Mwaleshi Camp is one of only two camps in North Luangwa, it is about as remote as you can get. North Luangwa has a heavily protected rhino program and this is one of only two places you can spot them in Zambia. The rhino program is heavily guarded and funded by the Frankfurt Zoological society, we are told it is successful and could be used to start stocking South Luangwa!
Here the focus is on walking safaris and the guides are excellent. Make Mwaleshi and North Luangwa your next adventure before the crowds do!
I loved the scenic flight over the Luangwa Valley and the wild remoteness of Mwaleshi. Mwaleshi is an old school basic bush camp focusing on exceptional food, incredible guiding and set in a wild location overlooking the Mwaleshi River. A very cool walk from Mwaleshi to Takwela with a lot of interesting wildlife.
Last visited by Mike Varndell, Managing Founder – July 2019
North Luangwa is one of the few places you can see rhino in Zambia. Heavily protected and looked after, away from the bustle of the south, the animals are said to be thriving. It’s been a tough time for rhinos with ivory poaching so it is amazing to see a success here. It is not just rhinos up here – the wildlife is thriving. Walking safaris are a little slower however, sightings were excellent last time we visited.
When you tell someone, they are going for a walking safari they can often be a bit nervous that they aren’t fit enough but I would urge you that this is not the case. Of course, if you want to you can cover larger distances but often you don’t get that far from camp or your starting point. We spent one afternoon (met by the car later for sundowners) by the river-watching hippos fighting and probably walked no more than a few meters. If you have a good guide you can find something interesting to talk about almost anywhere and these guides are the best!
Mwaleshi is based on a shallow river (it is only open when river levels are low), which means you have your very own paddling pool! Is there anything better than dipping your hot sweaty feet into a cool flowing river after a walk? Probably, if you could have your favourite drink in hand, which is exactly what you can do here.
With shallow water levels, it is away from hippos and crocs (although please do check and ask the guides) so you can bathe in the mid-day sun, dip your feet in and read a book or simply watch the wild world at work.
Mwaleshi was the perfect place to escape all other tourists and discover the beautiful wild and unique North luangwa. The lodge itself was beautiful with the chalets having great views over the river, the food was tasty and the staff were great. Our guides were great and although walking safaris can be a little quieter they were knowledgeable enough to get us looking at some smaller animals which was fascinating. We also spent a long time watching some fighting hippos which was thrilling! Massive thanks to Alex. Moffat for making it so special. Loved it will definitely be back!
“Just WOW! My husband and I, and our two sons, aged 18 and 16 stayed here for 4 nights and loved every second. We flew in from Mfuwi airport, in the Remote Africa Safari’s Sesna. A 15 minute drive later, which included fording a river, we were at camp, where we discovered we were the only guests! We stayed in two of the camp’s four chalets, which are built new at the begining of every season. The chalets are amazingly luxurious considering how remote they are, and include en-suite bathrooms with flush toilets, sinks with running water, and a bush shower that has hot water provided every evening. Hot water is brought to the bathroom each morning in a jug. The chalets are open sided, giving us uninterrupted views of the river and wildlife on the opposite bank.
Our guide, Brent, was very knowledgeable and made us feel really welcome. He led us on two walking safaris a day, along with a Tea Bearer and a Scout (with a rifle). All three were great trackers, and were able to interpret animal calls, tracks and habits to provide us with wonderful memories. Each hike was about 5 miles, and the terrain included sand, dirt, and tall grass, but it was very doable. The highlight was getting roared at by a male lion. Having also been on driving safaris I found the walking safaris so much more rewarding. Without the noise and protection of a truck, the animals seem much more real. There is something breathtaking about walking along an animal path, seeing fresh tracks, and knowing that you might come upon an elephant or a lion.
We ate a LOT at Mwaleshi! The food was outstanding. Breakfast was served, very early, by the fire, and included toast made over the campfire, eggs, cold meat, preserves etc. Lunch and dinner were both served in the open sided dining room, and included three courses, with fresh baked bread daily. Our morning hike always included tea and cake, and the afternoon/evening hike included sundowners. Brent was the perfect host, eating meals with us, sharing his knowledge and engaging the entire family, making our teenage sons forget to miss their electronics.
Mwalashi is a very special place. The remote location, and limited number of cabins mean that not many people get to experience it’s beauty and great service. I am so glad we were able to spend time there, and highly recommend it.”
“If you like remote I doubt it could get more so. You feel like you are in “Out of Africa” the movie as you wander the terrain of the North Luangwa NP. Remote Africa flies you here in their own tiny 6 seater Cessna from Tafika with their own pilot on a 23 minute very scenic flight over the Luangwa river at low height enabling views of hippos and elephants below in the river. Mwaleshi camp is situated on the Mwaleshi river which you have to cross in the jeep to get to camp. There are 4 thatched chalets right on the banks of the river with outdoor lounges to enjoy the view. The river here is shallow and fast flowing and no crocodiles or hippos inhabit this stretch. In fact you can swim just in this stretch but we didn’t venture in as was too cold. There is only 1 vehicle up here so this camp is designed as a walking camp but you often drive to a point and walk from there. Walks are conducted morning (about 4 ½-5 hours with approx. 45 minute tea break where a campfire is built) and afternoon (about 2 ½ hours) sometimes with a bit of a night drive back to camp. Walking isn’t difficult terrain to manage except if doing the beach walk in soft sand which I avoided. As we were lucky enough to be the only couple in camp for 2 days we had flexibility to choose activities so we mixed it up with further afield drives and walks. The chalets still have ensuites with bush showers where very hot water is delivered upon returning from your afternoon walk. Meals are incredible considering the remote kitchen they navigate. Always freshly baked breads, fresh salads (plane delivers supplies from Tafika’s garden) and scrumptious desserts. Same day laundry service is still accomplished. Alex is the manager and guide up here and very experienced. Walking the terrain you don’t often see as many animals but feel very in touch with nature. On driving to walking points you often see a lot. There are tsetse fly spots up here which I did not like as I react to the bites but Alex tries to avoid them or go through these areas in the vehicle quickly however I still did get quite a few bites. A camp of great solitude and closeness to the African bush”