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  • Writer's pictureAbby

Nsobe Game Camp

Updated: Feb 18, 2020


Nsobe Game Camp Travel Guide

I wrote this blog post in April 2018 at the end of Term 2! This week is my midterm break in February (halfway through term 2) and it turns out I started off this break at Nsobe, as well! So I thought it would be fun to add on and re-post. I've updated it to share more of what Nsobe has to offer as a travel guide. The original post was "Starting off break the right way..." which I would say still rings true for this break! Lovely staycation is happening for my budget travel plans this week.




April 2018

Simba School Schedule: why so many breaks?

Term 2 ended on Thursday and our school takes an end of term holiday for two weeks before we start again for Term 3! Most Zambian schools take a whole month after each term (they run by 3 months on 1 month off model).


Simba only takes 2 weeks at this time because for the August holiday we have 5-6 weeks off (when all the other schools just have 4 weeks off). This follows the UK summer. It's still nothing like going all year and then having a LONG american summer, but it is great to have more breaks spaced out during the school year and to have one break that is a little longer than the rest!


Okay, now you know a little more about how our school vacations work...so now I can't wait to tell you all about Nsobe!


Nsobe: what does it has to offer?

We started off the break right with a fun day trip to Nsobe Game Park! I've been there about 5 times now but I still love it. It's less than an hour from Ndola and the roads aren't terrible to get there. They have smaller game animals for the game drive, a reptile park, fishing, recently added back canoeing, bar and restaurant, swimming pool, spa, camping sites and a variety of chalets, houses and such accommodations.



Accommodation

My favorite accommodation there is the Woodland Park View which is set high above the trees and is a total outdoor adventure spot. You have to climb a rocky hill to get there! (There are not many hiking places in Ndola so that's out of the norm for us here.) It's great for romantic getaways as the package includes candle lit dinner with a bottle of wine, breakfast and any other room service all brought up for you! The shower and toilet are outside so you can shower with the monkeys as they swing from the trees. If you go with a group of friends I have heard that the fisherman cabin is another secluded beautiful area but right on the water. There is also mukuyu camp at a different location on the same property. It is known for the scenery and game that come to feed and roam nearby. It is said to be an amazing experience by many, though I've never been. Camping is another fun option if you are that adventurous!



Recommended time of year to travel

Nsobe is great year round but the rainy season is not as ideal as other times. The gardens are not as manicured due to the heavy rain fall. The road isn't as good this time of year but still passable in a small car. Swimming is still available but would be much better from April - May or August - November. Rainy season is more of the off season so if you are looking for a quiet getaway it would be enjoyable. If you're more interested in a lively atmosphere, summer months September - November are recommended.


Sunset on the lake, April 2018

Swimming

The 2018 Nsobe trip, I went with my friend April and we met another group of friends there. We jumped in the pool and swam with our favorite poolside drink: mimosas.


All of the other times I have been there it didn't feel warm enough to swim or I went with groups where no one else was swimming. But it really is a great pool if the weather agrees!


Bush Spa

The spa at Nsobe is my personal favorite part! My cousin Kimberly and I discovered it in August 2017 and had a fantastic experience. I've had both amazing and mediocre bush spa experiences here but overall...I haven't found a better masseuse at a better price in a more peaceful and beautiful location. April and I both tried out the hot stone massage. The great thing about having any spa treatment, is the access to a private spa deck, sauna and shower included in the experience. While April had her massage, I spent time on the spa deck looking out and appreciating nature, reflecting on my time and life in Zambia, stretching, deep breathing and trying out some balancing and yoga/dance type things. It was so relaxing and rejuvenating!


Spa deck at Nsobe Bush Spa in February 2020 (during rainy season so majority of the private deck is covered).

Cultural experience

My favorite/funny part of this massage was when the masseuse goes, "Ok, now I'm going to massage your blest" It sounded like she was saying "You're blessed" but of course I knew she was saying "breast" meaning chest...but also meaning breasts!

L and R bemba problems, I explain more about this in my {old} flied lice post here!


Africa is so different to other parts of the world in the way they value and respect different parts of the body. In my experiences with massages in the states and after some brief research on Swedish massage method, it's very common to include glute massage in a full body massage. However, it is uncommon to massage the chest unless it is just below the neck on a few pressure points.


Here is the total opposite! She was careful to not get too close to the glutes. And when she said it was time for the blest, she meant it! No shame or awkwardness just a very matter of fact massaging of the whole chest.


View from the massage room of the bush spa.

Snake House

There are multiple species of snakes all over the game camp that are caught and brought to the snake house for viewing and learning. The guide catches all of them himself! He told us all about growing up with his dad teaching him to catch snakes and extract venom to sell for antivenom medicine. He is so passionate about his job and really gives a wonderful tour.

Along with the many types of snakes, there is one crocodile about 20 years old and one baby crocodile that you can touch and hold. Many of the snakes are safe to hold if you're brave enough!



Game Drive

They have lots of species of impala / antelope, many birds, along with giraffes and zebra. The giraffes and zebra are not always spotted because the land is extensive and they are free to roam. There are also lots of monkeys on the property that can be seen apart from the game drive as well as during.

The tour takes about 1.5 hours but they can do a quicker tour upon request.

They allow both personal vehicles or provision of a vehicle and driver. For your own vehicle it's about k100 or k60 per person on their tour trucks. There is also an option for a bicycle tour!



Canoeing

Canoeing has recently be added again to the available activities! The canoe fits 3 people and costs k100 for a few hours of rental. It looks beautiful though I have not had a chance to go since they have brought it back.



Braii

No question about it, bringing your own food and grilling is pretty much the best way to do it! But they do have a yummy and affordable restaurant if that is preferred.


April 2018 Trip to Nsobe

Budget & Backpackers

This is one of the (if not THE) most affordable safari type experience in Zambia. It's definitely more low key with no big game, but it still provides a Zambian bush experience with gorgeous scenery, different african animals and a variety of activities. It's a great day or overnight trip from Ndola/the Copperbelt. It is a nature location that is really open to all by the way it is affordable, accessible and location friendly. The entrance fee has stayed at a low price and most activities are very affordable. Accommodation is mid range but still at a lower rate than other similar locations.


Booking

To learn more about Nsobe and to book, check out their website here or call +26021 2671008. It's best to book in advance for overnight trips. They do have free cancellation. Day visits do not require booking unless it is a large group.


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