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Zimbabwe’s Best 19 Safari Lodges & Camps

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Devryn Panaino

Safari Travel Planner

Safari Enquiry
 Devryn Panaino

Author: Devryn Panaino - 30 March 2023

Last Update: 7 May 2024

Zimbabwe is a star destination packed with wildlife encounters, adrenaline-soaked adventures, and a diverse landscape that will take your breath away.

After years of political strife, the country is back on its feet and offers safari-goers an adventure-packed holiday that’s hard to match anywhere else in Africa. If you’re planning on a trip here, you can’t do better than staying at one of the best 19 safari lodges and camps in Zimbabwe.

Hwange National Park

1. Somalisa Acacia

This destination blends an authentic safari experience with a 5-star getaway. Luxury design and modern amenities combine with canvas tents and daily game drives through the wildlife-packed Hwange National Park that will satisfy your need for exploration and adventure.

Luxury Lodge in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: somalisaacacia
Luxury Lodge in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: somalisaacacia

Oozing the romance of a bygone era, you’ll feel as if you’ve gone back in time while relaxing in a freestanding copper bathtub with spectacular views of the limitless bush.

Highlights include:

  • An intimate and family-friendly atmosphere
  • Walking safari
  • Night drives
  • Elephants gathering at the drinking pool
  • Excellent game sightings right from the camp
  • The Ngwana Club for kids

Ideal for:

Small groups and families with kids

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Game drives
  • Night drives
  • Guided walking safaris
  • Horse riding

2. Linkwasha Camp

Simple but classy, Linkwasha is possibly the most luxurious safari camp in Hwange. While you won’t forget you’re deep in the African wilderness, minimalist design and stylish elegance deliver the feel of a contemporary penthouse suite.

Lodge in Hwange National Park | Photo credits: Linkwasha Camp
Lodge in Hwange National Park | Photo credits: Linkwasha Camp

Canvas Meru-style tents are tastefully decorated, and sophisticated furnishings round off the luxury essence of the camp. The result is a sublime combination for an unforgettable safari experience.

Highlights include:

  • Incredible birding
  • A photography hide
  • Spectacular predator action
  • Sleepouts in star beds
  • Guided bush walks in a private concession
  • Night drives

Ideal for:

Couples and safari-enthusiasts

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Game drives
  • Local village visits
  • Private game drives
  • Guided walking safaris
  • Night drives
  • Fly camping

3. The Hide

Situated in the heart of the wildlife-packed Hwange National Park, The Hide is a stellar safari lodge and luxury getaway that’s perfect for families.

Views from The Hide in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: The Hide
Views from The Hide in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: The Hide

Featuring an exclusive-use villa and private suite, The Hide offers unique packages that allow children under 10 a free stay. Morning and afternoon game drives offer great opportunities to spot big game and the chance to see predators like lions, leopards, and African wild dogs.

The beautiful tented suites also overlook a water hole where guests can get up close and personal with a variety of wildlife.

Highlights include:

  • Situated in a private concession
  • Family-friendly safari experiences
  • Great views of a water hole
  • Sleepouts under the stars
  • Photography hide
  • Dependable big game sightings

Ideal for:

Small groups and families

Activities:

  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • Night drives
  • Bird watching
  • Guided walking safaris

Zambezi National Park

4. Mpala Jena Camp

Blending Moroccan-influenced design with traditional safari elements, Mpala Jena Camp has a one-of-a-kind style featuring canvas tents, wooden decking, and stonework.

Mpala Jena Camp in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Mpala Jena Camp
Mpala Jena Camp in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Mpala Jena Camp

Set deep in the Zambezi National Park and bordering the Victoria Falls, this lush, luxury camp is the perfect destination for anyone looking for a private and serene safari getaway far from the crowds but still close to the thrills of Africa’s adventure capital.

