Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris

Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris

O5 Road Mushilashi River, South Luangwa National Park Zambia
Camp is located in a remote area.
Traveller (185)
Each walk-in safari tent has an open-air ensuite bathroom with classic hot water bucket shower.
Room & Suite (25)
Dining area, Nkonzi Camp, Gavin Opie Safaris  
Nkonzi Camp offers a distinctive blend of unique safari experience, outstanding hospitality, and expert guiding in one of the world's most stunning settings.
Dining (17)

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About

5.0
#16 of 24 lodges in South Luangwa National Park
4.9 of 5 bubbles
Location
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Cleanliness
4.9 of 5 bubbles
Service
4.8 of 5 bubbles
Value

Guests enjoy game drives and world class walking safaris, revelling in the solitude and rarely encountering others, as the nearest neighbours are more than 3km away. Conveniently located just an hour from the main gate and Mfuwe airport, guests have effortless access to prime game viewing areas. Founded and managed and guided by Gavin Opie and his team, Gavin has over 15 years of guiding expertise in South Luangwa.

Visitors are treated to breathtaking sightings, including frequent visits from wild dog packs, leopard and frequent lion activity, as well as spectacular elephant encounters by the waterhole across from the main camp area. Their eco-friendly ethos shines through and they operate as a 100% carbon-neutral camp powered solely by solar energy, striving to minimise the impact on the pristine environment in the area.

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Property amenities
Free parking
Free breakfast
Bar / lounge
Walking tours
Airport transportation
Non-smoking hotel
Outdoor fireplace
Laundry service
Breakfast available
Sun loungers / beach chairs
Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Good to know
HOTEL STYLE
Mid-range
Quaint

Location

O5 Road Mushilashi River, South Luangwa National Park Zambia
73Reviews0Q+A1Room tip
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Detailed Reviews
Katie D wrote a review Aug 2023
5.0 of 5 bubbles
In July we made our second trip to Nkonzi camp as a family, and somehow we felt it was even better than we had remembered from
5 years previous.

We were met by the incredibly warm and welcoming Bev who made us feel totally at home. We were lucky enough to be a big enough group to fill the whole of this intimate camp, which was incredibly special - this camp has achieved the perfect balance between feeling completely remote and deep into the bush, far away from other camps and vehicles for a very authentic bush camp experience…
but also feeling extremely comfortable and luxurious in many ways. The beds are incredibly comfortable, the toilets and bucket showers work really well and there is always ample warm and cold clean water. The food was simple and fantastic, with the afternoon pre drive cakes a particular highlight! The most amazing brai was put on for us on our final night, with the table beautifully made up in the middle of the dried up river bed - very magical.

The whole place has a very homely, serene feel to it that we haven’t been able to find anywhere else and all of the staff were amazingly kind, friendly and attentive to all of our needs.

Gavin deserves a special call out as one of the most impressive guides we have had in Africa. His knowledge is fantastic, his manner easy going and he is hugely considerate to all of the animals he comes across on drives (we noticed this was not always the case at other camps). Gavin is full of great stories and knows the park inside out, we felt totally safe with Gavin and learnt huge amounts. The work he and Bev and team have put into the camp since we last visited was really noticeable.

We saw a ridiculously huge number of animals during our 3 night stay and were lucky enough to see almost everything entirely by ourselves, with no other vehicles around. This is rarely the case in busier / more popular areas of the park where an exciting sighting can often mean 4+ vehicles, which makes the sighting less intimate and also less pleasant for the animals.

Couldn’t recommend Nkonzi and Gavin Opie Safaris more, a wonderful and special place. I hope we will be back again!

Huge thanks to the whole team.

The Davies Family
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Date of stay: July 2023
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Gavin Opie, Owner at Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris
Responded 04 Jan 2024
Hello, Katie, and greetings to the entire Davies clan. I hope you are all well. I am back in the UK for the off season, and busy reading through Tripadvisor reviews. it is all bringing back fantastic memories of an incredible season. I won't forget that wild dog encounter on the last drive with you guys. What a thrill that was. Thank you very much indeed for all your kind words. It really is awesome to know that our guests have enjoyed their stay. We always aim to show people what it is about our little corner of Africa that we love so much, and so it is really satisfying to know when we have succeeded in that. Stay well, and we are already looking forward to your next visit! Gavin
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Steve D wrote a review Oct 2023
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Similar to a few other reviewers we recently stayed at Nkoni Camp having booked with Naturetrex.

We’ve been lucky enough over the years to have enjoyed a number of safaris, the one thing we have always found is, the more you get off the beaten track, the better the experience, and Nkoni Camp is certainly that.

It is though a very long journey from the UK, involving 3 flights and a road trip, so the travel time for us was around 30 hours.

