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Western Zambia

Predators of Busanga Plain, Kafue

Predators of Busanga Plain, Kafue

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What is this safari about?

Located in the remote northern part of Kafue, Busanga Plains is famous for its predators - especially the resident lion population! Here you will find lions and cheetahs preying on animals such as wildebeest, roan and lechwe.

The Busanga Plains area is also perfectly situated to see large numbers of less common animals such as puku, red lechwe, Lichtenstein’s hartebeest, oribi, sitatunga and servals - a special treat being the resident herd of rare roan antelope. For birding enthusiasts, the park boasts 491 species, including endemics such as Chaplin’s barbet. Crowned and wattled cranes, secretary birds and ground hornbills stalk the open grasslands, a view only interrupted by tree studded islands. Ancient fig trees (the famous One Fig) and palms draw their nutrients from giant termite hills. Each of these factors combine to create a distinctive landscape, like no other you will see in Africa!

Only accessible four months of the year, Mukambi Bush Camp lies in an area so remote that whilst renowned amongst locals, only a few visitors have discovered it. The Busanga Plains Camp consists of four big well-furnished safari tents (two twin and two double) with en suite open-air bathrooms overlooking the Busanga Plains. Red Lechwe antelope can be seen any time of the day from your tent.

Mukambi Busanga Plains Camp is open from 1st July until the first week in November. Private charter flights are available into Kafue.

Why is this special?

  • Resident predators provide exhilarating game viewing.
  • Variety of game and birds, second to none in Africa.
  • Very remote and largely undiscovered location, with vast plains and wetlands.
  • Very small and intimate camp setting.
  • Owner operator with proven low carbon track record and community involvement.
  • Lonely Planet has selected Mukambi as one of the few lodges that demonstrates an active responsible tourism policy.

Where is this?

The Busanga Plains Camp is a seasonal bush camp, deep in the heart of the stunning wetland area of the famous Busanga Plains. The camp is personal and intimate, set on a small palm tree island in the middle of the vast Busanga Plains.

This most northerly camp in the Kafue is an exciting six-hour drive from the main surfaced road running east west through Kafue. A trip to the Busanga Plains brings you back to the old safari days where the journey to your destination was half the adventure.

Who can go?

  • The safari is a great experience for the adventure traveller, families and small groups.
  • The minimum age for a stay at Busanga Plains Camp is 12 years old.

What should I expect to pay?

The rate for a minimum three night stay at Busanga Plains Camp is USD $775 per person, per night, sharing. This cost is fully inclusive other than Park fees and transfers.

There are children discounts available in addition to package deals for an extended stay at the other Mukambi Lodges in Kafue.

What extensions do you recommend?

Extensions to South Luangwa, Lower Zambezi and Livingstone are all a great idea.

 

 

 

Safari Enquirer

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Mobile safari Busanga Plain, Kafue

Mobile safari Busanga Plain, Kafue

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What is this safari about?

For some of the best wildlife and predator experiences to be found anywhere head to to a remote camp, called Ntemwa-Busanga Fly-Camp, a location famous for its lion population.

Enjoy a real adventure experience over three nights, as the safari’s owner operators, Phil Jeffery and Tyrone McKeith, take a small group on a privately guided tour in a remote camp. Erected in an area of the Kafue National Park known as ‘Treetops’ or ‘Musanza’, the camp is perfectly situated for access to the famed Busanga region, as well as the prolific wildlife and birding haven that is the Moshi and Musanza area.

Camping also comes with a little bit of luxury with each safari dome tent boasting a veranda, comfortable mattresses, good linen and solar lighting. Bucket showers and a short drop toilet make up the ablutions. A main mess tent area is available to escape the midday heat, with cold drinks and hearty meals served each evening under the stars…

The mobile camp is often booked in conjunction with the more permanent Musekese Camp, with a four night Musekese and three-night mobile option offering a popular combination.

Musekese is a small, intimate and classically styled traditional tented safari camp, situated on the banks of the Kafue River. Safari tents are furnished with comfy wooden beds and soft mattresses, bathrooms are open-air and grass thatch keeps the elements at bay whilst you bathe under traditional bucket hung showers, with hot water and flush toilets. Musekese is small, with just four canvas tents, each sleeping two people comfortably and all with superb views over the floodplain in front of camp.

You will be hosted by the most highly regarded team of Kafue experts, who will take you under the skin of this incredibly remote, beautiful and diverse wildlife haven. An experience not to be missed!

The safari is available from May to November.

Why is this special? 

