January 6

Top Places to Stay in Africa in 2023

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January 6, 2023

Are you planning a trip to Africa in 2023? If so, you're in for a treat. Africa is a continent full of diverse cultures, breathtaking landscapes, and unique wildlife experiences. Whether you're looking for a luxury safari or a more off-the-beaten-track adventure, Africa has something for everyone. But where should you stay on your trip? Well, that's where we come in! Here are the top places to stay in Africa in 2023, handpicked by our enthusiastic Travel Experts…

Chiawa Camp is one of our top places to stay in Africa in 2023

Discover the top places to stay in Africa in 2023, Image Credit: Chiawa Camp

1. Singita Mara River Tented Camp, Tanzania

Nestled in the gorgeous Lamai Triangle of the northern Serengeti, TanzaniaSingita Mara Tented Camp is what luxury safari dreams are made of! It's one of our favourite places to stay in Africa to witness hundred thousands of wildebeest brave the croc-infested waters in their tireless journey across the Mara River. The camp is truly a sight to behold, with whimsical, bohemian vibes and flowing white canvas subtly combined with a colourful palette inspired by the local Maasai tribe.

Beautiful interior of the tented lounge area

Luxury tents with a dreamy, bohemian quality thanks to canvas drapes, Image Credit: Singita Mara

Who’s it for?

This camp is the perfect spot for catching the Great Migration's annual Mara River crossing. But even when the wildebeest aren't making their grand trek, the game viewing is still top-notch. It's perfect for safari enthusiasts, birdwatchers, and nature lovers of all stripes. Plus, with its remote and luxurious eco-friendly setup, it's great for couples, solo adventurers, and families with older kids.

Highlights

  • Elegant luxury in the pristine wilderness of northwestern Serengeti National Park
  • Very remote and exclusive as it's the only permanent camp in the Lamai Triangle
  • Tented eco camp for a more intimate exchange between yourself and nature
  • Mara River is one of the best places to experience Great Migration river crossings
  • Year-round safari destination even when the migration is not passing through
  • Private plunge pool view of the river

    Views of the Mara River make it rank among the best places to stay in Africa in 2023, Image Credit: Singita Mara

    2. Mukwa River Lodge, Zambia

    Experience whimsical luxury at the stunning Mukwa River Lodge, nestled along the banks of the majestic Zambezi River. Located just upstream from the breathtaking Victoria Falls – one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World – this boutique lodge seamlessly blends in with its natural surroundings, creating a truly special experience. Escape to the magical world of the Mukwa River Lodge and discover Zambia in the most enchanting way.

    Couple dining on the river viewing deck at candlelight

    Luxury accommodation on the banks of the mighty Zambezi, Image Credit: Mukwa River Lodge

    Who’s it for?

    With only six suites and enjoying the exclusivity of its very own islands, Mukwa River Lodge is the ideal getaway for those looking for a secluded yet wildlife-rich retreat. Whether you're seeking romance with your significant other or want quality bonding time with friends or family, this peaceful paradise checks all the boxes.

    Highlights

  • Private island getaway with the most spectacular river frontage views
  • Exclusive with only five suites and a two-bedroom family suite
  • Rejuvenating treatments and massages along the river or at the secluded spa
  • An array of exciting activities, including river cruises, Victoria Falls tours and more
  • Luxury suites come with private plunge pools, double outdoor showers and a bath
  • Man having a spa treatment along the riverbed

    One of the best places to stay in Africa in 2023, Image Credit: Mukwa River Lodge

    3. The Silo Hotel, South Africa

    Towering above the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, The Silo Hotel soars, offering splendid views of Cape Town – the shining star on South Africa's travel tiara. Guests can spend the night in a piece of history at this hotel, located in the historic grain silo complex set above the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa. This must-see attraction rivals the likes of the Tate Modern and the Museum of Modern Art. Given its location, it's no surprise that The Silo is a hotel that pays tribute to African arts and culture and is a work of art in its own right.

    Private dining area of one of the suites

    Seamlessly combining natural beauty with modern conveniences, Image Credit: The Silo Hotel

    Who’s it for?

    The Silo Hotel is a visually striking building with a unique design, which would appeal to those who appreciate aesthetics and contemporary art. In addition, the hotel offers a range of packages and amenities fit for romantics, such as a spa and couples' massage room.

