birds kept us entertained and photo-happy for the countless hours we spent there. Absolutely loved it!

Once again, the staff were brilliant from our guide to the cooks to the camp managers / hosts we met. They all made the experience more personal and unique - I've never come away from a holiday feeling as if I've left friends behind! A true gem of a camp and that of a golden crown that is Shenton's Safaris. I'll be back out as soon as I possibly can!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
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Thank iamsam103
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ShentonSafaris, Manager at Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp, responded to this review, August 13, 2013
Dear "Iamsam103"

In addition to your review of Kaingo, I wanted to thank you for also taking the time to add a review for our bush camp Mwamba. Very kind indeed.

I'm so happy you enjoyed the set up of the camp, being more bushy and authentic.

You will be happy to learn that we have made the hide at Mwamba MUCH bigger now, you may actually have seen pictures on our July newsletter. It's really roomy, but I'm afraid there is not much we can do about the October heat!

I hope this is one more reason for you to come and visit again!

Sincerely,
Izzy
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London, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
95 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
Reviewed November 26, 2012

We spent two nights at Mwamba. They really should rename this place Leopard camp. We saw at least one leopard on every single game drive from Mwamba. On one night drive we had six separate leopard sightings. Our guide (Patrick) was excellent. He made a point of showing us some of the smaller animals (eg a chameleon) and birds as well as the big cats. We really appreciated this and it certainly makes the game drives much more interesting. Night drives here were excellent with several honey badger sightings.

The hide at Mwamba is brilliant (much better than any other hide we were in during our trip). It is right by a waterhole and it is the only water for quite a considerable distance so attracts a huge variety of animal and bird life during the dry season. We saw 3 lions, impala, bushbuck, fish eagles, sparrowhawk, lovebirds, lilac breasted rollers, plus many other species of birds.

The rooms here are fairly basic and the insect life is extremely prolific. If you can't deal with bugs then choose somewhere else to stay. We were there in October at the end of the dry season and the rooms got incredibly hot - we didn't get a lot of sleep as it was just too warm. If you are staying here during the hottest part of the year then bring a sarong with you that you can wet and sleep under - they were provided in some of the other camps and it makes such a difference. The food was simple but perfectly edible (note that if you stay at the sister camp, Kaingo, you get the same dishes there).

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1 Thank WildlifeFan01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ShentonSafaris, Manager at Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp, responded to this review, November 26, 2012
Dear "WildlifeFan01",

Thank you so much for taking the time to post this detailed review following your stay at Mwamba Bush Camp. I am so happy you have enjoyed Patrick's guiding as well as the incredible activity at the hide.

It is really the place to be in October - if you can stand the heat!

I'm so sorry that you have found the rooms to be too hot. With the large skylights in the roof we hope that the air circulation is sufficient, but it is true that with the temperature being so high at that time of year (October), it is hard to keep it cool. The idea of providing sarongs is a great one that we will keep in mind. We have some for sale at Kaingo, but we should promote their availability more at Mwamba too.

And you are right about the meals, we have an ongoing menu at both camps, which is based on a 10 day rotation (will be 14 next season), so unless you stay over 10 days you should not have the same meals when staying at either camp. I wish however that your description would have been higher than "simple", this is certainly not the standards we want our guests to remember; we are addressing this for next season as well. Stellar is what we want our cuisine to be (with the limitations of being in the bush of course)! The rooms will also be revamped a little bit, although we don't intend to change the atmosphere which is quite special.

Again, thank you for this very constructive feedback, and we hope to see you again in South Luangwa.

Sincerely,
Izzy
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Divonne, France
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
Reviewed October 30, 2012

Like other reviewers who stayed at Kaingo, Mwamba's sister camp, we walked the short distance between Kaingo and Mwamba, rather than transfer by jeep. We were rewarded with the sighting, amongst others, of a honey badger (rarely seen during daytime) who was so intent on digging the ground that we were able to come extremely close and take some great shots.
Mwamba is a fantastic camp, small and homely, where almost everything is outdoor: the bathroom, the bar, the dining room... It really blends in with the bush, without depriving  guests of their comfort - we found the chalets rather spacious and well designed, the service was very attentive and the food was amazing for the location (fantastic eggs benedict one morning, how does the chef manage this, I wonder!)
Our stay was made even better by our hospitable and caring host Brent, who is also an excellent and very intuitive guide. Together with our armed scout Gideon, they managed to spot teeny-weeny creatures such as chameleons and lizards in the black of night..! We had some great sightings and were lucky to spot a leopard every night of our stay.
 I will sign off with a warm hello to our fellow travellers at Mwamba: Shirley, Kirsten & Chris, Ursula & Rolf - it was a pleasure meeting you all!
Do not hesitate to book this camp, you won't regret it.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Nadège
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ShentonSafaris, Manager at Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp, responded to this review, October 31, 2012
Dear Nadege!

