The moment we touched down onto the Jeki airstrip in Zambia, we knew our experience of Sausage Tree Camp would be one to remember.
Smiley staff directed us to our plush safari jeeps and we were promptly driven through the bush to the banks of the great Zambezi river.
We’d arrived in the middle of the day when the sun was at its hottest, so it was smiles all round when the ice cold Mosi beers were handed out! We were then promptly whizzed on a boat – James Bond style – past hippos and elephants playing in the water, to the jetty of Sausage Tree’s luxury camp.
I’d never experienced a hotel arrival quite like it!
Our visit to Sausage Tree Camp was the first safari I’d ever done and I can safely say that this five-star camp set the bar VERY high.
Once at the property, we received a lovely warm welcome by all the team and were immediately served another chilled drink and handed ice cold flannels. We then discussed our stay and all the activities that Sausage Tree Camp has to offer, with Yuri de Villiers. Yuri is a professional and passionate guide who has been working in the safari industry since 2009. He and his lovely wife Ashley manage the camp together and they welcomed us with warm hospitality throughout our whole stay.
As we were talking on the Sausage Tree’s gorgeous stilted decking, we couldn’t take our eyes off the spectacular views. The vast carpet of water was dappled with sunlight and herds of elephants were grazing amongst the reeds on a nearby island. It was just incredible.
Guests can enjoy all of their meals and drinks from the chic decking area and there’s a 25 metre swimming pool next to it which shares those unbeatable Zambezi views.
Perfect for a post-safari dip.
A bit about Sausage Tree Camp…
Sausage Tree Camp was first developed in the Lower Zambezi National Park more than 18 years ago and prides itself on offering a ‘truly classic African wildlife experience’.
That’s why it attracts genuine wildlife enthusiasts, birders, conservationists and guests in search of a really wild and off-grid escape.
With a capacity of just 16 guests at the camp, the experience here feels ultra-exclusive and completely serene.
You have your own private guide(s) and safari vehicle for the duration of your stay. And as you’re in Zambia (where the guiding is known to be the best in the world), you can guarantee your driver will have encyclopedic knowledge of Zambia’s native flora and fauna.
We loved spending time with our guide Alex. And when we weren’t discussing the spectacular birdlife, imitating the sound of hippos and getting excited about a family of porcupines…
… we were hearing about his love for Craig David!
But more about the spectacular safari experiences in a later post. Let me tell you about the tents.
Oh the tents…
The Kigelia Tent at Sausage Tree Camp…
You’ll find eight Bedouin-style tents at Sausage Tree Camp. Two of these are honeymoon suites and five of them are their signature tents suitable for couples. The Kigelia Suite – whuch we were very lucky to call our home for three days – is their larger two-bedroom tent, that’s perfect for groups or guests with families – or I guess couples who like to spread out!
The attention to detail in the Kigelia Suite is super impressive. On arrival, beds were sprinkled with the camp’s signature sausage tree pods and adorned with stylish cushions. If you’re prone to insect bites (as I am), you’ll also be relieved to know that they are also surrounded by elegant net curtains to keep those little beasts away. There are also bottles of Sausage Tree Camp insect repellent in the room, which actually smells quite nice!
The bathrooms are a dream. You’re treated to not one, but two rainforest-style showers and ‘his n hers’ sinks. There’s also a selection of Sausage Tree Camp bath products and a huge egg-shaped bath tub for a relaxing post-safari soak.
Each guest can make use of the same-day laundry facilities at no extra charge and you’ll find robes, slippers and an ample supply of soft towels. Your Muchinda (personal butler) will also come to your tent each night to do turn-down service.
Sausage Tree Camp welcomes children above the age of eight but if you have children who are younger, their adjacent sister property, Potato Bush Camp is a great option.
The Kigelia Suite was more than large enough for a family of four. The two bedrooms were separated by a large living area with a big leather sofa; coffee table scattered with gorgeous safari books and dining table for those who feel like dining in their tent.
Couples like us are also right at home with a fabulous plunge pool, sun loungers and your own private bar.
The views from your private decking area and plunge pool are incredible.
Sausage Tree Camp carries a strong eco-friendly philosophy. In fact, the tents themselves have been built with minimal carbon footprint and seem to blend seamlessly into the bush. They are also spread out across a large area, so that animals can freely roam.
That of course, means you must make sure you’re accompanied by a member of staff if you’re walking to your tent at night! We regularly walked past a group of cheeky monkeys on the way to our tent. And while we didn’t encounter any large animals in the middle of camp, there was a constant chorus of singing birds and snoring hippos which all adds to the magic of your stay here.
The food at Sausage Tree Camp
The food really is one of the highlights of staying at Sausage Tree. As with many safari camps, you will typically start with an early morning pre-safari breakfast from 5.30. You then enjoy delicious lunches from around 12.30 and a casual afternoon tea on the camp’s main deck, before your afternoon activity begins.
All of your food orders are taken in advance by your Muchinda and there are a few options as to where you dine. This includes by the pool, on the main decking with other guests, or in the privacy of your own tent.
I’m not usually an early bird but sitting with a cup of coffee at 6am, as we watched the elephants graze was a really special moment in our day.
Another highlight for me was the chicken pie we enjoyed for lunch shortly after our arrival. It was fresh, buttery and absolutely delicious. Their fresh bread is also divine.
From the delicious food and drink to the relaxed vibe, we loved everything about our stay at Sausage Tree Camp.
The staff here live and breathe the wildlife and are completely dedicated to what they do. It’s also home to a relaxed yet expertly-delivered level of service that’s present in every part of the guest experience. It was an incredible introduction to Zambia and I haven’t even got started on the wonderful experiences you can have here.
But I’ll have to tell you about that in another post!
Until next time x