At a Glance
This high-end camp, which boasts an unrivaled location in the game-rich Hwange National Park, has put Zimbabwe on the map as a luxury safari destination.
- The game viewing, which can be done from the comfort of a Land Rover or, for those daring enough, on foot
- The view from each of the nine tents
- The family suite, so those with younger children can stay all together
Opened in 2015, the luxurious Linkwasha Safari Lodge sits in a private concession so rich with game that during my recent visit we saw, in our first 24 hours, what others would be lucky to see in two weeks. Some of the highlights were catching a pregnant hippo out of the water; taking a bush walk into a breeding herd of elephants with the guide who is ranked third in all of Africa; watching a cheetah take down a waterbuck as we sat at lunch; and spending more than an hour observing a mother lion and her cubs at close range. We even saw a rare leopard tortoise and a shooting star by the Southern Cross.
Sitting on grassy plains that resemble those in East Africa, the nine-tent camp features lounge, dining and library tents that are surrounded by wide decks with a small infinity pool and a fire pit that is perfect for post-dinner chats or cocktails. The décor within the army green tents exemplifies 21st-century safari chic. Comfy couches mix with modern leather safari chairs and copper drum tables, while local crafts like woven baskets and woodcarvings have been given a contemporary twist. In the dining tents, the pendant lights have shades that resemble overturned woven palm baskets with unfinished edges and placemats hand-beaded by local tribeswomen. In the guest tents, raffia rugs cover the wooden floors and beds are draped with mosquito nets, but there’s a sleek edge to the interiors and even the deck furniture that faces the pan and its endless parade of wildlife.
Despite the fact that Linkwasha is newer than some of the more established camps in Africa, the old hands in charge make guests feel welcomed into a family. If Linkwasha is the sign of what is to come in Zimbabwe tourism, then Botswana is in for some serious competition, and at a much better price.
Who Should Stay
Linkwasha is Zimbabwe’s most pampering camp, and thanks to its relatively accessible price point for a safari lodge, it is suitable for all travelers.
Written by Melissa Biggs Bradley