Royal Chundu Zambezi River Lodge
Victoria Falls Zambia
Royal Chundu, the "meeting place of the Chief", is a destination of absolute solitude and unspoiled beauty.
This breathtaking lodge is situated on the banks of the mighty Zambezi River, overlooking the majestic river and surrounding bushveld. Incredibly, Royal Chundu is positioned on a piece of untamed Africa with rapids protecting it up and downstream. The sights and sounds of Africa serve to invigorate the senses and enhance the blissful solitude.
Spacious suites and lounging areas masterfully blend colonial elegance and African charm, offering 10 villas on the mainland on the banks of the Zambezi and 4 private suites on the Katombora Island.
River Lodge Chalets
River Lodge is the main hub at Royal Chundu and the larger of the two lodges. There are 10 magnificent and spacious river-front suites at River Lodge. The entire lodge looks out onto the mighty Zambezi creating a spectacular and dramatic setting with the Matetsi Private Game Reserve on the opposite side of the river. Each suite has a double shower, air-conditioning, a fan, mosquito nets, a king-size bed and a generous deck with excellent views of the surroundings.
Island Lodge Suites
Island Lodge is the more private and exclusive of the two lodges at Royal Chundu. Located on Katambura private island, the lodge is surrounded by gentle river channels and dotted with Baobabs and two thousand year old Jackalberry trees. There are four magnificent villas at Island Lodge. Each villa has a spectacular deck, a large open-air bath, a glass-walled double shower as well as air-conditioning, a fan, mosquito net and a king-size, extra-length bed.
Activities & features:
We have 15 kms of private Zambezi to explore and enjoy.
Cruise on the river with snacks and drinks, watch the sun go down and try not fill up your camera's memory with the first sunset. There will be more!
You can cast a line and see what bites (strictly catch and release).
Watch crocodiles slip off the banks as you approach and listen to the snorting hippos. In the drier months the skipper will anchor near “Ellie Corner” where you can spot herds of elephants as they drink, play and bathe on the river’s edge nearby. You could also be lucky enough to see baboon, impala, warthog and buffalo.
The birding is sublime.
Royal Chundu is renowned for its superb fly fishing. Our unstressed waters vary from virgin island eddies and shallow rapids to deep flowing channels which boast the notoriously powerful Tiger Fish, numerous species of Bream and the prized Upper Zambezi Yellow Fish.
One of the biggest celebrations in Africa, the Parrot Fish Run, occurs from June to August every year. It sees millions of fish swimming for miles down the Zambezi as they get caught in the main stream. Local fishermen use hand-woven reed and palm leaf baskets to catch the fish.
Royal Chundu offers a variety of different guided fishing options - for the expert and novice alike. We provide the tackle and rods.
We are strictly catch-and-release. Unless the chefs need something for dinner...
Signature Canoe Trip with a Picnic
As an homage to our family’s personal history on the Zambezi River, we offer picnics along the banks of the river just as our family had picnics in the past: Persian carpets, hammocks, Pimms upon arrival, picnic tables and sumptuous tapas lunches or breakfasts which will find you restoring your soul while listening to the rapids coursing past you.
Start with a leisurely paddle down the Zambezi to our secret picnic spot on an island - and enjoy a truly indulgent and creative meal on the banks of the river. Cocktails, homemade cordials, a gin bar... It's romantic, fun and offers up delicious flavours.
You will go over some very gentle rapids - and you will get wet! You can choose to paddle (as little or much as you want), or just sit back and let the guides do all the work.
A hat and sunscreen are essential!
Village Walk and Gardens Tour
This warm, authentic activity is highly recommended. Royal Chundu is 100% Zambian owned and run. We donate seeds to anyone who wishes to grow food and we buy their surplus at market rates - which means most of our produce is sourced within 4 kms of the Lodge.
Your guide, who is villager, is well versed in all the village traditions and customs, and is able to show which plants and herbs are used in traditional medicine, how to make cooking oil, how to make soap and other necessities.
You travel by boat to the village, walk around with your local guide (while villagers go about their normal lives), stop off at a small market - and then head back to the Lodge.
Katombora Island Walk
Step off the boat onto our wild islet downstream from River Lodge and discover this untamed microcosm of nature for yourself. A guided walk past python creepers, 23 baobabs, and 2,000-year-old jackalberry trees. Our experienced guides will share their knowledge with you about the traditional and medicinal uses of the flora you will come across on the island. Untainted by development or animals, beside the odd baboon, this area represents the perfect ecosystem at play.
Our guides have grown up on the banks of the Zambezi. They know the river’s depths and inhabitants like the path that winds from their homes to the water itself. The calls of the African fish eagle and the sounds of the bleating-warbler have formed the background music of their childhoods.
On a cruise down the Zambezi, our guides will impart their knowledge of nature with you, pointing out the range of birdlife waiting to be sought out. Spot the finchlarks and flufftails tempting birdwatchers from the riverbank trees or the jacanas and kingfishers normally found beside hippos and crocodiles in the shallower reaches.
Choose from a morning, late afternoon (sunset), nighttime, or full-day birding safari, tailored to your individual requirements. The shorter safaris last approximately two-and-a-half hours.
Livingstone: Heli Flight
What better way to see the magical winding Zambezi River and the crashing of the Victoria Falls than from above in a helicopter?
You can enjoy a riveting helicopter flight over the Falls (the trip lasts approximately 12 minutes) or fly over the Falls, gorge and game park (for about 25 minutes). Look out for the wildlife and other sights below. You’re going to want your camera with you on this trip!