Surfing Into The Zambezi

From the very first day that Jason Mott arrived in the Lower Zambezi National Park in 1996 with only $700 in his pocket, a backpack, and a surfboard, he knew that this was a very special place. Little did he know, however, that it would come to be his home for the following 27 years.

He was on sabbatical in 1996, surfing in Cape Town, when the the founders of Tongabezi Lodge, Benjamin Parker and William Ruck Keene reached out and asked Jason to come to Zambia to help build a new safari camp. With the eternal optimism of youth, Jason ditched his surfboard for the unswimmable Zambezi River, and it was no surprise that he quickly fell in love with everything that the Lower Zambezi National Park had to offer.

A Sausage For a Home

After building the camp with Ben and Will, and building a second sister camp called Potato Bush right next door, Jason asked to stay on and train up as a safari guide. He very quickly moved into the management team, and four years later, he banded together with a past guest, and they bought Sausage Tree Camp for their very own. Jason and his family settled into this wild space, and over the next twenty-three years, they made this wild space into one of the most beloved wildlife camps in Africa.

Bangers And Mash

Around 2011, Jason decided that it was time to expand. He was keen to provide a family-friendly option inside the Lower Zambezi National Park, and to create a sister property for Sausage Tree Camp.

By 2012, the camp was built just a short walk away from Sausage Tree Camp itself. The new property was smaller and more affordable, but it would still offer all of the same incredible safari magic: private guiding, free flights in and out of the park for long stays, personal butlers, and even the same delicious menu.

When it came to naming the new property, the choice was easy. What is a sausage without mashed potato, after all? Potato Bush Camp was born, and very quickly became a firm favourite family safari destination.

Old Friends Reunited
and Greener than Ever

Little would Jason know that eventually, Sausage Tree Camp and Tongabezi Lodge would be reunited once more. It only took many years and a couple of complete rebuilds to get here, but now Jason has passed on the Sausage Tree Dream, as it was once passed on to him.

With the sale of Sausage Tree Camp and Potato Bush Camp to our very own Green Safaris in 2023, Jason had this to say:

“The road has been long, full of adventure, love, loss, blood, sweat and tears…It has been a privilege to play a part in protecting one of the world’s last remaining wilderness areas, and creating employment opportunities in Zambia. I could write a book full of stories, maybe I will one day, but for today I write to say farewell to you and the entire safari industry. Now, I have sold both Sausage Tree Camp and Potato Bush Camp (and the two planes), collectively known as Chifungulu Ltd. to Zambia's leading safari operator, Green Safaris. In doing so, I know the staff and camps are in safe hands, and Sausage Tree Camp and Tongabezi are reunited once again. The synergy between these two world-renowned properties has always been strong, and I have every confidence in their long-term success as part of the Green Safari's portfolio."