John’s Camp is highly recommended for travellers seeking authentic accommodation in Mana Pools. All vehicle and walking safaris from John’s Camp are led by highly knowledgeable and experienced guides. They have a real passion for Mana Pools and are keen to ensure you get the best out of your stay in terms of wildlife sightings, big and small! Service throughout camp is superb, as the small size of the property guarantees exclusivity.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
Guests of the property tend to fly from Victoria Falls or Harare to Mana Main airstrip. At the airstrip, you are met by a camp guide, and the 45-minute drive to camp provides a good opportunity for your first vehicle safari here!
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES:
Once you have arrived at John’s, you can relax in the lounge area of the camp’s open-sided mess tent, which boasts comfy seating, an explorer’s chest functioning as a coffee table, and lovely views of the River Zambezi! The river is also visible from the dining area, where a long table is set out for communal meals. Often guests enjoy al fresco dining closer to the water, and the camp’s fire-pit serves as a fantastic space for socialising too.
Guest accommodation at John’s Camp consists of just five canvas tents, all either side of the mess tent on the Zambezi floodplain. As they are Meru in style, they are double layered – the outer layer extends over the inner layer to form a pleasant private veranda, where you can sit and observe the local wildlife. A zipped door leads inside the tent, and the interiors include either a double bed or twin beds, lighting above, a tea-and-coffee station, and large gauze windows. The washing facilities are at the back, through a flap – these comprise flush toilet, washbasin, and classic bucket shower! There’s also a canvas washbasin, on the veranda. And each tent can be set up as a triple, with the extra bed suitable for a child.
John’s Camp offers an enticing assortment of activities – game drives, walking safaris, fishing, sleep-outs, and village tours. Mana Pools is home to a wealth of mammals, birds, and more! Four of the Big Five are in residence – lion, leopard, elephant, and buffalo – as are other predators such as cheetah, hyena, and wild dog, in addition to herbivores including zebra, eland, impala, waterbuck, and warthog. Monkey and baboon are frequently spotted feasting on the fruit of acacias, while the hippo and croc count is the largest in all Zimbabwe!
Concentrations of feathery friends are impressive too – the park has over 350 species, and among the highlights for birders are southern carmine bee-eater, rufous-bellied heron, and the mysterious Pel’s fishing owl. All these and more may be encountered on drives and walks. The camp’s fishing is land based and strictly catch and release, with a daily bag limit of five bream. Sleep-outs take place either in a dome tent with a mosquito net roof or on a rustic platform – both types of accommodation offer the chance to drift off under the starry skies with the sounds of wildlife all around you! And tours of a local village are also available, often combined with checking out the national park headquarters. This is a really interesting activity, well worth fitting into your itinerary if possible.