Monday, July 23, 2012

Toka Leya, Zambia.......

Flying into Livingstone, Zambia I got that same feeling as on my previous visit two years ago.....that of being dropped from the sky into a time warp of sorts. It's an old fashioned type of town. People were milling about wearing either brightly colored clothes or dark suits. There were busy shops, advertising painted on most flat surfaces, things to buy, eat, drink.........and one traffic light which has been installed on the main thoroughfare since that last visit! Very different from the remote safari camps. Definitely a town in comparison.

Shoes or bananas...decisions, decisions!

Umbrellas become sunshades.

Hopefully serving fried chicken, not lion!
 School children, thankfully, BUT only through the 7th grade unless parents can afford fees for higher grades. 
I love 'wraps' but would have to pass on this one! Just give me a slice of carrot cake please.

Leaving town we were driven to our camp for the next three nights, Toka Leya, 7 miles up the Zambezi River from Victoria Falls. Paula and I stayed there two years ago and were very excited to see several staff members still working there......they remembered us and were happy to see us back again.

The outdoor dining deck on the river bank.

The first evening we were transported by boat - with our old friend Donald at the helm - to a place on the river bank to enjoy 'sundowners' with other Toka Leya guests.

Donald, our boatman, second from left, was really 
thrilled to see us again.

We returned to camp and organized our stuff.......... one of 12 spacious, very comfortable, under canvas safari-style tents, all connected by raised wooden walkways limiting our footprint on this pristine area.
Nice deck area looking out to the river - sounds of hippos, elephants and birds under the canopy of jackalberry, knobthorn and water berry trees.
Love the bathroom here.........good lighting, a/c, and a hairdryer........separate shower room below.

Early morning outside No. 10 - quite a walk from the main camp area but by then we were in need of some exercise! Armed guards protected us from the large, potentially dangerous, animals roaming in the area. Really love this camp.........the caring people who run it, the delicious food served by the jovial wait staff, proximity to the river for cruising and viewing Vic Falls, and the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park on the doorstep where game drives allow for wildlife viewing - a bit of everything here.

Next time - a special invitation to meet Donald's family!


  1. I am amazed at how lovely these campsites are. The sunset shot of you is wonderful Mary.

  2. Making friends in faraway places is such a joy! Right now I can do so with my blog, and I love that! But there are times when you connect with someone on your travels that makes you know that we can touch each other's hearts if only given the chance! My Mom and I fell in love with a lovely Irish lady who owned the B&B we stayed in at one of our Ireland Tour stops. Her name was Hannah. We didn't really get to know her, as we were passing through, so to speak, but there was something about her that made us always remember her with fondness even 25 years later! I'd love to see her again, and the tour guide, John, who was so delightful and chatty and informative for the whole trip! Also, once my husband went to England and met a truly delightful family, but he realized once he was home that he had lost their address. One day before Christmas, here came a Christmas card with a photo, and we were thrilled to hear from them!---But, no return address on the envelope! We were so sad!!! I know they have thought all these years that we were just rude Americans, but we would have loved to have been able to correspond with them, if only we could have! It was a missed opportunity we have always regretted, as they were a kind and lovely family.

  3. Love that last picture of you, very nice. Yes, the sunset picture too. And how exciting to return and be remembered with excitement.

  4. I have strong memories of Livingstone too and wonder if it has changed much since 2005! Great photos of everyday life, each tell their own story.

    Once again, beautiful accommodation! That's one 'tent'!

    Have a great day Mary!

    Sft x

  5. I love the "Hungry Lion" fast food restaurant! And the "strictly no alcoholic beverages" sign too.

  6. Absolutely fantastic. That craft market would have been calling my name. Hungry Lion ... so funny. Here we have Hungry Bunny. In fact, when I was giving birth to my first son, my husband bought food from Hungry Bunny for his family and brought it into my room while I was in labor. The smell was so overwhelming I screamed "take that food and get out!" What was he thinking?

    Your accommodations are absolutely gorgeous here! And I can tell the next installment is going to be wonderful ... meeting Donald's family. That's what makes a trip really special ... when you can be a tourist and yet actually experience the life of the people who live there. We've been able to do that in most countries we've visited and it's made the journey so much more memorable. I look forward to your next post.
    Best wishes, Tammy

  7. Love that Hungry Lion branding!
    The camp looks exquisite Mary, I could manage a vacation there I think, especially if those views come with a sundowner.

  8. This trip looks like it agrees with you! The photos of you look great! So nice to be able to venture back to where you guys had stayed before, and that Bob was able to enjoy it this time too.
    Take Care,


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