Covering 750 000km squared, Zambia sits between the tropics. Most of the country is part of an undulating plateau, cut deeply by the great valleys of the Zambezi, Kafue, Luangwa and Luapula rivers.
Zambia is blessed with some of the most pristine wilderness areas and has harnessed an authentic view of real Africa. From the lower Zambezi to South Luangwa and the Kafue National Park, it is a mosaic of large and small miombo woodlands, interspersed with open, verdant spaces. The interior is dominated by Lake Bangweulu and surrounding floodplains.
This country has the largest water resource in Southern Africa. This stems from massive lakes and rivers that yield lush vegetation to support high densities of animal life. There are many protected wildlife areas that offer excellent habitats for herds of elephant and buffalo as well as other predators. Leopards are the main focus in the lower Zambezi, which attracts a vast number of big cat enthusiasts. Zambia’s herbivores are particularly fascinating due to a range of endemic species that have evolved over time thanks to isolation from neighbouring populations.
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AREAS OF INTEREST
KAFUE NATIONAL PARK
The largest of Zambia’s conservation areas, Kafue National Park offers its visitors an unusual safari experience: excellent big game viewing with barely another vehicle in sight. Accessible through daily charter flights, Kafue still lies well off the beaten track and is very, very wild with just a handful of luxury tented camps – most of them overlooking the vast Busanga Plains in the north-east corner of the reserve.
The highlight of a Kafue safari, these grassy seasonal floodplains are the grazing grounds for huge numbers of red lechwe and puku antelope as well as herds of buffalo and wildebeest, all of which are preyed on by cheetah, wild dog, spotted hyena and lion. Along with great game viewing, part of the magic of Busanga lies in its scenery: expect spectacular pink sunrises punctuated by the silhouettes of antelope feeding in the early morning mist.
Activities in the park include game drives, guided walking safaris and night drives in search of leopards. Lodges can also arrange motor boat safaris and canoe trips to see hippos and crocodiles in Kafue's rivers and birders are sure to add a few ticks to their life lists - a staggering 490 bird species have been recorded in the park.