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“What a setting!”

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Kafunta River Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Scunthorpe, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
34 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“What a setting!”
Reviewed 3 June 2014

We stayed here for 4 nights last month, what a great place. The setting of the lodge is perfect overlooking the river plain and a river crossing into the park. They also have an infinity pool and hot tub which is great. Meals under the stars and a great camp fire made for some great evenings under the beautiful African stars. We stayed in one the new suites, which has a second floor with great views. We did have a slight problem with the water in our room and the safe but they were slight problems that could soon be resolved. The staff are all great and very freindly, are guide for the 3 days was Abel who was the best. We witnessed some amazing sights that will stay with me forever. Thank you

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank angela141250
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David B, Public Relations Manager at Kafunta River Lodge, responded to this review, 6 June 2014
Thank you for your review of Kafunta River Lodge and it's rewarding to know you had a memorable safari. The suites are certainly a great place to relax and take in the view, with the deck on the ground floor and the balcony offering a great panorama. The infinity pool and hut tub have just been completely refurbished so it's good to hear that you enjoyed them. Thanks again.
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206 reviews from our community

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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 May 2014

Beautiful lodge in an amazing location, overlooking the river plain outside the park. It has recently been refurbished and is extremely comfortable - beautiful rooms on stilts overlooking the plain, each with their own private balcony and swing seat. The rooms are tastefully decorated and have everything you need - very comfy beds, huge mosquito nets, plenty of storage and chairs inside and out. The lodge itself has a huge deck area, with plenty of room for meals, a beautiful infinity pool and a hot tub fed by a natural spring which was a blissful way to relax after the bumpy safari truck. The food was excellent - varied and they provided good veggie alternatives to each course.
I travelled with three friends and we were incredibly well looked after by the team - they strike the right balance between being very friendly and approachable, but giving us space to relax in between safaris and meals.
Highly recommended and would love to go back.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank julia_c_travels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David B, Public Relations Manager at Kafunta River Lodge, responded to this review, 29 May 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review of Kafunta River Lodge and it's great to hear that you had a excellent stay with us. The Kafunta team always strives to ensure our guests have a superior safari experience and they will be very pleased to hear your feedback. Thanks again and we do hope you make it back soon.
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winchester
Level Contributor
91 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 May 2014

This was a really excellent lodge, slightly reluctantly marked down one star because we didn't like it quite as much as the Robin Pope. (our trip was split because of availability)

Our main reason to mark it down will change with the season. When it is safe (from around start of May until start of rainy season around November) they have a cable ferry to take you over the river to the park. However, the rest of the year requires a 1/2 hour drive before and after each Safari to get to/from the park; and then you go in via the main entrance and are in very frequented areas. We still saw lots of animals, just the overall safari was not quite as good as Robin Pope's direct boat. (We saw the ferry's rather hairy first trial run (no tourists) for this season over Easter, they expected to be operational around start of May).

The location was really good, with a short flat area between the lodge and the river. This was often teaming with hippos, giraffes and elephants you could see really well from your room or supper, or from the new infinity pool.

Food also excellent.

It was slightly larger and more formal than Robin Pope (still pretty informal but we did need keys here). So, not worse in that respect but fractionally less to our taste.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank reluctanttraveller47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David B, Public Relations Manager at Kafunta River Lodge, responded to this review, 29 May 2014
Thank you for your review of the Kafunta River Lodge and it’s nice to hear that you thought the location and food were excellent.

Kafunta’s pontoon, which is operational for the majority of the season, lets our guests cross the river in a shortcut to the heart of the park, rich with wildlife. It allows our guests to get straight into the action and away from the vehicles of the other lodges, almost all of which use the main entrance all year round. We believe this give our guests a more private safari experience. The pontoon is perfectly safe and is actually quite an enjoyable experience.

The main deck and each chalet has uninterrupted views of the floodplain teeming with wildlife so you can have great wildlife sightings without even leaving the lodge.
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Morpeth, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviewed 11 May 2014

Our family of five spent eight extraordinary days at Kafunta in April 2014 and we can't wait to go back.
As a wild life experience it was outstanding. During our stay, we saw 6 individual leopards, including a mother with cubs. The local pride of lions, which numbered around 20 individuals including 4 cubs, was seen several times in various groupings, We had the privilege to watch the lions after they killed a buffalo and the female leopard and her cubs twice after she had caught a baboon, including a breathtaking event at night when she took her kill into a tree for safety, with her pouncing cubs behind, just a few minutes before two hyenas arrived at the bush she'd spent the day in.
But these beautiful cats were only one aspect of the rich experience we had.
Our excellent guide Martin took every opportunity to teach us about creatures great and small, from tiny ants and termites to eagles, antelope and hippos and we had plenty of opportunity to sit still and watch the animals getting on with their lives whilst he explained what the behaviour meant. Martin was also a great story teller and we heard many entertaining folk tales about the animals and plants as well as the way that plants and trees are still being used today.

We also saw two families of that rarest of animals, African wild dogs ;the first at night after hyenas had stolen their meal and the second group a few days later, loping through the bush.

