The camp vegetation is dominated by broad canopied albida trees, much loved by elephants for their rich nutritious pods; these animals often join visitors in camp for a light meal!
Ten luxury tents (including 2 family tents) have classic interiors decorated using natural materials, and small verandas from which to appreciate the panoramas. Aimed to be as environmentally friendly as possible, Ruckomechi’s hot water and lighting is provided by solar power. Central areas are reached via a low-level walkway and include dining and lounge spaces as well as a star-gazing deck. Unwind beside the pool in hammocks, making the most of the exclusive setting. A privately located bush bath is set on the river banks, for that truly wild and romantic evening under the stars.
Activities include motor boat safaris, canoeing, day and night game drives as the lodge is located outside the park and safari walks, as well as catch and release fishing.
Open 01 Apr – 31 Oct
This stretch of the Zambezi River is famous for its four main pools (after which the Park is named – ‘mana’ means ‘four’ in Shona) – Main, Chine, Long and Chisambuk – which are remnants of channels of the river which stopped flowing years ago.
These, and smaller seasonal pools dotted further inland, hold water all year round drawing all manner of wildlife and waterfowl during the dry season.
The plentiful ana trees that characterise the floodplain shed their protein-rich pods during this time too, providing vital sustenance for many species, particularly elephant.
Wildlife viewing is therefore excellent, with large concentrations of buffalo and elephant to be found along the river’s edges, while predators such as lion, wild dog, leopard and cheetah are often sighted.
Greater kudu, Burchell’s zebra, impala, warthog and common waterbuck can be seen on the surrounding plains and the grunting of hippo can be heard all day.
Mana Pools offers fantastic birding, with the river and seasonal pans attracting large numbers of water birds and excellent mix of species in the riverine vegetation and mopane woodlands.
Local specials include Three-banded Courser, Western Banded Snake-Eagle, Arnott’s Chat, Green-capped Eremomela, African Golden Oriole, Lilian’s Lovebird, Böhm’s Spinetail and Meve’s Starling.
Unusual waterbirds include Rufous-bellied Heron, Long-toed Lapwing, Greater Painted Snipe, African Finfoot and colourful clouds of Southern Carmine Bee-Eaters.
Even the sought-after Pel’s Fishing-Owl is occasionally seen!
Camp residents include woodpeckers, Eastern Nicator, Yellow-breasted Apalis and White-browed Robin-Chats with their beautiful dawn-and-dusk song.
Wildlife viewing is excellent, with large concentrations of buffalo and elephant to be found along the river’s edges, while predators such as lion, wild dog, leopard and cheetah are often sighted.