JANUARY 2018

The waterfall above is Ngonye Falls in western Zambia during November.  The waterfall to the right is the Victoria Falls at the end of January.

January is expected to be a month of rain throughout Zambia, but this year the southern part of the country has had little rain.  The lack of rain is not an issue for our parks because the environment has evolved to cope with a harsh climate from time to time.  It is, though, a problem for many farmers who planted their crops enthusiastically in December.  Many of the crops, without rain, have withered and will not produce food.  Zambia does have a well-developed agricultural sector so we know that no-one will go hungry.

In Zambia we call this time the Emerald Season.  It is a time of plenty for all wildlife in the parks.  It is a lovely time to visit but does have its challenges.  Wildlife is scattered, enjoying the new growth in remote parts of the parks where people cannot reach.  I know that regular visitors to Zambia like to come once a year during the dry season and then again in the rains – it is like experiencing two different worlds.

As you can see in the short video of the Victoria Falls, they are looking good now.  Many people are hiring raincoats for the walk but they don’t help much.  The rain comes down but the spray goes up and reaches underneath any raincoat.  They are, though, a great help in keeping the camera dry …

Finally, now that the rain has finally started to come down as it should, it is cold sometimes.  Jumpers and jackets required.

 

From Tour Operators around the regions from Social Media

LIVINGSTONE

Kayube River House

A friend keeping me company on a tour of the camp

 

Elephant Cafe

We would like to thank you for all your incredible support this year! With your support this year we have successfully phased out elephant-back safaris, we have reached #1 Restaurant in Livingstone on TripAdvisor, won Best New Restaurant in Zambia from the Zambia Hospitality Awards and won Best Boutique Restaurant from the Luxury Travel Guide.

 

Munga Eco-Lodge

Environmental sustainability means making sure natural resources in an area can be preserved for use by future generations. True we need to use the environment and its resources to sustain us now.   Sustainability entails that in meeting our needs for water, food, shelter as well as engaging in activities that make our lives enjoyable – including leisure activities and entertainment – we don’t cause damage to our environment or deplete resources that we can’t renew.  We at Munga endeavor to leave the environment as untouched as possible as seen in our bush-like landscape.  It’s much more than just being “green.” So let’s take care of earth, remember it’s our only home!!!

 

Avani Resort

On the way to Livingstone Island.  Let’s hope the elephants don’t follow us there …

 

Jollyboys Backpackers Lodge

Woop Woop! Let’s do a little dance!

Jollyboys has won the Best Hostel in Zambia Award 2018 from Hostel World.

Jollyboys guests are the BEST! This award means the world to us as it is totally based on guest reviews. Thank you!

 

Livingstone’s Adventure

Our quad bike trips are one of the best ways for families to experience the Victoria Falls.

We have trips to suit small children, as well as longer bush rides.

 

     KAFUE NATIONAL PARK

As a reminder, much of Kafue is closed – the lodges in the north and Nanzhila in the south.  The other lodges remain open – along the Spinal Road including those on Lake Itezhi-Tezhi, around The Hook and those via Mumbwa in the east.  Ila Lodge is having a break in February, but will be open again in March.

I have found a new lodge, Mapunga, which opened in 2016. It is a bit north of Kafwala with tented rooms and a campsite.  I will plonk it on the map soon.

 

Mayukuyuku Camp

The wild dogs are back!

A few days ago our wild dog pack has returned to the camp area.

First seen on Pontoon Road – just two or three of them then the night before last 8 of them cornered a hippo near the corner turning into the camp. They kept blocking the hippo but in the end, the hippo managed to get back to the river

 

Nanzhila Plains Safari Camp

WE NEED A NAME! The lovely male lion we have seen throughout 2017 is now clearly the resident male in charge! He also seems to be looking after not 1, but 2 prides in the Nanzhila area…please help us by suggesting a name for him!

 

Mukambi

Here are some photographs of Fig Tree Camp being constructed in 2015.  And, below, what it looks like now.  (Fig Tree is closed until May but Mukambi is open)

 

Wild Wonderful World

A glimpse into the daily life of rescued orphan elephants in Zambia. We visited the Elephant Orphanage Project, a joint project between GRI – Zambia and DNPW. We first spent time at the Lilayi Elephant Nursery in Lusaka, where the youngest, most vulnerable calves are nursed back to health. When they are old enough, well enough and ready to be weaned off milk, they transfer to the Kafue Release Facility in the Kafue National Park, which is where we visited next. It was here we learned how a team of dedicated keepers and researchers help the orphans to take their final steps back to a life in the wild.

