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Chamilandu Bushcamp

Our rating

8/10

Price guide

Price rating 4

Highlights

- Intimate, upmarket camp
- Just three luxurious chalets
- Stunning, remote setting
- Wildlife in camp

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Overview

Chamilandu Bushcamp is a small, exclusive camp offering an authentic, 'up-close' wilderness experience within a remote southern corner of Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park. The camp sits in a beautiful, secluded location overlooking the Luangwa River, with the picturesque Chindeni Hills on the horizon. An intimate and chic option at the higher end of the budget spectrum, Chamilandu accommodates just six guests in three superb, open-fronted chalets set on stilts. Boasting expert guiding and extremely comfortable facilities in an area combining rich wildlife with low visitor density, it is a great choice for travellers wishing to be fully immersed in their natural surroundings without having to forgo modern comforts.

Approximately three hours’ transfer from Mfuwe airport, Chamilandu operates during the peak game-viewing dry season of June to November. Although visitors should come prepared for high temperatures from October onwards, this is the period when wildlife is at its most prolific, with large numbers of lion, leopard, elephant, zebra, hippo, impala, and jackal to be seen, along with the more elusive wild dog.

The camp’s open-sided wood and reed main area has a high thatched ceiling, sandy floors, contemporary yet cosy furniture, and a rustic and airy feel. Guests spaces comprise a communal dining area, a lounge with well stocked bar, and a small library. Outside is a pretty campfire area where guests can relax with sundowners, and nearby is a substantial hide overlooking a small lagoon, popular with elephants. The cuisine is excellent and imaginative, featuring high quality buffet breakfasts and lunches, and a delicious three course evening meal.

Activities focus on day and night game drives and walking safaris with experienced and highly respected guides. Even during peak season, this is an area of the National Park with very few visitors, and it is not unusual for guests to have the wildlife to themselves, without encountering other walking parties or vehicles.

The accommodation comprises three spacious thatched chalets constructed on tall wooden stilts, set amidst beautiful ebony trees. Each chalet is open fronted to the river, enhancing the camp’s genuine wilderness charm. Facilities include either one king size or two twin beds with mosquito nets, plus an open-fronted ensuite bathroom with double basins, WC, and twin rainfall showers. Outside is a roomy veranda, perfect for relaxing and enjoying the wonderful views. Chamilandu runs on solar power, with charging facilities provided in each chalet. However, although the camp’s remote location is part of its charm, visitors should note that this does mean there’s no mobile phone reception or internet access.

Children age 12 and over are most welcome. Under 12s are accommodated when the camp is booked exclusively by a group, subject to hiring a private vehicle and guide. Note there is a minimum age restriction of 12 years for walking safaris. As the camp has no pool and does not offer child specific activities, it may be more suitable for families with older children, or for adventurous families seeking an authentic wilderness base. The camp is unfenced and wild animals do wander through; although it is unlikely that wildlife would approach people or chalets, parents are reminded to supervise children at all times.

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What customers are saying after travelling with Tourdust

Average Rating

based on 504 reviews

(5.00/5)

  • 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 South Africa Bush & Beach Safari For Families on 02 September 2019

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