  • Safaris are guided by Phil or Tyrone, who are both avid conservationists with university degrees in Wildlife Conservation from a renowned UK institution. The pair offer a depth of knowledge on the local landscape and wildlife, which makes for a unique opportunity to learn from the best.
  • The Kafue National Park is home to 21 species of antelope, more than any other park in the whole of Africa.
  • Great remote experience and combination of mobile and lodge stay.
  • Walking, boating and fishing experiences are also available.
  • Experience predators and photographic opportunities galore!

Where is this?

The vast Kafue National Park is Africa’s last hidden gem. Covering some 22,400 km² it is one of the largest National Parks in Africa and is comparable to the size of Wales or Belgium.

More diverse than any park in Africa, the wildlife of the Kafue is as numerous as it is varied, with an abundance of big game including elephant, lion, buffalo, leopard and even cheetah. The Kafue is also home to one of the last remaining viable populations of the rare and endangered African wild dog.

The Kafue has remained largely untouched by development and thus remains a unique and pristine wilderness with sublime scenery, game viewing and bird watching. Today some two thirds of the National Park remain designated as a wilderness area where only walking is permitted.

Who can go?

  • This safari is ideal for small groups or families looking for something different, real, authentic and off the beaten track.
  • Groups are limited to a maximum six people and children are welcome.
  • The minimum age for walking is 14 years old.

What should I expect to pay?

Rates are from USD $420 per person, sharing and are fully inclusive other than transfers from Lusaka. Good children discounts are available.

What extensions do you recommend?

A visit to South Luangwa or the Lower Zambezi National Parks are recommended to provide visitors with a different experience. There are also some excellent accommodation options available at both locations.

The Victoria Falls at Livingstone offers another great extension. 

 

 

Safari Enquirer

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Lodges of Zambia

Lodges of Zambia

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What is this safari about?

Based on its shared values, safariFRANK continually selects a small number of lodges for its portfolio of recommended establishments. These rustic lodges are often owner operated and focused on low impact, sustainable tourism and support of local communities.

The current portfolio is:

  • Mutemwa Lodge, Upper Zambezi
  • Wasa Lodge, Kasanka National Park
  • Musekese Camp, North Eastern Kafue
  • Mukambi Plains Camp, Busanga Plains, Kafue
  • Mambeti Lodge, Liuwa Plains
  • Nanzhila Plains Safari Camp, Southern Kafue
  • Island Bush Camp, South Luangwa
  • Mchenja / Kakuli / Nsolo and Luwi Camps, South Luangwa
  • Kaingo Camp and Mwamba Bush Camp, South Luangwa
  • Sausage Camp and Old Mondoro, Lower Zambezi
  • Tongabezi Lodge, Livingstone
  • Waterberry Zambezi Lodge, Livingstone
  • Pioneer Camp, Lusaka

Some of these camps only operate in the dry season, from around late May to mid November. Due to short seasons and small sizes, some of these lodges must be booked well in advance, so it is advised you get in early to avoid disappointment.

Why is this special?

  • Many owner operator, low environmental impact lodges.
  • Old safari tradition with renowned Zambian hospitality.
  • Great personal service at fantastic locations.
  • Good value for money and some of the best wildlife encounters anywhere.
  • Rustic, homely and intimate atmosphere.
  • Great walking and photographic locations.
  • Many other adventures, especially on the mighty Zambezi.

Where is this?

The lodges are all located in Zambia, at the locations as indicated above.

Who can go?

  • Lodges are ideal for couples and great for groups. They tend to be fairly small and intimate, catering for between eight and 20 guests at a time.
  • Age restrictions can apply for some activities available through the lodges, such as walking.

What should I expect to pay?

Fully inclusive prices vary from USD $450 to USD $950 per person, per night, sharing. Discounted prices are available outside of peak season and for children.

What extensions do you recommend?

These lodges can be added to any of the safariFRANK adventure components either at the start, in between, or at the end of a safari.

Livingstone makes for a great end to an adventure safari.

 

 

 

Safari Enquirer

LET THE ADVENTURE BEGIN! Contact safariFRANK and let us show you how each Safari Component can be linked up to create your ultimate safari. Let us help you get started on the journey of a lifetime.

Self Drive Zambia

Self Drive Zambia

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What is this safari about?

