The Luangwa Valley, which marks the end of the Great Rift Valley, is one of the last unspoilt wilderness areas and possibly the finest wildlife sanctuary in Africa. It covers an area of over 9000 sq. km. through which the meandering Luangwa River runs. The oxbow lagoons, woodland and plains of the valley host huge concentrations of game - including elephant, buffalo, leopard, lion, giraffe, hippo - and over 450 species of birds.
The Luangwa River flows into the Zambezi River - just below the Lower Zambezi National Park. This park, scenically bordered by an impressive escarpment, has excellent game, which can be viewed from either the river or by land. Quietly drifting past a huge elephant feeding on the river bank is a great experience.
On arrival at Mfuwe International Airport your guide will meet you and drive you to camp, about one hour, through colourful local scenes of villages, agriculture as well as bush. The camp has a wide view of the Luangwa River. On private land, and overlooking the South Luangwa National Park, it is ideally situated for the start of your safari. The six rooms all look out over the river and have open air bathrooms. Depending on your arrival time, in the day you will enjoy a lunch looking out over the lagoon or if in the afternoon for tea and the afternoon and night game drive.
At dawn breakfast is served around the campfire. The porridge heated on the fire and toast cooked by the coals. The morning walk or drive will leave soon after, entering the park by boat from the camp or by the nearby pontoon. The game in the area is excellent – and includes many family herds of elephants and the endemic species of giraffe, the Thornicroft Giraffe. A mid morning break of tea, coffee and cake will be taken by a scenic point on a lagoon or the Luangwa River. Return to camp for lunch around mid day. After lunch you can cool off in the swimming pool or siesta. Tea will be served in the afternoon and then off on an afternoon game drive that continues into the early night giving the chance to see the nocturnal world. Usually one returns to camp about 20.00 hrs with dinner generally at 20:30.
Days 3 and 4
A few more days to enjoy the game viewing in the area on walks or drives or you may wish to go on an all day picnic. Taking a scout with you, you will be able to enjoy a walk or explore further afield in the park. Lunch will be under a tree or next to a lagoon and you will then be able to take a siesta or simply spend a lazy couple of hours reading a book or watching the fascinating animals and landscape around you. Returning to camp when you are ready – you may decide to continue straight on your evening drive and return to come after sundowners – this is a very flexible day.
After an early breakfast, transfer to Mfuwe Airport for the flight to the Lower Zambezi (1 hour 30 mins). As you fly into the area, you will see the wide Zambezi River, dotted with islands. Buffalo and elephant are always seen feeding along with the pods of hippos that rest on the edge of the sandbanks. Chongwe River Camp, only 20 mins from the airstrip, is situated on the confluence of the Chongwe and Zambezi Rivers, directly opposite Mana Pools. The Chongwe River is the boundary of the Lower Zambezi National Park. The camp has a wonderful view of not only the confluence of the two rivers but also the mountains of the impressive Zambezi escarpment. Situated under a canopy of Albida thorns and surrounded by cool lawns, the 8 chalets are large, well appointed safari tents under thatch, with luxury en suite open air bathrooms. The bathrooms are an experience on their own. All fittings are made from natural materials found near the lodge. Activities are extremely flexible and with individuals choosing from drives, walks, boat cruises, canoeing and fishing. Game viewing in the pristine Lower Zambezi National Park is superb and big game, such as elephant, hippo, buffalo and the big cats are even seen regularly in and around the camp! After a late lunch there will be a chance for an afternoon activity – be it on the river or by vehicle.
At the next river camp there are various activities to choose from. Included are exciting day and night drives and bush walks, but guests can choose their own day's itinerary from a selection of canoe trips, river safaris on safe, stable pontoon boats and catch & release angling for the infamous tiger fish.
Enjoy another full day of activities.
After breakfast and farewells, a drive through the park to the airstrip to meet the plane taking you to Lusaka (30 mins) for your onward flight.
Accommodation type: Various
Numbers min /max: max 12
Peak Season July to October )
Shoulder Season 22 May to June ) 2015 prices to follow or please enquire
Emerald Season November to 21 May )
Single Supplement on Request
Plus internal flights Lusaka/Mfuwe/Lower Zambezi/Lusaka approx. US$870 per person subject to confirmation
· All accommodation, meals, drinks, laundry, game viewing activities, transfers, National Park fees.
· River Camp ~ accommodation, meals, drinks, laundry, game viewing activities, canoe trips, river cruises, fishing trips, National Park fees
· International flights, visas, airport takes, national park angling permits.