Highlights include:

  • Jaw-dropping river views
  • Proximity to Victoria Falls
  • Secluded luxury and elegance
  • Dependable elephant, buffalo, lion, and African wild dog sightings
  • Boat cruises and canoeing

Ideal for:

Small groups and couples

Activities:

  • Boat excursions
  • Day tours
  • Fishing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • Bird watching

5. Old Drift Lodge

The discerning Old Drift Lodge is perched at the edge of the majestic Zambezi River and provides a luxury safari escape that’s equally suited to experienced and first-time safari goers.

Luxury lodge overlooking the Zambezi River | Photo credits: Old Drift Lodge
Luxury lodge overlooking the Zambezi River | Photo credits: Old Drift Lodge

The sophisticated and contemporary design and elegant decor combine with spectacular views of the surrounding wilderness to deliver a truly exclusive safari experience.

You’ll have ample opportunity to explore this natural environment by boat, vehicle, or on foot and the extra adventurous can even take to the skies to get a bird’s eye view of Victoria Falls, the world’s biggest waterfall.

Highlights include:

  • Uninterrupted views of the Zambezi River
  • Seasonal swimming in Devil’s Pool
  • Lunch over Batoka Gorge
  • Boat safaris
  • Whitewater rafting
  • Victoria Falls canopy tours
  • Scenic helicopter flights
  • Guided walking safaris

Ideal for:

Couples, small groups, and families

Activities:

  • Day tours
  • Game drives
  • Guided walking safaris
  • River cruises

6. Victoria Falls River Lodge

The first private lodge built in the Zambezi National Park, Victoria Falls River Lodge rests on the banks of the gorgeous Zambezi River and is close enough to the falls that you can see the rising mists from your lodge.

Luxury lodge on the Zambezi Crescent | Photo credits: Victoria Falls River Lodge
Luxury lodge on the Zambezi Crescent | Photo credits: Victoria Falls River Lodge

Besides the 5-star luxury tents and truly excellent service, guests here can scout out the Zambezi and Victoria Falls national parks on game drives, river cruises, scenic helicopter flights, and even a luxury steam train.

Highlights include:

  • Boating
  • Canoeing
  • Spectacular views of the Zambezi River
  • Proximity to Victoria Falls
  • Adventure activities such as bungee jumping and river rafting
  • Touring the falls by luxury steam train and helicopter

Ideal for:

Small groups and families

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Boat excursions
  • Game drives
  • Night drives
  • River cruises
  • Sundowners
  • Canoeing
  • Fishing

7. Island Treehouse Suites at Victoria Falls River Lodge

Forming an extension of the Victoria Falls River Lodge, the Island Treehouse suites are situated on the private Kandahar Island a little upstream from the world-famous Victoria Falls.

Island Treehouse Suites on the Zambezi River | Photo credits: VIctoria Falls River Lodge
Island Treehouse Suites on the Zambezi River | Photo credits: VIctoria Falls River Lodge

Built on stilted wooden decks with idyllic views of the Zambezi River, these elegantly designed suites are ideal for romantic and isolated getaways. Do yourself a favor and book yourself into one of the star-bed suites for a special night spent under the tranquil African skies.

Highlights include:

  • Panoramic river and forest views
  • Situated on a private island that can only be accessed by boat
  • Access to all Victoria Falls River Lodge facilities and activities
  • Star-bed sleepouts under the African sky
  • A personal butler service
  • Boating
  • Kayaking

Ideal for:

Honeymoons and romantic getaways

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Game drives
  • Day tours
  • Fishing
  • Guided walking safaris

Mana Pools National Park

8. Nyamatusi Camp

Nyamatusi is proof that conservation and sustainable living doesn’t have to sacrifice glamour and style. Situated in the heart of the Mana Pools National Park, the camp is a masterclass in eco-friendly principles.

Luxury lodge in Mana Pools National Park | Photo credits: Nyamatusi Camp
Luxury lodge in Mana Pools National Park | Photo credits: Nyamatusi Camp

Powered by a large solar farm and incorporating natural materials in its construction, the camp exudes eco-chic. Guests here can soak up the African wilderness comfortable in the knowledge that their stay is having minimal impact on the natural wonders that surround them.

