Where to stay
There are two possible places to stay on the estate; both are very different:Shiwa Ng'andu Manor House
(5 two-person rooms) P.O. Box 1, Shiwa Ng'andu, Mpika. Tel/fax: +260 4 370134; email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com; www.shiwangandu.com
Charlie and Jo at the manor house accept paying house guests, and make engaging and energetic hosts. Currently there are five rooms which have been refurbished to include en-suite bathrooms. All have original hardwood furnishings and paintings, and fireplaces in which fires are lit every night. The bathrooms have huge old metal baths rather than modern showers… but are very comfortable and often quite grand. It's very much like staying in an English stately home in Africa – which you'll realise isn't a contradiction in terms when you visit.
The food is usually simple farm fare, served with style. Jo and Charlie are generally very generous with the time that they give to their guests – but there is also a house manager and professional guide to take you around the estate. Your days are very full, with plenty of activities – you can choose what you would like to do from the menu of possibilities (pretty much as below).
Most people come to Zambia on safari – and then wonder about adding on Shiwa as an afterthought. That's sad, as I found my last stay here to be among the most interesting and engaging few days that I've spent anywhere in Zambia – a view backed up by the visitors that I've sent here since. If you do come, then allow at least three or four nights here; any less would be far too frustrating for you!Kapishya Hot Springs
(6 twin chalets and a campsite) email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The solid thatched chalets have mosquito-netted windows and are furnished inside with reed mats, comfortable beds and shelves. They have en-suite flush toilets and nice large showers and wash basins – plus individual mosquito nets for the beds. One of the chalets is double-storey, and particularly spacious and lovely! The chalets are all clean and comfortable; Kapishya's improved a lot in recent years! Nearby, the grassy campsite has soft earth that's easy on tent pegs, good hot showers (fed from a new water-tank), and clean flushing toilets. If you just turn up here then bring your own food, otherwise meals can be provided if you request them in advance.
Kapishya Springs themselves are a great attraction, but if you stay here then you can also organise most of the activities on the estate for a cost. Kapisha combines well with a visit to Buffalo Camp in North Luangwa National Park, as Mark Harvey runs both operations. Mark's a mine of local information – as well as a top local guide – and with lots of advance notice, it's sometimes possible to pre-arrange vehicle transfers between here and Buffalo Camp.
Whilst you're here most of the activities mentioned below are available – and are priced individually depending on exactly what you want to do. Alternatively, there are some lovely sites to explore near here yourself – see the section on waterfalls, below.