Safari & Cape… at a special rate!

Pay for 3 nights on an exclusive luxury safari and receive 3 nights with our compliments in one of Cape Town’s top luxury hotels.

3 NIGHTS ON SAFARI AT THORNYBUSH

Enjoy 3 night’s at the acclaimed Thornybush Game Lodge, with twice daily safaris led by highly trained rangers and trackers in search of Africa’s Big 5, gormet meals and luxury accommodation.

3 NIGHTS IN VIBRANT CAPE TOWN

With our compliments, spend 3 nights in the vibrant city of Cape Town at the luxury Cape Royale Hotel, including return airport transfers.

THIS INCREDIBLE OFFER IS ONLY £1,100 / $1,675 PER PERSON SHARING!

The price includes: 3 nights fully inclusive accommodation at Thornybush, return airport transfers from Hoedspruit, 3 nights bed and breakfast at the Cape Royale, return airport transfers from Cape Town Airport and daily mini-bar.

This exclusive offer is only valid from 08 July – 30 September 2010 and is subject to availability at the time of booking. Contact Opulent Africa for more information.

Exciting 9 night Kafue safari…!!!

Zambia’s Kafue National Park offers a truly remote wilderness safari with good game viewing, comfortable and reasonably priced accommodation.

To get the best out of the Kafue, we recommend a combination of three wonderful camps in the area, starting at Hippo Lodge which is located on the banks of the Kafue River. It’s a perfect destination for nature lovers, bird watchers and anglers alike. Days can be spent game-viewing on foot, by vehicle or boat. Guests can fish the Kafue hot spots, tick away at the bird list or unwind with a “sundowner” in the beautiful natural hot spring.

Hippo Lodge

Hippo Lodge is set in a remote wilderness, teeming with seasonal wildlife. The Zambian Ornithological Society has categorised Hippo Lodge as one of the best birding sites in Zambia – a real birdwatchers paradise.

The lodge is small and traditional with four stone and thatch cottages and two safari tents providing a choice in the style of accommodation. Located on the east bank of the Kafue River, the setting is idyllic with access to particularly remote areas of the Kafue National Park. The diversity of habitats supports a variety of wildlife, including hippo, crocodile, buffalo, elephant, lion and hyena.

Plains Camp

Guests would then be taken on a scenic road and boat journey to Plains Camp on the Busanga Plains – the only independent camp in the area. The Busanga Plains is a wetland area in the far north of Kafue and from July to October the plains are accessible by 4×4 safari vehicle.

Large groups of rarities like red lechwe and roan antelope are always present, as are huge herds of up to 1,000 buffalo, wildebeest, zebra and sometimes eland. Lion are abundant, along with cheetah hunting for their prey on the open plains.

The camp consists of four comfortable safari tents, complete with en-suite bathroom, hot water bucket showers and flush loo. The main boma area for dining and relaxation provides outstanding views across the huge plains and to the fig and palms opposite.

Plains Camp

The third leg of this exciting journey would be Manyukuyuku which is a charming and rustic camp, part Zambian owned. The camp is located on the southern edge of the Northern Sector of Kafue National Park, just 8 km from Mongu Road which allows year round access. Situated close to the banks of the Kafue River, alongside a highly wooded treeline, Manyukuyuku has magnificent views both up and downstream.

The large shady trees and the river’s boulders and rock formations make relaxing days all the more enjoyable and the area is rich in wildlife, so game viewing is a major attraction. The guestbook is brimming with sightings, especially lion, leopard and wild dog.

Opulent Africa’s 9 night Kafue safari costs from £2,295 per person and includes all road transfers, full board accommodation, safari activities and park fees. For more information on this itinerary or any of our current specials, please contact us.

Our intrepid traveller; a client’s account from Africa – Part 3

So far all the hotels and houses have had large shower heads with lots of holes which give the impression of being in a rain shower.  I really like that.  Maybe I should change mine out. 

We drove through the tea plantation which has 4 different types.  For miles it looks like a green undulating carpet.  Maybe that is the magic carpet?  The two I saw were India and Clonal.  The India was planted in 1939 and the Clonals were 1997 and 1999.   The tea pickers pick about 4 baskets a day at 10 kg per basket.  The baskets are strapped to their backs and they toss the tea leaves over their head into the basket.  When the basket is full it weighs about 12 kg (multiply by 2.2 to get pounds) and they carry it to a weigh station which is sometimes quite far from the field they are picking in.  Walk back and start again.  It is backbreaking work and they work 6 days a week but Sat. is only 1/2 day.  The best pickers can do their 40 kg in 5 hrs. and another 20 in the 8 hrs.  They pick the top 3 leaves that have sprouted above the bush since the last time the area was picked. 

 Michael taught me so phrases to talk to them.  ‘Monei’ is hello. ‘ Muli bwanje’ is how are you?  ‘Ndili bwino’ is I am fine, and ‘zicomo’ is thanks.  The pickers were extremely friendly.  When I waved and smiled they all waved and smiled.  Whenever they were beside the road waiting for their tea to be weighed, we stopped and I tried out my Chechewa.  The people loved it and laughed with me at my pronunciations, but they enjoyed that I tried. 

 We were on our way to the hydro plant which I got a tour of.  The three generators were builit in 1934, 1936, and 1948.  Then we headed to the Blue Lagoon, which was more like a Brown Lagoon.   Water was very silty and coffee colored. 

 Back to the lodge for lunch of chicken in a tomato sauce (I checked for termite flies!), rice, potatoes, baked squash.  After lunch it poured for about 25 minutes so we put off our exploration drive and walk to the Mviya Pools.  Bear in mind the soil is a large percentage of clay so it gets very slippery after a rain.  We drove to one of the tea pickers villages to meet our guide and begin our walk.  As soon as the kids and some adults saw me, they all started running toward me and I had half the village surrounding me.  They all kept saying “hello” just to hear me say it back to them.  They followed us for about 10 minutes before the guide told them to go back to the village.  We walked through tea and corn fields on narrow, slippery foot paths used by the villagers.   In the corn fields they actually had 3 crops:  the corn, beans, and cassava.  That way they have nitrogen from the beans, but I don’t think that is why; they just want to harvest the corn, and then the beans are ready to be harvested, and then the cassava.  

 It was uphill and down.  Reminded me of trekking the gorillas a little.  I slipped and fell once on the way and on the way back.  Second time we were crossing a stream on rocks and the guide was holding my hand and was pulling me a little too fast.   My foot hit the wet rock and slipped and over the big rock I went.  The guide had one arm and Michael came and grabbed the other to yank me back up.  Got a couple of superficial skinned knees.  There are 7  pools which cascade down the hillside.  One is supposedly 14 meters deep.  At the bottom the swifts were flying over the lagoon area.  When we got back to the village the kids swarmed again.  Took their photos and showed them.  Some were such hams, and all were delighted to see themselves. 

 Tea on the terrace again before dinner.  Dinner was steak, roasted half potatoes, stir fry vegs.  And it rained all night. 

During the day saw an orange headed lizard, Southern Rock Agama, Red-capped Robin-Chat, Red-billed Firefinch, Silvery Cheeked Hornbill, Western Banded Snake Eagle, “a” bulbul but not identified.