Highlights include:

  • Eco-smart luxury
  • Awe-inspiring views of the Zambezi River
  • Guaranteed elephant sightings
  • Fishing
  • Canoeing
  • Guided nature walks

Ideal for:

Couples and romantic getaways

Activities:

  • Game drives
  • Canoeing
  • Guided walks

9. Ruckomechi Camp

Ruckomechi Camp is situated on the banks of the stunning Zambezi River, famous for its dense concentration of hippos.

Luxury lodge views in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Ruckomechi Camp
Luxury lodge views in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Ruckomechi Camp

Deep in the heart of one of Zimbabwe’s most renowned national parks, this tented camp effortlessly blends an authentic safari experience with all the luxury and creature comforts you could dream of.

Away from camp, you can explore all the wonders of this tranquil wilderness by boat, on 4×4 game drives, or even on foot.

Highlights include:

  • Reliable sightings of buffalo and elephants
  • Sleepouts in a star bed under the glorious African sky
  • Jaw-dropping views of the Zambezi River
  • Predator sightings
  • Boating and canoeing
  • Guided walks through the bush

Ideal for:

Couples and families

Activities:

  • Boat excursions
  • Canoeing
  • Fishing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • Guided walking safaris

10. Little Ruckomechi Camp

Comfortable, contemporary, and stylish, Little Ruckomechi Camp is the younger sibling of Ruckomechi. Situated in Mana Pools, the camp wraps up the essence of this diverse and rich national park.

Luxury lodge dining area in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Little Ruckomechi Camp
Luxury lodge dining area in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Little Ruckomechi Camp

Go on game drives through the bush in search of big cats, then enjoy sundowners on a sunset cruise down the Zambezi. Little Ruckomechi is the perfect idyllic getaway for both seasoned and first-time safari-goers.

Highlights include:

  • Boating and canoeing on the mighty Zambezi River
  • An exclusive safari experience in a private concession
  • Heart-stopping game viewing
  • Spectacular views of the Zambian foothills and Zambezi River
  • A birder’s paradise

Ideal for:

Safari lovers of all kinds

Activities:

  • Day tours
  • Bird watching
  • Fishing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • River cruises

11. Chikwenya Camp

Chikwenya is the model Mana Pools camp. Its unique style, mixed with traditional safari tents, delivers an ultra-luxurious experience. Spacious, airy, and contemporary, it features all the class of a 5-star presidential suite.

A pod of hippos wad through the Linyanti river
A pod of hippos wad through the Linyanti river

Designed to make the most of its glorious location, you’ll be swept away by the awe-inspiring views of the endless plains and the Rift Valley escarpment.

Situated as it is in a forest, there’s ample opportunity to watch the local wildlife saunter up to feast on the pods of the ana trees.

Highlights include:

  • Catch and release fishing
  • Night game drives in an exclusive use area
  • Boat and canoe safaris
  • Guided walks along the Zambezi river and in the surrounding forest
  • An ultra-elegant lodge in a wildlife-rich area

Ideal for:

Couples and romantic getaways

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • Sunset cruises

12. Kanga Camp

If you’re a more adventurous traveler, Kanga Camp was made for you. While it features lush suites kitted out with all the creature comforts you could think of, the real focus here is on escaping into nature and getting up close and personal to the game roaming freely around the camp.

Elephants walking past luxury lodge in ZImbabwe | Photo credits: Kanga Camp
Elephants walking past luxury lodge in ZImbabwe | Photo credits: Kanga Camp

The seasonal camp (April to November) offers up ample opportunities to explore the wilderness at its wildest on game drives and walking safaris through this unique private concession.

Of course, you could also just kick back in camp and witness the huge variety of wildlife from the comfort of the viewing deck.