    Highlights

    • Exceptionally designed by the London-based architect Thomas Heatherwick
    • On top of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (MOCAA)
    • High-end amenities, including a rooftop bar, infinity pool and a range of luxurious suites
    • Visually aesthetic building with a unique style complemented by artistic décor
    • Range of dining options, including a rooftop restaurant with panoramic views of the city
    Woman swimming in the rooftop pool at The Silo

    Jaw-droppingly beautiful rooftop views has made The Silo one of the top places to stay in Africa in 2023, Image Credit: The Silo

    4. Bisate Lodge, Rwanda

    Nestled in the rolling hills of a dormant volcano in Rwanda, just a hop, skip, and a jump from Volcanoes National Park, Bisate Lodge is the ultimate destination for your once-in-a-lifetime gorilla and monkey encounters. This alluring lodge combines modern luxury with beautiful design elements reflecting local traditions. It's a place where you can truly relax and rejuvenate while also learning about Rwanda's unique history and culture.

    Domed-shaped, almost nest-like forest villas

    Forest villas enjoy striking views of three ancient volcanoes, Image Credit: Bisate Lodge

    Who’s it for?

    Bisate Lodge is an ideal choice for travellers interested in nature, wildlife, and cultural experiences and looking for a luxurious and comfortable base from which to go on gorilla trekking. It's also well-suited for travellers who appreciate eco-tourism and are looking for a sustainable and responsible travel option.

    Highlights

  • Unique location in a natural amphitheatre formed by a long-dormant volcano
  • Its design pays homage to Rwandan traditions and culture
  • Close to Volcanoes National Park's making it an ideal base for gorilla trekking
  • Exclusive with only six villas, each with striking views of three ancient volcanoes
  • You can visit Dian Fossey's grave and research centre and go on cultural excursions 
  • Two men putting on hiking apparel in preparation for their trek

    Embark on a trek in search of majestic gorillas, Image Credit: Bisate Lodge

    5. Saseka Tented Camp, South Africa

    Nestled in a bend of the Monwana River, Saseka Tented Camp is one of the most sought-after luxury safari destinations in the Greater Kruger National Park region. With the word "Saseka" meaning "beautiful" in the local Tsonga language, it's no surprise that every aspect of this camp exudes beauty. Designed by the legendary Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens, this camp perfectly blends vintage South African safari style with modern 21st-century design. 

    Saseka luxury suite

    Setting the bar high for luxury safari lodges in South Africa, Image Credit: Saseka Tented Lodge

    Who’s it for?

    Saseka Tented Camp has tons of universal appeal in an incredible setting, promising top-notch service and a first-class safari experience. It's also a great choice for a splurge-worthy honeymoon. If you're celebrating a special occasion, this camp will give it the attention it deserves. And the exclusive villa is perfect for a luxury multigenerational family vacation.

    Highlights

    • A stunning location nestled on a bend with a breathtaking view of the Monwana River
    • Flooded with light and dramatic use of textures, colours, contrasts and detail
    • Unique space that masterfully incorporates vintage and contemporary styles
    • Attractive amenities, including private plunge pools, personal guides, trackers and butlers
    • First-class Big 5 game viewing in a private extension of the Kruger National Park
    Beautiful breezy main area

    Luxurious interiors maximise a completely immersive experience into the surrounding wilderness, Image Credit: Saseka Tented Camp

    6. Chiawa Camp, Zambia

    Set alongside the lush Zambezi River and often visited by friendly local wildlife, Chiawa Camp is a top-notch spot to stay in Zambia. A family-run camp by the Cummings clan since 1989, it has won numerous awards for its fantastic facilities. They offer many activities for visitors, including game drives, bush walks, canoeing, fishing, river safaris, and stargazing! And with a team of super-knowledgeable guides, these activities are not only educational but tons of fun too.

    Frontal view of Chiawa Camp and river

    A place where you're invited to enjoy Zambia's splendour, Image Credit: Chiawa Camp

    Who’s it for?

    The Lower Zambezi National Park, in general, is an excellent destination for seasoned safari-goers – and Chiawa Camp provides the most impeccable base from which to explore this remarkable, wildlife-rich wilderness. If you've already been everywhere else on safari, make sure Chiawa is next on your list! 

    Highlights

    • Beautiful setting on the banks of the Zambezi River, under a grove of evergreen trees
    • Holds the prime position in the heart of Zambia's Lower Zambezi National Park
    • A stunning thatched upstairs viewing deck provides one of the best views of the river
    • Gorgeous swimming pool with timber sun deck overlooking the Zambezi
    • Safari experiences are unique, more remote, more exclusive, and experiential in nature
    Elephant at the camp viewing deck

    The best kind of visitor in Africa, Image Credit: Chiawa Camp

    7. Lolebezi Safari Lodge, Zambia

    Another spectacular Lower Zambezi property has to be Lolebezi Safari Lodge. With a kilometre of private riverfront to enjoy, you'll feel like you're embedded in the heart of the African bush. The contemporary lodge combines the luxury of a world-class safari camp with understated elegance. Whether you're looking for a romantic getaway or a family vacation, they've got you covered with superior suites and double family units.

    Main lounge area

    Incorporating luxury expected at a world-class safari camp with modest elegance, Image Credit: Lolebezi Safari Lodge

    Who’s it for?

