With the opening of Time + Tide’s new King Lewanika Lodge, Zambia is quickly emerging as a premier safari destination that offers a worthy alternative to the crowded and tightly controlled game drives of the more popular Serengeti. Developed in partnership with African Parks (a conservation nonprofit that works closely with the Zambian Department of National Parks and Wildlife), Lewanika is the only permanent lodge in the Western Provence’s Liuwa Plain National Park. The lodge, along with ProFlight’s first-ever direct flights from bustling Lusaka to Kalabo (located on the southern edge of the park), is helping to make the remote area, which is home to the second largest wildebeest migration on the continent, a must-see destination.
Opened April 1, King Lewanika sleeps just 15 guests in six one- and two-bedroom tents (from $1,070 per person, all-inclusive), complete with expansive decks that offer panoramic views over the region’s endless grassy floodplains. Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens—revered for their work at top African resorts like North Island in the Seychelles and Lewanika’s sister property Chinzombo— handled the design, outfitting the tents with clean and modern furnishings that keep the focus on the property’s remote location. Although the tent’s leather and canvas accents are meant to call to mind old-world safaris, 21st-century conservationism is at work behind the scenes: The lodge is entirely solar-powered, and built using such sustainable materials as grass, thatch, and recycled composite.
Of course, the wildlife of pristine Liuwa Plain is never far away. The park—which was designated a game reserve in the 1880s by the native Lozi tribe leader King Lewanika—is one of Africa’s first conservation areas. In addition to offering unparalleled access to the wildebeest migration, it gives guests the opportunity to sight lions, cheetahs, zebras, buffalo, and other species on intimate and uncrowded game drives. (timeandtideafrica.com)