Zambezi Queen

Zambezi Queen Review and Specifications

Specifications of Zambezi Queen

Year built2009  /  Age : 10
BuilderDormac Marine (Walvis Bay, Namibia)
OwnerBrett McDonald, Tony Stern
Length (LOA)46 m / 151 ft
Beam (width)8 m / 26 ft
Gross Tonnage500 gt
Passengers14 - 28
Decks with cabins2

Review of Zambezi Queen

The Zambezi Queen boat cruises on Chobe River (Botswana, South Africa) departing from Kasane. This houseboat also offers African safari cruise package deals with departures from South Africa (Johannesburg and Cape Town).

safari houseboat Zambezi Queen cruise ship

The boat is often chartered by the AmaWaterways line, but also from other river cruise lines offering luxury Chobe River travel deals in South Africa. Regarding its design, small number of all-suite accommodations, onboard amenities and all-inclusive deals, this luxury ship is classified as "houseboat". With similar design and features is the Amazon River cruise ship MV Aria (Peru, South America).

The magnificent Zambezi Queen was designed specifically for safari river cruising on Chobe River. She is a small (28-passenger) luxury riverboat (often called “houseboat”). Zambezi Queen was launched in 2009 and ensures passengers' comfort with her 14 balcony staterooms (ranging up to 300 sq.ft), decorated in contemporary style. The top deck is air-conditioned and consists of the lounge, dining room, bar, sunbathing area and a pool. The service by all African staff on board Zambezi Queen is highly personalized and attentive. The dining room is located on ship's 3rd level and offers unforgettable views on three sides. Guests can experience splendid dishes such as "fillet of beef with bordelaise sauce" and "butternut and macadamia soup" paired with perfect wine. A full English breakfast is offered in the mornings and the afternoons provide gourmet lunch buffet. The bar includes imported and local spirits, beers and wine. Complimentary beer and wine with all lunch and dinner are always available on board. Zambezi Queen is also a remarkable eco-friendly boat, built by the foundation of responsibility toward the environment. The conventional propeller system was replaced with water jet propulsion, causing no damage to river bed. The latest low emission and fuel efficient generators are run during the day. The boat operates on battery power all through the night. Hot water is assured by solar heating system. River water is used in tap and showers and all soaps and cleaning detergents on board are biodegradable. Energy-saving lights are used throughout the ship.

  • Passenger decks: 3 (out of 3)
  • Cabin grades number: 3
  • Total number of cabins: 14 (of which 2 Master Suites, 12 Balcony Suites).
  • Restaurants: Dining Room.
  • Lounges & Bars: Lounge & Bar (open-plan), Lobby, Library, Gift Shop, top-deck (bow swimming pool with loungers, aft shaded seating area).
  • Zambezi Queen African cruise deals are inclusive of alcohol (at lunch & dinner) and soft beverages, safari tours (river and land excursions), airport and land transfers.
  • Zambezi Queen is newly re-designed and privately owned top luxury houseboat. She is the only one AMAwaterways chartered ship operating luxury Africa river cruises in Botswana. The onboard dining experience features a classy dining room with unobstructed panoramic views of the surroundings, delectable dishes, top wine selection, full English breakfast, a gourmet lunch buffet, formal dining. Complimentary wine & beer are offered at lunch & dinner. Service staff is all African.
  • With a stylish elegance look, the Zambezi Queen houseboat features all-suite accommodations - each with a full-size private balcony. This luxury Chobe river cruise boat was built with a water jet propulsion instead of the conventional propeller system to prevent any damages to the river bed, along with fuel efficient generators (only during day hours - through the night the ship runs on batteries). Another feature is that all the hot water on board is provided by a solar panels. The houseboat also has a sewage processing and water purification plants installed. She uses river water in showers/tap and all cleaning detergents/soaps you used on board are biodegradable.

Cabins (Types/Categories, number, location), high to low:

  • Master Suites - MS (x2, deck Upper) - sizes 300ft2/28m2, with either double or 2 single beds. Master Suites have a second bigger balcony.
  • Balcony Staterooms - SA (x8, decks Middle & Lower, size 235ft2/22m2.) and SB (x2, deck Middle, size 215ft2/20m2.

Zambezi Queen ship access information

  • The boat's location is 80 km / 50 ml from Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe) and Livingstone (Zambia) and only 3 km / 2 ml from the Kasane Airport. All three arrival points are accessible with regular flights from Johannesburg (South Africa's largest city).
  • Coach transfers from Livingstone / Victoria Falls to the houseboat take ~ 90 min.
  • Access from Namibia is possible by 30 min flight charters from Victoria Falls to Impillia Island, with 10 min tender boat ride to the ship.
  • Another option is a Namibian private fly charter company operating chartered flights from Kasikili (Seduda) island covering an area of ~300 km / ~190 ml.

minute deals rates. On Zambezi Queen Chobe River cruises, AmaWaterways lines offer discount airfare travel deals on major airlines (without charging Flight Deviation fees).

safari houseboat Zambezi Queen cruise ship (Chobe River)

Chobe River cruise itineraries

The luxury Zambezi Queen boat offers African safari cruises on Chobe River in Botswana (Africa). Some of the itineraries are also inclusive of land travel package deals. Follows the list of AmaWaterways Zambezi Queen cruise itinerary themes operated by the houseboat on Chobe river, and the ones combined with South Africa departures:

  • "STARS OF SOUTH AFRICA" is a 16-days (sailing 4 days) river safari cruise from Cape Town to Johannesburg, with a total of 16 complimentary land tours (excursions, visits, fishing/game watching). Also included in the Zambezi Queen cruise fares are 3-night Kruger National Park safari lodge stay, plus 3-night Cape Town, 2-night Victoria Falls and 1-night Johannesburg luxury hotel packages.
  • The "DISCOVER AFRICA" segment is 12-days (sailing 4 days) safari cruise from Cape Town to Johannesburg. There are 8 complimentary land tours (excursions and visits), plus 2-night Victoria Falls and 3-night Cape Town luxury hotel packages included in the fares.
  • The "RIVERS and RAILS OF AFRICA" variation is 12-nights (sailing 3 days) combined Rovos Rail train and Chobe river cruise from Cape Town to Johannesburg. There are 19 complimentary land tours (excursions/drives/visits), plus 2-night Victoria Falls and 3-night Cape Town hotel packages, and 3-night train travel from Victoria Falls to Pretoria included in the fares.
  • "GOLDEN TRAILS OF EAST AFRICA" are 18-days (sailing 4-days) Chobe River safari cruises from Johannesburg to Nairobi. An optional 3-night Cape Town hotel package is offered as a pre-Johannesburg extension. There are 16 complimentary land tours (excursions, 4x4 drives, visits). Also included in the Zambezi Queen cruise fares are: luxury hotel packages (1-night Johannesburg or 3-night Cape Town /optional, 2-night Victoria Falls, 1-night Johannesburg, 1-night Nairobi) and 6-night luxury African safari lodges (6-night stay in Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Manyara Lake).

Below is the houseboat's Chobe River cruisetour itinerary map. It shows the sailing route of the operated by the houseboat 3- and 4-day luxury Botswana river cruises from Kasane (round-trip departures). There are 4 land base camps along the route - three in Namibia (Cenku, Mbalasinte, and Maliwaza) and one in Botswana (Kasane, departure port).

zambezi queen chobe river itinerary map

Another famous South African houseboat cruise ship on Chobe River is CroisiEurope's African Dream.

Note: You can see the CruiseMapper's list of all river cruise ships and riverboats in the "itinerary" section of our River Cruises hub. All companies and their fleets are listed there.

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