Chichele: The Lowdown

Extraordinary Africa> Zambia> South Luangwa>Chichele Presidential Lodge

Chichele Lodge is a comfortable, luxury safari lodge near the main gate of the South Luangwa National Park.

What’s Chichele Lodge really like? Built in the 1970s, Chichele was designed as the South Luangwan retreat for the then president of Zambia. As such, it has bagged a fabulous location in the heart of the national park. These days, this slightly more “hotel-style” of lodge is a rarity amongst Zambia’s extremely wild and rustic bush camps, so we think Chichele is well suited to family safaris and people who don’t want to spend too much time roughing it.
Chichele has just ten suites, which are large and comfortable and, like the rest of the lodge, have a distinctive colonial feel. There are four-poster beds, roll-topped tubs, antique style furnishings, and- unusually for a safari lodge, but much welcome in the blazing heat of the Zambian summer- air-conditioning. Like the rooms, the main area of the lodge has a traditional feel to it with a few modern comforts. Lunches are served out on the verandah, there are manicured lawns around the swimming pool and glorious views out over the national park.

What can I do at Chichele Lodge? As the game viewing in this area is amongst the best in the South Luangwa, the main activity from Chichele is taking morning and afternoon game drives from the camp. Walking safaris– a Zambian speciality- are also on offer, though for safety reasons children will need to be over 12 in order to participate in the walking safaris. One thing we should mention is that Chichele lodge is particularly good with younger guests, making it a real favourite with us for family safaris. They’re good at arranging activities which are a bit more suited to younger safari-goers, like learning how to build camp fires and learning to follow animal tracks in the grounds of the lodge.

Giving back at Chichele: Chichele Lodge helps to support Uyoba Community School, helping to fund the building of 3 new classrooms, and providing new desks for the pupils. More recently they’ve helped to create a bicycle hire and repair shop, creating employment for the women who run it and affordable transport for the local community. During term time guests can visit the school, and afterwards take a bike tour of the village. If you have a little extra space in your luggage, Chichele is also part of the Pack for a Purpose programme.

Want to know more? Just

Ask the Africa Experts