Zambia, a country that not only has some of the most impressive waterfall wonders and serene lakes to see, but it also has some of the most pristine and abundant wildlife habitats in the world. The country has a total of 20 National Parks and 17 waterfalls scattered throughout it’s diverse landscape making it a perfect location for safari-enthusiasts and scenery searchers.
Despite being a landlocked country, Zambia has many water sources that bring life to the land, one of which being Victoria Falls. The falls is one of the country’s main attractions, with many adventure and adrenaline seekers being drawn to its border.
Life is drawn to every corner of this country, with so many protected national parks, natures thrives here and can be seen in abundance. From the winding rivers of the South Luangwa, the wide floodplains of the Lower Zambezi to the Kafue plains and swamps, explore this unique wilderness on foot, on safari, by boat or even from the air.
What does Zambia have to offer?
There are many national parks to choose from in Zambia, depending on your wanted safari experience, each is unique in its own way and offers something different.
The Lower Zambezi is known for its vast elephant and buffalo herds which are drawn to the winding waters of the Zambezi River during the dry season, boat and canoe excursions are also available here.
Kafue National Park is not only Zambia’s biggest reserve but it’s also one of the largest in Africa, the park is known for its excellent big cat and bird viewing.
The annual bat migration takes place in Kasanka National Park around October / November, and is a spectacle only some get to see, this is the largest migration on earth, with over 10 million bats flocking to the fruit-filled forests of Kasanka.
The North and South Luangwa National Parks are renowned for their walking safaris and some of the best game viewing spots in the country. Before the rains hit, around late October, thousands of hippos congregate in the dwindling deep pools, creating some action packed scenes. It is also excellent for Big-Five game viewing and the park also has a few endemic species such as the Thornicroft’s giraffe, Cookson’s wildebeest and the Crawshay’s zebra.
There are many lakes scattered throughout the country that are that are worth exploring.
Lake Tanganyika is one of Africa’s Great Lakes and is the second largest freshwater lake on earth, it’s also home to over 500 different species of fish. The lake is a popular tourist attraction, with many activities available such as fishing, diving, boating, scuba diving, surfing on top of being a popular birding destination.
Lake Kariba is one of the largest man made lakes in the world and its remote wilderness is an attraction for the more adventurous traveler. The Lake has several islands on the Zambian side of the border, which make for a secluded retreat, stay in beautiful island lodges or authentic safari camps with vast scenic views of the lake. The islands include Maaze Island, Mashape Island, Chete Island, Sekula island and Chikanka island.
Zambia’s landscape has many hidden scenic settings to explore and its waterfalls are a great place to start.
Victoria Falls is on the bucket list of many, on the Zambia side you can visit one of the most dramatic viewpoints ‘Knife Edge Bridge’ as well as the famed ‘Devils Pools’ where only the bravest travelers take a swim and is only accessible between August-January.
For the adrenaline seeking traveler, there are a wide range of adventure activities, from white-water rafting, bungee jumping, abseiling and sky-diving.
Kundalila Falls, part of the Kaombe River is a 70-meter-high waterfall which overlooks the Luangwa valley and its wilderness vistas.
The Lumangwe and Kabweluma waterfalls are also a must see in Zambia, not far from the falls another 3 cascades drop into a forested ravine and this area in particular is sacred to the local people, ancient rock art can be found at the base and at the right time rainbows are created from the fine spray.
When to go
May - September | The dry season in Zambia has warm days and cool nights and is an ideal time of year for walking safaris and bird watching at many of the National Parks.
October - November | This time of year it becomes increasingly hot and humid. However, if you can withstand the heat, it’s an ideal time for safaris as all life is drawn to the remaining waterholes and rivers.
December - April | This is the wet season period, the temperatures cool down and the rain descends on the landscape, usually lasting an hour or two but sometimes can last for days. This time of year many safari lodges close due to unpassable roads. This is however one of the most beautiful times of the year to visit Zambia, and has become better known as the “emerald season”.
• Victoria Falls, Devil’s Pool & Knife Edge Bridge
• Zambia is a safe country to travel, however always be aware, especially in urban areas. • A yellow fever certificate is mandatory when departing Zambia as it is considered a risk area. • Malaria Prophylaxis and various vaccinations are required. • The official currency of Zambia is the Zambian Kwacha (ZMK) • All foreign visitors except SADC (Southern African Development Community) passport holders, require a Visa, which costs the equivalent of US$50 for a one-month single entry visa. • Tipping | 10% is the standard amount for meals, tipping your safari guides and trackers may vary. Always give tips directly to the person involved as tips are sometimes shared out and the individual may not receive the full benefit of your generosity. • Bargaining is accepted practice in Zambia and expected, don’t be afraid to ask for a better price at local markets. • On safari, stick to light neutral clothing colors such as khaki, olive and brown. Avoid black and dark blue as these colors attract tsetse flies.
Our favourite lodges
Accommodation; 10 river front suites (stone & thatch), 4 island villas (idem).
Room type; Double beds. Air conditioning & fan.
Bathrooms; Toilet, double wash basin, shower, bath. Island villas have outdoor baths.
Location; 30 km upstream Victoria Falls, 50 km from Livingstone airport.
Lodge facilities; Lounge & bar, restaurant with wine cellar, spa, swimming pool. Wifi in central area. Boma area (fire pit).
Activities; daily sundowner river cruise, Victoria Falls visits, scenic helicopter flights.