Shaped by the contours of three great rivers, Zambia is the real Africa, famed for its huge wilderness areas. The national parks, principally at Kafue and in the Luangwa Valley, which forms part of the Great Rift Valley, have traditionally been its main attraction. In addition, there is an increasingly fine choice of lodges along the Zambezi river and at Victoria Falls.
Some of the more imaginative and reputable safari operators run a variety of mobile expeditions, lasting from three to ten days, limiting numbers to around six or eight individuals. Operating mainly in the national parks of South and North Luangwa, Kafue and the Lower Zambezi, this is essentially, 'five star camping', with hot showers, fine cuisine and traditional east African-style safari tents complete with 'mess tent' pre-erected each night by efficient camp staff. But most importantly of all - the standard of guiding is unrivalled.
South Luangwa National Park
In Zambia’s best known park, the concentration of game around the Luangwa river is among the most intense in Africa. The river is the lifeblood of the region and accounts for the great profusion of species that can be observed. The changing seasons add to the park’s richness, ranging from dry bushveld in the winter to the lush, green vegetation of the summer months. Walking safaris originated in the South Luangwa and Robin Pope Safaris remain one of the most respected tour operators throughout Southern Africa. In addition, a variety of private lodges provide excellent accommodation. View Zambia in a larger map
Kafue National Park
From the astounding Busanga Plains in the north-west to the wooded wilderness of the south, Kafue sustains a huge diversity of wildlife, particularly antelope. Large prides of lion, leopard and cheetah are to be seen, accompanied by many of the smaller predators, such as jackal and civet. Bird life is also rich in variety, while the vegetation on the banks of the Kafue river is home to crocodile, monitor lizards and hippo. Walks, night drives, canoe trips and bream fishing can all be experienced.
Lower Zambezi National Park
A perfect example of untamed Zambia, the park lies opposite Mana Pools National Park in Zimbabwe, effectively making the whole area on both sides a massive wildlife sanctuary. The waters of the Zambezi are a focal point and canoe safaris enable visitors to get close to wildlife in its natural habitat.