Highlights include:

  • Animal tracking experiences
  • Superb photographic opportunities at the Kanga hide
  • Excellent leopard, lion, and Wild dog sightings
  • A permanent water pan visited frequently by wildlife
  • A luxury lodge in a private concession

Ideal for:

Families with teenagers and adventurous travelers

Activities:

  • Full-day safaris
  • Bird watching
  • Game drives
  • Animal tracking experiences
  • Night drives
  • Specialist guides
  • Guided walking safaris

Lake Kariba, Matusadona National Park

13. Bumi Hills Safari Lodge

Situated on the lush landscape bordering Matusadona National Park and overlooking the placid waters of Lake Kariba, Bumi Hills provides a wonderfully isolated safari experience with all the trappings of modern comfort, style, and luxury.

Luxury lodge infinity pool on Lake Kariba | Photo credits: Bumi Hills Safari Lodge
Luxury lodge infinity pool on Lake Kariba | Photo credits: Bumi Hills Safari Lodge

Its elegantly decorated rooms will leave you thinking of a 5-star resort surrounded by views of the majestic surroundings. Sumptuous accommodations combine with a plethora of activities, from exciting game drives to relaxing sunset cruises.

Highlights include:

  • A private, wildlife-rich concession
  • Sunset cruises on Lake Kariba
  • Animal tracking experiences
  • Ngwana Club for entertaining the kids
  • Breathtaking views of Lake Kariba and the Zambezi escarpment

Ideal for:

Romantic getaways and family holidays

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Fishing
  • Boat excursions
  • Day tours
  • Animal tracking experiences
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • Local village visits
  • Picnics
  • Sunset cruises

14. Changa Safari Camp

Tucked away within the Mopane woodlands on the banks of Lake Kariba, the delightful Changa Safari Camp oozes rustic yet refined style combined with luxury and a home away from home feel.

Deluxe tent at Changa Safari Camp in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Changa Safari Camp
Deluxe tent at Changa Safari Camp in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Changa Safari Camp

This eco-smart destination gets its inspiration from its wild surroundings and is built using all-natural materials. The camp’s traditional canvas tents are decorated with textiles sourced from Africa and feature stunning local hand-carved furnishings.

Calm and wonderfully isolated, Changa provides an authentic safari experience in what’s possibly Africa’s finest safari country.

Highlights include:

  • Stunning views of the lake
  • Boat trips to Sanyati Gorge
  • Wildlife that roams close to the camp
  • Boat safaris on Lake Kariba
  • The finest in gourmet dining

Ideal for:

Family vacations

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Photographic safaris
  • Boat excursions
  • Fishing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks

15. Fothergill Island

Fothergill Island is a stunning tented camp that provides the finest in authentic safari experiences without foregoing modern luxury and amenities. The camp blends in seamlessly with the surrounding wilderness of Lake Kariba and the wonders of the Matusadona National Park.

Luxury lodge accommodation in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Fothergill Island
Luxury lodge accommodation in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Fothergill Island

Being eco-conscious, Fothergill Island runs primarily on solar power, delivering a low impact on its environment.

Besides excellent game viewing featuring encounters with large African game such as elephants and buffalo, guests here can also enjoy bespoke activities such as archery, fly-fishing, and immersive game walks.

Highlights include:

  • Private plunge pools
  • Eco-smart solar setup fulfilling 95% of the camp’s energy needs
  • Age-appropriate children’s activities
  • Unique luxury tents in the Matusadona National Park
  • Fishing, archery, bird watching, and stargazing
  • Sunset cruises on Lake Kariba
  • Exploring the national park and Lake Kariba on foot, safari vehicle, and boat
  • Unmatched levels of exclusivity and privacy

Ideal for:

Honeymooners, couples and families

Activities:

  • Day tours
  • Fishing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walking safaris

Victoria Falls National Park

16. Victoria Falls Hotel

The Victoria Falls Hotel features Edwardian-style architecture that will transport you back to an era of grandeur and ageless elegance. As a member of the ultra-exclusive group of the world’s top-tier hotels (Leading Hotels of the World), this one-of-a-kind destination is an icon of the luxury safari universe.

