North Luangwa National Park, Luangwa Valley, Zambia
At a Glance
Tafika's sister-camp in the wild North Luangwa National Park
In the heat of the day cool yourself in the clear, shallow Mwaleshi River
Exciting walking guaranteed; lion and leopard often spotted
Game drives also available but walking is the highlight here
Superb guiding from Tafika's team of guides
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
During the green season, Mwaleshi is closed– as North Luangwa is very difficult to access this time of year.
Zambia has a moderate to sub-tropical climate with three distinct seasons: from November to March is the Emerald, or the rainy season, April to July is Zambia's winter, when the weather is cool and dry, and August to October is summer, when the weather is hot and dry. In terms of game-viewing, the drier months, meaning a higher concentration of game at the permanent water sources, are a superb time to visit.
To start planning your vacation to Mwaleshi Camp
The wilder little sister of South Luangwa, North Luangwa appeals to safari aficionados who like to get out of the vehicle and explore. Mwaleshi Camp, remote and rustic, is the perfect base from which to experience this wild corner of Zambia.
Mwaleshi is a superb, intimate little camp, set on the banks of the Mwaleshi River in the heart of the North Luangwa National Park. The camp offers the ultimate safari for those seeking a pure and remote wilderness experience. Whether you want to track large mammals, from elephant to the endemic Cookson’s wildebeest, or identify some of the 350 bird species recorded, at Mwaleshi you will be in the company of people who know and love this area.
The North Luangwa National Park is bordered on the east by the Luangwa River and on the west by the Muchinga escarpment, and stretches for 4,600 km sq. It is criss-crossed by a number of tributary rivers which eventually trickle into the Luangwa. The Mwaleshi river is the lifeblood of the park; streaming down from the escarpment in a number of waterfalls (which can be visited on foot) the river weaves its way through the park. During the dry season, the river recedes, leaving a number of pools along the way which attract large numbers of game. The vegetation in the park is varied, including acacia thickets, open savannah grasslands, mopane woodland and riverine forest. In contrast to South Luangwa, the North Luangwa is wild and untouched, with large herds of elephant, enormous herds of buffalo (sometimes seven hundred or more strong), and a good population of lion.
Mwaleshi Camp has just four reed and thatch chalets, each spread out along the banks of the Mwaleshi River. A thatched main area holds a small library of bird and mammal books and down on the riverbank is the camp fire, surrounded by chairs - this is where guests will meet before their morning activities and for evening drinks as the night falls. Activities here focus on walking safaris; exploring the wild bush with your expert guide and scout.
Mwaleshi Camp works perfectly in combination with its sister-camp, Tafika, in Zambia's South Luangwa National Park, to give a wonderful introduction to both North and South Luangwa.
The principal activity during your stay at Mwaleshi Camp will be walking safaris. Accompanied by an experienced guide and an armed national park scout, you will explorethe untouched North Luangwa Park. The availability of a vehicle means that you can explore more areas and areas further afield as a driver will drop you off and pick you up. During your safari you will be able to spot some of Africa's finest game and gain an understanding of life in the bush.
Anna Devereux Baker (Staff)
For those safari aficionados wishing for a bit of adventure, Mwaleshi is the place to come - the wild North Luangwa is packed with game including some very confident lions, a great number of elephant and hundred-strong herds of buffalo. It's an exciting park to explore on foot, accompanied by your expert guide. Walks criss-cross the shallow, perennial Mwaleshi River, refreshing and cool in the heat of the dry season. Mwaleshi has it all - a tiny, remote little bushcamp, lit by spirit lamps at night, and right in the middle of lion country - expect to hear lions calling at night!
Game Drives in the South Luangwa
Game drives are the most common way of exploring the African bush. A vehicle allows you to cover distance quickly and comfortably and offers visitors the best opportunity of getting very close to wildlife in a safe and controlled way.
Green Season Game Drives
The Green Season, Rainy Season, Emerald Season, Secret Season - what ever you decide to call it, this is a beautiful time of year to be on safari. Activities are rarely disrupted by weather and the bush is full of life.
If you get the opportunity to head out after sunset you should take it. The bush transforms under the cover of darkness as the nocturnal wildlife gets going. Using a spotlight your guide will scan the bush for eye-shine picking out some great action.
Location & directions
North Luangwa National Park, Luangwa Valley, Zambia
Mwaleshi Camp, located in the remote North Luangwa National Park, is situated 10km from the Mwaleshi and Luangwa river confluence.
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