Up until the 1970's Zambia was considered to have had some of the highest game populations in Africa. This safari destination has been recovering steadily over the last few years with fresh government controls over hunting and poaching. Almost 30% of the country is currently under game management.
Zambia has a relatively undeveloped tourism infrastructure and a small but sophisticated safari industry with excellent lodges and seasonal bush camps, as well as some of Africa's best safari guides. Safaris in Zambia are ideally suited for "old Africa hands" or those seeking a remote and more exclusive safari [see our recommended safaris.
A vast grassy plateau dominates the country with the prime wildlife regions being concentrated around the Luangwa, Kafue and Zambezi water systems, while not sharing the game diversity of some of its neighbors, Zambia's wildlife concentrations are impressive. It is ideal for specialists seeking specific African game species or bird life on a brilliant scale.
Zambia is the home of the modern walking safari and without doubt offers some of Africa's best traditional walking safaris, particularly in the Luangwa Valley
Night drives are a speciality in Zambia and provide arguably the best means for seeing some of the more elusive nocturnal species, including leopards.
The Luangwa Valley - One of Africa's finest safari destinations, famous for its landscapes and diversity of game, strong populations of antelope, buffalo and predators - its birdlife is magnificent. The Luangwa is particularly well recognised for its walking safaris.
Kafue National Park - Kafue has an impressive mammal list and boasts the greatest diversity of antelope in Africa including important populations of Defassa waterbuck and Red lechwe. The area appeals particularly to old Africa hands and specialists - this area is very remote.
The Zambezi - Victoria Falls is the obvious tourism favourite on the Zambezi. The more remote lodges, canoeing and other safari options on both the upper and lower stretches of the river make it an ideal safari destination.
Lake Bangweulu - The Bangweulu floodplains on the periphery of the permanent swamps of Lake Bangweulu are a birder's paradise. The area contains one of the last remaining habitats of the rare Shoebill.
Zambia, like Zimbabwe has three distinct seasons
1. A cool, dry winter period between May and August. Rivers and water sources tend to recede and game viewing improves steadily at this time, many of the roads in the remote areas are only passable during the dry spell.
2. A hot and dry period from August to mid-November. October and the early part of November prior to the onset of rains are horrendously hot in both the Luangwa and Zambezi valleys with temperatures regularly sitting in the mid-40's. Game tends to concentrate and if you can handle high temperatures, then this is the ideal time for game viewing.
3. A hot to warm wet season from mid-November through to the end of April. The onset of the rains makes the remote areas very difficult to explore and many seasonal camps are closed. A limited number of "green season" safaris are available.
Game viewing is best during the dry season from May through to October. The wet season is best for bird watching.
Lusaka is the primary international air hub with the main regional services connecting Johannesburg, Harare and Nairobi. European connections are provided directly by British Airways, KLM and Air France.
Mfuwe and Livingstone both have international status and provide important internal hubs for domestic and air charter companies (particularly between Victoria Falls, Kariba, Lilongwe and Maun across the borders).
The reliability of Zambia's air charter companies often surpasses that of some national carriers in the region. We have no hesitation in strongly recommending air charters, particularly when accessing the Luangwa, Kafue and Zambezi regions.
Zambia has a poor road infrastructure. If you're planning a self-drive safari, the more remote areas in particular require a 4x4 vehicle and a current and accurate update on road conditions is essential (a road report from the previous season is no guarantee that the given route is still passable) - certain areas should only be tackled in 4x4 convoy fashion.
Provided By: The Zambezi Safari And Travel Co. Ltd.
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