Travel News Around Zambia
February 2019

The Victoria Falls

Last month I showed you the ‘smoke’ of the ‘smoke that thunders’.  This month I am giving you the sound of the ‘thunder’.  It is impossible to have a conversation while walking along the side of the falls.  Remember, too, that the ‘thunder’ is happening 100 metres below, in the chasm of the gorge.

This month I decided to take a walk along the whole length of the precipice opposite the Falls.  It was ‘raining’ from the spray of the waterfall but I went anyway.  By the end of my walk I was soaked to the skin.

The Falls are not as full as usual for this time of year because rainfall has not been great, but they are still spectacular.  And this is the time of year that the gladioli are in flower.  Covering large areas of the bank, the yellow gladioli are a sight to see.  The walkways were full of visitors with lots of youngsters taking selfies along the route.  The youngsters didn’t worry about getting wet, but the older folk were covered in raincoats to keep out the spray.  Everyone seemed to be having a good time, despite their wet condition.

The Weather

When the rain started properly at the beginning of February, we were all very happy.  For the north of Zambia, the rain poured and poured.  But for us in the south, it didn’t, it went away.  It seems like the band of rain clouds are over the north of Zambia, reaching down as far as Lusaka and leaving us dry.  Our rain comes once a year between November and April and is caused by the intertropical convergence zone which hovers over the equator.  At this time of year it is expected to move southwards to give us rain, but, in years of drought it does not.  So, for us in the south, we are badly hit, but it seems that the land in the north is getting the rain which should be ours!

This happens occasionally and we are used to it.  Our biggest concern is that the Zambezi River is not filling as normal and this is the water which drains into the Kariba Dam to provide Zambia with most of its electricity.  The lake is very low now with little coming down the river to fill it up.  Hard times ahead …

The Parks

Meanwhile in the parks, the wildlife are happy.  The young are bouncing around; the puku, impala and wildebeest babies are all growing up and finding their place in their herds.  Soon in Liuwa Plain, the wildebeest will start to move north again, back on their annual migration.

The predators, too, are happy as the youngsters in the antelope herds make easy pickings if they are not careful.

Many wildlife areas are still closed because of the rain.  It will be another few months before they become accessible and open to the public.  If you scroll down to the photographs of North Luangwa National Park, you will see what some of our parks are like at this time of year.

Money

USD1 = K12.00;   EUR1 = K13.45;   GBP1 = K15.65;   SAR1=K0.85

 

Tracks 4 Africa

Tracks 4 Africa gives lots of advice on self-drive travel around Africa.  They also have maps and tips for GPS use.  If you need advice on travelling to Zambia via other countries, their website is worth reading.  Click on the link to the right to have a look.

 

From around the regions from media

LIVINGSTONE

Livingstone has three ‘tame’ zebra which walk up and down the Falls Road and around the outskirts of town.  I have a feeling that they have come from the AVANI Resort.  The AVANI Resort has giraffe, zebra and impala within their grounds but it is surrounded by a fence so, normally, the wildlife is confined to the area.  The fence is there largely to keep out elephants, because, although we all love elephants, they can be dangerous.   The zebra seemed so used to people and vehicles.  They are within (most of the time) the National Park so it is their land really.  I think we could do with more …

 

Fawlty Towers Lodge

Our innovative Irish guests have introduced us to a new pool game….. Something like volley ball cross dive bombing… Lol. Nice one lads!

 

The Elephant Café

Art with the Elephants, what a day, this is a phenomenal way to hang out with our elephants and unleash your inner artist.

 

Kayube River Estate

The unique, one-of-a-kind Mama Out of Africa

 

Baobab Camp & Cottages

The quarry is a great place for our guests to go canoeing, bird watching and fishing.

 

AVANI Victoria Falls Resort

Our Avani Kids club is the perfect spot for kids to be kids, enjoying excursions, games, and nature walks, to name a few. And guests can enjoy complimentary access during our family weekend getaway.

KAFUE NATIONAL PARK

Mukambi Safaris

Wild dogs in the green season? Now, what a sight to be holding up the traffic …

Fresh puku for breakfast anyone? These two crocs certainly look pleased with theirs. Incredible viewing on this morning’s game drive with guide Simonga in the Kafue National Park.

 

Shiluwe Safari Lodge, Itezhi-Tezhi

Look at that herd of Elephants, isn’t that awesome!!!

 

SOUTH LUANGWA NATIONAL PARK

Marula Lodge

Not sure if the lions are posing with our car, or our car is posing with the lions. In any case this is the Green season in South Luangwa. Thanks to Suzyo for the photo!

 

Remote Africa Safaris

We’re thrilled to share our exciting new development for 2019 – Takwela Camp.

Yes, we’re adding another bush camp to the Remote Africa Safaris portfolio!

Another fantastic Zambian sunset to finish off a great week.

 

The Bushcamp Company

Neither seems very interested in sharing!

photos by Isak Pretorius Wildlife Photography

LOWER ZAMBEZI

Time + Tide

This is a promotional video of a type I don’t normally include.  But there is a reason for this.

Firstly, it has some fantastic shots of Zambia and well worth watching.

Secondly, it shows that local knowledge is so important.  In Africa distances are long, logistics can be difficult, and visitors can spend a lot of their time waiting for connections between destinations.  By booking through a local company, these ‘waiting times’ are kept to a minimum.

Thirdly, Zambia has high levels of poverty in the rural areas around National Parks.  All our Zambian Tour Operators are committed to the development of rural communities, spending time and money on essential infrastructure to uplift communities.

By booking direct through Time + Tide, or one of our other major tour operators, visitors know that, not only will they have an excellent, well-tuned trip but they are also contributing to the development of the Zambian people.

Time + Tide operates in South Luangwa, Lower Zambezi and Liuwa Plain National Parks.

 

Royal Zambezi Lodge

Pink and purple hues fill the sky at sunrise on the Zambezi River.

A Martial Eagle seen with its prey

NORTHERN ZAMBIA

Ndole Bay Lodge

The best mode of transport around Lake Tanganyika is still by boat of which are hand crafted on the shores of the lake by local artisans with locally sourced materials. Influences of Arabia can still be seen in the design of dhows in the region when this was a historically a major trade route.

KASANKA NATIONAL PARK

Kasanka Trust

The bushpig (Potamochoerus larvatus), or ingulube in the local Bemba language, is generally nocturnal and seldom seen during the day.

Bushpig here at #Kasanka are usually elusive. They are seen by scouts during less than 1 in 3 of our anti-poaching patrols. We were lucky to capture one during daylight hours on one of our camera traps in some dense forest close to BBC Hide.

NORTH LUANGWA NATIONAL PARK

Mark Harvey

This is North Luangwa Mwaleshie And Luangwa River this morning !!! Thanks for the pictures Ed Sayer!!! Unbelievable!!

G:  North Luangwa is closed now.  I think you can see why from the photos.

LIUWA PLAIN

Zambian Carnivore Programme

Exciting news from Liuwa!

In a recent field-trip to the north of the park our research partners from Zambian Carnivore Programme came across seven previously unknown cheetah! An exciting development as it indicates continued growth of the population of this endangered species in the park and adjacent game management areas – a crucial element of the Liuwa landscape.  Photo: Daan Smit

Cheetah 180 and her cubs travel across Liuwa Plain in Western Zambia. In collaboration with the DNPW and African Parks we have studied Zambia’s second largest cheetah population for many years, and Cheetah 180 is one of the oldest animals, and a very productive and experienced mother — essential for the next generations of Liuwa cheetah! Photo by Daan Smit