Zambia Wildlife Safari
Upon landing at Oliver Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg you will board another aircraft for the short flight to Lusaka. There you will be met by the Black Pot Safaris team and your own fully-customised Land Rover Defender(s). After a brief welcome and introduction you will head west for the three hour drive to Mukambi Safari Lodge – the gateway to the Kafue National Park – where you will spend the next three nights in their well-appointed campsite. Surrounded by one of the largest areas of unspoiled wilderness in the world, Mukambi overlooks the majestic Kafue River and is situated 265 km west of Lusaka. From the lodge you will experience ‘Real Africa' - vast areas of untouched nature, unspoiled by mass tourism. The rest of your first day will be spent familiarising yourself with the vehicles, camping equipment and your itinerary. Using Mukambi as a base, you will explore the vast expanse of Kafue National Park in your own vehicles as well as enjoying a boat cruise on the Kafue River and two night drives in open vehicles with the local guides – skilled in leopard tracking - from the lodge.
Day 4 and 5: Busanga Bushcamp, Kafue National Park
After an early breakfast, you will leave for the Busanga Plains - an area of approximately 750 sq km out of Kafue’s massive 22,500 sq km and one of Zambia's most significant wetland resources. This is one of the few areas in the world that remain untouched by development and human activity. The Busanga Bush Camp is located in the centre of this wildlife paradise. The Plains are home to hundreds of red lechwe, the ubiquitous puku, stately roan and the diminutive oribi, Lichtenstein's hartebeest, herds of wildebeest, zebra and buffalo make for unbeatable wildlife viewing. This wealth of game on the plains is also a big attraction for predators, including wild dog, cheetah and prides of lion. To stay at Busanga Bushcamp is to break from the budget self-catering accommodation associated with relatively low-cost safaris, and it is worth it. Busanga is about as 'wild' as you can get in today's world: an unfenced mosaic of expansive grassy seasonal floodplains and "dambos" (open grassy areas that sometimes will fill up with rainwater). This camp is perfectly situated for some of the best lion viewing in Africa. While staying at this exclusive camp you will enjoy well-appointed rooms built of reed and canvas with wall-to-wall views of the spectacular wildlife that frequents the plain in front of the camp. Activities include game drives and night drives, led by qualified guides who are extremely knowledgeable about the area and its wildlife. For those interested in birding, the park boasts 491 species, including endemics such as Chaplin's Barbet.
Day 6: Pioneer Camp, Lusaka
From the luxury of Busanga Bushcamp you return to the real world of camping! Pioneer Camp is a stopover destination, but it is undoubtedly the most relaxing lodge on the outskirts of Lusaka. The lodge is situated on a twenty five acre piece of land with wide open spaces and exquisite Miombo woodland.
Day 7, 8 and 9: Tamarind Canoe Safari, Zambezi River
After an early start you head for the border town of Chirundu on the Zambezi River. Here you will be met be your river guides who will facilitate your crossing into Zimbabwe for the start of your three night canoe safari along the infamous Zambezi River through to the famous Mana Pools National Park. Each night is spent bush camping on an unpopulated, wild island in the middle of the river itself. These canoe safaris are semi-participatory and require you to paddle your own heavily laden canoe as well as put up and take down your own tent. But it is well worth it as this is an opportunity to silently glide past a large array of birds and mammals feeding and drinking at the river’s edge, totally undisturbed by your tranquil passing with the exception of the hippos who like to make their presence known! This is the ultimate safari experience for those who don’t mind a rush of adrenaline every now and then.
Day 10: Pioneer Camp, Lusaka
After breakfast a vehicle will be waiting to transfer you back to Chirundu and your Land Rover(s). From there you head back to Pioneer Camp to break the journey through to Livingstone.
Day 11 and 12: Peregrine’s Nest Bushcamp, Livingstone
After an early start you drive to Livingstone – the adrenaline capital of Zambia – to experience the wonders of Victoria Falls. Here you will stay at the little know Peregrine’s Nest Bushcamp for the next two nights and enjoy total privacy on the edge of the Batoka Gorge. Whilst in Livingstone you will visit the falls, wander around the exceptional craft market and enjoy a sunset river cruise along the Zambezi River above the falls themselves. But if you want more there are a host of other activities – from bungee jumping to white-water rafting to kayaking to micro lighting to helicopter charters to amuse yourself with.
Day 13: Return to Johannesburg
After a last breakfast together, the safari is sadly over and you fly back to Johannesburg and then home.
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