Zambezi Kulefu Camp in the Lower Zambezi NP
Zambezi Kulefu Camp – “the faraway place”, located on a permanent channel of the Zambezi, is shaded by massive Winterthorn Acacias which provide a cool and relaxing location to watch the world go by. The camp offers seven spacious tented chalets with twin or double beds, mosquito nets and en-suite facilities, offering a relaxing view of the mighty Zambezi.
The Lower Zambezi was for many years a forgotten wilderness and because of its remote location, has become a haven for many of Africa’s ‘big game’ species. The park is situated in the Zambezi Valley, opposite Mana Pools National Park, a World Heritage Site. It is bordered by the steep Mukamba Escarpment to the North and the Zambezi River to the South, which concentrates the animals in a fairly narrow riverine corridor, making for excellent game viewing.
The central lounge and dining area are housed in a magnificent Bedouin style tent which gives a lovely open air feel to the setting and allow guests to feel as though they are part of the surrounding environment. Teak furniture and natural fabrics add an authentic feel to this incredible bush experience as well as providing luxurious comfort. The location is enhanced by a swimming pool right on the river bank as well as a teak deck overlooking the river.
An evening campfire forms an integral part of the camp where guests can sit and discuss the events and sightings of the day. Batteries can be charged at Zambezi Kulefu Camp by generator and lights in the evening are supplied by 220 volt inverter. Traditional paraffin lamps illuminate pathways and tent entrances.
Zambezi Kulefu Camp Game Viewing
The area was only declared a national park in the mid-80s and is still very wild with big populations of waterbuck and buffalo. The park is dominated by the river which, combined with a dramatic escarpment, channels the game into a narrow floodplain where the game viewing opportunities are sublime. Morning and evening game drives in open 4 x 4 vehicles are spectacular with chances to see elephant, lion, wild dog and hippo. The park is also home to a population of honey badgers – these small predators are named for their addiction to honey but it is their courage that is their most noticeable characteristic. So fearsome is their reputation that even lions and leopards give honey badgers a wide berth when they see them jogging through the bush.
One of the most interesting ways of seeing the game at Zambezi Kulefu Camp is from the water. Sanctuary has specially designed flat-bottomed motorboats that take guests up close to the game in great comfort. Seeing a big bull elephant towering on the banks from the nearby safety of a motorboat or buffalo wading the river channels, looking for fresh grass on the islands is a thrilling sight. Enjoying refreshing sundowners, Kulefu coolers, while watching the sun set from the boat is the perfect opportunity to marvel at this untamed wild area and its beauty and diversity. A common sighting in the area are the elephants who often feed on the islands in and around camp, as well as occasional herds of zebra and kudu. Impala flit through the grasslands like rust flakes on a pine workbench, adding a little colour to the bush.
Another exhilarating experience is canoeing on the Lower Zambezi River where Sanctuary Retreats’ experienced guides lead canoe safaris through the reed beds, byways and channels through the woodlands that line the river for intimate encounters with hippos and waterbuck. Canoeing provides the perfect way to experience the bush from a different perspective. If guests get tired of paddling, motorboats can always tow their canoe back to camp while they enjoy a cocktail on the deck.
Walking in the Lower Zambezi bush is quiet, informative, exciting and also remarkably rewarding. Sanctuary’s highly trained English speaking guides love taking guests on walks through the park as it gives them an opportunity to really show off their expertise! The guides at Zambezi Kulefu Camp show visitors all the sights, smells and signs of the bush on exciting walks along the animal paths that surround the camp. Walking safaris are conducted by a professional guide and an armed National Parks scout. The lovely open woodlands and grasslands are perfect for stalking a bull elephant and watching him pluck seedpods from the Winterthorn, or sucking water from a weed-covered channel whilst hiding behind a tree stump is a thrilling experience.
The Lower Zambezi is home to the savage tigerfish, the most sought after game fish in the world and only when one has experienced the thrill and fight of catching a tiger fish first hand can one understand why.. Sanctuary has all the fishing tackle guests could possibly need and the guides to show them how to use it. Expert anglers will need no convincing but if guests only go fishing once in their lifetime, this is the place to do it. Fishing trips for game fish such as catfish, bream or the renowned tigerfish is on a catch and release basis. Sanctuary’s Zambezi Kulefu Camp combines luxury, exclusivity and style in one of the world’s most secluded wilderness areas.