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Royal Chundu Zambezi River Lodge

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Price guide

Price rating 5


- Upmarket, exclusive lodge
- Private and secluded riverside location
- Wide range of activities

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The Royal Chundu Zambezi River Lodge is a deluxe property on the banks of the Zambezi River in the Livingstone area of southern Zambia. Located 30km upstream from the iconic Victoria Falls and across river from Zimbabwe’s Matetsi Game Reserve, this secluded lodge enjoys exclusive access to a 15km stretch of private waterway. Part of the Relais and Chateaux portfolio, the lodge offers ten luxurious and tranquil riverside suites, a swimming pool, gourmet restaurant and wine cellar, plus a wide range of land and water based activities. At the higher end of the budget, Royal Chundu will appeal to travellers seeking an upmarket waterside retreat.

The lodge’s spacious main area is split-level and open-sided, with an airy thatched ceiling, and is decorated with an eclectic mix of African textiles and contemporary furnishings. Guest spaces include two relaxing lounges with an open fireplace, a formal dining room, a bar and wine cellar, TV room, library, and a gift shop. Outside is a lovely ‘boma’, and a fabulous swimming pool overlooking the river. The lodge has its own helipad for private transfers. Wi-Fi and mobile phone reception are available in all areas.

Cuisine is a mixture of pan-African and international dishes, served either in the dining room or outside in the atmospheric boma, frequently accompanied by Zambian drumming and dancers. Private dining can be accommodated, either in guest suites, or on an exclusive boat cruise or picnic. The lodge prides itself on using locally sourced ingredients, including fish from local suppliers, and produces its own free range chickens and eggs.

There’s a wide range of activities including sunset boat cruises, fishing, and canoeing trips along the Zambezi. Guests can enjoy guided walks followed by a riverside picnic, and cultural visits to local communities. Spa treatments are available on site. Excursions further afield include Victoria Falls and Livingstone Island, and day trips to Botswana’s Chobe National Park. Adrenalin seekers can partake in white water rafting, bungee jumping, and canoeing the exhilarating Katombora rapids, and a helicopter tour of Victoria Falls is an exhilarating must.

Accommodation comprises ten thatched, spacious riverfront suites with wonderful views of the Zambezi. Each suite comprises king or twin beds draped with mosquito nets, air conditioning, fans, and a mini bar, plus an ensuite bathroom with a twin shower, twin basins and WC. Outside is a lovely private veranda with panoramic river views.

Children of all ages are welcome. Each suite can accommodate up to two adults and two children, with reduced prices offered to under 12s. All young guests receive a safari adventure pack on arrival, and board games and puzzles, children’s books and DVDs are available at the lodge. A dedicated children’s club offers a daily activity programme including cookery activities, astronomy, catch and release fishing, and river cruises. Babysitting can be arranged at additional cost.

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What customers are saying after travelling with Tourdust

Average Rating

based on 503 reviews


  • Hi Lisa,

    The safari trip was excellent! The stay, the food and the people were all very nice. We were happy to have Ryan and Stanley as our game drive guides they brought us up close to the animals and Ryan gave very good information throughout.

    Would definitely recommend to friends who are interested in safaris :)

    Also, thanks much for your help, particularly keeping the room for my Brother and his wife they’ve enjoyed the safari very much too!

    Best regards,
    Woan Chyi

    MissingWoan Chyi L reviewing Cape Town & Kruger Safari on 16 October 2019

  • We had a fantastic time and all the arrangements worked perfectly.
    We were very impressed with the quality and service levels of all 4 locations visited and it was truly a holiday of a lifetime.
    Thank you to you and to Lisa for giving us this experience.
    Particular highlights for us – really the whole experience, but of particular impact:
    Breathtaking scenery at Cathedral Peak Hotel
    Rhino Ridge game drives incredible, thanks to guide (we had their head guide, Hala, who’s knowledge, enthusiasm, kindness, interaction, ability to spot wildlife was out of this world)
    Luxury of Rhino Ridge (shower, food, views, service)
    Immersion in nature, torch lit meal on last night and beach trip at Kosi Forest Lodge
    Level of service, quality of food throughout

    MissingCatherine F reviewing South Africa Safari, Beach and Wetlands on 04 September 2019

  • We had a fantastic time. Thank you and it went smoothly in the main except for British Airways!

    The trip had the right degree of luxury and relaxation (for me) and adventure (all of us).

    A few points:
    Driving directions to Umlunghi Lodge were slightly wrong. The driving directions should read at the 4th roundabout take the first exit and turn right over the railway. We loved it there. Anton, Bianca and her son and Harriet were very informative and entertaining. The snake talk and handling, night walks and seeing scorpions and the walk in the bush and "bumping" into a giraffe were really special. The kayak trip to Makuzi pan that the lodge organised was good and Tomaz was very informative and kept a respectful distance from the hippos.3 nights was plenty.

    Rhino River Lodge game reserve was incredibly luxurious and we felt very looked after. The lion siting in camp the day we arrived sent an extra frisson of excitement down our spines. It was easy to forget there were predators that could attack us with all that luxury. The staff and guides (Karl) were knowledgeable and invested in their set up. We saw rhinos with baby, cheetahs with young, porcupine, Genet, wildebeast, Impala, Lion with young, buffalo, a puff adder, ostrich, zebra and giraffes. 4 nights was also plenty.
    They all served great food but I felt Ghost Mountain Inn topped the lot. The variety was amazing. We arrived at 10.30 but could not get into our room until 2 ish. The service was not so personal I guess because it is larger (far more than 50 rooms). We had been a bit spoilt at Rhino River! My daughter and I had some treatments at the Spa and loved it. We also went on a large boat trip on Jonzi and had a closer encounter with a large bull hippo and also a hike up Ghost Mountain with Patrick who was very informative and passionate about his people and his country. Isaac the other guide there took us on the boat trip and pointed out the sugar cane harvest on the way. he was very informative also.

    Lastly, Lalaria Lodge was fabulous and we all piled into the surf of the Indian Ocean. There was hardly anyone on the beach. It was "too cold" according to the landlady. The view from her terrace was of the ocean and whales breaching in the distance. I could have sat there all day. She very kindly provided us with a Scrabble board of her own for us to play. We took a Microlight ride from Ballito over the coastline in the hope of seeing whales and dolphins but no luck. If we had stayed longer we might have gone on a boat trip from Durban. We had a meal at a restaurant called Mozambique which was great fun with vast portions, plenty of carbs and fresh seafood!

    The value of the Rand to the Pound was excellent and therefore we felt that we got excellent value which also played a large part!

    MissingKatrina P reviewing Value KZN Bush & Beach Safari For Families on 02 September 2019

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