A new riverfront lodge in Malawi offers guests a rare treat: 173,000 acres of untouched African wilderness all to themselves. Opened in July, the eight-chalet complex of Mkulumadzi—the only property in the Majete Wildlife Reserve—is 25-year-old Robin Pope Safaris’ second bush camp in Malawi, one of the safest and least-visited countries on the continent.
Mkulumadzi guests spend their days exploring Majete’s river valleys, waterfall-laced hills, and dense Miombo woodlands, which are dotted with eland, elephants, and black rhinos. Sunrise river trips showcase some of the rarest and most beautiful birds in Africa. One thing safari-goers will not see is another safari vehicle in the valleys or another boat on the river—something their counterparts in the Kruger and Serengeti national parks cannot claim.
Post-safari, guests gather in Mkulumadzi’s main lodge, which is open on all sides and includes a bar, dining area, viewing veranda, and lap pool that overlook a watering hole popular with hippopotamuses. Dinner is served in the lodge or at the guest chalets, which feature private verandas and front bedroom walls that fold away to let in the fresh air and river views. Mkulumadzi, +265.177.0540.60, www.mkulumadzi.com