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“A very special place”
Review of Tafika Camp

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Tafika Camp
Reviewed September 20, 2013

Wonderful place perfectly run by its owners, with very knowledgeable and enthusiastic guides, great wildlife and fantastic varied food and delicious bread and cakes. Attentive staff all round and a great atmosphere, with a awful lot of safari tome on offer both in vehicle and on food and excellent night drives too.

Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
Thank BrigitteM21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 15, 2013

Tafika is a very special place. From the accommodation, food, hospitality, setting and guiding - none of it could have been better. We only had one night which wasn't nearly enough, and were made to feel like part of the family. A lot of the guests had stayed there many times, and it was easy to see why.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with family
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Thank cloveshols
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 28, 2013

Far from everything, this last bastion of no technology is glorious. The atmosphere is like none, all are treated as equals, and you feel like you're part of a big friendly family. The food and company is outstanding. The rooms are indescribably, simply, beautiful. The setting above the Luangwa river, is phenomenal. It is not for those who want for wifi - thank goodness! The wildlife is incredible and the guides so inspiringly interested in every aspect of their surroundings - the animals, the birds and the plants. I will be saving up (for several years, I fear!) to return and try all of the camps run by this organisation - Remote Safaris.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Backpackerto5star
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2013

On our 90-minute drive from Mfuwe Airport with guide Lloyd to Tafika, we saw enough wildlife to make our visit worthwhile. And that was just the beginning.

We were delighted to find that Tafika is so beautiful. The entire camp, from public space to reed chalets, is thoughtfully designed to be pleasing to the eye and comfortable. An added delight is the setting on the Luangwa River, which insures that you see wildlife throughout the day and hear it throughout night--from cacophonous bird calls to hippo hip hop.

Owners, John and Carol Coppinger, are clearly pros who know how to run a camp. They have high standards, and this is reflected in the quality of their staff and guides. We had good game drives with Makubu and Amon, and especially enjoyed our time with Bryan, whose amazing leopard sighting and pursuit was the wildlife highlight of our trip.

Vegetarians will delight in this camp. Because Carol is a vegetarian, most dishes served were without meat. The food was perfectly adequate--not often delicious but good enough and always nutritious.

The camp was very congenial, with good opportunities to meet and chat with others around the campfire, the bar, and the dining table.

Room Tip: If you are phobic about ledges, ask for a chalet a bit further from the river bank.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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Thank LKMiami
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 24, 2013

We stayed at Tafika in July 2013 and we really enjoyed it. The camp is located in a very beautiful surrounding with great views over the river. The huts are very spacious and clean. The atmosphere is very friendly and you soon start feeling at home. The game drives and walking safaris are great and so is wildlife in and around the camp. Definitely a place to go back to!

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Christina G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2012

We really enjoyed our time at Tafika. The game drives were great. Our guide (John) realised pretty quickly that we were interested in birds and smaller animals as well as the big stuff and he found some lovely turacoes and green pigeons for us in a fruiting fig. We only has 2 nights here - in hindsight I wish it had been more. Before we went out on each game drive we discussed options of where to go and what we might see at each place and it was nice to be given a choice. On both afternoon game drives we went in search of wild dogs and we found them both times. There was a group of 17 (including 8 pups) and on both occasions they were very active with all the pups playing with each other. On one of our mornings we went to a spot where large numbers of grey crowned cranes congregate and we saw them as they flew in, which was lovely. We also saw lions, a leopard, hyenas, civet, genet, elephants, giraffe, a huge heard of buffalo, and lots of other animals while we were here. On one of our afternoon game drives we visited their carmine bee eater hide, which was brilliant. It is in a great position (much better than the one at Kaingo camp). It is worth getting up early in the morning and watching the river as huge flocks of queleas drink at the river and they swarm like locusts - it is spectacular.

The lodge also has a hide by a small waterhole. It isn't as spectacular as the one at Mwamba, as it is very close to the river, but we still saw hammerkop, impala, elephants, hippos, ground hornbill, bushbuck, baboons, banded mongooses and a juvenile eagle. It is nice just to be able to wander in whenever you feel like it.

The food is plentiful and nice and the owners who run the camp are very friendly. The rooms are very well designed and are nice and let in a breeze (if there is one blowing) which is nice. They also supply a sarong like cloth to wet and put over you while you are sleeping when the weather gets really hot. This made such a difference and we really appreciated it.. There is a central point for charging batteries and laptops in the dining area.

Overall we really enjoyed our time at Tafika. The wildlife and terrain is slightly different to the other two camps in the park that we stayed it and I would definitely recommend a stay here and at Mwamba bushcamp - they complement each other very well.

  • 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.
Reviewed October 26, 2012

Our first trip to Africa was made even more special by choosing Tafika for our first camp. We were met at the airport, guided round any red tape, and taken to the camp without any stress or worry.

Individual, well spaced reed huts facing the river, with constant hot water, very private. With two big beds covered by a massive mossie net at night. The wash and shower area are uncovered, electric lanterns are in the bedroom and wash area. The floors are varnished brick with mats.

John and Carol Coppinger and all the team, too many to mention are perfect hosts, nothing is too much trouble. They always seem genuinely interested in our opinions, what we had seen or would like to see on our safaris etc. they take enormous pride in their country and camps making sure everyone has the best time possible.

We were particularly impressed by how knowledgable and keen all the guides are. They all work extremely hard and have to pass exams to get different levels of guidiing. They take a real pride in their work and so make spending time with them such a pleasure. We went in the dry season so were lucky enough to see giraffes, hippos, elephants, Wilderbeast, crocs, zebras, all wandering round at the river at the same time. We had several sightings of wild dogs, lions, hyenas, vultures and many many smaller animals and birds.

We also have to agree with all the other reviewers about the food, it's just so good, fresh, varied and good quality. Freshly baked bread, cakes, quiches, lots of fresh veg and salads, even one evening roast beef and Yorkshire pudding! You certainly don't go hungry.

You can do walking or jeep safaris, the spotlit night safaris to see nocturnal animals after the Sundowner of your choice every evening are brilliant. The guides have such sharp eyesight! Spotting a leopard in the dark just from the glow of its eye in the spot, we couldnt see it was a leopard even with binoculars. We drove over and followed it for ages. He wasn't at all bothered by us. The baboons were bothered by him judging from the noise they made!
The micro light trip in the morning is brilliant, not to be missed!

We went on to a couple of other camps owned by the Coppingers, Chikoko and Mwaleshi. They were smaller walking camps. More rustic, but equally well run, exciting and enjoyable.

We had an amazing time here only trouble is getting the money together to go again, it's addictive, be warned!

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank 2003millie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tafika Camp

Address: Mfuwe, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
Location: Zambia > South Luangwa National Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #27 of 43 Specialty Lodging in South Luangwa National Park
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Home to John and Carol Coppinger, the founders of Remote Africa Safaris, Tafika is a small, first-class camp standing on the banks of the Luangwa, on the remote north side of the beautiful Nsefu Sector of South Luangwa National Park, Zambia. Tafika's guides are amongst the most experienced in the Luangwa valley. 4X4 safaris (day and night drives), walking safaris, unique cycling safaris and cultural visits to a nearby village are on offer. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Tafika Camp Hotel South Luangwa National Park
Tafika Camp Zambia/South Luangwa National Park

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