Zambia is a LARGE country with its wilderness areas widely spread out into all four corners. Whilst the road infrastructure is fairly good in some areas in others it is average to poor, something which makes for an adventurous self-drive experience for the traveller with patience and time on his side. It is a safe country to travel in and the people are generally very friendly and content.

safariFRANK works with a trusted family owned and operated business based in Livingstone, which specialises in hiring fully equipped Toyota Hilux vehicles. These are all late model vehicles purchased new and serviced by Toyota, so are very reliable and in great condition. Each car is fully equipped including two roof top tents and all the gear needed for camping for four adults. All you need to bring is your personal gear in a soft bag (pack lightly as space is limited) and a sense of adventure!

safariFRANK can assist you with planning your journey and should you prefer to have some local knowledge on hand, we can arrange for your trip to be escorted or guided.

Accommodation can be arranged to suit all needs and can be camping only, lodge to lodge, or a combination of both.

Why is this special?

  • Independence and freedom to explore remote wilderness, right off the beaten track.
  • Numerous unique National Parks to visit.
  • Some of the best wildlife and traditional safari experiences anywhere.
  • See the wildebeest and bat migrations - world-class wildlife events!

Where is this?

Self-drive can go anywhere in Zambia from the remote Liuwa Plains in the west, to North Luangwa - as wild as it gets!

We have a number of suggested 10 or 15 day itineraries, either starting in Livingstone and ending in Lusaka, or vice a versa. We will assist to develop your perfect itinerary covering all the ‘must see’ places, as well as your particular interests.

Due to long distances travelled and in some places poor roads, travellers should be mindful to drive to local conditions at all times. Consideration should also be taken of the seasons as it can get wet and sticky in some areas with potential road closures from November to April.

Who can go?

  • Couples, families or small groups with multiple vehicles.
  • Children of any age can go making for a great family adventure.

What should I expect to pay?

The daily rate for a fully equipped Toyota Hilux is USD $225, including unlimited kilometers, VAT and fully comprehensive insurance.

All vehicles have Interpol clearance and can therefore be taken out of Zambia, but there is an additional USD $100 per country for insurance and paperwork. A USD $300 pickup and drop off fee between Lusaka and Livingstone applies.

A ‘green season’ rate of USD $180 per day is available between November and the end of June.

What extensions do you recommend?

There are many great lodges to combine with the drive and a stay at Victoria Falls is a must.

In addition, cross border self-driving to Botswana or Namibia is a great option to consider. 

 

 

 

Safari Enquirer

LET THE ADVENTURE BEGIN! Contact safariFRANK and let us show you how each Safari Component can be linked up to create your ultimate safari. Let us help you get started on the journey of a lifetime.

Tiger fishing the upper Zambezi

Tiger fishing the upper Zambezi

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What is this safari about?

Tiger fish the upper Zambezi, Barotse and Kwando Rivers, Zambia.

Ideal for tiger fishing, the upper Zambezi River at Mutemwa is wide and varied with shallow rapids and riffles, deep holes (7m+) and eddies. The river offers islands, reed beds, grassy banks and mud wall drop offs and therefore the fishing is diverse with something for everyone whether it be drifting a live bait, spinning or fly fishing in the rapids. This stretch of river is only shared between two camps, so the water is extremely private.

Situated further north, Barotseland is known for consistently producing trophy tiger fish and bream who are known to savagely attack lures, earning them the nickname ‘The Barotse Express’. The enormous Barotse floodplains swell and flood during the rainy season, creating significant breeding grounds for incredible volumes of baitfish, which are gradually washed into the main channels leading to the impressive volume of large tiger fish and bream in this area. Whilst tiger fish are the major fishing attraction visitors have also recorded excellent catches of nembwe, humpack and thinface largemouth breams, 3 spot bream, pink happies and upper Zambezi yellow fish.

During the winter months, visitors can fish three Barotse Rivers during the annual Barotse Floodplain Fishing Safari. This is an excellent time of year to catch the enormous tigers and great bream as the floodplains empty into the main channels. To maximize this opportunity, each year on the Kwando River the “Location X” Tiger Camp is set up for six to seven weeks. The owners have decided not to name the location until clients confirm their bookings to protect this incredible fishery from over-exploitation and for the original guests to retain their “invitation only, first option” shares in this unbelievable fishing trip.

Mutemwa Lodge is owned and run by Gavin and Penny Johnson, who have been involved in upper Zambezi fishing and bush safaris in Barotseland for over 19 years. At the Lodge it's the belief that every upper Zambezi experience should encompass everything that makes the Zambezi River magical. This includes quality tiger fishing on a remote and private piece of the Zambezi, wonderful bird life, stunning sunsets, a roaring fire at night - all complimented by superb owner hospitality and great food. 

