A Guide to your Safari holiday in Zambia
Since 31 January 2015, travellers passing through South Africa after travelling to Zambia will no longer be required to have a yellow fever vaccination certificate.
© Robin Pope SafarisZambia is home to some truly spectacular scenery and is an amazing wildlife safari destination. From the amazing Victoria Falls in the south (one of the natural 7 Wonders of the World) to the vast Luangwa Valley in the north (including the South and North Luangwa National Parks which are home to one of the greatest collections of wildlife in the world including leopard, lion, elephant, giraffe, buffalo, hippo and more than 400 species of birds), it is easy to see why this country is such a draw for a memorable safari holiday destination. First time visitors will find themselves wanting to return again (and again and again).
Somehow, however, the country still remains untouched by mass commercialisation, and a safari holiday here really feels like a secret adventure that you have stumbled upon and that only you know about.
Silently paddle a canoe through meandering waterways past elephants drinking at the waters edge, walk into the bush and sleep under the stars, or head out on a morning game drive just after sunrise where all you see is wildlife, not vehicles.
Zambia is probably most famous for its dedicated walking safaris, and the quality of the walking guides is unsurpassed - so you are in incredibly good and safe hands as you walk in single file through the bush. Learn about tracks and how to identify a bird from its call even though it is hidden from sight, discover the medicinal uses of various plants, and listen to the other noises of the bush not normally heard over the drone of a safari vehicle engine. Hold your breath as you slowly approach a herd of elephant or buffalo on foot, your heart beating with the adrenelin and exhilaration of being so close to nature. Once you have done a walking safari, you are truly spoilt for life.
© The Bushcamp CompanyNight safari game drives with powerful spotlights are also a speciality, especially in South Luangwa National Park. With any luck, you may spot a leopard hunting, or even an aardvark ambling slowly towards a termite mound for its evening snack.
The safari camps and lodges throughout Zambia range from rustic bush camps, some of which are only accessible on foot having trekked through the bush for a day to get here, to luxurious 5* camps with pristine bush or river views.
The quality of the accommodation is undoubtedly some of the best to be found in Africa, with even the most basic bush camp offering something that makes your stay here unforgettable - be it a view over a waterhole, or the feeling of having stepped into the Africa of yesterday.
Some people will say that a safari holiday in Zambia is better suited to the more experienced safari goer, but we disagree. A first timer on safari may not want to undertake a 3 day walking trail, of course, as soon as he arrives in the country, but staying at one of the extremely comfortable and luxury lodges and dabbling with a short morning bush wallk combined with game drives and a boat safari is something that even a safari novice can easily become relaxed with after just a few short hours.
For the hardened safari enthusiast, however, Zambia does also offers a myriad of wildlife experiences, some of which cannot be found elsewhere - seeking out the rare shoebill stork in the Bangweulu Swamps in the north, witnessing the largest bat migration and spotting the elusive Sitatunga antelope in the Kasanka National Park; and watching the breeding colonies of the Carmine Bee-Eaters stretched along the riverbanks of the South Luangwa National Park.
Whether you want to visit the Victoria Falls and one or more of the National Parks, and whether you want a serious walking safari or a more general safari experience, we can help plan your holiday to this stunning country. From when you land in either Lusaka or Livingstone, we will take care of everything from start to finish. You will not have to worry about a thing and your trip will be specifically tailor-made to ensure you have the perfect trip. We can also offer a ‘bush and beach’ combo, combining a Zambian safari with a stay at the beautiful Lake Malawi.
If you would like to get some personal help and guidance on your trip from one of our experienced travel consultants then you can ask us to help plan and book your trip.
Zambia is a land-locked, warm-hearted African country with an endless list of adventures on offer. Many tourists overlook Zambia as a wildlife destination in its own right, yet the nation is packed with natural delights, making it a superb and secret spot for a safari.
See our suggested itineraries for this route.
Prices from pp*
A Bit More about the Country
Zambia is home to a population of 13.2 million people, and given it's size - over 290,500 square miles (so larger than France) - this means that the entire country is quite sparsely populated. Zambia is renowned for its friendly hospitality, and visitors are welcomed with a true sense of warmth and honesty. It is also one of the safest countries in Southern Africa, due to its political and economic stability.
There are over 70 ethnic groups within Zambia, but the 7 major tribes are Lozi, Bemba, Luvale, Nyanja, Tonga, Lunda and the Kaonde. The official language is English.
The capital is Lusaka, although many visitors will start or end their trip by flying into or out of Livingstone, in the very south of the country, and enjoying a few nights stay to marvel at the wonderful Victoria Falls.
Malaria is prevalent throughout the country, so visitors are advised to consult their doctor prior to travel regarding taking suitable malarial precautions.
Zambia is 2 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) all year round.
The currency is the Kwacha, which is made up of 100 ngwees, but most of the lodges will quote and charge in US Dollars (US$).