Enjoy a varied safari experience in Zambia

Safari in Zambia
Zebra and giraffe crossing the road (Image by Needpix.com)

Zambia has a lot to offer those looking for an African safari experience. There are a number of different safari options to see the most popular wildlife.

The National Parks of Zambia are all fence-free, meaning the wildlife has a chance to roam around. The animals can head from the Lower Zambezi National Park through the adjacent wilderness areas. This also gives the opportunity to spot all the various iconic wildlife species in different environments.

Chiawa Game Management Area and Mana Pools

Head on a game drive into the Chiawa Game Management Area, where the vast array of resident wildlife includes lion, elephant, hippo, leopard and more in beautiful surroundings. Head to Mana Pools, across the Zambezi River where wildlife visibility is excellent next to the river and on the surrounding flood plains. Here you can spot plenty of elephant, Nile crocodiles and hippos in the water of the Long Pool at sunrise. Head to the Chitake Spring to spot lion, waiting for their prey around the waterhole.

South Luangwa National Park

The South Luangwa National Park is to the east of the country’s Luangwa River Valley. The park is famous for an abundance of wildlife, perfect for an adventurous safari trip in Zambia. Just inside the Mfuwe Gate entrance to the park, you will see many hippo in the river. However, on the woodland savannah there are hundreds of bird species to spot.

Giraffe in the South Luangwa National Park
Giraffe in South Luangwa National Park (Image by Joachim Huber/Wikimedia Commons)

Heading down the trails past the baobab trees, it is possible to spot large elephant herds and the rare Thornicroft’s giraffe. A night game drive with spotlights will reveal the large population of leopards in the park.

Leopard on night safari
A leopard on a night safari (Image by rcrhee/Wikimedia Commons)

Zambian walking safari

This type of safari holiday in Zambia is ideal for the cooler, winter mornings. At this time of year, the bush is less dense, offering more visibility and safety. Also the temperatures are milder and more comfortable for moving around in the bush.

Walking safaris tend to focus more on the details than seeking out predators or big game. Visitors can find out about the smaller species, as well as tracks, insects, birdlife and the signs of the bush itself. They can also learn about the medicinal values of plants in the park, while getting a bigger picture of what the African wilderness is all about.

Recommendations for a walking safari include wearing sturdy walking shoes or trainers with thick soles against the sharp thorns on the trails. It is an absolute must to carry binoculars and a camera to capture unexpected sightings of wildlife along the way. Due to their nature, walking safaris are normally limited to a maximum of four guests and the minimum age to participate is 14 years.

Zambian river safari

Zambezi River safari
Elephant on the banks of the Zambezi River (Image by Ninara/Flickr_

Get yet another perspective on Zambia’s wildlife while enjoying a river safari. River guides take you on a cruise down the Zambezi River – one of the largest rivers in Africa – while searching for elephant herds bathing in the water, or the buffalo hiding in the reeds.

You might even get to spot the elusive African Skimmer. This near-threatened bird species can occasionally be found along the river banks, or swooping down for food in the river.

African Skimmer
African Skimmer on the Zambezi River in Zambia. (Image by Lip Kee/Wikimedia Commons)

Experience a safari holiday in Zambia to see the widest range of African wildlife, while staying in style at one of the many excellent camps and lodges in the National Parks.