Fishing season varies, also between locations, and travellers should enquire for best and available times.

Why is this special?

  • Remote fishing for the famous tiger.
  • Great owner operator hosts Gavin and Penny Johnson.
  • Lodge or fly-camp based fishing options, in very remote locations.
  • Varied types of species and fishing opportunities.
  • Real expedition based fishing adventures.
  • Experience the magic of the mighty Zambezi.

Where is this?

Mutemwa Lodge is closely located to Sioma Falls in Sioma Ngwezi National Park and is situated on the upper Zambezi River between Sesheke and Sioma. It can be accessed via a three-hour road transfer from Livingstone Airport, or a one-hour transfer from Mapacha Airport at Katima Mulilo in Namibia.

The Barotse flood plain is a few hours north up the Zambezi River from Mutemwa. The Kwando River in turn is due east bordering on Angola.

Who can go?

  • Great for families or small groups of friends.
  • A passion for fishing is a must!

What should I expect to pay?

Rates at Mutemwa Lodge are around USD $300 per person, per night, sharing. This cost is fully inclusive, other than drinks and transfers. Good discounts for children are available.

The cost of the fly-camp fishing expeditions is approximately USD $480 per person, per night, on the same basis as above. These expeditions are available at set dates, at certain times of the year and are limited to a maximum of eight guests.

What extensions do you recommend?

Travellers wishing to fish more should consider a stay at Nxamaseri Lodge in Botswana’s Okavango Delta. It is highly recommended.

For wildlife experiences there are numerous options within Zambia and Botswana available.

 

 

Safari Enquirer

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Wildebeest Migration Liuwa Plain

Wildebeest Migration Liuwa Plain


What is this safari about? 

Liuwa Plain is situated on the upper Zambezi floodplains of Western Zambia. Each year when seasonal floods transform the flat grasslands into a wetland paradise, the area becomes home to the second largest wildebeest migration in Africa. It is a spectacle which sees between 40,000 and 50,000 individuals migrate within the broader Liuwa system, moving between the numerous pans following seasonal burns and flooding.

At the start of the rainy season (around November) the Zambezi floods from the north and the wildebeest move south to higher ground creating a magnificent migration with literally ten’s of thousands moving along the plains - a sight to behold! They are joined by herds of zebra, tsessebe and lechwe, and predators such as wild dog, hyena, cheetah and lion.  

The area incorporating Liuwa Plain has a long and rich history. One of the earliest protected areas in Africa, Liuwa Plain was proclaimed a game reserve by the King of the Lozi people in the early 1880’s.  Since 2003, the Park has been managed by African Parks through a public-private partnership with the Zambian Government and the Barotse Royal Establishment.

A new lodge Mambeti is located on the upper Munde stream, a site chosen for its sweeping vistas and complete wildlife immersion. The accommodation comprises six luxury villas including a two bedroomed family villa, with the capacity to accommodate a total of 15 guests. This will be the only lodge inside the Park and makes for a very special experience during the migration. 

Why is this special?

  • Witness the second biggest wildebeest migration in Africa!
  • View unique predator behavior - hyenas hunting in packs of up to 50.
  • Rare bird watching with 334 species.
  • Fabulous photographic opportunities.
  • Stay at the only lodge inside the Park.
  • Great conservation history and community participation
  • Wild and seriously remote…

Where is this?

Bound by the Luambimba and Luanginga Rivers, Liuwa is characterised by its spectacular flat landscape with wide-open spaces. Its seasonally flooded Zambezi floodplain is dotted with slightly elevated wooded islands.

Historically used as a royal hunting ground, people today still live inside the Park, a legacy that dates back to the late 19th century when the Barotse King, Lubosi Lewanika, proclaimed it a protected area and appointed his people as the custodians of the reserve and its wildlife – including the famous Liuwa lions, hyenas and cheetahs

Who can go?

  • Great for couples, families and small groups.
  • Ideal for those interested in remote and special wildlife encounters.
  • Birder and photographer heaven!

What should I expect to pay?

Prices are still to be announced.

What extensions do you recommend?

A stay at Liuwa can be combined (through a package deal) with a few nights at the camps in South Luangwa, creating a great Zambian wildlife experience. Add to that a stay at Victoria Falls and its pretty much as good as it gets!

safariFRANK’s Botswana or Namibia components also work well with a Zambia connection.

 

 

 

Safari Enquirer

LET THE ADVENTURE BEGIN! Contact safariFRANK and let us show you how each Safari Component can be linked up to create your ultimate safari. Let us help you get started on the journey of a lifetime.