Sapi Concession, Mana Pools National Park
Sapi Explorers Camp, located along the Zambezi River in the 292,000 acre private Sapi Concession, creates a safari experience reminiscent of the old African explorers with a romance of yester-year, whilst ensuring that adventure and discovery are essentially part of the journey. This amazing wildlife sanctuary, along with the neighboring Mana Pools National Park, now comprise over 833,000 acres of prime protected wilderness estate, with the Sapi Reserve, today being recognized as one of the finest destinations in Africa. Collectively they form part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site as well as a core area of the middle-Zambezi biosphere reserve. The camp is perfectly located along the Zambezi River, the perfect base from which to explore the Sapi Reserve, Mana Pools and the Zambezi River. With space for just twelve guests in five Explorers-style tents each with en-suite bathroom facilities including bucket shower and flush toilet, this is the Africa of old. Watch wildlife congregate along the Zambezi River to drink and marvel at the setting of the African sun through the trees. The safari experiences on offer will certainly appeal to any safari guest who is looking to truly enjoy and…
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partake in the excitement of wildlife viewing game drives, boating and canoeing or tracking and exploring the interior of the private reserve, being one of Africa’s remote wilderness areas. Whilst you traverse the diverse terrain of the Sapi Reserve, discover the legendary Mtawatawa pan, encounter some of Africa’s largest wildlife species by vehicle or on foot. The opportunity to view Africa’s animals and birdlife with the water activities on offer including canoeing or boating is special indeed. 

The African Rift is a geological zone where continental plates in Eastern Africa have developed a tectonic plate boundary. The African Plate is in the process of dividing into new tectonic plates, resulting in the Zambezi escarpment. The geology of the Middle Zambezi Valley and by association, the Sapi Reserve, correlates with the Jurassic and Triassic periods in the region of 190 to 200 million years old. Along the boundary of the Sapi Reserve, and within Chewore South, lies a number of dinosaur footprints, and on the south eastern side of the Sapi Reserve are petrified wood forests. 

This complex and yet magnificent landscape has special significance for its landscape and wildlife photographic tourism. The Zambezi River itself is wide and meandering, streaked with smaller water channels between the islands and dappled with the shapes of hippo, elephants, crocodiles and other wildlife wading in the shallows. From the Zimbabwean side, the high escarpment mountains of Zambia form a dramatic backdrop to the idyllic river scenery. 

Extending for an estimated thirty miles from the Zambezi escarpment, through the flat floor of the Zambezi Valley and down to the river itself, the terrain transforms from rocky mountainous outcrops, to thick Jesse bush vegetation. Amidst large dry river beds, year-round as well as seasonal natural springs and waterholes are found along with a system of alluvial river terraces which flank the river frontage. This narrow strip of fertile land supports mature indigenous woodlands of winter thorn and apple ring acacia, mahogany, ebony and fig trees. The Jesse scrub and dry deciduous lowland forest, botanically classified as Xylia torreana dry forest, are habitats which have been identified as a conservation priority owing to their small areas and high biodiversity. 

Renowned for its unique “blue hue” lighting as sunlight filters through the shady glades, large concentrations of wildlife, particularly in the dry season, rest and feed beneath the trees. It is for these reasons that the area has become a photographer’s delight. In addition, the middle Zambezi is listed as an important staging post for migratory birds and an estimated 380 bird species have been recorded making this an exceptional option for birding safaris. Specialties include Shelly’s sunbird, Shelly’s francolin, rock pratincole, African skimmer, racket-tail roller, Arnott’s chat, white breasted sunbird, broad-tailed paradise-wydah, and Pel’s fishing owl amongst others. 

Most large mammals synonymous with an African safari occur in the region. Elephant are numerous and the majority shelter in the Jesse during daylight hours and tend to wander down to the river during late afternoons and overnight. The Sapi Reserve is rich in wild ungulates, with the most notable being buffalo, eland, kudu, zebra, waterbuck, impala, duiker, bushbuck and nyala. Specialties and rarely seen species include the Sharpes grysbok and Suni. 

All the apex predators are well represented. Lion populations are ever increasing and there is a plethora of spotted hyena. Wild dog are seen on the alluvial Jesse bush ecotone. Cheetah are rare but have been periodically recorded to date. 

Interestingly, the large slit faced bat (Nycteris Grandis) occurs along the Zambezi and is the only bat in Africa that eats fish and frogs. These bats have excellent eyesight and drop down on their prey from overhanging branches.


  • 4 luxurious tents with outdoor sitting areas
  • 1 two bedroomed family tent
  • En-suite bathroom with flush toilet, double basin and shower
  • Hot and cold running water
  • Fans in bedrooms
  • Main guest area includes a marquee canvas area with lounge and dining area
  • Outdoor fire pit
  • Situated on 292,000 acre private concession
  • Twice daily game drives
  • Canoeing and boating safaris
  • Walking safaris
  • All Inclusive: 3 meals daily, soft drinks, house wines, local brand spirits and beer, safari activities, laundry
  • Wi-Fi access in guest rooms
  • Solar power produces 24-hour 220v electricity
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