 

     LOWER ZAMBEZI

Lower Zambezi National Park is closed but Chiawa Game Management Area remains open.  Kiambi and Kanyemba are easy to reach by self-drive but if you want to drive further, check on road conditions.  If there has been lots of rain, it can get boggy.

 

Royal Zambezi Lodge

Wild Dog vs Buffalo – WATCH THIS absolutely incredible footage of SEVEN Wild Dog and a LARGE herd of Buffalo – captured on video by our guide Wallace Kapomba, just YESTERDAY, on a game drive with some very lucky guests ! WOW !

 

Kanyemba Lodge & Kanyemba Island Bush Camp

Some spectacular pictures taken by our guest Marcus Vüllers a couple of weeks ago….

Thank you for the talent!

 

Mvuu Lodge

“A day on the deck”.

A time-lapse of around 3 hours condensed into 40 seconds of the view across the Zambezi from the deck at Mvuu Lodge, watch until the end for storm that past over the river from Mana pools.

 

Baines’ River Camp

Always such a pleasure to watch the beautiful impala during the rutting season, when the bachelors clash in the bush and the sounds of snorts and crashing horns echoes through the bush as they vie for top mating honours…

 

Conservation Lower Zambezi

We were happy to welcome a timid visitor at the CLZ basecamp today! A Speke’s hinge-back tortoise frequents our office every year and it didn’t want to skip 2017!

 

     SOUTH LUANGWA NATIONAL PARK

Between Mfuwe and Chichele there are all-weather roads, so lodges in this main area remain open.  However all the bush camps are closed.

In Nsefu, Nsefu Camp has been closed for most of January but is now open until May.  Tena Tena and Tafika are closed until May.

The lodges in Lupande Game Management Area remain open.

 

Robin Pope Safaris

Being a little giant in South Luangwa can be exhausting so this little elephant found a comfy spot for his well-deserved nap.

Elephants rarely lie down when they sleep so this was a special moment to witness.

 

The Bushcamp Company

When a giraffe looks this little, you know it’s a tall tree!

photo by Mfuwe Lodge guest Lesley Weaver

 

Marula Lodge

Watch this till 55 secs when the wild dogs change their minds. The wild dogs had just stolen a carcass from a leopard and then the hyena tried to steal it from the pack! Lots of green season action. Thanks to guest John Dilling for the footage.

 

Croc Valley Camp

“The greater the storm, the brighter your rainbow”

Photo by Vic Crankshaw

 

Kafunta Safaris

The Luangwa River in the wet and dry season! Same spot!

Photo by Edward Selfe Photography

Time for our annual break! Kafunta River Lodge will be closed for the rainy season. A good time to do big scale maintenance and give our safari guides a well deserved holiday! The lodge will reopen on March 29th.

 

Flatdogs Camp

as we try to be more flexible in the New Year, I thought I’d share these yoga influenced pics – full body stretch, downward cat and savasana ginger style!!

 

Wildlife Camp

Some Lion photos from our December 2017 park drive. Old Ginger was left baby sitting while Mom and the other girls were resting quite a distance away. !!! Looks like hard work. Photos by Tara Miles

     LIUWA PLAIN NATIONAL PARK

Liuwa Plain is closed to self-drive.  The park is inundated by the Luanginga and Luambimba Rivers which have overflowed their banks.  However, King Lewanika Lodge is open for fly-in guests.

 

Time + Tide Norman Carr Safaris

Wobbly knees and fuzzy ears – meet the newest residents of the Liuwa Plain!

Photos from Tracks Safaris’ recent adventure to Time + Tide King Lewanika Lodge

 

     NSUMBU NATIONAL PARK

Ndole Bay

A client pic taken at sunset from the Ndole Bay Deck over Lake Tanganyika, Zambia. Thanks for sharing!

Resident wood owl in Ndole Bay Lodge.

 

SIAVONGA

Eagles Rest

Pretty in pink on the lake