Stanleys Terrace at Victoria Falls Hotel | Photo credits: Victoria Falls Hotel
Stanleys Terrace at Victoria Falls Hotel | Photo credits: Victoria Falls Hotel

Walking distance away from one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, the Victoria Falls Hotel is possibly one of the finest places in Zimbabwe from which to explore this awe-inspiring spectacle.

Highlights include:

  • Helicopter and luxury steam train tours
  • A direct walkway to Victoria Falls
  • Uninterrupted views of the falls
  • 5-star fine dining
  • Outstanding service
  • Conde Nast Traveller’s 2020 Gold List Award winner

Ideal for:

Couples and families

Activities:

  • Boat excursions
  • Canoeing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • Day tours

17. The Elephant Camp

Elephant camp gets its name from the massive pachyderms that frequently visit it. Visitors here can experience once-in-a-lifetime encounters at the Wild Horizons Elephant Sanctuary and get to interact with these remarkable creatures in a controlled and ethical environment.

Luxury lodge viewing deck in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: The Elephant Camp
Luxury lodge viewing deck in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: The Elephant Camp

Besides getting up close and personal with the largest living land mammals, Elephant Camp’s close proximity to Victoria Falls means that fun is never far away. Go ziplining over the falls in Africa’s adventure capital or take a game drive to explore the national park.

Highlights include:

  • Canopy tours over the falls
  • Ethical elephant encounters
  • Panoramic views of the Victoria Falls National Park bushveld
  • Fine dining over Batoka Gorge
  • Boating, canoeing, and whitewater rafting

Ideal for:

Adventurous travelers

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Day tours

Malilangwe Wildlife Reserve

18. Malilangwe House

If you’re looking for an exclusive, private, and luxurious escape, you can’t do any better than the high-end and discerning Malilangwe House. Perfect for groups of friends as well as families, guests here can look forward to the royal treatment.

Singita Malilangwe House in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Singita Malilangwe House
Singita Malilangwe House in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Singita Malilangwe House

Your private chef whips up delicious meals, a butler is on hand to take care of your every need and this is all topped off with a personal guide who will help you expertly explore the wilderness that surrounds you on all sides.

Authentic but luxurious safari experiences don’t come much better than this.

Highlights include:

  • Sundowner cruises on the dam
  • A luxury, exclusive-use villa in a wildlife-rich reserve
  • Jaw-dropping views of the bushland and Malilangwe Dam
  • Private chef, butler, game vehicle, and field guide
  • Mini Rangers Course and kids’ activities
  • Tailor-made safari experiences

Ideal for:

Small groups and families

Activities:

  • Bird watching
  • Boat excursions
  • Fishing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walking safaris
  • Local village visits
  • Spa treatments
  • Star gazing
  • Sundowners
  • Sunset cruises

19. Singita Pamushana Lodge

Resting on the edge of a sandstone ridge overlooking the Malilangwe Dam, Singita Pamushana Lodge is a slice of safari heaven. Classy thatch and stone buildings blend in effortlessly with the surrounding wilderness and rich decor featuring local handcrafted woodwork and fabric adorned with traditional patterns all pay tribute to the lodge’s deep African origins.

Plunge pool at luxury lodge in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Singita Pamushana Lodge
Plunge pool at luxury lodge in Zimbabwe | Photo credits: Singita Pamushana Lodge

Whether you’re soaking up the jaw-dropping views from the infinity pool, tucking into exquisite cuisine under the African skies, or indulging in a massage on your private veranda, you’re never far away from the calming combination of natural surroundings and top-notch style.

Highlights include:

  • An extensive wine cellar
  • 5-star dining in a variety of locations
  • Awe-inspiring views of Malilangwe Dam and Nature Reserve
  • Visiting ancient San rock art sites
  • Dependable Black rhino sightings
  • Sundowner cruises on the dam

Ideal for:

Family vacations

Activities:

  • Animal tracking experiences
  • Bird watching
  • Fishing
  • Game drives
  • Guided walks
  • Historical tours
  • Specialist guides
  • Tennis
  • Guided walking safaris

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