Suggested Trip Dossiers
15 days Land Only (732) (ZB)
15 days Land Only (733) (ZA)
12 Days Land Only (966) (ZW)
22 Days Land Only (927) (LP)
8 Days Land Only (TD3000f_VF) (VF)
“The Axe forgets but not the tree”
“The man who wanted to gather too much honey was stung by the bees”
“To think secretly is like the journey of a dog”
“Be on good terms with those you leave, because it is night where you are going “
“The animal that has mud on its hooves is assumed to have been to the water hole“
“A child who does not cry will die on its mother’s back”
Zambia a landlocked country in the heart of Southern Africa surrounded by eight neighbours, with its capital city, Lusaka, located in the southeast of the country, has been inhabited for thousands of years by hunter gatherers and migrating tribes. After sporadic visits by European explorers starting in the 18th century, the area was, towards the end of the nineteenth century, gradually claimed and occupied by the British as the protectorate of Northern Rhodesia. The modern state of Zambia, deriving its name from the mighty Zambezi River, was born on the 24th October 1964, after the protectorate gained independence from Britain.The area which is now modern Zambia was originally inhabited by Khoisan hunter-gatherers until around AD 200, when technologically-advanced migrating tribes began to displace or absorb them. The earliest account of a European visiting the area was Francisco de Lacerda in the late 18th century, followed by other explorers in the 19th century. The most prominent of these was David Livingstone, who had a vision of ending the slave trade through the "3 C's" (Christianity, Commerce and Civilisation).
David Livingstone was the first European to see the magnificent waterfalls on the Zambezi River in 1855, naming them Victoria Falls after Queen Victoria. Locally the falls are known "Mosi-oa-Tunya" or "the smoke that thunders" (in the Lozi or Kololo dialect). The town of Livingstone, near the falls is named after him. Highly publicised accounts of his journeys motivated a wave of explorers, missionaries and traders after his death in 1873.
Zambia has a few well developed tarmac roads but once you leave the arterials, you are ‘off the beaten track’, indeed most of Zambia is off the beaten track. This is Zambia’s appeal; wilderness and space. From the southern shores of Lake Tanganyika to the northern shores of Lake Kariba, from the vast Barotse floodplains to the rich Luangwa Valley, from Lake Bangweulu and the swamps to the abundant Busanga Plains and Liuwa Plains, from Victoria Falls to Kalambo Falls, from the Ku’omboka to the Umutomboka, this is Zambia and this is the real Africa.
Zambia beckons to the intrepid, the adventurous; to those who want to step off the conveyor belt of mass tourism. If risk is perceived, then the risk is justified by the repertoire of destinations and the quality options the country can offer: the astonishing wildlife of Luangwa Valley, Kafue, and Lower Zambezi, the graceful lechwe antelope filling the vast plains of Busanga and Bangweulu in their tens of thousands, the annual white-water frenzy of Batoka Gorge, the ‘flight of angels’ over the ‘smoke that thunders’ the adrenalin-choked bungee jump off Victoria Falls Bridge, the limitless expanses of Lake Kariba and Tanganyika, fishing, diving, house-boating, canoeing.
During the beginning of our rainy season, I was privileged to visit western Zambia with our webmaster and other old and dear friends. We experienced the Kalahari sand veldt, crossed the Barotse Flood Plains, and were ferried over the Zambezi on four different occasions. These experiences reminded me of the explorers of old: think of an explorer and the image that typically springs to mind depicts a man in a pith helmet sweating his way through the undergrowth, a troupe of overburdened porters trailing behind him.
We made use of a Land Rover instead of porters, exploring a region with no modern infrastructure, saw one of the biggest migrations of Blue Wildebeest in Liuwa Plains, was charged by the biggest lions that I have seen in my life; what a beautiful specimen; but also saw the damage that is being done by the aid brigade …
Exploring and doing game viewing in a National Park in Africa with no existing roads or even tracks? We did it in Sioma Ngwezi. We camped like explorers with no infrastructure and were privileged to see Wild Dogs. From Chobe we went for lunch to Savuti and on the return journey awaiting the prospect of sundowners were charged by a bull elephant. He kept us at bay for about an hour, playing hide and seek and charging us every time we try to pass him. Good photo opportunity but not for me who was reversing at flat speed in thick sand, looking backwards to remain in the sand track, with the “He is gaining ….. he is gaining …. HE IS GAINING!!” … still ringing in my ears. (Kenneth Smith December 2005)
Zambia’s Luangwa Valley: No Trip to Malawi is complete without visiting the Luangwa Valley! This is one of Africa’s greatest remaining wildlife areas and still preserves high densities of big game along with the wide open spaces allowing visitors to feel they are really deep in “the bush”.
The Luangwa lies two days drive from Mwabvi. The Valley is in fact part of the great Rift Valley system, with lake Malawi forming a parallel leg to the East. The 2 main parks in Luangwa are the North and South Parks.
South Luangwa has always been the most popular destination for visitors. It cannot be beaten for a combination of its wildlife, birds and most importantly lack of visible developments which tend to detract from the experience of other great parks in Africa.
Having said that there are now a number of lodges coming up at the central Mfuwe area. But the park is huge and has camps in outlying areas offering equal scenic beauty and wildlife experiences for visitors moving both on foot and by vehicle.
If you are planning a safari and would like to include South Luangwa we can help you book a suitable camp to stay at and arrange your transport there and back.
North Luangwa is the real wilderness cousin of the South! It also offers some spectacular game viewing and specialises in walking safaris, but in an area 20 times the size of Mwabvi there are only 3 widely spaced lodges. For this reason you really are out there on your own amongst the animals. The park management is assisted by a project from the Frankfurt Zoological Society which has controlled poaching and allowed the game to increase after the destructive decades of the 1970s and 80s.
Luambe National Park is a small park wedged between North and South Luangwa on the east bank of the river. It is a beautiful area with some good bird watching and game viewing. There’s a lodge in the park and it makes an ideal stopover for adventurers driving between North and South Luangwa.
Victoria Falls, one of the seven wonders of the modern World. For centuries, these dazzling waterfalls were considered to be sacred and local people came here to pray and make their offerings. Only following the visit of David Livingstone on 16th November 1855 did they come to the attention of the western world. Soon they became an integral part of the grand African tour for the adventurous and wealthy. However, only with the explosion of air travel have more people been able to view them. There can be few experiences on earth as gratifying as watching the gushing white waters of the magnificent Victoria Falls. The experience is enhanced by the fact that it is possible to walk in front of them, unlike many other waterfalls, which are seen from the side. Well-kept paths lead to different points for the views of the falls. But the most astonishing view is from the Knife Edge Bridge. This is as close as you will ever get to the falls.
Barefoot Safaris is a Member of the Malawi Tourism Association
BAREFOOT SAFARIS & Adventure Tours
Discover the Africa of your dreams on a Barefoot Safaris Adventure