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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 15 November 2018

5 new wilderness retreats in Africa 

Rwanda, Namibia and Zimbabwe offer several new options for design-conscious and environmentally minded travellers

The new One&Only Nyungwe House in Rwanda. 
The new One&Only Nyungwe House in Rwanda. 

One&Only Nyungwe House, Rwanda

In Gisakura, western Rwanda, One&Only has opened a new 23-room “nature resort” on a working tea plantation near the mountain rainforest of Nyungwe National Park. One&Only Nyungwe House offers nature hikes and chimpanzee viewing. Rooms cost from US$1,105 (Dh4,059) per night, including taxes. Next year, the company will open One&Only Gorilla’s Nest in the north of the country.

Shipwreck Lodge and Serra Cafema Camp, Namibia

Shipwreck Lodge, Namibia. Shawn van Eeden
Shipwreck Lodge, Namibia. Shawn van Eeden

On Namibia’s wild Skeleton Coast, the 10 shipwreck-shaped chalets of Shipwreck Lodge sit between vast sand dunes and the Atlantic Ocean. Activities include seal watching, exploring abandoned diamond mines and shipwrecks, 4x4 trips along the Hoarusib River and picnics on the beach. The property is part of a communal conservancy to safeguard local people, wildlife and the environment. Rooms cost from $683 (Dh2,509) per night, with taxes.

Serra Cafema Camp in north-west Namibia. 
Serra Cafema Camp in north-west Namibia. 

In the extreme north-west of the country, on the Kunene River in Hartmann’s Valley and only accessible by plane, is Serra Cafema Camp, reopened after an “environmentally sensitive rebuild”. The property is completely solar-powered and operates as a joint venture with the local Himba tribe, one of the last semi-nomadic peoples on Earth. Rooms cost from 8,905 South African rand (Dh2,299) per person, per night.

Nyamatusi Camp and Chikwenya, Zimbabwe

Nyamatusi Camp, Zimbabwe. 
Nyamatusi Camp, Zimbabwe. 

Deep in Mana Pools National Park in northern Zimbabwe, in the Nyamatusi Wilderness Concession, Nyamatusi Camp consists of six luxury tented riverside suites with indoor/outdoor showers, bathtubs, private plunge pools and air conditioning. Activities include game drives, walking and kayak safaris, and fishing. Suites cost from $620 (Dh2,277) per night, including taxes. For more information, visit www.africanbushcamps.com.

Also in the 1.7-million-hectare Mana Pools park, and also offering six tents, is Wilderness Safaris’ Chikwenya Camp, at the confluence of the Sapi and Zambezi rivers. The area offers large concentrations of buffalo and elephants, while lions, wild dogs, leopards, cheetahs, vervet monkeys and hippos are also often sighted. Rooms cost from $1,288 (Dh4,731) per person, per night, all inclusive. For more information, visit www.wilderness-safaris.com.

Chickwenya Lodge, Zimbabwe. 
Chickwenya Lodge, Zimbabwe. 

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Read more:

The greatest escape: a Namibian road safari

Hotel Insider: Roho Ya Selous, Tanzania

Hotel Insider: Oyster Bay, Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

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