Kafue National Park is the largest single protected area in Zambia and the second largest in Africa. Covering an area of about 22,400 km2, the park was first designated as a reserve in 1924 and declared a National Park in the 1950s, but unlike many tourist destinations, Kafue is still largely untouched and unvisited, a pristine wilderness with breath-taking landscapes, wonderful wildlife viewing opportunities and a diversity of bird-life.
The permanently flowing Kafue river runs roughly north-south through the length of the park and exits in the south-eastern side where it is dammed by the Itezhi-Tezhi Dam. The flooded river fringes support a variety of habitats and wildlife.
The parks covers a range of habitats, from savannah grasslands to open Miombo scrub and woodland, with dambos (grasslands which become marshy in the rainy season) interspersed among them. In the extreme northwest of the park, the wet Busanga Swamps – with their adjacent floodplains – are a designated Ramsar site. While much of this northern sector is permanently waterlogged, the dry season (from May to November) becomes increasingly productive, as large herbivores are attracted to rich feeding grounds on the Busanga Plains. Lions here are known for their tree-climbing habits. Cheetah sightings can be good and the wild dog population is thriving but they’re only occasionally seen. Leopards are prevalent in the forested areas.
In the south there are stony hills and rocky outcrops where Mopane woodland takes over, adapted to hotter drier conditions. A fringe of riverine forest lines the banks of the Kafue River, which has been controversially dammed just outside the park at Itezhi-Tezhi Dam, forming a 370 km2 reservoir within the park. Patches of Baikiaea (teak) and Cryptosepalum evergreen forest occur in the south and west.
In the inaccessible northern reaches of the Park, seasonally flooded grasslands provides an abundance of wildlife, with prolific birdlife and supporting large herds of herbivores, including lechwe, sitatunga, oribi, tsessebe, hartebeest, zebra and buffalo, and predators typical of the region, including lion, leopard and cheetah as well as the endangered African wild dog.
The area is noted for its diverse birdlife, with an amazing total of nearly 500 species being recorded, including the rare wattled crane and black-cheeked lovebird.
The Kafue and Lunga Rivers offer superb fishing opportunities, especially good bream, barbel and fresh water pike, and an annual competition is held on Lake Itezhi-Tezhi in September.
The main east-west road from Lusaka to Mongu crosses the northern half of the park. Seasonal dirt roads also link from Kalomo and Namwala in the south and south-east, and Kasempa in the north.
Three day/two night mobile camp safari in the wildlife wilderness of Kafue National Park.
Day 1 - Depart Livingstone 9.00 am. for Kafue National Park. Travel through rural Zambia, picnic lunch en route. Enter Kafue game view to camp. Brief rest and snacks prior to afternoon game drive around Nanzila camp.
Day 2 - Early morning tea coffee and snacks before morning game drive return to camp for brunch relax in camp enjoy a light lunch before an afternoon game drive we will stop for a sundowner before returning to camp using a spotlight searching for nocturnal animals another delicious meal before turning in.
Day 3 - We start the day with tea and coffee re then head out on another game drive or an optional game walk we will return to camp for breakfast before returning to Livingstone arriving back in town around 15:00.
Four days/three night mobile camping safari in the wildlife wilderness of Kafue National Park. Suggested itinerary:
Day 1 - Depart Livingstone 09.00 am for Kafue National Park. Travel through rural Zambia, picnic lunch en route. Enter Kafue. Game view to camp. Brief rest and snacks in camp prior to afternoon game drive around Nanzila camp.
Day 2 - Early morning tea coffee and snacks before game drive in Nanzhila area return to camp for hearty breakfast. Head north game viewing along the way. Visit to the Elephant Orphanage for a 2 hour tour - a highlight for many and showcasing the vital animal welfare work undertaken by this project. We will also have our mid day picnic at this time. Depart elephant orphanage and game drive to our next camp on the shores of Lake Itech-itechi where a delicious evening meal has bean prepared
Day 3 - Another early morning with tea coffee and snacks before heading out to explore the surrounding area or optional walking safari.returning to camp for breakfast ,then head south game viewing our way towards Nanzila camp another great picnic style lunch and time to relax before heading of on an evening drive when we will stop for a sundowner drink before spotlighting back to camp search for elusive nocturnal animals.another great meal awaits
Day 4 - Time to head home. Early morning tea and coffee with hot bacon and egg rolls before our last game drive and return to Livingstone stopping en route for our last picnic arrive Livingstone 14:00 hrs where you will have earned a few drinks and maybe a relax by the pool.
Interested in discovering Wild Kafue with The Mobile Safari Company? Contact us for more information.