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“Majestic Mchenja”

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Mchenja Bush Camp - Norman Carr Safaris
Reviewed November 11, 2012

This was our first Norman Carr Camp and we were not disappointed. On our arrival we received a warm welcome from all of the Staff members. We arrive around 3:00 after non-stop travel from 5:00a. Knowing we had been in route all day, the Hostess reserved a plate of lunch for us, nice welcoming.

Our room was great, clean and the beds very comfortable. Just sitting on our deck was like being on a Safari, one morning we counted the sight of 11 different animals. The outdoor shower added a nice touch, along with the in room bathtub.

Our guide Simon is very knowledgable and patient with us photo happy people. This place is wild life abound. On the night drives we stopped for some of the best Sun Downers ever...

I can't pick one "highlight" of the trip because the entire experience made staying at Mchenja a highlight of our African vacation.

If you're looking to book a Holiday to Africa, I highly recommend Aardvark Safaris to help you plan. Although not affiliated they have high remarks in regards to Norman Carr Camps which we found to be true in all aspects.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank liv2xplore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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37 - 43 of 53 reviews

Reviewed November 6, 2012

This was our second trip to Zambia, and our game viewing was beyond words. We stayed 3 nights, but next time we will stay longer at this Norman Carr camp. The remoteness is something that everyone who loves the bush should experience.
We arrived Mchenja too late for an afternoon drive so we relaxed on the edge of the river. We had not gotten our suitcases unpacked when we "heard a herd" of elephants swimming across the river to visit! They tried to climb the bank, but with out success, slid down the bank on their knees. Then finding an easier route up the hill, they calmly joined us in the camp. The experience was breathtaking. Mother and baby gracefully tiptoed around our tea table as another ele munched on a tree branch next to the lapa, 5 feet from us as we stood frozen in awe. That was just the start of our stay at Mchenja!
We are still debating if the best part about Mchenja is the abundant game, the location on the river, the awesome staff or delicious food.
Simon, our guide, was superb in his knowledge and went extra miles to make our trip great. Viato, our tracker/security person, was a gem and kept us safe at all times. I absolutely loved the food that Rueben and the others in the kitchen treated us with. It was so fresh, creative combinations, lots of vegetables and producing food of that standard is not easy in such a remote location. Amba and the rest of the staff made every part of our trip thoroughly enjoyable.
Thank you all for making our stay so wonderful and also for the beautiful singing on our departure! You created memories for us that will last a lifetime.
Kathryn

Room Tip: From the looks of it they are all good.
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  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank K J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 11, 2012

We had a great experience here

The staff at this camp were pleasant and accommodating, the food was excellent and the wild life viewings fantastic.

Over a two day stay we saw hippopotami, lions, leopards, hyenas, elephants, giraffe, wart hogs, zebra, bush buck, impala, puku, kudu, water buffalo, African civet, genet, Cookson's wildebeest and many birds including saddle billed stork, spoon bills, ibis, and fish eagles.

Norman Carr Safaris delivered an excellent safari experience and we strongly recommend this company

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Lorraine232
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 2, 2012

This was our next stop after our stay at Nsolo and our sleep out in the bush. When we walked in from the bush, we were surprised by the beautiful location at the edge of the Luangwa River. As in Nsolo, the staff was amazing, the food spectacular and the game viewing exceptional. I think South Luangwa combined with one of these lodges from Norman Carr Safaris must be the ultimate african experience!!!!! Hope to come back soon !!!

Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
Thank brentener
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2012

Mchenja is an intimate camp with very comfortable accommodation situated along the Luangwa river. We spent 3 nights in tent 1 and wished we could have stayed longer. Amba and the whole team were so fantastic and made us feel like family. Our guides Simon and Andrew were incredibly knowledgeable and entertaining. The food was some of the best we had on our safari in Zambia - compliments to chef Reuben. A highlight was definitely having a leopard walk past the room as I was sitting outside reading. Visit Zambia and stay with Norman Carr Safaris if you have the chance.

