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Why Settle for Less when You can Safely Experience More on an African Safari?

March 2, 2021 Visit Africa / Seychelles No Comments Email Email

Celebrating its 15th anniversary, southern African safari operator, African Bush Camps (ABC), is adding a 15th camp, Khwai Leadwood, to its portfolio in April 2021. With luxury tented camps and lodges in Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe’s private concessions and national parks, the operator’s numerous circuits ,and recently released discounted offerings, tick all the boxes for an unforgettable safari experience in 2021 .

Since CV-19’s outbreak, ABC has continued to develop innovative ways, in line with the WHO’s health protocols, to prioritise guest and staff wellness. The operator has recently introduced antigen and PCR test procedures at selected Botswana and Zimbabwe camps to reduce guests’ test result waiting times and assist in smoother camp-to-camp transitions in these countries. At other locations, ABC representatives transport guests to medical laboratories near airports. Travelling in one country provides the benefit of avoiding multiple PCR tests. Yet, some guests may fear that this means missing out on an extensive cross-country safari. Rest assured, ABC’s camp locations are spread across the respective countries and offer geographic variety, unique wildlife encounters and distinct cultural experiences.

Enjoy a Memorable Safari Circuit in Zimbabwe

Home to nine luxury tented camps and lodges, the remote coordinates of ABC’s Zimbabwe-based concessions naturally makes for a low human density experience. Wildlife is ample and often found roaming around and, sometimes, right through the camps! From panoramic views of Lake Kariba, to Hwange National Park’s rugged wildness, to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe promises an adventurous course for the nomadic traveller.

If you’re looking for: Off-the-grid luxury safari living, sustainable amenities, family-friendly design, unlimited wildlife, remote travel

Recommended: Somalisa Concession, Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe

For Zimbabwean born founder and CEO, Beks Ndlovu, sharing the essence of ‘old untouched’ Africa with people across the world has been his lifelong dream. In 2006, he acquired a private concession in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe and opened his first camp, Somalisa. It soon became the base for three camps, Somalisa Main, Acacia and Expeditions, located either within walking or driving distance of each other. It takes a one-to-two-hour private charter flight and another one and a half hour’s drive to reach the concession from Harare’s international airport or Victoria Falls.

Winning the World Travel Award’s Leading Tented Safari Camp in Zimbabwe in 2019 and 2020, Somalisa is easily recognised by guests as the premier safari destination in Zimbabwe. Nestled under groves of Acacia trees, and in view of drinking holes where various animal species cross paths, Somalisa is an ideal hideaway. The camp collection has also received the thumbs up for its responsible energy use and repurposing of resources. A full solar-powered farm means electricity is generated on site and the water purification system allows the camps to recycle 80 percent of their water. As a result, Somalisa received Zimbabwe’s first GOLD Green Tourism Certificate.

If you’re looking for: Uber luxury safari lodge; all-inclusive amenities, WiFi, family friendly design, river activities, remote travel

Recommended: Bumi Hills Safari Lodge, Kariba Lake & Matusadona, Zimbabwe

Accessible only by plane or boat, nothing says ‘remote travel’ like a trip to Lake Kariba in the Matusadona region in Zimbabwe. Bumi Safari Hills Lodge provides a sense of escape with access to endless views of the historic human-built lake. With open green fields at the foot of the hills and aerial views of wildlife below, there is no question as to the abundant game viewing opportunities from your private deck and the communal veranda and pool. Aside from its ten spacious suites, the two-bedroomed Boabab Villa at the furthest end of the lodge offers a personalised setting where families can reconnect. The villa’s exclusive booking comes with a dedicated butler, and a private six-seater vehicle and guide. Guests who book at Bumi Hills Safari Lodge before end of March 2021 receive a complimentary manicure or pedicure during their stay.

Expansive views of Lake Kariba from Bumi Hills Safari Lodge’s outdoor bar and lounge area

If you’re looking for: Off-the-grid luxury tented camp living; pro-sustainable amenities, remote travel, close wildlife encounters

Recommended: Kanga Camp, Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe

Kanga Camp has become renowned as ABC’s ‘armchair safari’ mainly because it is set at the region’s sole water source which attracts a multitude of species in the dry season. Its condensed forest setting at the crux of a protected world heritage site makes for some of the most exciting and up-close wildlife observations. Unspoilt, rural and wild, the eco-friendly camp location features a limited number of simple yet elegant Meru-styled tents. Keeping step with ABC’s family-friendly nature, children over the age of seven are welcome at Kanga. The camp is only open in the shoulder and dry seasons from April through to the end of November.

Kanga Camp is the ultimate ‘armchair safari’

A Community Focus:

Beks is one of Africa’s first black safari owners and supports tourism that is more inclusive, conservation focussed and drives community empowerment. He started the ABC Foundation (ABCF) in the same year as the company. Every year, ABC donates approximately 2.5 percent of its annual turnover to its Foundation’s projects and helps raise funds to continue the Foundation’s work in the villages surrounding all 15 camps.

In Zimbabwe, early childhood development is a priority for ABCF. Even during the lockdown, the Foundation has worked towards providing younger generations with a safe, secure, and clean learning space. The Hwange community fundraising project (close to the Somalisa concession) centres on building ablutions for the Early Childhood Development (ECD) classes to improve sanitation and reduce the children’s chances of contracting diseases like typhoid, cholera and CV-19. A fence around the school’s perimeter is also planned to keep younger children from wandering off into the bush and keep dangerous animals from roaming the playground. The goal is to increase ECD admissions and give children a better start in life.

Help young minds develop and ensuring children’s safety at schools in the communities surrounding Zimbabwe camps and lodges are a priority for African Bush Camps Foundation

In addition to ABC’s promise of a 100 percent refundable deposit, who book before end of April include free nights on selected bookings (pay for five nights, stay for six or pay for eight nights and stay for 10) and kids aged 15 and younger stay free at ABC’s family-friendly camps.

What to Know Before Travelling to Zimbabwe:

ABC short-circuits the administration time of completing health forms at camp, and sends guests a digital questionnaire before they depart
On arriving in Zimbabwe, international travellers must present a negative CV-19 PCR test taken within 48 hours prior to departure
A PCR test taken in Zimbabwe (as required on returning to your home destination or when showing CV-19 symptoms on arriving in Zimbabwe) costs approximately USD60 and is at the traveller’s expense

The PCR test taken in Zimbabwe can take two hours or more for the results to be released
If the PCR test is positive, the traveller will be required to undergo a quarantine period of up to ten days or until such time as a negative test is received. This will be at the traveller’s expense and can be done at approved private facilities
ABC-recommended PCR test facilities include Lancet Laboratories in Harare and Victoria Falls
PCR And antigen test procedures are available at Bumi Hills Lodge and Mana Pools locations in Zimbabwe.

On arriving at a Zimbabwean international airport (Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport in Harare, Joshua Nkomo International Airport in Bulawayo or Victoria Falls International Airport), an ABC representative will collect you at the arrival point and ensure that you safely and comfortably reach your next destination, whether it be by regional charter from the airport or straight to camp in a deep-cleaned vehicle

Airlines may require travellers to complete a health questionnaire on board or on arrival and present it to health staff at the airport

Please ensure you are knowledgeable of the travel requirements for returning to your resident country

Excluded from ABC rates: Visa fees, international and regional flights, travel insurance, transfers, items of a personal nature, and staff gratuities
Bookings are 100 percent refundable dependent on certain conditions. Please review our CV-19 T’s and C’s here

For useful travel tips, visit https://africanbushcamps.com/travel-information/

For more information and to make reservations, visit www.africanbushcamps.com

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