    If you're a tree-hugging adventurer, Lolebezi is the place for you! Not only is it super sustainable, but it's also setting the bar for luxe safari vacations in Africa. Trust us, a stay at Lolebezi will leave a lasting impact on all who visit.

    Highlights

  • Designed to make the most of its one-kilometre private river frontage
  • A level of privacy that only five hectares of protected wilderness can provide
  • Game drives, bush walks, river cruises, and fishing are just a few of the many activities available
  • Sumptuous and spacious luxury river suites and double family units 
  • On-site spa with qualified treatment specialists and a yoga deck
  • Couple enjoying the wilderness beneath a private thatched viewing area

    Simplistic luxury in Zambia's wilderness, Image Credit: Lolebezi Safari Lodge

    8. Morukuru Beach Lodge, South Africa

    Set atop the sandy dunes of the De Hoop Nature Reserve, Morukuru Beach Lodge presents you with spectacular views of the Indian Ocean. Found at the end of the famous Whale Route, this lodge also offers some of the best shore-based whale-watching opportunities in the world – you can even catch a glimpse of these majestic creatures from your bedroom, the restaurant, or the bar! Enjoy a game drive, take a low-tide walk, go mountain biking, watch whales from land, or try your hand at sandboarding. 

    Ocean view from the fire pit area

    An off-grid idyll for couples or small families seeking a pristine, private beach house, Image Credit: Morukuru Beach Lodge

    Who’s it for?

    In need of some quality time with your nearest and dearest? Morukuru Beach Lodge has got you covered with a variety of suites for couples, families, and honeymooners. And if you're a whale enthusiast who wants to spot some of these majestic creatures without the crowds, De Hoop Nature Reserve is the place for you.

    Highlights

    • Located above the sun-bleached dunes of the De Hoop Nature Reserve
    • Boasting unspoilt views of the Indian Ocean coastline, right at the end of the whale route
    • It affords some of the best shore-based whale watching in the world
    • An array of activities, including game drives, mountain biking and sandboarding
    • Chic, serene suites and spaces complementing the surrounding landscape
    Ocean view from suite

    Beautiful fynbos vegetation and pristine white dune setting, Image Credit: Morukuru Beach Lodge

    9. Simbavati Cederberg Ridge, South Africa

    A fancy wilderness lodge that's all about tasty eats, hospitable vibes, and exciting adventures, Simbavati Cederberg Ridge, treats you to breathtaking views of the Cederberg Mountains' rugged natural splendour, and there's no shortage of activities to keep you busy! You can look forward to guided walks, mountain biking, rock art excursions, Rooibos farm tours, sunset boat cruises and more. Plus, the lodge boasts a chic African farmhouse atmosphere, with inviting décor featuring high ceilings, wooden beams, and natural textures that give the space a bright and airy feel. Read more about our experience at this lodge here.

    Panoramic views over the rugged natural beauty of the Cederberg Mountains, Image Credit: Cederberg Ridge

    Who’s it for?

    Simbavati Cederberg Ridge boasts luxurious lodgings and is perfect for groups of friends or family who want to stay connected (with each other and Mother Nature). Plus, it's an excellent choice for the young at heart, who love the great outdoors and don't mind a bit of activity. And, bonus, it's a fantastic place to unplug from technology and truly relax!

    Highlights

  • Luxury in nature, complete with delicious food, warm hospitality, and adventure
  • Panoramic views over the rugged natural beauty of the Cederberg Mountains
  • An authentic ambience in the modern African farmhouse
  • Generous covered stoep and dining deck overlooking the garden and mountains beyond
  • Restaurant, large swimming pool and indigenous gardens flowing into the veld
  • A range of both adventurous and leisurely activities, Image Credit: Cederberg Ridge

    Top Places to Stay in Africa 2023

    So, are you ready for your trip to Africa in 2023? You're in for a wild ride (pun intended)! This continent is full of diverse experiences and destinations that will leave you feeling like you've escaped the mundane. So, what are you waiting for? Our team of Travel Experts will guide you along the way.

    Featured Image: Lolebezi Lodge

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    Tags

    cape town hotels, East Africa, Okavango Delta, Wildlife


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    About the author 

    Michelle Welvering

    Growing up, Michelle always wanted to become a world-renowned artist, a kickboxing-champion and an eccentric explorer – aka a Kickboxing Exploring Artist! After pursuing an education in Fine Arts and opening her own Kickboxing gym in Pretoria, an unexpected twist led her to a six-year stint as a travel consultant in South African tourism. She believes that all things happen for a reason and, driven by adventure, she was eager to find a more “wild” and cultural space to call home. This led her to wander the Western Cape coastline, fall in love with the city of Cape Town and, of course, her workplace, Rhino Africa.

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