price avg $532,00/night

Camel thorn Lodge is Imvelo Safari’s most exclusive lodge to date. We have chosen to build this flagship camp in one of Hwange’s last remaining corners of well-protected and un-spoilt woodlands.

When we were plotting the design for this lodge, we knew we wanted it to be a little bit of unique and a lot of special. Due to this we have not opted for the area’s traditional model of camp; we have not found a small patch of trees for shade in front of a large open plain, and then put in an artificially pumped water hole to attract the elephants…. Instead, we have decided that Camelthorn will quietly nestle in one of Hwange’s last untouched corners of real woodland wilderness.

Deep in amongst the Camelthorn and ebony trees our stunning new lodge offers villas with huge glass fronts, overlooking small watering holes and birdfeeders that will attract some of the smaller and less destructive woodland creatures; bushbuck, duiker, mongoose and squirrel – not to mention a plethora of colourful birdlife.

The villas have attractive double height ceilings, a fireplace for winter evenings, a fan for summer days, large glass sliding doors that open onto beautiful woodland, a well stocked mini-bar, comfortable lounge and en-suite bathroom that includes a shower, bath with a view and twin basins. Each individual luxurious forest villa is topped off with a private outdoor balcony with its own spiral staircase – where you can soak up the sun’s rays in the hammocks, or even sleep out under the stars.
Do not think we have forgotten about Hwange’s fame for its elephant, and of course we couldn’t leave them out all together… Due to the destruction elephant cause we want to keep them away from our Disneyland forest, so there is a permanent waterhole no more than a kilometre away. This will attract the elephants in all year round, whilst keeping our woodland intact. Whenever the notion takes our guests they will be able to take an escorted stroll to our large private underground blind, to sit and relax whilst observing the drinking wildlife right up close.

Game Viewing:
The game viewing opportunities at Camelthorn, from both vehicle and on foot, are spectacular. Our guides are not only experienced, they are also licensed armed professionals who love nothing more than imparting their knowledge and showing you around the African bush. During your stay with us, you will be allocated your own guide who will join you on all activities for the duration of your stay. When it comes to local wildlife, the guys are walking encyclopaedias – so don’t think twice about testing their knowledge!

Game drives:
When driving through the local lands, as well as Hwange National Park, you’re guaranteed to see an exciting variety of wildlife: the area is home to an abundance of fauna and flora all year round. We recommend taking comfortable daylight games drives through our private concession and Hwange National Park, to view the spectacular numbers of grazing game and roaming predators.
The large population and variety of herbivores on the Ngamo Plains support abundant predators. Lion, spotted hyena, cheetah and leopard are often seen. Bat-eared foxes and both species of jackal are common, and a wild dogs’ den lies close to camp. Lion kills on the Ngamo flats are often evident and we have even been lucky enough to witness many whilst out on drives with guests. During the dry season, an evening spent parked discreetly near a waterhole is always a memorable experience. The interactions within, and between, the elephant herds coming in to drink, is a show you won’t see on Broadway or in the West End.

Night drives:
It’s well worth joining one of the shorter night drives, through the forest area around the camp estate. Our trackers operate powerful spotlights to seek out some of the less-seen nocturnal creatures. The lights red filter lessens the disturbance, thus creating a unique opportunity to watch the fascinating behaviour of the nocturnal world. Antbears, porcupines, genets, springhares, lesser bushbabies and pennant winged nightjars are to name but a few.

On foot tracking:
Due to being in a private concession, we can also offer walking safaris through our wilderness area. Our guides’ experience with big game makes for a potentially exciting, whilst safe, approach on foot. You may encounter a herd of bull elephant or perhaps a playful flange of baboons.

All day trip in the park for a pump run:
A full day trip through Hwange is always a guests’ favourite. During the dry season, from May to November, Imvelo operate a string of waterholes along the southern side of the Park. These are usually run by diesel engines, which are operated for months at a time by local pump attendants. We offer our guests the opportunity to join us on a ‘pump run’: cooler boxes packed full with cold drinks, water, ice and a good picnic lunch are stacked into the truck. A trailer carrying diesel, oil, filters and rations for the pump attendants is locked on the back. We all pile in, and off we go. The most remote water point is Secheche, about 60 kilometres away from camp. En route we drop off diesel and provisions at numerous pumps throughout the park, weaving our way between the throngs of jostling elephant that come pouring in for the fresh water. It makes for a fun, memorable and extremely rewarding day.

Village visits:
During your time with us we will offer you the opportunity to visit some of our neighbouring tribal areas. We work closely with the villages of Vozheka, Ngamo and Ngunyana. The local people love nothing more than visitors and you’ll receive a warm welcome, as well as a grand tour of their homes. We always arrive unannounced and they are by no means a ‘show’. You have the chance to gain a real and fascinating insight into Ndebele peoples’ lives. Your stay with us can become about far more than just the animals: come and discover the real Africa.

Conservation and Community efforts:
Here at Imvelo, we believe in enriching the lives of our visitors, as well the lives of those around us. We are, after all, using the local communities land and resources; so it’s only fair that they benefit too.
We offer our guests an honest eco tourism experience. We have purposely built each of our lodges on land that belongs to local village communities. This enables us to develop from the grassroots up and employ from the surrounding areas. We now employ over 100 local people on a permanent or semi-regular basis.

Imvelo continues to work closely with village leaders, distributing resources to where they are needed most. We encourage them to link benefits from tourism to wildlife conservation. Our aim is to empower indigenous populations and teach them self-sustaining methods of survival.

Over the past five years, Imvelo have ploughed over $2m into local communities. The money is distributed to where it is needed most, such as education, providing clean water and developing initiatives to ensure the local people are benefiting directly from tourism. In 2011 alone, in just one ward we built a classroom block, supplied schools with furniture and textbooks, and erected five teacher’s cottages. You can read about our work at one local school, Ngamo, here.

By drilling bore holes and fixing wells Imvelo strive to supply local people – and animals – with sources of clean water. Last year we repaired over 50 village wells. In fact, we’d love to show you the progress that’s being made. Our unchoreographed village visits give you an opportunity to see real village life, as well as some of the programs with which we are involved.

Until 2011, many local people had never received any dental care. So Imvelo teamed up with 13 Spanish dentists and formed a dental safari clinic. The response from the communities was both overwhelming and heart wrenching. People travelled from miles away to receive vital, and in cases, life-saving dental care. One grandmother was saved by pulling out five rotten teeth, followed by a bag of antibiotics.

In 2011, a total of 1173 rural villagers received treatment. There were checkups, extractions, fillings and root canals. The team completed over 4500 procedures. In 2013 we treated an amazing 1516 patients and in 2014 1215 patients received treatment, taking our total over 3 years to a phenomenal 3904 patients.

Just by being at one of our lodges, you are helping us more than you could imagine. And with your support, we can continue to enrich the lives of others.

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Hotel Facilities

  • 4x4 vehicles
  • Air Conditioning
  • Airport Transport
  • Bar
  • Big 5 Game viewing
  • Camp Fire
  • Conservation/Community involvement
  • En-Suite
  • Game Drives
  • Game walks
  • Laundry Service
  • Mosquito Net
  • Professional Safari Guide
  • Sundowners
Camelthorn is Imvelo Safari's most exclusive lodge to date, with luxurious forest villas set in one of Hwange’s last remaining corners of un-spoilt woodlands.

Available Rooms

  • Forest villas

    luxuriously furnished forest villas that are cool in the hot months and warm and cosy in the cold months.

    • x 2
    • x 2