But was It worth it – 100%!!

That said, if you are seeking the luxury lodge experience you often see on
travel programs this is probably not for you.

For us though, we loved it!!

The tents are great, with plenty of room, and well stocked with excellent insect repellent - a real must. The outside shower experience was fab, especially as it needs to be manually filled and was so, whenever we asked, the food was top notch and any request happily accommodated, for instance I don’t eat cheese. Oh and if you fancy a beer or wine with your evening meal, the prices are unbelievably good @ $2 a pop.

Our fellow camp mates were a pleasure to spend time with, but above all of that, Bev and her team are truly fabulous!!

And as for the wildlife – superb, we have never seen so many Lions, we saw them on every safari and eventually lost count.........

So if you are looking to do a safari with a guaranteed opportunity to see Lions, probably Leopards and potentially Wild Dogs, we would highly recommend Nkonzi Camp.
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Date of stay: October 2023
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Peter S wrote a review Jan 2024
Northallerton, United Kingdom
5.0 of 5 bubbles
I’ve been going on safaris since 2003 to Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia and Rwanda, and have spent more than two years of my life in total visiting these six countries – and the absolute best experiences that I have are always at Nkonzi Camp. Where do I start – the legendary wildlife guide Gavin Opie, the remote and ‘real’ location of Nkonzi Camp, the unique wildlife viewing experiences that Gavin always provides, the amazing staff at the camp, the superb food, …. where do I stop?
Anyone who is fortunate enough to share time with Gavin Opie in South Luangwa, Zambia, cannot fail to be impressed with his endless knowledge, his passion for the wildlife, his deep understanding of all issues related to wildlife and conservation, and his wonderful sense of humour. He has created a unique camp in a remote area of South Luangwa, and provides a luxury experience with his four double tents, lounge area, dining area and bar, without taking anything away from how ‘real’ you feel when you are out there. All his staff are amazing – and his Camp Manager Bev makes sure that every visitor feels safe, special and valued.
The images I have posted show the camp and experiences other than the wildlife sightings – I prefer to keep my wildlife images to myself - the images I am able to take on Gavin’s game drives are certainly worth treasuring!
It’s hard to pick out anything that stands out above the rest, everything is so wonderful, but the all-day game drives – literally out into the middle of nowhere – are an experience not to be missed. Don’t miss out on the guided bush walks – what an experience these are. Enjoy breakfast round the fire on the banks of the river, enjoy the wonderful meals served up out in the fresh air, enjoy the torchlight barbecue in the middle of the dry river bed, enjoy the authentic location, enjoy the luxury tents and the open air shower, enjoy the amazing wildlife experiences, and enjoy sharing time with the best wildlife guide I have ever met – by a mile.
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Date of stay: August 2023
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Gavin Opie, Owner at Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris
Responded 31 Jan 2024
Dear Peter and Diane, Thank you so much for taking the time to write this amazing review. Nkonzi certainly is a very special place. We do love our secluded little corner of South Luangwa. It really does make me feel proud that the experience you are describing is exactly what we always wanted to deliver at Nkonzi. It is wonderful to know that we are able to share our love and passion for the Luangwa with our guests. As ever, we are very much looking forward to welcoming you again later this year! Gavin
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Pathfinder325581 wrote a review Jun 2022
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We have just returned from nkonzi camp luangwa Zambia having spent 4 nights there. The safari experience was incredible, the morning and evening drives outstanding and the wildlife experiences were 5 star. From wild dogs to lions and leopards up trees porcupines and various bird life to walking treks in the bush with ismail out security ranger who kept us safe and at ease all the time. Gavin and his team of hard working and lovely employees were amazing. The tent s are perfect and we slept well at night. The food was varied and plentiful. We had breakfast on the river bed in the morning, a evening meal on the river bed under the African sky which was so romantic and a full day out in the bush with a wonderful picnic under a majestic tree which was a lovely surprise. On our last day we had a bush break fast of sausage and bacon on a game drive out on the remote plain exhilarating!! Thank you Gavin and your fantastic team for giving us a memorable stay. We can’t wait to revisit and highly recommend this camp. 4 days was not enough we felt so sad to leave😞 if you are looking for an authentic African safari with a great guide and fantastic wildlife sightseeing look no further than Nkonzi
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Date of stay: June 2022Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
boxermom2014 wrote a review Jul 2022
Louisville, Kentucky
5.0 of 5 bubbles
My husband and I spent 4 nights at Nkonzi in July 2022 and it was difficult to leave. Everyone was so attentive, from owner/guide Gavin and spotter Dixon who made every effort to show us as many animals and birds as possible, to Justin the ranger who kept us safe on walks, to Jacob and the kitchen crew who fed is delicious meals. Enjoyed breakfast each morning in the riverbed and a lovely BBQ the night before we left. We learned so much about the plants and animals and I was able to spend hours doing what I love best - taking pictures! Best of all to Nkonzi Camp - we hope to one day return. Brad and Aimee (USA)
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Date of stay: July 2022
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Brian L wrote a review Oct 2023
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nkonzi isn’t a luxury camp but it is an excellent bush camp out in the South Luangwa National Park. The camp is remote and we saw very few Safari Vehicles near the camp. The camp is clean and comfortable. The tents are quite spacious with beds which are either double or twin beds. There is lighting in the tents provided by solar panels and batteries. The staff are really first rate and are attentive to the needs of the guests. Food is interesting, certainly not African, but often based on Italian cuisine.,
The drivers and guides are also excellent, with a good knowledge of the natural environment. They also know where the animals are to be found. For birders they have a good ear and can find and identify birds by their calls, essential in the woodlands.
My wife and I really enjoyed the week we spent at Nkonzi Camp. I would certainly recommend it to anyone looking to experience the environment.
From the camp we had a choice of walking or driving safaris in the early morning before it gets too hot and then a driving safari at 16:00, out until after dark.
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Date of stay: September 2023Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Tapiwa Mayuni wrote a review Nov 2023
Lilongwe, Malawi
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nkonzi Safari Camp, located in the South Luangwa National Park, is a testament to the legendary walking safari guide Gavin Opie's passion for the wild. This neat little camp, owned by Gavin himself, exudes authenticity and charm. Bev, the gracious host, ensures a warm and accommodating atmosphere, while Jacob, the wonderful barman, attends to every need with a friendly touch.