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank gbwt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 6, 2011

If you're looking to do a walking safari, go to Zambia. And if you're in Zambia, go with Norman Carr Safaris; we can't recommend them enough.

We stayed at three of the five Norman Carr Safari lodges in South Luangwa for two nights each. Luwi was our first stop and we then proceeded to Nsolo and last of all Mchenja. We liked doing it this way as you see progressively more game as you go along - though we spoke to other guests who liked the reverse; see lots of big cats etc then head to the more remote camps to appreciate the smaller things. Who knew dung would be so fascinating?

Mchenja is also the most luxurious of all three camps (we hear very good things about Kapani and Kikuli but didn't get to those two) and even has a bath. At Mchenja we were very well looked after by Katie and our guide and scout, Simon and Kimisa (so sorry if the spelling is wrong!) were just magicians who seemed to know where all the animals in the vicinity were hiding at any given moment...

We saw hyeana knocked off a kill by lions and got to watch another pride work their way through a buffalo over a few days (note: it definitely gets a bit woofy after the third, park upwind...). We also saw a hippo at, well, fairly close range, which was a bit of an adrenaline rush - however, the guys were totally professional, made sure we were out of harm's way and we always felt entirely safe.

Walking is by far the best way of having a look around and we had some pretty magic encounters with elephant and buffalo as well. Even if you've seen 40 elephant already from a vehicle, seeing them on foot is just amazing.

The food, the view and the service are all spectacular at Mchenja, with heaps of animals and birds just hanging around near camp. We could hear a lion roaring one morning while drinking our coffee watching the hippos in the river - and I think that will be one of my great memories of South Luangwa.

Having done safaris in SA and Namibia, I can safely say Zambia is the best place I've been, in terms not only of the variety and numbers of game we saw but also the sense of remoteness which just makes it all much better.

To Katie, Simon and Kimisa, thanks so much for such a great time, we're sorry we didn't get to write in the visitors' book! Wishing you all the best,

E&T

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Brunswick_travellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 30, 2011

After driving from Luwi Bush Camp, I arrived at Mchenja for my final nights of my safari in South Luangwa. I moved from Nsolo - a drier environment, to Luwi - a greener environment, to Mchenja along the banks of the Luangwa River. The beauty of the camp and of the chalets themselves was matched by the knowledge of the staff and their ability to understand how to increase odds of seeing what you seek. As I have mentioned in my reviews of Nsolo and Luwi, in the vein of these three bush camps in which I stayed, the staff is all highly interactive with the guests, which makes the stay much more personal, warm and genuine. The experienced guides have a great passion for their work, and it was a joy to see the wonder with which my guide, Innocent, also observed the things that I was lucky enough to see - like lions stalking, killing and eating an impala or methodically pursuing a herd of buffalo and tactically trying to separate the herd and attack. With grace and elegance, Mchenja is as pretty it is as lively - the hippos communicating all day and night directly below us in the river particularly sang great bedtime lullabies. This was the perfect capstone to my safari first focusing on walking and appreciating the smaller wonders of the bush to focusing on game drives (especially the exciting night drives) appreciating the big picture, also moving from the more rustic to the more elegant.

Stayed: August 2011, traveled solo
2  Thank Rachel K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mchenja Bush Camp - Norman Carr Safaris

Address: 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 #30 of 43 Specialty Lodging in South Luangwa National Park
Price Range: $580 - $650 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Mchenja Bush Camp - Norman Carr Safaris 4*
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set in a grove of magnificent ebony trees, Mchenja is a luxurious, elegant and stylish tented camp overlooking a huge sweeping bend in the Luangwa. Each of the five octagonal tents have their own private en-suite open air bathroom plus free standing, Victorian style baths with a river view. The beautiful central chitenje (dining/bar area) is built around one of the old fallen Mchenja (ebony) trees and guests can cool off there in the camp’s plunge pool. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Mchenja Bush Camp - Norman Carr Safaris Zambia/South Luangwa National Park

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