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“A fantastic way to start your South Luangwa Adventure”

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Kapani Lodge - Norman Carr Safaris
Certificate of Excellence
Kingscote, South Australia, Australia
Level Contributor
37 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“A fantastic way to start your South Luangwa Adventure”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 9, 2013

We arrived in the early evening to a very warm welcome (and a refreshing cold towel and a drink).
Our room was presented immaculately and we had time for a lovely shower before an exceptional evening meal with wonderful company.
The next day we were up to a sumptuous breakfast and a morning drive where we saw everything we could hope for.
This was to be the standard for the rest of our trip. Helpful and very knowledgeable guides and superlative attention to detail.
We loved every moment and will be back to stay with Norman Carr Safaris again

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nick M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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82 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    63
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    7
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
New Delhi, India
Level Contributor
95 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 116 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 2, 2013

we went with friends and booked 3 cottages, it felt like an exclusive holiday for us six! Had hippos, monkeys as visitors and an after dinner meeting the herd of elephants was surreal! The safari was an exotic mix of jungles and a variety of animals - Lions, leopards, elephants giraffes, zebras, wart hogs, and many more... the guide was good but the spotter was just a spot boy carrying spot light at night. He did not spot anything. But the whole experience was amazing and we had a lot of fun. Great sunset points, lovely greenery , rivers, amazing animals.... Rooms are cute with huge mosquito nets and fan within! Food is very tasty.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Ganga D D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London W4
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 18, 2013

Great place for a terrific safari experience. The lodge is very friendly and comfortable and the guiding and safaris could not have been better. We learned a lot but also had a lot of fun and laughter and really enjoyed the company (thanks Lawrence and Hebbert). There is a lot of wildlife in and around the lodge (including baboons with a taste for toast if given half a chance) and a real sense of history. We felt very privileged to share it. Many thanks

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank paulw4uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 15, 2013

2 adults + 2 teenagers + kapani lodge staff ( + a leapard or two!) = a perfect family holiday !
- a truly special Zambian genuine welcome and kindness and laughter for the whole 5 days. I have been to game parks many a time but this was my first experience of having a personal guide and a WHOLE new world opened up thanks to his prodigious knowledge and eyesight! We will most definitely be back!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank NorfolkAli2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 26, 2013

Our four nights at Kapani Lodge were the perfect start to our first safari. Beautiful setting and campus, great staff, the patina of the Norman Carr history, the best food, comfortable lodging, lots and lots of animals and birds (including a never ending stream of baboons and vervet monkeys in camp and lots of others in the oxbow lagoon). The only thing we might change would be to move on more quickly to a more remote bush camp. Several very exciting close sightings of leopards--the main section of South Luangwa is an Eden of wildlife.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Steve P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 18, 2013

My recent trip to Kapani Lodge + bush camps Luwi, Nsolo and Kikuli were completely fantastic. The service Norman Carr Safaris offered our group was much, much more than I could have dreamed of. The wildlife viewing and professional guiding was fantastic, and I learned a lot of the ecology of the area, and a bit of the culture of the local people. The staff were helpful, and very hospitable. It was such a delight to sit on the deck and watch the "traffic" go by, Zambian style - hippos, bush babies, monkeys, puku, impala. Totally awesome. THANK YOU, NCS!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank DannaDanna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Moab Utah
Level Contributor
36 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 16, 2013

I also review Luwi, Nsolo and Kikuli bush camps. We arrived June 26, and our last night was July 6th

The lodge is great, the bush camps are crazy awesome. Unfortunately, there are only 5 stars available, because I would like to give 6 to the bush camps. Back to Kapani Lodge. We started our 10 night safari here with 3 nights. After having Norman Carr handlers greet us the day before at Lusaka, help us through customs, get us to our transfer, and then meet us at Lusaka in the morning for the flight to Mfuwe and then meet us there, we arrived in time for brunch. Then we went for our first afternoon and evening game drive. Willie, the guide is so smooth, he makes it look easy to see awesome stuff, and then just at the perfect time, stop for sundowners out of the bar on the back of the safari vehicle with the sun just going down on a spectacular view. The only thing that threw him off his timing was the night we watched an elephant family with the cutest baby ever feeding in his planned sundowner stop. We got our drinks after the sun had just gone down, about 100m away from the elephants.

We spent 3 nights at Kapani, 2 at each of the other three bush camps, and finished up with a final night back at Kapani. We stayed in 2 different Kapani rooms, both were nearly identical, and we felt we had the best room each time. The rooms are attended to by a great staff-They clean up while you are out on the morning drive, then again while you are at tea. And they seem to pop in and set the mosquito netting to open or closed at the appropriate times, all with you never seeing them-like magical elves. Also, I felt secure in leaving documents and such lying about. The rooms have keys that they insist you use to lock the door, so only authorized people can get in, but really, it just felt very safe there.

The food. Our group had some difficult requirements-vegetarian, gluten free, gluten free vegetarian, and all we had to do was ask that the delicious vegetarian dishes be put out in bigger portions. The plated dinners were good, and on the last night when we showed up, they had gotten out of the crazy veggie/gluten free routine, and there was a brief moment of confusion about how many vegetarians there were. In time to serve with everyone else, they made some special meals, everyone was accommodated, and we all had a wonderful dinner while Hippos came out of the lagoon and dined on the grass below the porch where we were seated. Breakfasts are buffet style with eggs to order, strong coffee, or tea, amazing creamy yoghurt, fruit bowl, choices of cereal, fresh bread, etc The eggs are cooked over a fire or a charcoal grill, quite rustic and charming, and delicious, all while watching the sun come up over the lagoon.

The grounds are open, there is a pool that was not too refreshing to enjoy getting in, and it only gets warmer as the season goes on, I assume, and lounge chairs and towels provided. The 'bar' and deck have great views of the lagoon where there is always something to see, from a large group of Baboons to the occasional Giraffe or elephant family, and even a leopard if you are lucky. (By the way, our very fortunate safari had 10 or 11 leopard sightings, 3 very close for some time, 14 lions, and everything else. I think the only thing we didn't see was an aardvark and a chameleon.)

The location is about a 10 minute drive from the park entrance, enroute to the park we were treated to a family of giraffes, a family of elephants, and many other critters, so as far as I can tell, the animals aren't sure where the park boundaries are. We also had elephants in camp one night, eating the trees right outside our room! What a treat!

The Lodge is great, but for the real feel of the park, you must go to the bush camps, where the overall feel is more intimate, with even more personalized service for meals and safari walks. This trip as a whole for us and our friends was amazing. I would say a once in a lifetime experience, but I am sure if we returned with Norman Carr, we would then have a twice in a lifetime experience.

Room Tip: All the rooms are good. I think there might be a honeymoon suite, but our rooms were great.
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Moab_Dave1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kapani Lodge - Norman Carr Safaris

Property: Kapani Lodge - Norman Carr Safaris
Address: Eastern boundary of the park | On the Luangwa River, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
Location: Zambia > South Luangwa National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #33 of 43 Specialty Lodging in South Luangwa National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Kapani Lodge - Norman Carr Safaris 4*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kapani is an exclusive, privately owned lodge situated on the banks of a large lagoon, and was originally built by the late Norman Carr. Open all year and accommodating only 12 guests, each of the six suites has an en-suite bathroom and a lounge with bar fridge. According to the season, dining is al fresco with dinner taken on the terrace, on the spacious deck overlooking the lagoon, by the swimming pool or in the lounge. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Kapani Lodge - Norman Carr Safaris Zambia/South Luangwa National Park

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