Each morning, the safari experience started at breakfast when we might see elephants swimming across the river near the lodge, giraffes walking from the woodland in the other direction, and baboons and a variety of antelope moving across the flood plain below the lodge, in our field of view.
The early safari starts at 6:30 and the second finishes in the dark, so there is opportunity to see nocturnal creatures as well.
The staff were, without exception, warm, kind and welcoming and we always felt that nothing was too much trouble. My aunt of 80 [who has mobility problems] came with us and had all the help, support and encouragement she needed to be included in everything and fully enjoy the holiday.
Also of significance, our 18 year old son, who is not known for being up much before midday given the chance, was first out of bed everymorning at 5:30, and berated us for our lateness when we emerged for breakfast at 6am.
We stayed in very comfortable, stylish and beautifully thatched chalets with cooled drinks in the fridge and decking with a stunning view over the flood plain towards the river. In the evening, supper was eaten under the African sky which was often a miriad of stars, to the sounds of hyppos in the water nearby.
The infinity pool overlooking the plain and the fabulous hot tub next to it provided additional luxury during the afternoon rest time.
The food was delicious; simple and beautifully prepared and made with local produce.

Lastly - the magical sound of crickets and tiny frogs at night, under a starlit sky with the milky way in all its glory - beyond words.

Room Tip: All the chalets look towards the river and have a beautiful view. There are two very close to the ma...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SueC341
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David B, Public Relations Manager at Kafunta River Lodge, responded to this review, 14 May 2014
Thank you for your review of Kafunta River Lodge and it is lovely to hear that you had an outstanding wildlife experience. The South Luangwa is a great park to see cats and the elusive leopards in particular.

Martin will be very pleased to receive your feedback. Martin, and all our guides, loves to share the Zambian bush and wildlife with guests and his knowledge is truly in-exhaustive.

You're never too old or young for a safari and the staff are always ready to assist to ensure that all our guests have a comfortable and exciting experience. The lodge can also accommodate guests in a wheelchair.

Thanks again for your review and we do hope to see you again soon.
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Zoetermeer, The Netherlands
1 review
Reviewed 25 April 2014

It was our first safari ever and it was fantastic !! Beautifull views, a fantastic staff, an excellent guide (Andrew) a perfect suite and lovelly foods. The best holiday ever and we are looking forward to come back soon in another season. Not because we did not like this one, but just to see the other side.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Marjorie A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David B, Public Relations Manager at Kafunta River Lodge, responded to this review, 28 April 2014
It's lovely to hear that you had a fantastic holiday with us at Kafunta River Lodge. It's definitely well worth visiting the South Luangwa in different seasons, the transformation is amazing and it's a whole new experience.

Thank you for your review.
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Québec
Level Contributor
167 reviews
86 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 April 2014

A warm welcoming, staff dedicated to your well-being, fantastic game drives with a guide (Andrew) knowing a lot about his environment, trees, birds, animals. At arrival, a welcome drink, a lunch, a little free time before our first game drive. Lucky we were with in our sight a nice male leopard, then a dozen of lions, then wild dogs, and so on and so on. The next morning the same thing and at the night game drive, again. Lucky we say. And at the lodge, peace and quiet with a room overviewing a large plain a long the Luangwa River.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank yvonandreanne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David B, Public Relations Manager at Kafunta River Lodge, responded to this review, 17 April 2014
It's great to hear that you had a fantastic weekend at Kafunta River Lodge and thanks for taking the time to write a review.

You certainly had some nice game sightings. The guides never cease to amaze with their comprehensive knowledge of the bush and ability to seek out the wildlife.
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Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
69 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 January 2014

We stayed at Kafunta for 7 days over Christmas 2013 and the whole experience was exceptional in every way, a real holiday of a lifetime.
The whole staff at Kafunta were delightful and really nothing was too much trouble for them. The food was generally very good and our chalets perfect for our stay.
We were exceptionally lucky with our safari trips. This is generally the "shoulder season" in Zambia but it was so dry when we were there that there was absolutely no restrictions on where our safari vehicle was able to go. As a result, we were lucky enough to see just about every animal on our wish list including African Hunting Dogs, Lions and13 sightings of Leopards (mostly only feet away from us). And to cap it all we witnessed the dogs pulling a leopard from a tree and pursuing it to a larger tree where it found safety. Surely these sorts of things are only seen by David Attenborough?
Josephat, our guide was brilliant. Exceptionally knowledgeable, great company and he always had us in the right place at the right time.
A holiday none of us will forget and probably will struggle to better.

Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank PeterW63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David B, Public Relations Manager at Kafunta River Lodge, responded to this review, 10 January 2014
Thank you for your review of your Christmas safari at Kafunta River Lodge. It's great to hear that you had an exceptional safari experience and the holiday of a lifetime.

You can have a some great wildlife sightings in the dry as the animals tend to stay in lose proximity to the river. The Luangwa is a top destination to see leopard but you certainly had some exceptional sightings, thirteen including a clash between a leopard and a wild dog pack.

Josephat is an exceptional guide with an encyclopedic knowledge of the African bush and it's wildlife. His years of experience in the park lets him show you the best spots for wildlife viewing.

Thanks again and we're so pleased you had an unforgettable safari.
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Additional Information about Kafunta River Lodge

Property: Kafunta River Lodge
Address: Box 83, Mfuwe, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
Region: Zambia > South Luangwa National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 43 Speciality Lodging in South Luangwa National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3 star — Kafunta River Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kafunta River Lodge is set in the riverside forest on the banks of the Luangwa River overlooking the South Luangwa National Park, Zambia. This classic safari lodge offers our guests all the comforts, while being situated in unspoilt wilderness. There are 8 private chalets and 2 luxury suites, all overlooking a game rich flood plain. We offer game drives, night drives and walking safaris. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Kafunta River Lodge Zambia/South Luangwa National Park

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