After driving around for several hours in pitch blackness, suddenly, we were bathed in the lights that signaled the end of our first night drive through Hwange National Park. As our jeep came to a stop, we could see that a party was waiting to greet us.
Tracey, Cynthia, Jeremy and Godfrey from Makalolo Plains welcomed us with warm towels and glasses of brandy and ushered us into the main part of the camp.
We needed them. After the sun dropped, a biting cold enveloped us. The breeze that felt balmy and welcoming during the early afternoon and evening lashed at our faces and hands. We felt like blocks of ice by the time we reached the camp.
In laying out the camp rules, Cynthia warned us that we had to be escorted, especially at nights, by someone from camp, and they’re always armed with a rifle – a reminder that we were surrounded by dangerous animals.
The word camp usually conjures up images of roughing it, of being without our usual comforts. That’s not the case at Makalolo Plains.
Located within Hwange, Makalolo’s main building houses a pub, reception area, lounge, patio and dining room. The patio runs the length of the main building. At the end of the patio is a small pool. There’s also a sitting area where at night guests trade stories of their day’s activities around a fire that provides warmth as well as illumination. There’s no electricity at Makalolo.
Individual luxury tents that sit on raised decks are connected to each other and the main building by a boardwalk. We had the family tent which was spacious enough to sleep up to 4 adults comfortably. It had two full bathrooms en-suite plus an outdoor shower. Unfortunately, it was too cold at nights when we returned from game drives to enjoy it.
Meals at Makalolo Plains
As with everything else at Makalolo Plains, we could tell that a lot of attention was paid to preparing and presenting our meals. Breakfast was usually served on the patio.
On our second day, a lasagna lunch was served al fresco.
At 8:00 p.m., a drumbeat calls everyone to a buffet-style dinner where the women are served first.
Dinner our first night was roast beef with mushroom sauce, carrots, snap peas, roasted potatoes and wine.
Each time we went on a game drive, Godfrey would pull out a small table with snacks and beverages.
Tracey, Godfrey and Cynthia, part of the team at Makalolo Plains that made our stay memorable.
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