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Why we love Kafunta River Lodge
Key Features
When to Visit
Kafunta River Lodge Tours

Kafunta River Lodge is a family owned, great value, lodge, perched on a river-bank of the park boundary. Overlooking a huge marsh it is a wildlife paradise and an excellent place to start your Luangwa adventure. The lodge also features an infinity pool, a natural hot tub as well as a small spa for relaxing massages.

“Upon arrival, I was welcomed by the full management team, beaming and welcoming me into their pride and joy – Kafunta River Lodge. And what a joy it is. The rooms are gorgeous, the shower a dream and the private deck a lovely addition. The main lodge itself overlooks what can only be one of the most magnificent views in the valley, a vast plain teeming with wildlife – plains game, ellies, buff, and fantastic birdlife, enjoy a dip in their infinity pool whilst you admire it. The food here is also a highlight, the four-course dinner I had, was one of – if not the best I’ve had in South Luangwa. “

Last visited by Gabi, Sales & Marketing, October 2019

“Every time I have stayed at Kafunta I have been welcomed with open arms, from the incredible viewing deck to the amazing hosting team it feels like a home away from home which keeps me coming back. I really love that you can see the hippos munching the grass from your dinner table at night, you just never know who is going to be walking past your room!”

Chloe McCormack, Sales & Marketing, July 2018 – 

Exceptional member of staff: Cephus, Guide: His love for nature doesn’t disappoint with eagle eyes and a keen knowledge for the smaller things he gives a complete guide to the valley.


Family owned

The Cowan’s first opened Kafunta 20 years ago. Built from scratch they have increased their portfolio to 3 lodges; the main River Lodge and two seasonal bush camps. With 20 years experience, it is easy to see why they are valley favourites, treating each guest as an extension of the family!

Photographic hides

The marsh in front of the lodge attracts a wealth of animals, from elephants looking to bathe and drink to abundant birdlife swooping in to grab insects or frogs from the water. With lions, wild dog and leopards all regular sightings in camp it is an excellent place to relax for an afternoon to see who comes to visit. Directly below the dining deck, you can often spot lazy hippos wallowing just meters from the viewing point with a drink in hand!

Adventurous river crossing

At certain times of the year the entrance into the park from Kafunta is an adventure in itself. In the dry season you can drive straight across the riverbed and into the park but in the months where the river is higher you can enjoy taking the pontoon across the private entrance. The guys will ‘row’ you across using brute strength to pull the pontoon along a rope system alongside the famous Luangwa River, teeming with hippos and crocodiles. Start your game viewing the second you hit the water!

LOW Season: 1 Apr – 31 May & 1 Nov – 5 Jan

HIGH Season: 1 Jun – 31 Oct

CLOSED: 6 Jan – 31 Mar



  • Lush green scenery and best sunsets
  • Flowers, birds and baby animals galore
  • Few tourists
  • Cheaper rates


  • Beautiful green scenery after rains
  • Fantastic photography opportunities
  • Dry weather
  • Mild temperatures


  • Dry scenery, best for spotting game
  • Abundant wildlife – fewer water sources
  • Warm/hot temperatures
  • Prime time for walking safaris

Category Ranges:
$: USD 0 – USD250/pppn
$$: USD 251 – USD600/pppn
$$$: USD 601 – USD1,000/pppn
$$$$: USD1,001+/pppn

The price categories give you an idea of the nightly cost per person for this accommodation.

  • Exceptional service, spectacular wildlife, unforgettable experience.

    Stunning location and passionate service very close to gates of South Luangwa National Park. Knowledgable guides and experienced, caring drivers and spotters.
    Very good restaurant quality food and ample refreshments – both complementary and good value.

    Empathetic staff who made living, driving, photographing, relaxing all exceptional elements of the holiday. High prices for a premium experiences. Would highly recommend.

    Gabriella M
  • Don’t miss this camp

    We stayed 3 nights in Kafunta and 2 in the sister Three Rivers Camp. Our guide Abel was most accommodating – searching assiduously for everything on our bucket list. We saw lions, elephants, antelope, porcupine and many birds to add to our African collection. The highlight was the early season carmine bee-eaters. The night drives appeared to be disappointing until John spotted a chameleon, 3 leopards and a hyena happily munching on an impala. Accommodation and food were excellent, especially the chance to talk to Abel and then the “private” tables for dinner.

    Melbourne, Australia
  • Excellent place to end your safari trip

    We stayed in Kafunta River Lodge for 2 nights at the end of our safari trip. We enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere, very good lodgings and facilities. The game drives were very good too especially as we were able to find Ginger and Garlic Lions.

    Knesselare, Belgium
  • Close to perfect

    Imagine a wide African vista across which wander elephants, hippos, hyenas and lions. Imagine also that you can see all this in from the porch of your lodge or whilst sitting at lunch or dinner. That’s Kafunta. Add in great food, excellent accomodation and the friendliest staff you could ever wish to meet and it’s almost perfect. We loved Zambia, it’s people and it’s wildlife and Kafunta was a great place to start our holiday from.


Fast Facts

  • Location: South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
  • Internet connection:WiFi – Temperamental
  • Fans/Air ConFans
  • Number of rooms:8 chalets and 2 suites
  • Child policy:6+ years
  • Swimming poolYes

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