The Times – UK Saturday Travel Section

20 September 2003 – Lisa Granger

The best camp for living, breathing, walking and traversing the wild has to be Mwamba Camp in Luangwa Valley. Everything about the bush camp is natural: the three reed and thatch huts set under enormous ebony trees beside the river. The bucket showers under the stars, the solar lights, the fresh, delicious food grown at owner Derek Shenton’s farm, drinks from the top of an anthill overlooking puku, impala and bushbuck grazing, skylights cut into thatched roofs so that guests can watch the stars from their beds.

The guiding, too, is some of the best in Zambia: Derek Shenton, a guide for 12 years whose father was Warden of Kafue National Park, does much of it himself, bringing to life plants, insects and trees, as well as four-legged beasts encountered on the walks and drives. If he is not available, both Patrick Njobvu and Deb Tittle are great stand-ins behind a wheel, on foot or in the camp’s private hippo hide, combining sharp humour with an encyclopedic knowledge of the bush. If it’s all to wild, Shenton’s second camp, Kaingo, is a three-hour walk away (or 20 minutes drive), with five more sophisticated huts, a sheltered leadwood bar and an indoor dining table. The camps have a 60 per cent guest return rate.


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