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Zambia's Classic Safari

Zambia

Overview

This classic Zambia safari starts off when you arrive at Lusaka where you will take an internal flight and then go on to the luxurious Nkwali Camp, where the spacious chalets are located on a bend in the Luangwa River. Over the next eight nights you will stay in a variety of high-end lodges and camps, specially chosen by us for the quality of the accommodation, facilities and of course, their access to seeing the best of Zambia’s wildlife. There is every chance of seeing the Big Five on this trip and plenty of time to indulge in other activities such as swimming, fishing, river trips or even visiting a local village. After your classic Zambian safari, you will be transferred to Livingstone Airport for your onward flight.

Safaris

5 nights in Chiawa Camp
3 nights in Lower Zambezi 
2 nights in Tongabezi Lodge in Livingston

Day 1 - Nkwali Camp
On arrival at Lusaka International Airport, you will be met by a Robin Pope Safaris' representative who will have a name board with your names. He/She will assist you with immigration and customs clearing then check in for your flight to Mfuwe, South Luangwa. The flight is on average one hour.  At Mfuwe International Airport a guide from Robin Pope Safaris will meet you.   The drive to Nkwali Camp is 1 hour through colourful local scenes of villages, agriculture as well as bush.  
Nkwali Camp has a wide view of the Luangwa River.   On Robin’s private land, and overlooking the South Luangwa National Park, Nkwali 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 to the back of Nkwali or if in the afternoon for tea and the afternoon and night game drive.

Day 2  - Nkwali Camp
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 at 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.  Following tea you will go out on an afternoon game drive that continues into the early night giving the chance to see the nocturnal world, returning to camp about 20.00 hrs with dinner generally at 20.30.   

Day 3 - Nsefu Camp
After an early breakfast, a transfer game drive through the park into the Nsefu Sector of the park and onto Nsefu Camp.  Nsefu was the first game camp in Zambia and dates back to the early fifties. The Nsefu Sector was recognised then as a phenomenal area and it still is. Robin Pope Safaris owns the only two camps in this sector of the Park. There are six round rondavels with luxurious en suite facilities and each room has a clear view of the sweeping bend of the Luangwa River through large windows and from the wooden verandahs.  On arrival you will be shown to your rondavel and then lunch will be served followed by a well deserved siesta before the afternoon and evening game drive.  (Note: option of booking Tena Tena for the 3 nights). 

Day 4 - Nsefu Camp 
Today is a chance to drive or walk through the ebony groves.  Or you may decide this is an ideal day, depending on the heat and time of year, to explore the Nsefu Sector of the National Park possibly with an all day picnic drive to the salt pans that will cover different habitats and is an exceptional day’s safari. 

Day 5 - Nsefu Camp
After breakfast around the camp fire, your safari will continue with another relaxing day at Nsefu, with morning and evening game activities and the possibility of visiting Kawaza village. This community tourism initiative is a great opportunity to meet local people and experience life in a real non-tourist village.   If you wish to visit, then it is best to mention this when booking your holiday or with Robin Pope Safaris on arrival.

Day 6 - Chiawa Camp
After an early breakfast, transfer to Mfuwe Airport (1.5 hours) for the flight to the Lower Zambezi.  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.  The transfer to Chiawa Camp is through the park and there is the chance of game viewing along the way. Resting on the banks of the Zambezi under a lush grove of mahogany and acacia trees, eight spacious tents on elevated wooden platforms with en-suite facilities offer Chiawa's guests ample comfort and stunning views. 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. 

Day 7   - Chiawa Camp
At Chiawa there are various activities to choose from.  Not only on offer are exciting day and night drives and bush walks, but Chiawa's 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.   

Day 8 - Chiawa Camp
Enjoy another few days full of activities.  

Day 9 - Tongabezi Lodge
Today (usually in the morning) you will take a flight transfer onto Livingstone via Lusaka (1.5 hours’ flight).  On arrival you will be met and transferred to Tongabezi Lodge where you will settle into your accommodation and be served a delicious lunch.  Accommodation at Tongabezi Lodge is set in a tranquil grove of ebony on a sweeping bend of the Zambezi River, and consists of colonial-style river cottages and spacious open-planned stone and thatch houses.

Day 10 - Tongabezi Lodge
There is a wide range of activities on offer at Tongabezi including fishing, canoe trips on the river, game drives in the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park.  For the more adventurous, Livingstone boasts a whole host of adrenaline filled activities including whitewater rafting, bungee jumping and microlighting.  Or you may just wish to rest in camp and enjoy the spectacular scenery and peaceful atmosphere.  The day will end with a relaxed dinner served either in the main dining area or as a private meal outside of your room. 

Day 11
After breakfast you may have a morning activity, time permitting or a transfer to Livingstone Airport for your onward connection. END OF SAFARI

Location

Zambia is a landlocked country in Southern Africa, neighbouring the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the north, Tanzania to the north-east, Malawi to the east, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia to the south, and Angola to the west.

Experiences

The South Luangwa National Park is said to be the birthplace of walking safaris and you'll still find some of the continent's best on-foot experiences here. Victoria Falls – one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the world - is a huge draw for visitors and it’s a truly amazing sight, forming the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe. It was described by the Kololo tribe living in the area in the 1800s as ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’ – ‘The Smoke that Thunders’. The Zambezi River is Africa’s fourth largest river system, after the Nile, Zaire and Niger Rivers and it runs through six countries on its journey from central Africa to the Indian Ocean. The river’s majesty has attracted tourists from all over the world and provides opportunities for a huge variety of water sports and game viewing. The Zambezi is home to hippo, crocodile and elephant, as well as amazing birdlife. Considered one of the best stretches of commercially run river in the world, Batoka Gorge is heaven for white-water rafting. Its 23 white-water rapids are run in large rubber rafts launched from just below the Falls and you can do a half-day trip, full day or two day. It’s also a terrific place for kayaking, river boarding and jet boating. Zambia is a safari enthusiast’s dream with over 30% of the country’s land allocated to National Parks. Kafue National Park’s Busanga Plains are famous for lion prides while plains game such as puku, red lechwe, Lichtenstein’s hartebeest, oribi and buffalo can be seen. Cheetah and wild dog are also present and there is a resident herd of rare roan antelope. Birdlife in Zambia is prolific, with over 750 bird species found in the country. 

Accommodations

Luxurious riverside lodges, 5* hotels and stylish tented safari camps

Useful Info

Capital: Lusaka

Money: Zambia’s currency is the Zambian Kwacha (ZMW).

Time: Zambia is two hours ahead of GMT and five hours ahead of EST.

Health: Zambia is a tropical country and vaccinations for typhoid, polio, hepatitis, tetanus and possibly meningitis C are recommended. Malaria is common and you should take anti-malarial tablets.

Water: Tap water in Zambia is generally not drinkable, at least unless boiled. Bottled water is widely available in cities, but not necessarily in rural areas.

Weather: Zambia has a tropical climate, with a wet and dry season. 

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