Once again, thank you for taking the time to post your review for Mwamba, in addition to the one you posted for Kaingo.

Do make sure to send us some pictures of that honey badger!!

I'm so glad you enjoyed Mwamba, it is a little piece of paradise in the bush indeed.

All the best,
Izzy
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Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed October 22, 2012

We arrived here on foot after spending 4 great nights at the lovely Kaingo Camp, also run by Shenton Safaris. Much of what I wrote for my Kaingo review is also relevant here so I won’t repeat it. My Kaingo review is here: http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowUserReviews-g479226-d480754-r142886049-Kaingo_Camp_Shenton_Safaris-South_Luangwa_National_Park.html

Accommodation: 3 reed and thatch rondavels making for a very intimate bush camp experience. These are rebuild each year at the start of the season. Small but adequate internals with a door leading to an outside, but fenced in, bathroom. The whole thing is a bit like a comma with the round bit being the bedroom and the tail being the enclosed bathroom which is spread out to provide a flushable wc, shower and sink area - bags of space. We had Fig and there were plentiful figs on the vine around our central tree – figs which the monkeys took pleasure in throwing at you whilst you were underneath the tree showering! The roof had screened areas which meant you could lie in bed and take in the night sky. There was a shaded patio area overlooking a dry river bed which led down to the last waterhole hide. Usually plenty of activity to watch.

Communal areas: Dinner and breakfast taken in the open in front of the small but wellstocked bar. Morning and afternoon tea taken in the open. The max no of guest is 6 so it never feels crowded or busy.

Food: Plentiful and always delicious. Heralded by drums. The lunch being served on your own patio is a nice touch and allows for some much needed downtime at the hottest part of the day. The water is supplied from the camp’s own bore hole and is crystal clear with a lovely spring-like taste. I felt the food had a slight, but definite, edge over that of Kaingo.

Efficiency: Everything seemed to run smoothly, hot water was on request except in the morning when your bucket shower was filled at about the time the morning drums sounded. It was definitely hotter than at Kaingo and so showers just using the cold tap were our preference although the warm shower in the morning was a gentle wake up. Laundry done and returned each day. Given the remote and definite “bush camp” feel to Mwamba and its closeness to nature and the natural world, I found myself being very conscious of waste and so I ended up bringing most of mine home, certainly anything that had a plastic component I was loathe to dispose of there. There were no electrical outlets for charging to the camp manager does this for you.

Activities: Morning and afternoon walks and game drives are on offer. A visit to one of the hides is the mid-day activity – we actually found the flexibility of having the last waterhole hide right next to camp really good and we tended to go there after breakfast rather than at mid day as it did get hot in there at the height of the day.

Guiding: We had 2 guides – Brent who also managed the camp and Patrick. Both exceptional and with long experience – very much in touch with the wilderness and expert at their jobs. They both clearly delighted in discovering animals/birds and also made very sure we found out all wanted to. They excelled at exciting us with their passion for the natural world., also both interesting and humorous conversationalists. Accompanied by Gideon at night, we had fantastic and amazing sightings. Very special leopard sightings, something to remember forever. Quite humbling in many way, especially given the beautiful landscape. I can’t commend these guys or the experience highly enough.

Summary: this was probably our best ever holiday – the combination of a fantastic setting, exceptional guiding, great organisation really meant that everything pulled together in a hugely satisfying way. The animals and birds we saw were varied and sufficiently different from Kaingo to merit a visit to both camps. As with Kaingo, there is a focus on ensuring that photographers get what they need but that shouldn’t put you off if you don’t have all the gear – I don’t and I had the time of my life. This is a beautiful, restful bush camp which inspires in you a feeling of being at one with your surroundings: something special indeed given the richness and diversity of the world as it surrounds you there.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank KayHBee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ShentonSafaris, Manager at Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp, responded to this review, October 31, 2012
Dear "KayHBee"

Such a pleasure to read your thorough review on Mwamba, after reading the one you posted for Kaingo. It is so detailed, I just don't know what to say, other than a big thank you for being such a supporter of our products.

I will make sure to pass on the comments to both Brent and Patrick. They are real assets to us.

Very best,
Izzy
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York
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed October 5, 2012

We've been to quite a few different safari camps but this is the first one that's provided us with the opportunity to get covered with mud by an elephant having its afternoon bath! Mwamba has a superb hide down by a waterhole close to the camp and we spent some very happy hours here watching the animals and birds come and go. This included five elephants who arrived to drink and bathe and cleverly managed to spray mud through the very small viewing window of the hide all over us!

