The Mighty Victoria Falls is well known around the world for being one of the 7 wonders of the World. Many people associate the Victoria Falls with Zimbabwe but often forget that the view of the Falls is shared with another country – Zambia.
A landlocked country in Southern Africa, Zambia offers visitors a wealth of experiences due to its diverse ecosystem. Bordering the Zambezi River gives visitors the opportunity to do more than simply view the Victoria Falls (as magnificent as they may be) – it offers guests the chance to partake in numerous water activities ranging from easy and relaxed sunset cruises or canoe rides to highly adventurous white water rafting (not for the faint-hearted). The first European to see the Falls was David Livingstone, and the town of Livingstone near the Falls was named after him. Locally though the Falls are referred to as ‘Mosi-o-tunya’ which means the ‘thundering smoke’.
The South Luangwa National Park, for example, is one of the most beautiful and diverse wildlife sanctuaries in Africa. The Walking Safari, which is now conducted in numerous game reserves in Africa, began in this Park. Due to the diverse flora in the area, the Park is home to over 400 different bird species. A haven for bird watchers!
The North Luangwa National Park was, until 1984, an untouched wilderness with only one operator being allowed access to conduct walking safaris in the area. In 1989 two scientists were granted special permission to conduct research in the park. Only after this was permission granted to a few safari operators to conduct game walks and game drives in the park. Even today the number of visitors allowed in are strictly controlled in an effort to preserve the untouched beauty of the park as well as to try and prevent poaching and damage to the natural flora and fauna in the park.
The Kafue National Park is Zambia’s oldest and largest national park – covering an area of 22,400 square kilometres. While only a two-hour drive from Livingstone, the park has retained its beauty and remains relatively untouched in its nature. Due to its size and bio-diversity, this park is also home to a large variety of flora and fauna and is one of the few parks in Africa in which sightings of pangolin, aardvark, civet, caracal, honey badgers and otters can be seen in the same area.
So next time you plan your trip to Africa, consider visiting Zambia for its amazing beauty and rich heritage!
SW Africa Destination Management