- Remote, intimate camp
- Day and night game drives
- Camp-to-camp walking safaris
- Visits to local village
Located in one of the last remaining unspoilt wilderness areas of Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park, Tena Tena means “temporary home”, and this tented camp’s professional team of staff certainly go out of their way to make visitors feel welcome. Belonging to the Robin Pope Safaris portfolio, the camp is open from mid-May to October each year. Elephants, giraffes, buffalo, leopards, lions, hippos, and around 450 species of birds can be spotted during game drives, and guests can enjoy the privilege of observing rich wildlife from the comfort of their own tents. Just over an hour’s drive from Mfuwe airport, Tena Tena allows its visitors to feel close to nature, while at the same time enjoying a touch of luxury and comfort.
Tena Tena is an intimate camp comprising just five twin tents, and one double that also functions as a honeymoon suite. Shaded by the surrounding mahogany trees, each tent has an en-suite, open-air bathroom, and a private veranda with far-reaching views along the Luangwa River. Guests can congregate in the cosy main camp area which is centred around a large termite mound. An old hippo run has been repurposed into a path that leads onto a raised level of the camp which features a bar and a lovely wooden seating area where guests can sit and soak up the sunset. Dinner is served under the open sky on the picturesque river banks. Note that while Wi-Fi is available on site, there is no mobile phone reception.
Day and night game drives are on offer, along with guided walks accompanied by an experienced guide and an armed scout. Given that Robin Pope Safaris are the only company operating in this part of the park, guests will benefit from the area’s low visitor numbers. Since Tena Tena is only a few hours’ drive north from Robin Pope's main camp, and reasonably close to its sister camp Nsefu, guests can easily combine a visit to Tena Tena with a mobile walking safari. Those wishing to learn more about local culture can take a tour into the Kawaza village to visit the school, or wander through the bustling Mfuwe area, which is bursting with markets, bars, and stalls selling locally-produced tribal textiles. Kawaza village also features the Wildlife Education Centre, a charitable trust which works to educate the children of the Luangwa Valley about the wildlife in the area.
Although the staff at Tena Tena are happy to welcome families with children aged 12 and above, do bear in mind that there is no specific provision for children and the camp does have quite an adult atmosphere. Visitors may wish to consider sister property Luangwa Safari House instead, which is booked on an exclusive use basis and has a dedicated children’s itinerary, or indeed Nkwali with its swimming pool and designated family accommodation unit.
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!
Woan 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
Catherine 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!
Katrina P reviewing South Africa Bush & Beach Safari For Families on 02 September 2019