The camp is lovely. Just three extremely comfortable thatched cabins with big windows in the roof so you can lie in bed and watch the stars, and ingeniously constructed outdoor bathrooms with bucket showers that the staff fill with hot water if you ask - though we never did as it was so hot when we were there cold showers were fine by us! There's nice central area with a bar built around a tree truck, a table for communal meals under a canopy of branches and a sitting out area overlooking the dry river bed where a never ending parade of impala, elephants and baboons provide the entertainment.

The staff are superb from Kennedy, our wonderful guide who made each drive an adventure, Peter our guard and spotter who charmingly checked out suitable bushes for lady guests, Brent who kept everything running smoothly, John and Henry who looked after us so well and kitchen staff who created excellent meals in what seemed to us to be very basic surroundings. And a special mention to whoever provided the laundry service that got the elephant mud off my shorts!

The wildlife is pretty good too. We saw a really exciting night time lion hunt that ended with a standoff between five lions and six hyenas over one poor little dead puku. The lions won.

Room Tip: There are only three cabins. We had 'fig' but they all seemed very nice.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Welburn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ShentonSafaris, Manager at Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp, responded to this review, October 31, 2012
Dear "Welburn"!

It sure seems that you have had quite an experience at Mwamba, and I'm glad Eddie, our laundryman, was up to the task of cleaning the mud of your clothes!

Thank you so much for your enthusiasm about our camp, and our staff, this will be shared with them!

Very best,
Izzy
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Sydney, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
76 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2012

Mwambe is a small bush camp with only three huts (a total of six guests at any one time). Our hut was wonderful - loved the outdoor bathroom and the skylights to view the stars at night. It was so peaceful there.

The game drives each morning and afternoon are superb, though as we are not morning people, 5:30am wakeups were a challenge ;-)

The food was excellent, especially the private romantic dinner they organised for us one night when we had the entire camp to ourselves :-)

This camp is perfect for serious photographers - the Mwambe pride of lions were very accommodating, as was the leopard. Unfortunately, a driver from a neighbouring camp was not as skilled (or as careful) as he scared off the partner of that leopard from enjoying the kill - very dissapointing, but not Shenton Safari's fault.

The lunchtime trip to the waterhole was very productive. I was able to hop out of the jeep to take photos there, but had to switch around to the other side of it when four elephants decided to walk abreast up to us to check us out. They then walked into the lagoon and considered whether to smack a hippo with a nile crocodile as as to move it out of their way (I'm not making that up!).

Loads of animals, great guides, friendly hosts, great food, so peaceful an environment - only wish we could have stayed longer there. This was the third safari camp we've been to and it is our favourite!

Room Tip: Only three huts, so choice is not really an issue. If anything, I'm glad we had one of the end o...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank JS231
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ShentonSafaris, Manager at Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp, responded to this review, August 30, 2012
Dear "JS231"

Thank you for this wonderful review, it is such a treat to read how much you have enjoyed Mwamba and its really special feel. You were spoiled with sightings, and that is another great news.

My apologies for the lack of guiding etiquette of the other operator, we will certainly address this.

We hope to have you back some time soon.

Sincerely,
Izzy
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Additional Information about Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp

Property: Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp
Address: South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
Location: Zambia > South Luangwa National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #33 of 44 Specialty Lodging in South Luangwa National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp 3.5*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In addition to Kaingo Camp, Shenton Safaris operate Mwamba Bush Camp, providing an opportunity to explore the park's heartland. Wonderfully remote and peaceful, the site is a relaxed 3-hour bushwalk or 20 minute drive from Kaingo. Both walking safaris, and game drives (day and night) are offered from Mwamba. Set on the banks of the Mwamba River, a tributary of the Luangwa, the camp, sited under huge evergreen ebony trees, enjoys shady views of perennial water-holes, both of which have hides perched over them for fantastic photographic opportunities or simply quiet times viewing the animals. Mwamba takes only 8 guests in 4 reed and thatch chalets, uniquely designed with two soaring skylights (protected by mosquito gauze) set into the roof allowing you to experience sleeping under the stars. These four bungalows have huge outdoors ensuite bathrooms with flush toilets and hot bucket showers. Our lighting is all solar powered and the complete absence of generator noise means nothing interferes with the morning chorus or the midnight howls of the hyena. The accommodation reflects a thoughtful balance between back-to-nature simplicity and essential comforts. Meals are of the same high standard as Kaingo, and the bush-style dining and bar area or "chitenge" is set under the deep shade of huge ebony trees entwined with python vines. A spectacular sundowner spot on top of a large termite mound and a glowing campfire under the night sky completes the camp's friendly and personal atmosphere. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Shenton Safaris Mwamba Bush Camp Zambia/South Luangwa National Park

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