Livingstone is known as the base for global travellers wanting to explore one of the natural wonders of the world, Victoria Falls. Livingstone has numerous accommodation options, but for those still wanting to get their ‘safari’ fix close to the falls, Islands of Siankaba, Toka Leya Camp and Waterberry Zambezi Lodge all offer their own twist.
An intimate, remote and cultural private island experience
Arriving only by boat or mokoro to the lodge, Islands of Siankaba is situated on two small quaint islands on the shallower, smaller channels of the Zambezi River. It’s 7 luxury tents are nestled on the banks and hidden within the forest for an authentic raw African feel. All tents are connected via a wooden walkway, intertwining within the trees and in the company of curious vervet monkeys.
A rope and wooden walkway leads the tents to the main veranda, which again is nestled amongst the trees and looking onto the river banks, giving easy access to all water activities. Its dining area is situated in the same environment with a panoramic terrace view surrounding the pool area, which in accompanied by a bush spa. ‘Bush dinners’ are also offered on request where guests can dine ‘al fresco’ under a canopy of Mahogany and Milkwood trees on the island’s nature trail. The local village choir regularly serenades guests as they enjoy their evening meal, all under atmospheric lantern and starlight.
Islands of Siankaba offer village walks by foot and bike as well as community visits and guided nature walks so that guests can experience true Zambian culture. Mokoro trips are a must for those wanting an authentic perspective of the river and islands in a one to one guide experience.
A feeling of true wilderness close to the Falls
Overlooking the mighty Zambezi River and some of its islands, Toka Leya Camp is located within the core of Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park and is only 12 kilometres from the Falls.
Twelve spacious en-suite safari-style tents, (including three family tents), with expansive decks sit just shy of the banks, soaking up the views of the river and active wildlife. Hippo, crocodile and elephant are all regularly seen near camp as well as a diversity of birdlife. Wooden walkways snake between the tents and the main area, limiting the footprint on the pristine area.
Situated on risen decking complete with infinity pool and convivial fire pit, guests can sit with a drink and relax in true safari style, whilst looking out onto the river. Dining under canvas but in an open setting create stunning 360 degree views of nature in an intimate environment.
Game drives into Mosi-oa-Tunya Park are on offer for guests wanting to experience African wildlife. The park hosts species such as elephant, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest and white rhino. There is also rich birdlife, including the sought-after half-collared kingfisher and Schalow’s turaco. Rhino tracking on foot is also available on request, accompanied by a scout.
Relaxing after safari or recovering from a long haul flight
Drifting gently off to sleep to the grumbling of hippos making their way out of the river to graze on Waterberry’s lush lawns and the night sounds of lion, hyena and elephant across the river in the Zambezi National Park, then waking to morning Zambian coffee and biscuits served on a private terrace and enjoyed while dressed only in your Zambian chitenge gown is simply living the safari dream.
This traditional 7-room lodge where service is the key feels far away from the buzz of Livingstone’s other success story – the numerous adventure and cultural activities that make it such a popular destination. Guests can enjoy peace, quiet and relaxation in this haven of beautiful gardens – but in just 30 minutes be driven through beautiful Mosi O Tunya National park to enjoy all the adventures to be had around Victoria Falls. For groups who want a private experience and to be spoiled by their own chef, boat, infinity pool and stunning gardens River Farmhouse is just 200m downstream from the main lodge.
Waterberry guides are eager to share their love of birdlife with a list of 140 to be sought in the private conservation area, along the beautiful riverbank and while cruising this peaceful section of the Upper Zambezi. Game abounds in the National Park on the opposite bank – either to be followed by boat or to be spotted from the comfort of a chair on the terrace.
Waterberry is famously committed to the local community, with an adult skills centre opened this year to add to the existing schools project. Going green is the target for 2018, with particular emphasis on waste reduction, including building projects using that bane of wildlife areas – old plastic water bottles.
Outposts Travel Africa specialise in tailor-made holidays to Africa. If you are interested in visiting Zambia and The Victoria Falls, simply contact us today to start planning your African adventure.