The camp, a true gem in the bush, embraces the essence of a no-frills, authentic safari experience. The spacious safari tents, each equipped with outdoor bathrooms, offer a perfect blend of comfort and immersion in nature. Nkonzi Safari Camp, under Gavin's guidance, provides a genuine and unforgettable taste of the untamed beauty of South Luangwa.
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Date of stay: October 2023
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled on business
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
David N wrote a review Oct 2022
Pershore, United Kingdom
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nkonzi was the first stop in our trip to Zambia, planned before Covid and arranged by Tracey from African Travel Resource,. She listened to us and made sure the trip was what we wanted and she didn’t disappoint. This is a lovely simple, comfortable, genuine bush camp and Gavin Opie was a great host and guide. The staff made every effort to make us comfortable and Gavin went out of his way to get us the experiences we wanted and more. Lots of highlights with a couple being a two year old leopard in the middle of the road during a night drive and a painted dog hunt on the dry river bed outside the camp as we were having our early morning pre-drive breakfast (we left late!!). Thank you for a brilliant start to our trip.
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Date of stay: August 2022
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
SP62 wrote a review Oct 2023
Alnwick, United Kingdom
5.0 of 5 bubbles
My husband and I were part of a NatureTrek Group who spent a week at this remote bush camp. Gavin, Bev and their team could not have been more welcoming and accommodating - nothing was too much for them. The bedrooms and bush shower were exactly as we were expecting and all the food was both plentiful and excellent.
The combination of bush walks, nightdrives and game drives worked well with unsurpassed views of all the key species. As well as a leopard mother and cub we had a classic leopard in tree encounter and excellent sightings of lions and wild dogs. Rarer species included a serval and porcupine.
We had some close encounters with an elderly female lion whilst on foot and some feisty elephants during the game drives but we always felt very safe.
We also had many good bird sightings including eagles and kingfishers.
Overall, if you want to stay in a remote bush camp and enjoy wildlife sightings largely to yourself and can manage without air conditioning, then I can’t recommend Nkonzi Camp highly enough!
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Date of stay: September 2023
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Mark U wrote a review Jul 2022
Spalding, United Kingdom
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Our second stop on our first safari and what a fantastic camp. Gavin, Isaiah and Moses gave us so many great experiences and sightings - from leopards in a tree to stick insects!! Bev and the guys in the camp took excellent care of us and gave us wonderful meals in between our drives and walks. An outstanding destination.
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Date of stay: June 2022Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Blair S wrote a tip 05 Jul
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Sit back and let the excellent staff give you a real Africa experience."
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LOCATION
ZambiaSouth Luangwa National Park
NUMBER OF ROOMS
5
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NKONZI CAMP - GAVIN OPIE SAFARIS - Lodge Reviews (South Luangwa National Park, Zambia)

Frequently Asked Questions about Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris
What are some of the property amenities at Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free breakfast, a lounge, and free parking.
What food & drink options are available at Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
Does Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris have airport transportation?
Yes, Nkonzi Camp - Gavin Opie Safaris offers airport transportation for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
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